Recently, we’ve been having a lot of fun shooting cycling video’s in Dublin. Together with documentary director, cameraman and cycling fanatic Paddy Cahill, we’ve filmed the back alleys of Portobello, the pedestrian paths along the Grand Canal, and the traffic-filled tarmac of Camden street. And in filming, we found each urban setting was – in its own way – great for cycling. We’re sharing the video’s below, so you can see for yourself.
The back alleys in Portobello are the most comfortable cycling area. Portobello is a harbour of red-bricked houses without through traffic. Only its Lennox Street has some boutiques, a design agency and the Bretzel Bakery; all with well-kept colourful storefronts – telling you these entrepreneurs devote attention to every last detail of their business. But apart from Lennox Street, the neighbourhood is built exclusively for the families that live there. The atmosphere is classic and timeless, and reminds you of Mary Poppins. So it’s here we shot a film about a Lady on a bicycle; with a star appearance by cycling fashion designer Georgia Scott.
The pedestrian paths along the Canal would have beaten the Portobello cycling experience, if only it wasn’t illegal to cycle there. However, despite the illegality, clandestine cyclists and pedestrians seem to co-exist peacefully during off-peak hours. Cyclists use the path to get to the old willow near Rathmines Road, pausing every now and then to stare at the swans or swerving aside to allow a pedestrian to pass. When we were shooting a film with Gavin and his daughter Isabel (“Izzie”) in a delivery bicycle, we decided to use these paths on our way to feed the ducks. When you watch the film, you’ll see in the end no ducks turned up, so we fed the swans instead.
Camden Street is energetic, filled with taxi’s, shops, and unloading lorries. It’s the street where Dublin City Council’s Cycling Officer enjoys his daily commute most; seeing the street as an industrious convergence traffic, like a human ant farm. It was the perfect scenery for our film with Buzz Fendall – Dublin’s most famous (and least hairy) barrista. In that film, Buzz packs his delivery bike with ‘Fixx’ coffee packets. ‘Fixx’ is a cofffee blend Buzz engineered himself – and it’s rapidly getting popular with other coffee shops in town. His colleague Monica then goes off on her delivery route. Click on the film below, to see what a working day looks like for her.