Her name is Merry Michau. She wrote 2 times from the UK where is her permanent residence. Her second email below is about her passion for motorcycles, her admiration for custom builders and her love for photographing the lifestyle. In them, she is also frank about the fact that a feature in my website would help…She just did a photographic report on Jesse James and is preparing her latest project. “Shed Life”, for a new exhibition later this year. Her story and a couple of recent shots from her portfolio.
“Firstly I’m a woman in a mens world and I wouldn’t have it any other way. At 7 my dad brought my brother a monkey bike and me a pony.. All I remember thinking was I want the bike not the pony and the rest is history. I am from a long line of bikers in my family. My grandfather and father both rode trials bikes, my grandfather being among the first to do this sport. So you could say it’s in the blood. After owing a few dirt bikes, breaking them, fixing them up with my brother and breaking them again I hit 18 where I took and passed my road test. There was no stopping me then and I somehow managed to persuade my father to invest in a Harley Sportster.
As soon as I saw it I couldn’t understand why everyone wanted to look the same so on this brand new bike I started ripping bits off and changing it to how I wanted it to look. About this time I fell in love with photography but never wanted to go into fashion or advertising, and to be honest struggled to find a place to fit. I was obsessed with war documentary photography specially war but being a woman in a war zone just didn’t seem to be doable. I was still riding bikes and taking lots of photographs of them as a hobby, then one day a friend said to me ‘We have all these amazing bike photographs you’ve done why are you not selling them?” So that’s what I started doing, I can’t say its made me a rich women but it’s my passion, what I eat, sleep and breath. My daughter made me laugh the other day when she said “mom all the photos on your phone are bikes…
Jesse James saw my bike photography and asked me to Austin Texas to work with him. It was also was to say the least totally spellbound by by chance to watch him making stuff. Even if his bikes are not your cup of tea he works hard and makes pretty much everything from scratch, something to be admired. I tried to capture these moments on film that will be part of my upcoming exhibition “Shed Life” later this year. “Shed Life” will also feature lots of bike builders and secret garages. Every time I enter these places I get goose bumps, the smell of gasl and oil, the dimly lit corners and decay waiting to be photographed. I have tried to ask myself why I’m like I am while all my girlfriends are happy shopping, spending time on make up and spa days. As a kid I received an Action man not a Barbie. I had no interest for girls things. When I’m not thinking about my next photo project I’m thinking about a new way to build a bike or being obsessed with Ruby helmets or the fact that Matchless is about to bring out a very cool bike line of clothing. So, I guess there is some girl in me.”