Mountain bike accident leads to stunning visual project and new career

After a mountain bike accident left Banner Elk-based adventurer William Mauney with severe injuries that interrupted his normally active lifestyle, he decided to pick up a high-quality DSLR camera and figure out how to use it.

“Over the course of a year, despite requiring three surgeries and weeks of physical therapy, having to use crutches, canes, slings and braces, I somehow managed to take nearly a hundred thousand photos and dozens of time-lapses,” explains Mauney on his Vimeo page. “Many of these images and scenes were shot while recovering from knee and shoulder surgeries. I spent my downtime researching and learning on-line how to do these amazing things that cameras can do.”

The result, North Carolina – Mountains to the Sea – A Time-Lapse Journey, contains 10 months of time-lapse photography. Locations in North Carolina include Banner Elk, Grandfather Mountain, Beech Mountain, Sugar Mountain, Kings Mountain, the Outer Banks, Salvo, Rodanthe, Hatteras Island, the Pamlico Sound and more.

“I am thrilled to have had so many people enjoy my time-lapse edit,” Mauney tells Mountain Xpress. “It’s had nearly 300,000 views in the past week and a half.”

Mauney credits picking up a camera with saving his life after his accident, which happened while training for a mountain bike race. “It was something to look forward to and focus on,” he explains.

It also propelled him into a new career. “I started a photography business out of necessity,” he says. “Unable to work after [the] accident, this was something I could still do at home. I spent months researching and learning about photography.”

Fully healed and back to his active lifestyle, Mauney is now a professional adventure photographer, who specializes in skiing, kayaking, mountain climbing and hiking. He films events such as “mud runs,” fundraisers, weddings and contests.

For more information, visit Mauney on facebook.

One of Mauney’s videos appeared in a Mountain Xpress post about a 2,800-acre fire that burned sections of Linville Gorge in November, 2013.

Mauney’s YouTube video channel is here.

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