How To: Make a ski edit

Erik Seo

Kyle Decker is a ski industry cinematographer who works mainly with Level 1 Productions.

Everyone from pros to kids are making ski edits these days and it's never been easier to capture quality footage and spread ski stoke to all of your friends via a simple edit. But how do you distinguish your edit from the masses and make it look polished and professional? We decided to ask Kyle Decker, a director, filmer and editor with Denver, Colo.-based ski production company Level 1. At age 18, Decker left his hometown of Elyria, Ohio, to move out West. He scored an internship with Level 1 and was soon hired on full time. This winter, Decker is taking a leave of absence from Level 1 to create a film project with Tom Wallisch, which is due out next summer. With his experience, Decker gave a few tips on how to create your own ski edit.

Get a camera. Now that technology is changing so quickly, cameras have become more affordable and accessible. Some may even fit in your pocket, so no more lugging around tons of equipment all day or taking turns sitting on the chairlift with the huge camera bag.

Own a GoPro. Having a point of view camera attached to your helmet is a great way to mix up shots. Now the viewer will feel like they're hitting that jump or rail right along with you.

Gather your friends together. Skiing with friends is fun and why not do the same thing but film it? This way you'll be able to get different shots and you can all take turns. Now you can assign your own crew: director, cameraman, and ski talent.

Pick your locations. Find the best place to film and get it in the right light. Also make sure that you're at the perfect spot to see the tricks from start to finish and have others shoot where you may miss out on some of the action. Try out different places and angles to shoot. Get creative and try shots that may not be traditional.

Keep your batteries charged. It's no fun when you're all set to start filming your friends hitting jumps and rails to find out your camera won't even turn on. Make sure you pack spare batteries for longer days.

Make sure your lens is clean. A foggy or obstructed lens won't be able to shoot the way you were thinking. It may be funny after you get a little snow spray at the end of one scene but you won't want your whole edit to look that way. Grab your goggle bag and use the cloth to wipe your lens or purchase one for this reason.

Buy editing software. You don't have to spend a lot of money to edit together your piece. Simple editing programs will get the job done but if you want to get fancy you may have to shell out a little more cash.

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