A couple of months ago we teamed up with Burton to launch a competition, which showcased snowboarding’s creative spirit. The response was awe inspiring, with photographers, filmmaker and artists all highlight exactly why snowboarding is one of the most inventive sports on the planet.
There were hundreds of amazing entries, but one that we all loved was “Throwback Fridays” by Jack Tompkins. In fact, we loved it so much that Jack was made one of the winning finalists. Part of his prize was to jet off to Vail, Colorado, to record the Burton US Open Snowboarding Championship. Now back in the UK, we hooked up with him to find out more about his adventure, his filmmaking and how he got on with the Nokia Lumia 920.
1. What made you enter the #NokiaxBurton and how did you feel when you discovered you were one of the two finalists?
One of the main reasons for entering the competition was the opportunity to show my work to great companies like Nokia and Burton, I felt incredibly privileged to be chosen as one of the finalists, especially with so many incredible entries. I was really honoured to have people that I look up to the industry such as Gabe L’Heureux and Blotto taking time to look at my work and was really stoked to see their comments!
2. What’s the story behind your winning entry?
For a few years now I’ve been lucky enough to be the videographer for Onyx Snowboard School. Head Coach, Baden Knifton is an incredibly driven and passionate guy and he’s become a great friend so working with him is always fun! He really wanted to try and capture the unique ‘vibe’ of Onyx Snowboard School, which is difficult to sum up in a few words but basically encompasses the highest standards of teaching with a ‘don’t take yourself too seriously’ attitude and the result is pure enjoyment from coaches and clients.
The video that was submitted was part of a longer production showing highlights from the two week Les Deux Alpes summer camp. The last section was “Throwback Friday”, a celebration of all things retro where on the last day everyone heads up the mountain and throws old-school tricks in bright one-piece snowboard suits. Hopefully the video captures the fun that was had that day!
3. What do you think of Vail and the US Open?
Vail was incredible! We were treated to a powder day during the trip and couldn’t believe how many untouched spots we found, especially after only getting on the lifts in the afternoon after a morning of filming. Really can’t wait to go back and explore the whole mountain!
The opportunity to film at the US Open was unbelievable, to have Torstein Horgmo, Mark McMorris and Shaun White throwing incredible tricks just a few feet away from you was just amazing. I felt incredibly lucky to be able to capture their riding and hopefully can do their talent justice with the final edit.
4. What were your first impressions of the Lumia 920? Which features most impressed you and why?
What struck me most about the Lumia 920 was the quality of the video. The 1080p HD footage was brilliant, I took my DSLR with me on the trip but hardly used it because the Lumia was so good!
The interface was probably my favourite feature, it was really intuitive and easy to use, which was especially helpful when having to quickly switch between settings as the weather conditions changed. You can also operate the touch screen using gloves which was awesome for shooting in the mountains!
5. If you had to share three top film making tips, shooting with the Nokia Lumia 920 what would they be?
1. Learn by doing.
The Lumia 920 has a great camera but it doesn’t work exactly like DSLR’s. After a few sessions with the camera you begin to learn how to move and position it to get the shots that you want. The techniques and movements are different from DLSR filmmaking but you soon learn how to move the camera to get great results.
2. Keep it steady.
Slow and steady movements worked best when trying to capture panning or moving shots. If you’re planning to use it to do snowboard follow cam’s practice keeping the camera steady in your hand and letting your arm and body absorb the movements when riding down the slopes.
3. Get the accessories.
Nokia very kindly provided us with magnetic fisheye, wide angle and macro lenses that attached really easily to the camera and also a portable battery charger that was great to take out on the slopes as the cold temperatures drain batteries quicker than normal. With all the accessories the Lumia 920 was a fantastic all round camera.
We’re very happy to hear that Jack enjoyed his time so much and that the Nokia Lumia 920 proved itself both on and off the slopes of Vail. We’ll have the chance to see for ourselves how well in worked out when we showcase Jack’s film sometime soon. In the meantime, why not check more of this fantastic filmmaker’s work at www.vimeo.com/jacktompkins