today is Sep 27, 2022

At 18 years old, Blake Jorgenson moved from his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario to Whistler, B.C. seeking the dream of a ski bum lifestyle. No aspirations on having a career or doing anything that didn’t support a life of living free in the mountains.

“I had this old Canon film camera that I brought out west with me. Used it in art class and the darkroom. One day, I went to buy some film at the One Hour Photo shop in the village and the girl at the counter said I should buy slide film because “It’s what all the pro ski and snowboard photogs use”. For some reason, the way she said it meant that I had to buy it. After getting that first roll of Fuji Velvia processed and viewing them through the light of the shop window, I was hooked.”

Blake then bought a used slide projector and as much slide film as he could afford. As photography became a way of documenting his life, he was unknowingly building a career. “I still remember getting my first photo published in Powder when I was 19 and it was a life changing moment. The idea of getting photos of my adventures and experiences in a magazine was the ultimate form of validation that what I was doing was the right thing.”

Year by year Blake worked to blend the lifestyle/work dream. Twenty years later, he has secured a legacy as one of skiing’s true visionaries. He’s shot some of the most impactful moments in the history of the sport and has helped set the standard for what makes a great ski photograph.

Chosen by Blake, here are the Top Five photographs of his career.

Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson

Eric Hjorleifson - 2007. This was one of the most special days in all my years of ski photography and it was the last photo of the day on what we called “Big Thursday”. Exploring for the first time the Bralorne area north of Pemberton B.C., Eric Hjorleifson had been looking at this unique spine line from the beginning of the trip. When the stars aligned on the right day with the most perfect snow conditions possible, this image was created and set a personal standard for arial photography from a helicopter. I have tried ever since to figure out how to top this image but never could.

Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson

Wiley Miller - 2013. I managed to convince the gang from Level 1 to come enjoy the Bralorne experience and with some trouble with avalanche conditions suggested the mysterious double wind lip that had never been hit by skiers before. The first hit is always the shot for something like this so we meticulously planned the flight path for this specific shot and when Wiley nailed it I felt one of the most rewarding feelings of my career and I knew in that instant that this was a timeless image.

Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson

Sean Pettit - 2015. We were shooting an Oakley campaign that started with the art director showing us an old photo from the 80's with someone skiing down a waterfall and said he wanted to recreate that. Sean and I knew we needed to modernize the concept a bit and after location scouting some glaciers in the Whistler Backcountry, Sean Spotted this giant wind feature with the ice showing through. We shot the Oakley add but just before we left I said we should shoot something specifically for Powder and this was that shot.

Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson

Dane Tudor - 2018. I got the call from Sherpas Cinema to join them at Mica Heli to work on their film project “Children of the Columbia”. It was springtime and the conditions were just right for this un-skied line on what was called the “Harp”. Skiers had previously stood on top of it but had all backed away. For how crazy this line looked from a distance Dane made it look incredibly easy.

Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson

Tanner Hall - 2007. I was fortunate to get to go on multiple trips with Tanner that year working on his film “Believe”. I realized in that time that Tanner was probably one of the hardest working and talented people I have ever met. He would push himself to the limit every day where he could barely walk and then be right back out there the next day. We decided to resurrect the Rutherford quarter pipe with Tanner, Sean Pettit, and Kye Petersen who all defied my own logic of what was possible on skis that day. Of all the shots I took, this was the most stand out of them all.

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