The man with a nickname of an animal makes the wonders behind the lens and the edit.
So you are the man behind Relate To It. Can you tell us about it in your own words? What’s the true meaning of the film?
– We wanted to go snowboarding powder and try not to pay our asses off while doing it. Traveling takes money, that’s for sure, but we chose places where you could ride with almost no money–if you happen to live nearby or be traveling somewhere around the area. We had to travel to those places, but when we got there we tried to stay low budget. Not everybody gets to travel, but every country we went had amazing locations that don’t necessarily require much money to ride.
As you look back the season, how was it?
– It was good, lots of powder and lots of hiking too. So at times I was in better shape than in years!
What were the highlights of the season, and what are the highlights of the film for you?
– Highlights were maybe in Tamok. We had the opportunity to use helicopter in there and we chose that place because it is close to our home and it is maybe the cheapest way to get to heliboarding. Snow was good, mountains in there are amazing and you can always find something new from there even on down days. And when there is no heli it is really cheap if you got the time and effort to hike.
You got Fullsteam Records to ease with the music, and they have quite impressive back-catalog. Did it make editing easier? I know you’re a huge fan of good music…
– It was awesome to get Fullsteam on board so to speak. Looking forward to edit on other great songs because it was so much fun to edit on Lapko’s song.
Last year came Antiout. What are the biggest differences of these two flicks?
– I suppose they remind each other but you can see the differences, that’s for sure. Better snowboarding is one thing. We are still making a snowboard movie for snowboarders and I know people expect to see mainly snowboarding on it so that’s what we are still after.
You’re a mean backcountry machine yourself, too. Did you get any good rides last winter, or were you just behind the lens the whole season?
– I do get good rides. Sometimes you are too tired to get any “last free runs of the day” but I still try to do it. Many days you just can’t do it after whole day of hiking but then there are days that all I do is ride, like we did couple of days in Canada. And we got few good ones in New Zealand, too.
Every artist says their last work was the best, so you don’t have say it outloud. But what makes Relate To It so unique?
– You get to see real snowboarding and not just fancy cameratrickery and all that stuff that is not really related to snowboarding. Powder, backcountry, having fun and snowboarding is what it’s all about. There is something for everyone and you don’t need to be professional to ride in most of the places we did so in that sense you can picture yourself in many of the shots in this movie.
Your movies are quite different than other snowboarding films. Where do you get your inspiration?
– Inspiration comes from old skateboarding and snowboarding movies. Years between 1985–1995 were the most inspirational to me and I’d really like to do something like old Santa Cruz skateflicks were. But then again I want to bring my own look into everything that I do so we can’t be copying those films too much. I like everything that is not so perfect. I like that you can see real life in the movies and not just polished amazingness where everything is just perfect.
You shoot a lot with old cameras and such. What kind of gear do you have, and why are you using so much those camcorders that suppose to stay in museums?
– I like film and shooting film, it just looks good. It is good for setting mood and feel of the movie and it brings you closer to real life in some way. There is an element of surprise that is fascinating too. Same thing with photography, if I had all the time in the world I would go the analog way but it just takes too much time to do everything like that. I have maybe 8 super8 cameras, some of them broke and some are too big or bulky for traveling. Nizo 481 is my main tool at the moment + some old film cameras between years 1940–75.
And at the end it just had to go to this. How come there’re so many animals around the film?
– Oh yeah that thing… I just happen to have a nickname that is an animal, my friend’s last name is an animal and many other guys just ended up getting called by some animal names, they seem to be common in Finland or at least amongst our friends.
Home: Rovaniemi, Finland
Board and setup: Burton Malolo 158 with 5,5 cm setback + 158 Freebird split with Sparks.
Dream crew to ride and shoot with: Terje and Muller that’s for sure but to be more realistic I’d say Antti, Naku, Hast or maybe Otto Veijola. Kärppä or Hanafi shooting photos and Matti Ollilla or Jukka Heikkilä on second cam.
Best places to ride: Monashee and Japan were awesome but if I had to pick one it might still be Tamok. If the snow is good it beats anything.
Music: Punk and rock
Other hobbies: Skateboarding
Last words: …come right after too much whisky.
words: Tuukka Tams
photo captions: Teemu Lahtinen / northlightpictures.com
photos: Teemu Lahtinen , Jani Kärppä , Tucker Patton