today is Oct 06, 2022

This is a new series of photo galleries celebrating the groundbreaking work of Powder’s contributing photographers, past and present. I’m asking them to give us what they consider to be the top five photographs of their careers thus far. Speaking for skiers all over the world, I’d like to express our appreciation for their vision and dedication to the craft of capturing moments that inspire us to get out, get higher, and go further.

First up, an individual who set a new standard for ski photography throughout the 1990’s, 2000’s and beyond.

In the mid 80’s Scott Markewitz was competing on the pro mogul tour and skiing for some of the top photographers of the time such as Dave Stoecklein and Lori Adamski-Peek. He’d always been interested in photography, so after learning a few tricks watching these photographers in action, he bought his first camera, a Nikon FM2 and a batch of Kodachrome 64, and began shooting with some of the local pro skiers. In the spring of 1987 he sent a sheet of his favorite slides to Powder not thinking that much about it. That summer, he came back from coaching a ski camp in Europe, walked into a newsstand in New York City and did a double take when he saw his photo on the cover of the 1987 Buyer’s Guide. As a bonus, he was one of the skiers in the Salomon ad on the back cover. From there, he jumped into photography full time and went on to become one of Powder’s most prolific shooters with over 20 covers and countless gallery shots and feature story projects to his credit.

Presenting Scott’s Top Five.

Depth of Field

Photo Credit: Scott Markewitz

Eric Pehota and Kirk Jensen on top of the first descent of Meteorite, Valdez AK - 1992. This was on a shoot with RAP films in the early days of skiing in the Chugach. Every day we explored new terrain that had never been skied and racked up many first descents, but the biggest prize of all was Meteorite, with it’s massive steep ramp towering above the valley. The original plan was to have Trevor Peterson and Eric Pelota ski it, but in a convoluted story that involved heavy drinking, a room mixup, and Trevor nowhere to be found in the morning, Kirk had to take his spot instead. It’s still one of the classic first descents in Alaska, and I know Trevor always regretted missing it.

Depth of Field

Photo Credit: Scott Markewitz

Bobby Brown, X Games Big Air, Aspen, CO - 2011. One of the challenges of shooting events like the X Games is finding angles that are different and unique from what the dozens of other photographers are shooting. The big air is at night, and lighting can be tricky, but I noticed that a stand of aspen trees on the side of the run was lit up, so I moved around and experimented with different angles until I found this opening in the trees that gave me a clear shot of the skiers as they took off.

Depth of Field

Photo Credit: Scott Markewitz

Kristi Leskinen, Superpark 5, Mt Hood, OR - 2003. This was an experimental image I shot with infrared film and an infrared filter, holding the filter out in front of the lens in one hand and the camera in the other while the skiers jumped over me. Most of the shots were garbage, but a few of them worked, and this one made it on the cover.

Depth of Field

Photo Credit: Scott Markewitz

Mark Abma, Girdwood, AK - 2009. The snow wasn’t very good on the big lines, so we went in search of jump zones and found a nice wide valley valley with big rollers and perfect long landings. While we were shooting I keep looking over at this beautifully lit roller with a deep blue background and thinking what a perfect jump it would make. It was too late to set it up that day, so we came back a couple of days later, built this jump and had an amazing session where I was able to capture this image exactly as I had seen it in my mind 2 days earlier.

Depth of Field

Photo Credit: Scott Markewitz

Trevor Petersen, West Rib of Mt. Serratus, Tantalus Range, BC - 1993.  Trevor, Eric Pehota and I flew into the Tantalus range in the spring of 93 with the goal of bagging the first descent of the East Face of Tantalus.  Unfortunately, the temps were too warm and the snow was becoming isothermic, so we had to back off our objective and spent the time skiing more accessible lines. The West Rib of Serratus was just above our camp, so one morning we hiked up and bagged a few shots before it got too warm. To me, this image captures Trevor’s dynamic skiing style and the true steepness of the run.

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