Behind The Scenes
THE MAKING OF TERRA INCOGNITA
Words by Daniel Fickle | Photos by Aaron Brimhall
Ben Giese and Maggie Gulasey came to us with the idea of producing the film Terra Incognita and our response was an immediate "fuck yes". From that initial conversation, the entire process was organic and collaborative. We captured this film over the course of a week. Driving almost 2,000 miles across southern Colorado and New Mexico to six different film locations the days consisted mostly of driving/riding and only shooting during the last couple hours before the sun disappeared. Because we sought out to capture this otherworldly vibe shooting during golden hour and magic hour only made sense. The only exception to this was White Sands because that place looked like another planet regardless of what time of day it was.
From about 6pm until dark, we had a very short window to shoot at each location, so as soon as the light was right we began rolling camera and Maggie followed her instincts. I have this theory that Maggie is tapped in with a network of extra terrestrial life, so it was no surprise that she nailed the performance.
With an everlasting positive vibe from Ben, there was never a dull moment on the trip. You know you are with a great group of people when you can spend 7 days on the road and not once was there a disagreement or any negative vibes. It really says a lot about the characters of the people you are working with and it's refreshing to be on a project where everyone is on the same page. Sure, not everything went according to plan; one day it was too windy to fly the drone, another day the stabilizer wouldn't connect, and we even had a scary moment when I clipped the Ronin stabilizer on the asphalt while filming out of the back of the car. But thanks to everyones optimistic nature, no shitty moments lingered.
I must admit, I felt like a bit of a poser going on this trip because my partner, Ben McKinney and I don't ride motorcycles. I'm obviously all for it, but skateboarding has always captivated my time and interest. Aaron Brimhall, Ben McKinney and myself were packed in a car following Maggie and Ben on their BMW’s. Aaron is a mad man, telling us tales of climbing sky scrapers in Hong Kong and cliff diving at his local spot in Utah. And after countless conversations in the car with Aaron about the freedom and excitement riding, Ben McKinney and I were already hooked. At one point driving down a long stretch of highway, Ben and Maggie must have passed 8 or 9 cars on at once hitting speeds well over 120 mph. All of us in the car felt pretty left out at that point. Needless to say, we and I got our motorcycle endorsements a couple weeks after returning from the trip and the rest is history. They say making movies is a magical experience. Well, riding motorcycle definitely has some of that same shit.