Hailing from the Gold Coast, Queensland, Tim Caraco is a photographer and film maker of various subjects. Luckily for us, one of the those subjects are his friends and more importantly, their vintage motorcycles. Tim’s ability to capture his experiences through a lens is truly special, with a natural talent that cannot be learned overnight.
We sat down with Tim to discuss his journey from first getting behind the camera, to shooting for magazines and hosting his own exhibition.
Tim Caraco Photography
“Where do I start, I’ve kind of always been into photography and video. Anything to do with capturing the moment, I realised from a young age that I was pretty shit at painting and drawing.
There are photos of me at 6 years old with a camera documenting a local bushfire. By 11 I had made my first skate “film”. Basically I would edit everything in camera by rewinding the tape and re-recording a trick until it all flowed.
By the time high school rolled around I was very interested in documenting everything we did as rebellious teenagers… At this point I was learning photography at school, I ended up dropping out of school and pursuing photography full time. A lot of us were dirt bike riders so I was taking photos on every trip we went on. There was always that itch to take your dirt bike on the road and this eventually evolved into my good friend Cohen building me a little 250 chop. Everything from then is history, a lot of us got into the vintage chopper scene, meeting some incredibly cool people along the way. As my photography skills were progressing so were my friends fabricating abilities, they’ve built some really cool bikes and I love capturing them with that old vintage feel.”
With such an emotive touch to his photography, we asked Tim to provide us with 10 significant images and share the stories behind them with us. The responses give such a nice insight into the mindset of Caraco during the shots, where his inspiration comes from and the bond that motorcycles can build between friends.
1. “After my pal Nicky Dues had finished up his Ironhead build “Voodoo Child” we went out on a ride to snap some images for a local magazine. As with anything old, it tends to break. We had pulled up at this awesome spot littered with hay bails. Just as he was getting off his bike to assess the damage I captured this photo.”
2. “Another good friend of mine Cohen’s appropriately titled “mud slinger” Panhead. We had planned to go out and get some shots of Cohen tearing it up in the mud, but the weather wasn’t on our side- it was completely pissing down with rain. My camera’s weathered proof but still I knew in my head 10 more minutes of this shit and my camera will be a sinker! Things weren’t going to plan (when do they ever) but I ended up with this killer shot of Cohen trying to start the old girl up with a long empty road in the background.”
3. “One sunny afternoon shooting a little video clip, this epic cloud positioned itself over the sun. I got the video shot in the bag and told Nick to speed back behind the canefields again and “give it everything you got.” The dust flying up backlit by the sun really nails the photo. One of my all time favourites.”
4. “I’d like to say girls ride around on my bike naked in the forest all the time, alas this is not the case. Fully planned shot that ended up going viral, I wonder why…”
5. “Again I wish we lived in the 70’s when chicks got tanked and rode on the back of bikes topless, I want to shoot more of this.”
6. “I really dig shooting in stormy conditions, the clouds always give the photo that dramatic feel, especially when someone’s standing on top of the bike going 80km/h with no helmet on and sand shoes. Thanks for putting yourself in danger for a great image.”
7. “Days like this. Sometimes you get those days when almost everything is perfect. The weather is epic, the air is nice and cool, you’ve got a chick on the back and a camera strapped to your sissy bar.”
8. “Same day as number 4. A beautiful landscape, an amazingly crafted machine and a babe in lingerie, what more do you need in a photo?”
9. “I recently did a trip to Melbourne and met a bunch of really rad and humble chopper dudes. Me and a mate had organised a ride down along the great ocean road – but with any great plan comes terrible weather. We ended up getting a really good turnout the following day for a ride to St. Kilda. I snapped this image of Kev surfing his Panhead… Shortly after we pulled over he told me it was the first time he tried it, epic!”
10. “Definitely one of the best solo riding experiences I’ver ever had. I’d been crashing at Pumps house in Byron Bay, I woke up really early in the morning with every intention of blasting down 7 Mile Beach. After riding through the mountain and getting spat out at the beach it was an amazing feeling, no one insight. There is something about blasting down the beach at sunrise in 3rd pinned, tank slapping and dodging waves and seagulls that’s really peaceful. I really want to do this again real soon!”
Freedom Machines Exhibition
Tim recently held his first solo exhibition, showcasing his photography work at Hinge Gallery on the Gold Coast. His creative flare can be seen across the board as he took the event to the next level, introducing Harley & Triumph chops into the space, as well as live music and tattooing.
His works however were the obvious highlight, instilling the emotion of raw adventure that can only be found behind the bars. We asked him about the event and where the idea came from, this is what he had to say:
“The idea for Freedom Machines came about through another personal project I have been working on called “Halfway to Knowhere”, a film exploring all the adventures motorcycles have taken us on the last 4 years. It has been an ongoing project and me and my good pal Nick had been chatting about having a show around the premiere of the movie. As time went on I figured out the project was going to be a lengthy one and I decided to have an exhibition featuring all the imagery I had captured instead. The idea of showcasing motorcycles inside a gallery and using them as the artwork along with the images sounded awesome. After a little push from my friend Matty Bones I had locked in a date at the Dust Temple and started to promote the exhibition.
The opening night was a great success with the place reaching capacity before 9pm, there were people lining up at the front to get in and the bar was drunk dry in light speed pace. Mike Jonze did a great job of revving the crowd up…. literally.
After putting in a few years work and all my friends supporting me it was an amazing feeling to have an event that had never been done before, pulled off with perfect execution. If all goes to plan it will be a yearly show! Thanks to everyone that came from far and wide to make it such a riveting night, especially from Sydney it means EVERYTHING.
We are also planning on taking it down to Melbourne and possibly Sydney.”