I didn’t know much about Joe Williams. All I knew was that he had launched his own BMX photo zine, titled Black Block and that we’d somehow attended the same street jam but hadn’t actually met. Whatever, he sent me a copy of Black Block and I really enjoyed flicking through the images – it’s a straight up photo journal documenting BMX riding and lifestyle, both at home and away on trips, purely in black and white.

We thought he was a prime candidate for a PHOTOBOOTH feature so here we are. Hopefully we see another Black Block soon…

AGE: 28
INSTAGRAM: @joewilliamsphoto
WEBSITE: (under construction)


– Tell us a bit about yourself: where you’re from, your involvement with riding and how you got into photography.

“I grew up in a small village on the edge of Dartmoor and have always ridden bikes for the sake of transport. Despite the lack of facilities or older riders I somehow got the idea I wanted a BMX and that was that. Luckily, a few new kids moved to town who were keen to ride and we started jumping the only speed bump in the village. 

My dad always had an old canon A1 that I used to borrow… The results were questionable but either way I have been trying to take photos ever since.”


– What was it that caused a spark with photography?

“Photography and any extreme sport go hand in hand. I was always keen to capture my own, and my friends’ progression.

Ultimately, it was BMX that sparked my interest in photography but after signing up to college/uni I got hyped on photography as a whole.”

“I ride with a load of legit riders
and someone’s gotta do it.”

“I always have a camera somewhere nearby and over the last few years shooting BMX came second to various other photographic endeavours…

After burning through film… and money, I’ve only recently kitted up with something that resembles a digital kitbag and tried to get a bit more serious with riding stuff. I ride with a load of legit riders and someone’s gotta do it.”


– With the internet awash with a constant supply of photos both good and bad, what was it that caught your attention to provide inspiration?

“I’ve chilled out with the web consumption lately, but one guy on my Instagram feed that never disappoints is ‘Boogie’ (@boogiephotographer) – he has been killing it forever.”


– Who gets you stoked nowadays? Either photography wise or with riding?

“Just getting out on the bike and riding/shooting with anyone is enough to get me stoked… I only moved down to Exeter from Bristol last year so it’s good to get out with new riders and see old spots with new eyes, and I’m always stoked to go back to bristol and get things ticked off the list with the BS3 boys. Other than that, just seeing guys like the @metalpegsbmx crew keeping it real. They’ve got another jam coming up and no doubt it’ll be a good’n.”

– What’s your most used equipment, and what is your preferred setup? 

“For the last few months I’ve been broke so have been shooting digi..

I plan on getting the Hasselblad out and getting serious at some point this summer!”



Canon 7D
Samyang 8mm fisheye
Sigma 17-50mm
2 x Yongnuo yn560 speedlights
1 x carboot sale Cobra
2 x Yongnuo RF603 Triggers
Sekonic Flashmate
Various light stands/tripods with hot shoe adaptor
Olympus mju i
Canon AE1
Koni Omega rapid (120)
My girlfriend’s Hasselblad


– To date, what has been the most fulfilling moment with regards to your photography?

“I’m my own worst critic so I’m still hyped to get a photo I am actually happy with.”


– Despite popular belief the life of a BMX photographer isn’t that glamorous. What do you personally get out of your experiences shooting photographs?

“Like I said earlier… I’m still stoked just to be out on a bike rolling with a crew. I’m just as happy to be rolling with a few beers or jibbing a curb but unfortunately I won’t be able to do it forever… Right now I just want to capture it while I can.”

“Being behind the lens is also a great opportunity to dodge the stunts that I don’t have the balls for.”

– If it hasn’t yet taken you where you’d like it to, where would you like this path to lead?

“Both photography and BMX have been the impetus for a lot of rad trips… Hopefully they can keep me inspired for a few more years to come.”


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