Life moves fast, way too fast. It’s rare to catch a moment where you can slow it right down and appreciate the small things, completely aware of your surroundings. That’s what were serving you up today!
We caught up with Burton Snowboards ‘One World’ director to chat all things Maria Thomsen and slowing things down.
I highly recommend watching this one on a screen larger than your phone, with the sound way up.
938 frames per second is how fast (or slow) the camera we used for this shoots. This video is played back at 24 frames per second so for each second of real life – this will play back 39 seconds. That means this board slide from Maria actually took a bit less than 3 seconds.
Video editing is really just manipulating time. You can speed things up, or slow them down, or re-arrange them to best suit what you’re trying to tell or show. It’s one of the most fun parts of editing when you can figure out the perfect combination of all that to make something feel right. It’s called “editing” because you’re actually editing what happened.
When a clip or shot just plays out with no edits, it can be really cool. “Long take shots” are always a crowd pleaser, and something most directors dream about putting together – like this clip from the Burton Presents intro I directed in 2013 – holy shit that was 7 years ago). The actual shot was almost 3 minutes long and involved a lot of choreography.
The inverse of that, can be really simple, like this shot from Christian Haller 2018 movie Soft. This shot blew my mind. I saw Hitsch while we were filming a different Burton Presents in Switzerland, and he told me he had a 3 minute long shot of a method for a movie he was working on and I couldn’t wait to see. When I finally did it was just so mesmerizing. I had seen phantom shots, but rarely had I seen one play out in it’s super slow motion for the full duration of the shot. You need to have patience to appreciate it (it doesn’t fit into a 15 second story very well) but it’s just really cool to see something so simple, so slow, you pick up every flap of a jacket, and every piece of snow.
Anyway, it was really cool, and I wanted to see more of it. When planning these ‘OneWorld’ episodes I knew I really wanted to try to replicate a shot like this, but wanted to do it in the streets. Thanks for the inspiration Hitsch and sorry for copying you!
To do it in the streets was a little complicated – we didn’t have much money to pull this off and it’s pretty expensive to rent cameras that shoot so slow. When filming in the streets, it’s pretty common to get kicked out of spots and whole days can get wasted pretty easily. We only had enough money to rent the camera for a day so wanted to get the “ok” to shoot at a spot before renting.
Originally we were going to shoot in SLC here at the Vivent center, we lined up permission and had a few days ear marked to shoot and were ready to pull the trigger on a rental. We had a whole crew ready to go and make a big production of it. We were going to have a dog running in the background, birds in the run in to the rail, cars driving down the street in the landing, etc etc – we were inadvertently diverting from the beautiful simpleness of the Hitsch shot that we all loved. It was kinda stressful but overall felt good about it, and then it didn’t snow in SLC. Too many things needed to align for it to work out, so we scrapped the idea and started thinking of other cool things we could do instead.
A few weeks later I joined Joe Carlino in Minnesota to shoot street stuff with Maria, Niels, Ethan, and Luke. I had kind of put off the idea of the slow motion thing, but then Joe and I started talking and he made me realize it could be WAY less complicated, and there are plenty of no bust spots in MN.
We talked to the crew about different spots and tricks and found a spot in Minneapolis that we could rent from. I only had a few days before I had to go to the US Open and unfortunately the weather didn’t cooperate with us and I had to leave before we actually shot it.
Joe and Kai (who flew in when I left) crushed the shot. They found a good (no bust) spot, the kinks in the feature meant we’d get some cool board flex or could gap to the down and was visually pretty interesting. To add some texture in the form of flying snow, we got Ethan a new snowblower (I think that’s him pushing it in the background). The whole crew hit the rail a few times and we’ve got some other sick shots (like Niels bail from the #OneWorld trailer) that we’ll probably release later, Maria’s shot was fire. She is a fucking boss.
This slice of beauty, is all about the ramble above. Slowing things down, real slow. Maria Thomsen is a stand out in the new film (make sure to watch), breaking boundaries in the female street snowboarding scene. She throws down hammers, rapid fire throughout the entire film. So this is a nice little moment, for you all to enjoy. Maria sliding down a kink to absolute perfection. Bellissimo (very beautiful).