I looks more like flying than riding.
The skateboarders and snowboarders featured in "Project Alaska One," an actionpacked video made almost entirely in Juneau, spend more time airborne than earthbound.
Scott Baxter, 26, an avid snowboarder and videographer, spent the past year digitally videotaping the exploits of local riders. He edited dozens of hours of footage down to 100 or more five- or 10-second action shots, interspersed with snippets of Alaska wildlife and scenery, to create a half-hour documentary of local talent.
Baxter produced 1,000 copies of the video, better known as "PAK 1," and is selling it for about $20 through Boarderline and Poseidon Boardsports.
Skateboarder and snowboarder Mark Landvik, 22, said Baxter always has had a camera or two around. "PAK 1" just grew out of Baxter's love of boardsports and his interest in documenting them.
"There's a lot of up-and-coming talent in this town, and they're in this movie, both skateboarding and snowboarding," said Mark Schultz of Juneau, a professional snowboarder. "Scotty's really showcased their talent."
Schultz, 31, grew up in Juneau and is one of a cadre of Juneau snowboarders with national and international sponsors. Schultz is in and out of town all winter competing and riding in the U.S. and overseas. He heads to Switzerland in March to compete in the Red Bull World Extreme Snowboarding Championship.
Schultz, Landvik, Ashley Call, Dan and Alex Villanueva and Jesse Bellcourt are among more than three dozen riders featured in "PAK 1." Many are identified and showcased in short segments. Baxter used music rather than narration for audio, letting the scenes speak for themselves.
"Big-budget projects can lose their roots and this has a good roots feeling," said Schultz. "It's not all glory shots. (This shows) the roots of snowboarding and skateboarding and what's going on here in Juneau, in Southeast and all Alaska. It's entertaining to watch. My mom loves the video. It's got a good down home feeling to it."
Most of the snowboarding segments were taped at Eaglecrest Ski Area, among the peaks of the Juneau Icefield or on local slopes such as Mount McGinnis and Mount Jumbo. Baxter and his friends used helicopters to reach the icefield, but not for the camerawork.
"A lot of the footage looks like I was in a helicopter," Baxter said. "Just being on another ridge across the valley, looking down, gives it the perspective it's from a heli."
Skateboarders were shot at the Jackie Renninger Skate Park and at a variety of downtown Juneau locations. The video also includes surfing off Montague Island near Seward and in Sitka Sound, a bit of skiing and in-line skating and some snowmachine riding around Haines and Anchorage.
Baxter also included a wipeout section near the end, showing the less glamorous side to the sports.
"That's the other end," Schultz said. "You've got everyone making their tricks and landing their jumps, but the wipeout section shows some hard falls, which definitely happen."
"There's definitely a downside," Baxter said. "Everybody pays their dues to do what they do. There's a learning process of slamming down."
Baxter financed the project out of his own pocket. He's done videography work for hire, as well as carpentry work, but now he's turned his attentions to marketing "PAK 1" and putting together a budget to find backing for "PAK 2."
"The next one will be 100 times better than this," he said.
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