Fashion trends are as capricious and dispensable as the blasé hipsters who sport them. Enduring appeal, on the other hand, is hard to come by. That’s what makes the both Levi’s and its 501 Jean such icons; it’s why we keep a framed poster of the 501’s history on the wall here at the GP offices. In a masterstroke of marketing, Levi’s put together this energetic film, which reminds us just how rich the 501’s history is.
A Soaring Film on Mt. Chimborazo's Ice Merchants
We are in no rush to slow the pace of progress; after all, we stake our livelihoods on the new, the fashionable and the high-tech. Still, there remains a soft spot in our web-hardened, computerized hearts for the simple dignity of a life in nature, and that soft spot melts to mush (get it?!) before stories like that of Balthazar Ushca, the last remaining ice merchant on Ecuador’s Mt. Chimborazo.
The sights and sounds of two-weeks in Spain
It’s got to be slog (a once-in-a-lifetime slog) to travel through an entire country in just two weeks. But to pare your footage from those two weeks into a three-minute video? Monumentally more difficult. Fortunately, this clever three-minute video employs split screen formats, so your eyes can multitask and take in more than three minutes worth of visuals. Good thing, too, because there’s a lot to take in.
Helmuth Bott's Porsche 959
In this video by eGarage, Peter Schutz, former CEO of Porsche AG, opines that the 959 may have had more affect on the automotive world than any car since its introduction. You’d be hard-pressed to find many counterarguments. Here, Porsche endurance racing legend Hurley Haywood both narrates and pilots as he cruises around in a prototype (one of six) originally owned by Helmuth Bott.
Big Waves Keep on Crashin'
Summer means slapping a coat of wax on your skis and sending them to the back of the gear closet. That is, unless you’re really stubborn (and somewhat deranged), like pro skiers Mike Douglas and Cody Townsend. Sick of waiting for the powder to start falling again, they took matters into their own hands. After…
Meet Phipps, A Flyfisherman Through and Through
In this calm, three-minute video, we’re treated to a supreme visual experience by the aptly named Red Epic camera, a DSLR-sized rig capable of 5K resolution in every frame. We meet Phipps, a man who has lived in Tasmania his whole life, spending his time at a fishing shack that has housed his family for decades. The cabin sits on a quiet, trout-filled lake, and Phipps, genuine and wise, seems to be meant to inhabit that shack, to fish in that lake.
Beautiful things made out of beautiful leather
Toward the end of this quick film Walker Macwilliam, creative director of Ghurka and narrator of the video, says Ghurka’s purpose is “making beautiful things out of beautiful leather”. We say that about sums it up perfectly.
Teton Gravity Research's Aerial Reel
There is so much epic mega-ness in Teton Gravity Research’s aerial reel that it’s difficult to contain our bladders (too much information? Too much information): cornea-melting 4K ultra-HD footage, shot using a RED Epic-equipped gyro-stabilized camera platform mounted on a helicopter that is most surely badass; a grandiose soundtrack that seems right out of the latest action-thriller; oh, and then there’s the Bay Area.
A time-stopping piece of automotive history: '74 E-Type
Only 59 more E-Types were made after Dave Paddison’s V12 Series 3 convertible rolled off the Coventry assembly line in 1974. “Last of the Breed”, indeed — nearly the last entirely. And what a specimen for a guy like Dave to own.
Hypnotizingly Beautiful Visual Tour of Paris in Winter
Camera jockey Andrew Julian has an immense talent for spotting and capturing beauty. Apropos, then, that he journeyed to Paris, which happens to be brimming with beauty at every turn. Most everyone is familiar with Paris in the summertime, whether via the myriad movies set there or by dint of commendable vacation planning. However, Julian…
In Biella, Italy, is situated a textile mill that first opened in 1663, where 3 generations of workers still strive to make the best fabrics in the world. It’s fitting (tailoring pun!) then that J. Crew sources material for its Ludlow suits from Vitale Barberis Cononico, where 7 million meters of hand-inspected fabric are produced each year.
Poor Bill Hammerstein. He and his wife had so few guests coming by his SoCal home that he knocked down the guest house out back entirely. In its place, he built a three-stall garage that houses a red Shelby Cobra, a red Mercedes 300 SL convertible and a — you guessed it — red V12 1971 Ferrari 365 Daytona coupe. Yeah, that Daytona.
We want to hate this Sony Action cam mounted on an RC multi-copter. It’s a drone. Those are the scary things that the government uses to spy on you as you go about your vital covert actions (picking your toenails, or watching Bravo channel). But this Sony creation — it’s kind of… cute. And also freaking awesome, mind you. This little bugger zooms around Battleship Island (you know it from Skyfall).
You’re following Tom Cruise through a hotel room, or better yet, Brad Pitt through a shoddy, packed bar. You are carrying a very large video camera, attached to a huge counterbalanced device (which happens to be attached to you), and you have to carefully move in a choreographed path around the actor as he delivers his lines. You have one, two, maybe three takes to nail the shot. Feeling the pressure yet? These are just the topical difficulties of the steadicam shot, a gem of the Hollywood industry that produces some of the most spectacular scenes in some of your favorite movies.
Detroit is trashed worse than Ke$ha on a Tuesday morning. Everybody knows it, and that’s why we love that the city’s in the hunt to host the X Games for the next three years. If you’re going to have a rundown slum of wasted buildings, why not use said buildings as dramatic backdrop for awesome 360s and Fakie kick flips?
Ships in a bottle have all the wonder of a parlor trick without the gimmickry. Modeling combines with magic to turn wood and glass into a beautifully crafted enigma. Somewhere around the 1:10 minute mark, when Ray Gascoigne discusses switching from American Yellow Pine to Western Red Cedar, you’ll realize that you want to take the time to meet this man, see him work his craft, listen to him tell his time-worn stories.
Enabling couch potatoes everywhere to say they’re still “world travelers”, Paul Wex’s mashup of Nokia 3D Maps footage provides oh-so-realistic shots of beautiful cities across the world. Originally stymied by a sub-par (a.k.a. not ridiculously good) graphics card, Wex upgraded, then shot helicopter-esque scenes of New York, Toronto, Chicago, LA, San Francisco, Boston, London, Vienna, Berlin, Sydney and Melbourne skylines. Soaring electronica music (also crafted by Wex) adds to the already grand scale of things. After all that tough sightseeing, you may need to take a break to browse the internet.
Rather than creating maudlin product spots to peddle their premium jeans, Tellason decided to document the stories and lifestyles of their clientele. Their first film highlights the work of Todd Blubaugh, a Seattle-based artist who spends his time both behind a lens and fabricating one of our favorite forms of functional art: custom motorcycles.
This video sets the prestige of shipbuilding back at least a decade. “That’s not so bad!” says pretty much every single viewer as the Maersk Line’s Triple-E Vessel is lego-blocked into existence in just over a minute. You’re right. It’s really not that hard. What’s 1,304 feet, anyways? Just 150 feet shy of the Empire State Building, you say? Oh. And it actually took three months? Maybe you won’t be enrolling in that online shipyard mastery class after all.
If you don’t get choked up, maybe even a little misty, watching this video of a son reuniting his parents with their first car, you may just be beyond our help. Not only does it portray the lengths one son will go to permanently etch smiles on his parents faces — it also highlights the incredible bonds people form with their vehicles. A sacrificial sale when Joe Smith was drafted into the Korean War, his 1948 Plymouth Convertible always maintained a soft spot in Joe’s and his wife Beverly’s hearts. For their 60th wedding anniversary, their son Joel found, restored and delivered a working time machine, complete with three-on-the-tree.
We really wanted to hate these ink makers. Their product is outrageously priced, a vital part of enraging machines that jam, make annoying noises and refuse to connect wirelessly to our computers. But set to classical music, the Charlie-and-the-Chocolate-Factory setting (complete with huge drums of slowly drooling colors, giant rollers and careful craftsmen blending every shade under the rainbow) actually reveals an impressive show of passionate craftsmanship. That and lots of glooping. We’ll still curse your name when we have to buy toner, ink makers. But maybe with a few less F-bombs.
Renan Ozturk of Camp 4 Collective is (just like everyone involved in Camp 4 Collective) a beast. What’s he a beast at? Adventure, for one, but mainly in capturing the epic: The epic actions — rock climbing without ropes, skiing mountains that should definitely not be skied, flying over ice fields so large they seem to defy the horizon — that his team undertakes; The epic and often terrifying extreme landscapes they explore; The epic people they meet. All together, the highlights make for a pretty stunning three minutes of footage. Stop reading this and watch it.
The automotive video wunderkind Petrolicious have struck auto nostalgia gold once again with their latest short dubbed Never Enough Alfa. As a few of you sleuths might have inferred, the video centers on a brand that’s close to more than a few team members’ hearts: Alfa Romeo. But any soft spot we have for the brand pales in comparison to collector Manuel Leon Minassian, who eventually started buying rides like people “buy tacos”. Though he’s got more vintage whips than he cares to share, one car in particular holds a special place in his heart — a customized 1972 Alfa Romeo Berlina.
Often, the simplest things are the best. Not so often, though, do those simple, excellent things involve a journey of over 4,500 miles. Trans-mongolian: A long train journey is a singular short film; its only accompaniment is a Mongolian throat-singing soundtrack mixed with the rhythmic click-clack of the train; many of its rapid-fire scenes are shot in tilt-shift, adding to a mystic quality.
Watch closely now
If you need proof of coffee practiced as an obsession, art form and science, this quick video — a “how-to” on making a cup of espresso — is exhibit A. Intellegentsia Coffee in Venice, California can come off as a little pretentious at first; but what you’re really seeing is an unabashed expertise in truly great coffee. “We take every single step in the chain, from seed to cup, as seriously as possible”, Kyle Glanville extols. We believe him.
Heart of glass
A good lens will burn your bank account faster than a real housewife after a bottle of chardonnay — but there’s a reason this precious glass costs so much. Dust-free production is an exacting process that requires plenty of human interaction to do right. But don’t just take our word for it. Watch this brief Nikon film created in celebration of the 80th anniversary of NIKKOR lenses that highlights how their tubular bundles of photographic joy are brought into this world, and you’ll see what we mean. And while you’re at it — have the missus watch too before showing her your latest receipts.
Be Safe, Live Wild
On April 6th, 2011, veteran backcountry skier (and former crab boat captain of Deadliest Catch fame) Roger Strong was caught in an avalanche in Snoqualmie Pass, WA. Roger and his two friends managed to survive the disaster, but two others were killed. The freight train of snow swept the group through hundreds of feet of steep trees — and a collision with one tore both of Rogers tibias away from their femurs and destroyed most of his knee’s critical tendons and ligaments, leaving him in a wheel chair for three months. In “Strong”, produced by Arc’Teryx, Roger revisits the site of the tragedy exactly one year after it happened, reflecting on the choices that brought him there. Is it irresponsible to satiate an inner love for adventure as a family man? Should one dare to test fate again? These are the central questions of “Strong”.
Just when you think you’ve grown a decent pair of cojones — you know, conjured up enough bravado to hit the next level rapid — out comes Cascada, an adventure film that blends bold cinematography and gut-wrenching paddling. Cascada follows seven audacious paddlers as they make their way through the Mexican jungle in search of the perfect waterfall (from where we’re sitting, they achieve it) with ultra high definition cameras in tow. It’s unbelievable stuff; we’re not surprised, because the film is the latest from the mavens at Forge Motion Pictures.
MJ’s moonwalk was mesmerizing, as was Neil Armstrong’s; Dean Potter joins their ranks in this stunning video. Shot from over a mile away, “Moonwalk” captures the climber and tightrope walker racing against a rising moon that seems unnaturally propelled into the night sky. There’s a single moment, after finishing his first crossing and starting back…