The past few season I have had the opportunity to ride with, and film with, a Southeast Michigan Native, Jordan Gasper. Including his own film work, he has contributed several photos and videos to MiSkiReport.com this season. This past week I had the opportunity to interview him – here's what came out of it.
First off, how old are you?
- Is this a trick question? I’m 17. Pretty young compared to some freelancers, but that means I get more time to progress, right?
What do you call home?
- I like to call my home the mitten. It's nice being in an urban area in SE Michigan where I live right now. However, if you drive 4 hours or so, you escape into Northern Michigan’s beauty. It’s almost like a whole different state. It’s something unique that most “homes” don’t have. I can be skiing on trash dumps where we get less than 25 inches of snow a year, and then drive up to the U.P. to Mt. Bohemia where they average 300 inches a year and triple the vertical drop the hills have down here. It's a very two-faced state, which is why I love it.
How did you get into filming?
- Almost 2 years ago, I decided to pick up a Canon DSLR as my first “real” camera. We were always documenting our ski edits and our summers on low-end cameras. I decided I wanted to make something more out of it, and that year I made an edit recapping our summer.
What do you consider your local hill to be?
- Skiing wise, my local hill (Pine Knob – Mt.Holly) isn’t the prime destination. However, with the good group of riders that ride there on the reg, it’s for sure a great time. We may not get a ton of snow, have pristine features, or even be able to ski on real snow, but we have a huge crew of riders, which makes everything tons of fun. That is always the end goal.
What kind of equipment do you use?
- Right now I am using a Canon T3i with a few lenses. I also use all different types of stabilization systems, such as a Glidecam, to make the shots the best they can be.
What is your favorite part of filming?
- My favorite part of filming is when a rider stomps a trick that they have been trying for a while. Sometimes you are working for hours to get a single shot. It’s a great way not to only document things, but be artistic in the process. There are no rules, and creativity can go very far. I also love it when I get to shoot with great riders. I took a few laps with the Inspired Crew this past season. Phil Casabon, Paul Bergeron, and Kevin Perron were some of the coolest guys I have met on snow. It was definitely the highlight of my season.
Is there any downside to shooting in Michigan skiing wise?
- There is not a huge disadvantage, but it isn’t as good as shooting out west. You get a lot of gloomy, cloudy days here. The features aren’t very “big” here either, which isn’t great for appearance. Lastly, the scenery isn’t great in SE Michigan. I guess that all of those disadvantages do make it different though. Our features aren’t very polished up either, but hey, that’s why some great riders come out of this state.
Do you film anything other than skiing?
- Yes sir. I film anything, really. Behind skiing, I love to film cliff jumping, long boarding, etc. I have shot documentaries and music videos before, which is also something I really enjoy. Promos and short films are also fun. Anything that involves me behind a camera, I would love to film haha.
So, I heard that you are 2013 X-Games, Big Air, gold medalist Henrik Harlaut’s chauffeur?
- I guess that’s what they are calling me these days, eh? But yes, I got the chance to pick up Henrik from the airport coming home from Aspen after the X-Games. It was definitely pretty sick to be able to meet and talk with him.
Lastly, do you plan to make a career out of filming and photography?
- Right now, I’m really keeping my options open. I know it will be something that will stick with me forever, but I’m not really sure if I want to make a career out of it yet.
Thanks for the interview Griffin, and thanks to Jason Dodge for always keeping Facebook and Twitter updated with my latest edits. Expect more content to come out this summer, as well as next winter. Keep it real!
Here is Jordan's season edit from this year.
Did you like Jordan’s edit? Check out some more of his stuff at http://vimeo.com/user8219966 and http://www.newschoolers.com/membervideos/126808.0/-J-Gasper-.