This is the family of Zak and Jennifer Schwank. A few years ago, Zak decided to sell his car and use a bike as his main form of transportation. With three children that he cares for during the day, he has gone through a few different types of cargo bikes. He started with a Madsen, and right now he is using a custom Metrofiet. He sure got a lot of attention riding around Newport Beach with that thing – everyone stopped us to ask about it, which is why I am linking. SUCH a cool bike. SUCH a great family.

Because cycling is a large part of their lives, they wanted to incorporate them into their session.

I always love someone who goes against the grain, and found their decision fascinating and inspiring. I thought it would be interesting to share a bit more of their story with you.

“The more and more I think about why we ride so much the more I come back to being able to give our children some independence. Sure there are environmental, health and financial reasons why we bike instead of drive, but it really boils down to empowering our children. We bike about 6 miles round-trip to school each day and for our children to be able to do that under their own power is empowering for them. We want our children to have the confidence that they can do anything in life and biking is one way we hope to instill that in them.” – Zak Schwank



More info about the Schwank family:

If you are in the Temecula area, you may be interested in joining the Temecula Bike Train that Zak organizes.

Article on the Bike Train.

Valley news story, including a video about the family.




Join the Conversation


  1. Hi Tara! Love your work. Can you tell me anything about that map of the US painted in the parking lot that appears in this shoot? Location? Who painted it? Thank you so much.

  2. Full disclosure, I know the Schwanks and I consider them heroes. Zak has done more for cycling in our area than any other single person. He has a joy for a better world through biking and his family is all in. Can’t believe how you managed to capture the Schwank’s I know so perfectly. Way to go!!!

  3. Susan – it is located in Newport Beach, behind the elementary school, near 15th street. The school uses this portion of the beach for recess – how lucky are they?

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