"Often, the picture in the Patagonia ad is the best one in the magazine" - Yvon Chouinard in Let My People Go Surfing.
Patagonia's general marketing perspective is "be authentic and truthful, and that will create your credibility and image," and I think we've done a natural job of emulating that in our way. We can't keep up with their photos, though. They're like a couple hundred million dollar company and we're... not. And they defined the way outdoor product art works, and we didn't. But our SKU count is way way closer than our relative sizes would dictate. We don't have an art department, or marketing department, or any departments.
We try to take good photos, but the number one mission for site photos is to give you an idea of what any set of wheels would look like. So while we'd love to give you glorious magic hour photos of authentic users in inspiring use conditions, we're limited in what we can do there. Sometimes we have the opportunity to get a nice shot of a set of wheels before it goes out, but the major focus is on getting the wheels to the authentic people who are going to use them, in inspiring magic hour use conditions or not. Hence, we have a lot of manufacturer stock photos in the product pages.
In the meantime, here are some of the photos that we've either taken ourselves or that we've been given which are the kind of photos that we'd like to have a lot more of, but we'd need 50 hour days and a LOT bigger travel budget to get. A bit of a greatest hits tour of our Instagram through the years. (they get a bit blurred in translation, sorry for that).
On the other hand, we have been diligent about having good copy to accompany the product pages. With the latest upload of 650b, gravel, and mountain builds, that sort of cracked. Too much stuff at once. We've always been detail rich, and blog posts are better positioned to give the info we think you need about a set of hubs or a rim choice than would fit in a product description. For now, we've used a lot of straight cut and paste from the component manufacturers to fill in descriptions, but our ongoing mandate is to find and execute an efficient way to convey "what does this setup do well, and why would you choose this over other similar builds?" Some of those are in paste up.
A big part of who we are and what we do is getting you the info you need to be confident you've made a great choice that will suit your needs and preferences. It's just bike wheels, sure, but there's a lot of technical stuff going on with them, and you deserve a good conversation and good info beyond "these will be rad!" if you're going to make that kind of commitment.