While there's a certain calming beauty to the drizzle of Portland, the gray skies make me yearn for the warm days of summer. A couple months ago, I was lucky enough to meet the wonderful Grenney Family as we shot a short video to promote summer activities at Deer Valley Resort. I forgot to post the video when the weather was more appropriate, but I thought it'd be nice to post it now before we totally make the mental transition to Fall activities and dreaming of powder turns.
Snowbasin Resort has been using this short video to advertise the sale of its 2017-18 season passes, so I thought I'd post it again to help others visualize what we're all looking forward to in the relatively near future here in Northern Utah. I put this edit together shortly after shooting video over the course of two days last season. Our original intent was to create b-roll of the lodges with gorgeous vistas of cliffs and mountain tops caked in white, as well as happy, smiling, mellow family lifestyle shots. What ended up happening was that it did nothing but snow and snow and snow more. We rolled with the punches (if getting tons of wonderful powder can be considered a "punch"), accepted that Mother Nature wasn't going along with our plans, and we changed our agenda and to shot run after run of skiers and boarders enjoying the powder with free refills. When shooting outdoors you're always at the mercy of the weather, but sometimes it surprises you with conditions that are even better than you could have hoped for.
"And I learned to wander. I learned what every dreaming child needs to know -- that no horizon is so far that you cannot get above it or beyond it.”
Beryl Markham, West with the Night
I want to share this article here before the dustings of snow on the nearby peaks and the decreasing hours of daylight slowly push my dreams away from exploring green hills to ones of wandering around bright white peaks. I wrote this article for ZEAL Optics and it was originally posted on their social media and blog last month.
We've been off the grid for the past two months as we loaded up and embarked on a two month odyssey in our Sprinter van - Miss BAV'y. We explored to the west and then slowly made our way up into Canada and back down to our home here in Utah. It was an epic "wander about" and the lack of a defined itinerary added to the sense of adventure, the spontaneity, and our overall fun. We're already looking forward to our future van travels.
I even occasionally got out the drone and shot some aerial footage along the way. Here's one example from the Northern California coast on the Pacific Coast Highway.
Here are two videos I produced for Solitude Mountain Resort to help promote the resort's array of summer activities. The Big Cottonwood Canyon is such an oasis that's easily reached by a short drive from the city below. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly you can climb up and out of the heat of the Salt Lake City valley into the cool, green alpine climate surrounding Solitude Mountain Resort.
As I do late spring cleaning of my hard drives and consolidate project files in preparation for our summer travels, I didn't want to simply file away long b-roll assembly videos of the various drone footage I've shot since last summer. I did make the b-roll assemblies, but I also created some one minute long videos utilizing the best of the drone shots. Aerial views are spectacular, but as more and more people venture into the world of flying drones the world is becoming inundated with numerous aerial shots of all sorts of places, people, and things. That being said, I'm still a sucker for a nice aerial shot, especially if it features a location that's especially beautiful or remote. The videos here were shot either on the Phantom 4 or the newer Mavic Pro. Both of the drones are amazing creations utilizing the best and latest technologies & engineering -- the way the Mavic Pro folds to such a small size is a wonder of creativity and design. While I don't fly the drones often, just one or two shots can add a special touch to most videos.
FAREWELL TO WINTER
THANKS FOR THE EPIC TIMES.
Here's the latest "Day Of" edit I created yesterday for Snowbasin Resort featuring Alexandra Pallas.
Below is the first of the "Day Of" edits I created yesterday for Snowbasin Resort featuring Greg Roman.
What a great snow year it has been out here in Utah! The "Snowpocalypse" continues as I type - we woke up to several inches of snow (not in the forecast) after shoveling 2-3+ feet off of our driveway yesterday. It's hard to complain, since the skiing has been amazing day after day. Deer Valley Resort hired us to create a series of "Day of" videos in which we shoot, edit, and release videos the same day. While it has been a logistical and planning challenge to make sure everything is in order on each day of a shoot, the results have been successful and we've gotten the first two videos out the door on time.
Solitude Mountain Resort hosted four days of ski and snowboard competition in preparation for hosting the 2019 World Cup finals. The 2017 "Snowpocalypse" continued during the all the days, but it didn't hamper the racers or the fans. We shot b-roll of the events for use in future advertising, but in the meantime we created this short edit to promote the current competition. Thanks again to everyone, employees and volunteers, who made this such a successful event.
Deer Valley Resort is hosting the FIS Freestyle World Cup competition this February, so to promote the event we created a short video featuring Olympians Brad and Bryan Wilson. Besides being Deer Valley Resort skiing ambassadors, they're just nice, friendly, outgoing, good guys. We wish them all the best on this season's competition circuit.
We love Powder Mountain and the fun, laid back vibe that is prevalent at this Northern Wasatch gem. With a new expansion into Mary's Bowl this resort now has even more terrain to match the desires and skill levels of every skier and boarder. Powder Mountain Snowsports asked me to create this video to promote their private lessons which features touring skiers and boarders around the 9000+ acres of terrain. Thanks to the skiers and staff who helped make this video.
An Ogden local and a well known name in the ski racing community, Scott Hoffman, ex-US ski team member and NCAA National Champion, enjoyed a long ski racing career that included years as a successful pro ski racer. After retiring from racing, Scott struggled against his addictions, and his life spiraled down a path from which he thought he could never escape. After spending a year in prison, Scott emerged sober and with a new inner peace. He has dedicated his life to giving back to society, the skiing community, and people who are currently fighting to overcome their own addictions.
Scott and I worked on this video over the past nine months and hope you enjoy the video as much as we did making it. Please share it with others who you think would be inspired by Scott's short story of finding his way.
After our recent wave of snow storms, it seems like last week happened so very long ago with its brown landscapes, warm temperatures, and noticeable lack of snow. We had just cancelled our reservations in Sun Valley for Thanksgiving and quickly pondered our options. It didn't take us long to realize all our collective thoughts lead us to the same conclusion; a van trip to Moab.
We enjoyed our Thanksgiving dinner at home in the Wasatch, then set off early the next day. Putting our lives in the hands of our teenaged daughter, she steered Miss BAV'y southward, but her awesome mix tape kept our nerves calm (distracted?) and our spirits high. In less than 5 hours we were on a hike to see an arch. The trip ended up being a quick whirlwind of fun times (despite being woken up by a highway patrol officer and told we had to move to a campground...is sleeping in a big white van actually camping?, I ask).
The trip also allowed me to test a few settings on my drone. The Phantom 4 is so much better than previous models with its biggest advantages over older models being ease of use, reliability, and an integrated camera without the distortion of a GoPro. The MOAB video is nothing more than a fun excuse to practice my drone "flying" skills and my drone editing skills. All footage was shot in 4K at 24fps. In hindsight I should have shot it in 30p for smoother pans. In the future I want to test the 1080p60 and 1080p120 modes, but the draw to shoot 4K all the time is just so darned appealing I don't know how soon I'll get to those modes.
Despite losing his way during his 20s, Dave Rosen never lost his love for skiing. Sober and motivated, Dave is determined to make up for lost time.
Dave reached out to me a couple years ago, and we agreed to meet at Powder Mountain, Utah one day to see if we had the chemistry to make a good working team. I was blown away by Dave's abilities as a skier, especially his eagerness to hit big jumps off piste, but even more so I was impressed by his professionalism and desire for perfection. That first day of skiing together went so well that we're been working together regularly to create photo and video media.
Over time Dave told me how his addiction to alcohol had taken over his life, but how he'd been sober for several years after seeking help through Alcoholics Anonymous. I thought he had a story worth sharing, but I didn't want to simply shoot a "talking head" documentary. I approached him with the idea of this video with a voiceover, no obvious interview, and the video stylistically being divided into two parts.
Dave embraced the concept and over several days we were able to get a lot of great shots in the park and off piste at Powder Mountain. I don't normally shoot in the park, so it was a fun challenge doing multiple laps shooting various angles in slow motion and with the camera stabilizer in an effort to best show Dave doing his thing.
We're looking forward to this season, and we already have plans to shoot throughout Northern Utah.
Dogs on snow in slow motion!...who doesn't love that? On the same day they announced their opening day for the 2016-17 season, Snowbasin Resort also officially released this video we created featuring "The Avy Dogs of Snowbasin." Thanks to the Snowbasin Ski Patrol for all their help putting this together. They're a great team who works really hard to keep us safe, and they'd love it if you said "hi" next time you see them up on the mountain. It's officially time to start getting excited for winter!
Sadly, SKILOGIK has closed its doors. We were happy to partner with this company over the past several seasons to help promote their gorgeously designed wood inlay skis. Their products were works of art and skied like a dream. We'll miss their company, their products, and the people who worked so hard to promote such a well made, independent brand. We hope everyone involved with the company finds an equally fulfilling, creative outlet to work at within the outdoor industry. Thanks for the years of excellence!
During the last months of freezing temperatures, when the mountains are still sheathed in white, my mind wanders about imagining the upcoming summer with its excursions deep into the same mountains free of snow, accessible along dry trails, and cut by clear waters full of hungry trout. Well, summer is here and it has been another one full of adventures and wanderings - Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska.
The season is fleeting and the focus is on fun, family, and friends...and a Sprinter van conversion, but that's a story for another day. This summer I scaled back the amount of video I shot and have been working on taking better photos. Whether that happens, I don't know, but in the meantime, this summer has been a fun one.
Now it's time to get in one or two more backpacking trips, start dreaming of winter, and finish editing the various projects that need to be done before the start of the 2016-17 ski season!
Thanks again to Deer Valley Resort for their trust in me to create two graphics based ads for their national online ad campaign for #deervalleysummer. This one is the fifteen second ad. The thirty second ad can be viewed HERE. Both ads were created in After Effects CC.