📷 Rio Asch
“I was this kid at Loretta’s losing my mind… just running around getting as much footage as I can with my Canon Rebel SL1. [They were] probably thinking, ‘Who is this chump?'”
If you want a crash course in how to get somewhere in this convoluted industry of cameras and dirt bikes, take a couple pages out of Jeff Urbahn’s playbook. The kid from Illinois sped onto the scene in 2015 by way of the Motoplayground #1 Undiscovered Movie Shooter Contest, and didn’t slow down until his schooling finally caught up with him this past year. Jeff quickly perked the ears of the Vurbmoto crew on a trip to Loretta Lynn’s in 2015, putting out multiple edits on the now-defunct site. (I know, we’ve been on a Vurbmoto trend basically since the site started, but we’ll bust out soon enough. Lot of people had their hands in that scrap!) From there, he skirted around until he spearheaded the efforts behind the Motoplayground YouTube channel, traveling the country throughout his tenure with the amateur motocross juggernaut before leaving the sport altogether. He now explores the mountains of Eastern Europe while attending school in Italy for the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. And that was just in the last three years.
Discussion includes: Photography and his life abroad, early influences in video, fanning out on Windham and McGrath at Party in the Pasture, and impromptu champagne showers.
*phone starts making beeping noises*
World of Echo: Hello?
Jeff Urbahn: Hey man. Can you hear me now?
Yeah man. What’s up?
Hey. How you doing?
Good. I’m not sure what happened there.
Yeah, I turned my wifi off, that might help. There’s a little delay with this sometimes too, but usually it works decent.
We’ll get it going… I’d like to kick off the interview right away if that’s alright with you?
Yeah man, sounds good to me.
I’ve got plenty of questions here but I wanted to get this out of the way first. What’s an Illinois boy doing all the way in Florence, Italy?
I’m actually here studying for the semester, so I’m studying and living in Florence for four months, which is awesome. I’ve just been traveling a ton. I [get] four day weekends [as well] so that’s been great, just traveling around and taking a bunch of photos, checking everything out in Europe.
I was catching up on you through your Instagram and all of the photos you’ve been taking. You’ve been to Italy, Switzerland… all over the place.
Yeah it’s been awesome. The last two months I’ve been to Switzerland, Germany, France, Austria, and Italy of course.
Was traveling always something you wanted to do, or did this come about through school and you thought to give it a shot?
It’s something I’ve always wanted to do since high school, when I learned about study abroad [programs]. I never knew that much about it but it was always in the back of my mind, I’d think, “That’d be really cool to go do that.”
Once I had gotten into college I kind of wrote it off, but what got me thinking about it again was my interest in landscape photography and hiking. I realized doing study abroad might be a good opportunity to get a lot of photos and work on my portfolio. That’s what really motivated me to look into it again, and I was able to work it out through my school.
Where are you going to school again? I know it’s somehwere in Chicago.
Yeah, it’s actually two hours south of Chicago, at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.
I had that mixed up, my bad. What are you studying there?
Graphic design. It’s been going good so far.
How’s that tie in with your travels? Or are they separate pursuits?
They’re kind of separate, but while I’m here I’m taking design courses. The school I’m at, Lorenzo de’ Midici in Florence has a pretty good design program. I’m taking this [moment in time] as a semester to work on my courses but to also really focus on traveling and doing that kind of thing, then I’ll hit it hard next year to graduate.
You’ve got quite the trigger finger, I’m not sure we’re going to even fit in the filmmaking criteria for this interview! These are some amazing shots though, I was wondering if you could highlight a favorite?
I like my Dream Lake photos from last summer in Colorado, those have always been a favorite of mine because I wanted to do that hike for almost three years, so that always makes it a little bit sweeter. Honestly, I think some of my favorites are ones I haven’t even posted yet. I think that’s kind of how it always is, when you’re filming or shooting photos, especially in the beginning stages because you’re improving so much. I’m happy when I post something, then I go out and [shoot] again and learn some new stuff and think, “I wish I had known this on my last shoot.” I’ve got some cool stuff in storage that’s probably my favorite work I’ve done so far.
Views from Dream Lake, Colorado. On the water in Florence and Venice, Italy.
I get what you’re saying. In the beginning stages of learning something, learning a craft, every next thing you make is the best thing you’ve ever made. You kind of see that progression really quickly, and as you get better those benchmarks become higher. It’s nice to hear that you’re still finding that next level and still have things to strive for.
I think the gaps become smaller, but I think it’s one of those things where it’s always going to be like that. It’s definitely not massive steps [of improvement] that I saw when I first started, but you’re always learning new stuff. I think every time you go out with a camera it’s all about pushing towards getting better and better.
With all of the traveling you’re doing now and the photos you’re taking, are you using that to get in touch with the locals and their scene?
I always try to. It’s kind of hard sometimes, just ‘cause I won’t be in a place for a super long time and I’ll have to get back to school and study. Whenever I’m out doing hikes to get photos, or hanging out in town at the hostel, I always try to meet as many people as I can. Last weekend I was in Chamonix, France, which is like a huge center for snow sports and climbing. I met a pro skier while I was there who was from Colorado, he was actually my roommate in the hostel. Then I met a kid who was living there for the season, he was from Australia. Then the weekend before that in Switzerland, I met a local who was there for the weekend. He lived up in Zug, but he was down in Zermatt doing some climbing. We ended up going out for some beers afterwards, which was cool. So when I’m around I try to embrace the culture as much as I can. It’s hard obviously, to get a feel for a culture in four days, but when I’m down at the local spots I always try and do a little research of the places instead of doing all of the stuff tourists will do.
All of that seems much more breathtaking than the suburbs of Illinois.
(laughs) Very accurate.
Once upon a time you were a bit more of an action sports videographer. I’d spot you at the moto tracks sometimes, but it seems you got your start on the slopes. Were you around snowboarding and skiing as a kid?
Yeah, I always was into action sports. I raced motocross when I was younger, then I got into skating a little bit… I was always a skier from when I was young, then I got into snowboarding. I was always around that kind of stuff. I watched a ton of edits. Snowboard edits, skate edits, I loved them. I got a GoPro for Christmas in 2013 and I thought, “Instead of just putting this thing on my head, I’m going to go film some buddies with it.”
So I kind of started just doing that and it progressed over time. I got my first SLR in 2014 or 2015 and that’s what I filmed with for the first two or three years of doing moto.
I like that you mentioned watching the snowboard and skate videos, because from watching your work I noticed small elements of those videos in them. Lots of intercuts, glitch effects, and fisheye footage. What kind of videos were you watching at the time?
I would just spend hours on YouTube going through edits. I can’t even name any specific ones, but it was just all of these three or four minute edits that these kids were making on their own, home-video style. I watched [full length] skate movies and snowboard movies, but I really think what influenced my work the most when I was starting out was those YouTube edits.
It seems to be a different generation. I think the guys who came before us were more inspired by the full length DVD/VHS era, where the media cycle for content was a lot more strung out, whereas you and I came up with the advent of YouTube and everything picked up a little more speed. We weren’t watching the movies, we were watching [the shorts] that other people our age were capable of putting out.
One hundred percent agree with that.
So, somehow you ended up at the motocross races. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t your first time filming moto at RedBud in 2015?
That was my first time filming at a race officially, with a press pass. But how I actually got started was by filming some snowboarding for this company called VOID Clothing. They hit me up and said, “We have some moto riders, and this spring we were wondering if you wanted to come out and film them at our track.”
Since I used to race it sounded great, I wanted to get back to the track. I linked up with those guys and that’s what I was at RedBud for, was to film some of their athletes. Like Chad Saultz, Logan Skaggs… that’s how I got back into moto and fell in love with it again.
You kind of strike me as the type of person who just goes wherever the opportunity takes them… so I wasn’t sure what to make of your motocross background. Was it something that you were always attracted to?
I was definitely the definition of a weekend warrior. I was riding old stock bikes going to the races every two weeks or so, just going to the local races. I started when I was five or six and then raced until I was eleven or twelve. I got out of it partially due to financial reasons, and [on top of that] I hurt my knee and that took me out for a month or two. I lost interest, but I found my way back through filming. I’ve always followed the sport though, I kept up a little even when I wasn’t racing.
Were you at Byron a lot, or Sunset?
Yeah! Definitely Byron a ton, Sunset too. I raced back at Waterman International Raceway, that indoor track.
That place was five minutes from my house, it was amazing. Mt. Carroll [too]… yeah.
I’ve only been to Mt. Carroll once back when I was on 50’s, been dying to get back there and ride. It’s a beast of a track.
Yeah it’s so much fun. I only rode there twice but it was always my favorite track.
Your first time filming moto happens during that summer in 2015, then in September of that year you put out “Farm Boy Blues ft. Chase Sexton” with Vurbmoto. How’d you get in contact with those guys?
I was actually down at Loretta’s that year, through a crazy turn of events I got hooked up with Motoplayground. I did their film camp at Boom Diggity, so from that I got invited to come down to Loretta’s and film for them. While I was there I saw Wes [Williams], and I was like, “I gotta go talk to this guy.” I told him I was doing this video with Chase, because at that point I had been planning it for awhile. With Farm Boy Blues I wanted to really try and push myself to get cleaner footage than I ever had gotten before.
He replied, “Yeah just send it over when you’re done and we’ll take a look at it.”
They ended up liking it and putting it on the channel. That was definitely my first video to ever got a lot of attention, and one that I pushed myself the hardest with.
So you just walked up, point blank. “Yo, Wes! I got this shit going on.”
(laughs) Pretty much. I guess I was a little naive, which worked out in my favor. I was this kid at Loretta’s losing my mind because it was my first time there, and I’m just running around getting as much footage as I can. Back then I was shooting with my Canon Rebel SL1, which is like a three hundred dollar DSLR. I’d have a 75mm lens on it with my glidecam, because I didn’t have a good tripod. Wes was probably thinking, “Who is this chump?”
He was super cool, super nice. I don’t know if he ever looked at [Farm Boy Blues] but whoever I sent it to was stoked on it and ended up putting it on the channel, which back then for me was so cool, I was already hyped to be with Motoplayground at Loretta’s. Then I got a video on Vurb and I was out of my mind.
So you knew Chase beforehand? Did you grow up seeing him at the races?
I was so young at the time that I don’t really remember riding with him, but I’m sure [we were at some of the same events]. Our parents knew each other. Once I got out of the sport I didn’t really communicate with him anymore, I mean I never really knew him that well. I saw him at Sunset, I think it was the Regional that year [in 2015], and I hit him up on Instagram and asked if he’d like to film sometime with a local kid. I think he remembered me, but I’m not sure. We ended up linking up and making that video at Byron Downen’s house, because Byron was a mutual friend of ours.
Illinois crew: Jeff and Chase Sexton share the frame with Sexton’s 2016 Open Pro Sport #1 plate.
Talk about that day filming at Byron’s house.
It went well from what I can remember, it seems so long ago now but it really wasn’t. It was my first time being out there, and they have a really tight group there, Chase used to go out there all the time before he moved to Florida. I was feeling pretty shy, just trying to work my way into their little squad they had going on. But other than that it went good. Thinking back I was running around with such a crazy setup. I remember being so focused, because I had this image in my mind that I wanted to push myself and try to get cinematic shots. Looking back it’s not the most cinematic video but it definitely was a big step for me.
I think what you’re saying really shows. From your RedBud Regional video to that I felt was a big leap for you as well.
Thank you man. (laughs) I’m glad it shows!
You’re probably thinking, “Yeah… thanks for this compliment on a three year old video.” (laughs) Going forward a few months later, you reminded me of this before the interview that you filmed at Party in the Pasture that year as well. How’d you play your cards to score that trip to Mississippi?
I got lucky, they actually reached out to me for that one. I think it helped that they liked the Farm Boy video. I don’t really think I was their first choice but I’m guessing whoever they were working with regularly couldn’t go, so they reached out. It worked out [because] I was on Thanksgiving break my freshman year of college. I got out of class on a Friday, packed my car up, and drove straight through the night to Mississippi. I spent the first half of my Thanksgiving break down there filming that, which was super awesome.
What was it like being around guys like Windham, McGrath, Brett Cue, and Wil Hahn. Were you geeking out a little bit?
Oh yeah. Very, very overwhelmed. I was texting my Dad the whole time, because he used to race back when I did too. He’s raced since the eighties, he got out of it but got back into it and rode with me. We always watched motocross together, so he knew who all of those guys were and looked up to them. I’m like, “Dad… I’m filming Jeremy McGrath right now. I just filmed Jeremy McGrath doing a nac-nac!”
He’s losing his mind too, it was pretty funny. That was the first time I got around any pros to film. I talked to Brett Cue and said, “Hey man! I’ll make you and Instagram edit!” He was super cool and actually ended up posting it, which was awesome. I was definitely geeking out.
Did you anticipate getting any shit for the song, though? There’s definitely some people calling you out for it in the comments. (laughs)
I can’t remember exactly, but I think it might’ve been one of those videos where I wanted a really good song, because it was going on Vurb. I think it was one of those times where I was struggling to find music, I spent more time looking for a song than I did filming, as it usually goes. I had that song in the back of my mind and I knew it had been used before. I couldn’t find anything else because that song was already in my head, so I just folded and went for it.
People can be fickle about that stuff.
Yeah man, music… they don’t care about the content. But the music, though! People get so upset about that, or hyped.
I think any type of music or song could go with a motocross video as long as whoever is making the video is in tune with [what they’re making]. For example, this song you used for the Party in the Pasture video, you already had it in your head and I think it ended up being a good video because you were in tune with that song. You knew how you were going to use it.
I think what you said about any music being able to go [with a motocross video] is so true. I was looking back at some of my old videos and there’s this one I had on my channel. It’s an old video for a project I did at school where I had to use this classical music, and I ended up putting it to all of these clips I had of Joey Crown down at Bostwick. It’s a weird video but it kind of works, in a way. You can edit to anything, but if you have that [song] going in your head already you subconsciously shoot for it. I think it turns out better that way.
…and then people still comment, “Man, this song sucks!” (laughs)
So after Party in the Pasture, it’s not until 2016 that you’re on Vurbmoto again with your “Finding Florida” series. Explain that set of videos a little bit. Whose idea was it go down there, etc.
I had been wanting get down to Florida and do some filming, I really wanted to go to WW [Ranch]. I planned the trip with Byron Downen and Chase Becker. We were going to go down anyway, so I reached out to Vurb and let them know we were going to go meet a bunch of riders and gave them a list of some of the names. I had the idea to do that series and I asked if they’d be interested in helping offset some of the costs of the trip, and they were totally into again. It was just something fun I wanted to do over winter break. We went down there for two weeks and ended up being able to get it on Vurb, which was cool. I think it was one of the more popular video series I’ve ever done.
Not only is it the views, there are tons and tons of comments saying stuff like, “this is the best series.” Or, “great edits!” When you were in the cutting room did you think you had a winner?
I was pretty hyped on it, the group of riders we had just really came together as [we went along]. We ended up meeting Joey Crown down at Bostwick. I kind of talked to him a little bit, because I knew he would be down there but I wasn’t sure where he was going to be, or when. The private shoot at WW ended up working out, we went on a day they were closed and they let us just film all day, which was amazing. We had Andrew Maroney, who was just throwing fat whips. It all just [seemed to] come together, and because of that I was feeling pretty good about it. You never know how something is going to be received, but again, I just tried to push my editing and make it something special because I felt it had potential to do well.
The stuff you got with Maroney and Sam Wise is just unreal. It almost seems like you can’t keep up with the camera at times, because they’re just railing.
We had Hannah Hodges, Gavin [Wilkins] was down there, Sam, Andrew, everyone on the trip was just throwing down. Especially at WW Ranch when we had the track to ourselves. We thought we were going to get rained out, but the track got good at the end of the day, everyone was pretty hyped on it. They were just throwing down, ripping corners and throwing fat whips. It was overwhelming, multiple times I had to tell them, “Guys, you gotta give me more time between shots!” (laughs) “You guys are doing too much sick stuff, I can’t keep up with all of it.”
Then there’s Byron, throwing boner-airs and shit. (laughs)
Exactly, doing Byron’s thing. It was just such a fun time. I was staying at a house with Byron and Chase, it was such a cool trip hanging out with those guys.
More of a technical question for you, what software did you use to make the title cards? A few people in the comments were saying the title animations were sick, which is cool, but that’s not something people are usually hyped on… (laughs) “Check out this title, bro!” Was that an After Effects template, or?
No, I think that was in Blender. I’d used Cinema 4D, which is another 3D rendering type of program. I had that on my old computer, but for my Mac I wasn’t able to really find anything, so I finally found Blender and I just taught myself how to do it. I had this idea of a “flying-in” title that ended up being a huge time commitment, so I don’t know if it was worth it or not, but it came out cool. It was one of those ideas that once it was in my head I wanted to make it happen.
Couldn’t find that Cinema 4D torrent? (laughs) I hear good things about Blender though, and the fact that it’s free is pretty cool.
Yeah, it was cool. Though I don’t think I’ve used it since, to be honest. (laughs)
So the second time we ran into each other you had moved onto being a contributor at Motoplayground, I wanted to ask about your story with those guys. I know you did the #1 Undiscovered Movie Shooter Contest with them, and you won it. Did it surprise you that you pulled it off? You were in the mag and everything.
I actually didn’t win that one…
I think I got second, technically. I was still in the magazine which was wild, but yeah they kept working with a couple of us after that. The contest was pretty crazy, they gave us VIP treatment [at their Camp Boom Diggity event]. I’m sorry, to clarify I guess I did win the contest and got invited to be one of the finalists [at their event], but there was another contest once we were there with the five of us. So I guess that was a “sub-contest” that one of the five of us technically won, and got the cover the of mag. But going down there was super cool, and I got to start my relationship with Motoplayground which was nice.
Do you remember anyone else that was in the contest?
There’s Grant Aiello, Jake “Mumbles” [Jake Jaynes], Brian Garcia, and then Garrison [Keane], it was the five of us and we were just vibing that week, immediately everybody hit if off. Like I said, once we were down there, there was technically a contest going on between us but it wasn’t really [a contest] at all. We were all just hanging out and bro’ing down, it was a super fun time. Even afterwards we’ve all kept in touch, and whenever we’re at races we’ll still hang out.
I feel like you kind of spearheaded Motoplayground’s online video presence with some of the first edits that were ever on their YouTube. Why do you think it took them so long to adopt a YouTube channel? Did it take a lot of convincing from you to get Harold [Martin, founder of Motoplayground] to bite on this?
So in 2015 after doing the contest with them, I went to down to Loretta’s and filmed for them. At this time they still didn’t have a YouTube presence, and once 2016 came around and I was out of school for the summer I was already talking with Harold. It did take some convincing, but I also think he was ready to make it happen once I started talking about it. I think the delay was just making sure it was done right. I think they were really just trying to stick to their roots [with the magazine], but after a while they started to see some value in the online world. I ended up working for them that summer in 2016, which was really great.
I think that was a point in my life where I realized, “I’m really doing this.” At the beginning of that summer I ended up getting the FS700, which was my dream camera for awhile, because before that I was still filming on my first DSLR. That was a huge upgrade for me, and with that I really wanted to step up my editing and filming in general. I got to travel a ton that summer, I was working with Motoplayground and the RidesUnlimited race team. I was honestly on the road more than I was at home that summer, which was tiring at times but also really awesome.
Was Mammoth your first big trip?
Other than Loretta’s the year before, that was my first big national. It was my first trip that I was actually flying out somewhere. It was a great time, and I ended up getting to go back last year in 2017. I love it out there, I love the race and the environment out there.
Mammoth is a place I’ve always dreamed of riding at. It looks so scenic and the track is laid in the hills it seems like.
When I was going out there the first time, people told me, “Dude, the track is literally in the mountains. You’re gonna lose your mind.”
And I’m thinking, “Yeah, right. It’s probably at the base of the mountains, it’s gonna be whatever.”
It is literally in the mountains. (laughs) There’s mountains on every side of it, and when you fly into Mammoth airport you’re flying between all of the peaks. There’s whitecaps, it’s crazy.
After Mammoth you were back at Loretta’s again for Motoplayground. What did you learn in your time between visiting there in 2015 and 2016?
Yeah, that was the first race I think-
*phone starts making beeping noises*
-aybe other than wh-
*more beeping noises*
Hey, [World of Echo]? Sorry, the call dropped.
You were in and out there, I hope you don’t mind repeating what you just said. (laughs)
From 2015 being there, then again 2016, that was definitely a crazy year. Between my personal projects and working with companies I probably put out twenty full-length edits within that time, not counting Instagram edits. I’d just been filming constantly, so coming into 2016 I was feeling a lot more confident. I had just gotten my new camera, and [being at Loretta’s again] was the first time I had been to a big national twice. That ended up being a huge benefit because I was already familiar with the format of the racing, I knew when podiums started and how the flow went, so I was able to get in better spots to film that. That kind of stuff. I think that was the biggest thing for me in 2016, was that I already knew what I needed to get. Shots I wasted in 2015 helped me in that I was able to spend my time more wisely. It was really cool to be back there a second time and have that year of experience behind me. I think if you watch the difference in the videos from 2015 to 2016 it’s definitely pretty large. (laughs)
You got the sick champagne pop in the 2016 edit, that’s a great shot.
That was a crazy moment. Here I am with my three month old, basically brand new camera. I’m so hyped about it and I’m up there, and Masterpool said when he popped it it just dumped out of his hand and spilled. He felt so bad after that, but I got the shot so it ended up working out! It was so funny, there was like three photographers that came up afterwards, because all the photographers are around the podium. There was a few guys that got some shots of me just getting completely covered in champagne, my camera is just dripping. In the photos you can see it’s just completely covered in champagne. I hit the record button and just immediately ran back to the Motoplayground trailer and started wiping it off. It was worth it, I guess. The camera never really showed any signs from it afterwards.
I think you really set the precedent at Motoplayground for their online content. It tapers off a little bit after Loretta’s, and then after Ponca City it really drops off. Did you start to become busier with school around this time?
For Ponca I went during my Thanksgiving break again. I ended up going to the Monster Energy Cup after that actually, but we couldn’t really do a video from that because of [television] rights and stuff with Supercross, so we just did a couple interviews. After that I was back at school, and during the winter I wasn’t able to get a road trip together… I just kind of stopped working with Motoplayground after that and we eventually went our separate ways. I stopped filming as much motocross as well, unfortunately. I wouldn’t say I was burnt out, but I definitely tried to tone back how much I traveled the next summer because that first summer in 2016 I learned a lesson with overbooking myself. That summer [in 2017] got busy, I wasn’t doing as much with Motoplayground, and then I just tapered off. I started getting into other interests, like with my landscape photography and photography in general. I was also doing some stuff with my work down at school, which is like a graphic design job. Obviously I don’t run the Motoplayground channel anymore, so I’m not sure what they’re doing with that.
Do you ever think of coming back to motocross? I don’t want to go as far as to say you wish you did things differently, but is it something you’d like to return to? Or are you set on the path of school and exploring landscape photography?
A little bit of both, I guess, that would be the easy answer. (laughs) I definitely miss it. I think this summer I’ll try to get to a couple regionals, or maybe a pro national and do some stuff if I can. I love the sport because of the friends I’ve made in it, and I love getting back to the track and hanging out with all of the filmers and stuff. I don’t know if it’d be something I do as serious as an actual job again, just because my interests have changed a little bit. I definitely want to focus on my photography and eventually have it come full circle, I’d like to try and do some landscape stuff incorporated with action sports. I’d love to get back into doing some ski footage and ski photography. I’m looking into maybe doing some mountaineering stuff, that’s kind of where my head’s at right now. But like you said earlier, I kind of just go where the path takes me. Right now I’m just focusing on that stuff, and I’m hopefully moving to Colorado next year, so I’ll just be doing a lot of hiking, snowboarding, and climbing. Hopefully I could incorporate more of my photography with that stuff.
You talk about wanting to merge two passions with action sports and landscape photography. With snowboarding/skiing you can’t really get more blended than that! The dude is flying down the landscape!
Yeah, exactly. I don’t know if you know who Jimmy Chin is, but he’s a climber/photographer for National Geographic and North Face. He’s kind of done exactly that [by merging two of his passions], and he’s always been big role model for me. Right now I see myself more going down that path, because I just love the mountains and I’m trying to get out there more often, and I think my work will follow me out there. That being said, I think I’ll always try to do some moto stuff every now and then, because I do love the sport and I love filming it. I’m definitely getting the itch again now that I haven’t done it for a little bit, so I think I’ll be making some more content soon.
Going down the line at Mammoth Mountain, 2017.
Well whatever it is you’re doing, I look forward checking it out and seeing what you’re up to.
Awesome, thanks man… same to you! I just wanted to say too, real quick. I think it was probably your 2015 edit from RedBud, which is actually where I met you, I think.
That edit was so sick man! That intro with the sound editing and stuff that you did, that was a huge inspiration to me for a long time. I mean it still is… That one always stood out to me, not only in your work, but just in moto edits in general. Huge props on that one.
Thank you, man. Looking back on that weekend it was kind of funny, because I met you and you asked me what I was there for. [I talked about this at the top of last week’s interview with Chase Dunivant] I was all jacked because I was shooting for Vurb for the first time. Over the next couple months from meeting you though, you just took off and started doing those series with them and I was just thinking, “Man, this guy is killing it! He just totally leap-frogged my ass!”
[Your] video was probably why, to be honest. (laughs) That video motivated the hell out of me! I remember I met you that weekend… was it you that had that makeshift glidecam?
Yeah, I did! It was made out of aluminum, I think.
I was so impressed by that thing! I thought that was so sick. I remember you said you were working for Vurb and stuff, I thought, “Man, that’s so sick! That’s goals right there.”
Then I saw [your] edit and I was like, “Oh god, I need to step my game up. This kid just wiped the floor with me.”
I think honestly after watching that is when I started making the plans for Farm Boy Blues in my head. I was thinking to myself that I gotta do something bigger, something better, because I’m not up to par right now at all.
But you were just starting out, though! That was your first event!
That was my first moto event, yeah, but I was just hungry for it I guess. And at that point I had been filming for a while, just not moto. That was so funny, I just remember seeing your edit and being like, “damn.” It was demotivating, but also motivating at the same time.
I get that. Seeing somebody else’s work and thinking, “Damn, I wish I did that!” I’ve felt that feeling many times. It’s a double edged sword.
Well I appreciate the kind words, and I guess as far as the interview goes, that’s it! What is it there, ten o’clock now? Ten-thirty?
Ten o’clock, yeah.
I won’t hold you up any longer, probably keeping your roommates up or something.
(laughs) Yeah… but I appreciate you doing this, this was cool.