Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

By Tomas Slavicek   April 29, 2016 | 08:29 am GMT+7
Southeast Asia’s climate makes it easy to ride a motorcycle all year long. We might ride various kinds of motorbikes for different reasons, but we all share the same roads.
Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Ms. Phan Thi Tuyet Mai bought her Honda Lead 110cc bike back in 2012 and has used it since then to go to work, take the children to and from school, and to go shopping. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Tran The Bao is a delivery man. One can see this from the huge bags behind his back. He uses his motorbike for his delivery service job and sometimes, but not very often, to go out with friends and family.

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Hoang Ngoc Hoa is one of the many examples of Vietnamese street workers. He has all of his machines and tools and materials he needs for his work as a locksmith on his bike. He then drives and stops along the streets when he finds his customers. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

For five years Mr. Nguyen Tuong An has been the proud owner of a beautiful Kawasaki W650. He uses his bike for daily transportation, sometimes to go on a trip with a group of friends who have the same interest in motorbikes, or to different provinces like Ha Giang and others. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Le Cong Dinh is a former editor from an automobile magazine in Hanoi. He was redesigning his Ural motorbike to a lighter and more vinduro style machine. He usually rides to get away from the busy city and to connect with nature. He loves motorcycles and wants to show what motorcycle culture and history means to a younger generation of riders. For that reason he established a motorcycle club called Conxeart, where one can learn how to maintain and repair bikes and also connect with other people for trips outside the city. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Emanuele „Arca“ Toppino is an Italian designer living with his wife in Hanoi. In his free time he likes to ride his motorcycle. It is a time for traveling, designing, discovering, and for change. By redesigning motorcycles he wants to express his ideas and it’s also the way that makes him happy. You can see him in the photo with an almost finished chopper style Honda Cub. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Nguyen Quang Khue was born in 1941 and was a captain in the Vietnamese military. He was also the first guy in Vietnam to have Czech bike Jawa 350cc with a sidecar in Northern Vietnam. To ride a motorbike for him means to be alone, just to fly and follow the wind. In the picture you can see him with his Honda FTR 250cc and a sidecar that he made himself. 

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Tran Quang Vinh got his passion for cars, motorbikes and bicycles from his father – a mechanic who used to work in France. He likes the design and shape of different bikes. Now he owns more than one hundred cars, motorcycles and bikes and has a plan to open a museum himself as his legacy.

Photographer's eye: Motorcycle stories

Mr. Nguyen Van Tan always loved Harley Davidson motorcycles and all the style that is connected to these bikes. To get dressed as proper road rider. He rides his Harley Davidson Softail 1600cc with his friends, with the Hanoi Chapter Group. In his day to day life he is a businessman, but one could never guess that from the incredible outfit he wears on the road!

In many of the more developed countries in the world, most people travel back and forth by car, or use public transportation. But in Southeast Asia, or more specifically, here in Hanoi, it is much more common to get around by motorbike or motorcycle. Everyone rides a bike here. Well, almost everyone. 

Whether you were born in Hanoi, or on the other side of the planet, when you hit the road on the busy city streets during daytime traffic we all share a common bond and automatically become in tune with the beating pulse of this metropolis.  

These are stories about everyday rides, weekend excursions, and much much more. Behind many of these photographs there is a much bigger story that is sometimes too lengthy to tell in simply several attached lines of text. But if you let your imagination go even deeper, you will start to see that these photographs are also about the small similarities and differences in all of us. 

All photographs were part of exhibition Play Motorbike that took place at the end of 2015 in Hanoi. The exhibition was done under the generous patronage of The Czech Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam. 

 
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