New Series: Intern Inside Brain Farm HQ

Posted in News on August 6th, 2014 by Steph

We appreciate our interns here at Brain Farm. So much so that we are giving them access to the outside world.  Now you will get to know the inside of Brain Farm HQ through this new intern view  series. Get to know Phil Hessler our Production Management intern and stay tuned for more posts from location.

 

Who are you and where did you come from?!

My name is Phil Hessler, I grew up in a small suburb outside of Boston where I fell in love with snowboarding and skateboarding. I was lucky enough to start coming to Jackson, WY in 8th grade and officially moved out here for my junior and senior year of high school. I am currently living between Jackson and Salt Lake City and have one more year left of school at Westminster College.

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What is your connection to film?

Being a snowboarder and skateboarder, I’ve always been messing around with cameras filming edits with my friends. But my real ascent into the world of filmmaking began with Far From Home.

Far From Home is a 2 year film project that traces the unlikely story of my best friend and brother Brolin Mawejje. Brolin was born in Uganda and is now a pre-med student in Salt Lake City and also an aspiring snowboarder who hopes to become the first African to snowboard in the Winter Olympics come 2018. The film is heavily story driven and explores Brolin’s troubled past and the eclectic community that came into his life to help foster this bright future.  We’ve been around the world and shot over 400 hrs of footage from Uganda to Argentina to tell this story. The film will be available in Winter of 2015! You can learn more at www.farfromhomemovie.com.

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What is it like interning at Brain Farm?

Getting to see how an elite production company runs first hand is an invaluable experience. There is so much more to making a movie than just shooting and editing. Every step of the process has to be executed in a flawless manner to contribute to the strength of the end product. From development through distribution, each stage of the process is just as important as the next. Who is your core audience? How are they going to be able to see your film? Why will they want to see it? These are all questions I’ve been asking myself since I started interning here.  It has also been incredibly valuable to be able to bounce ideas off the Brain Farm team. Being able to ask questions about story development and different technical problems that arise in post has been extremely helpful to our process. Their mentorship has been a blessing. I also love the opportunities to work on smaller video project with quick turn arounds such as the Aysmbol Gallery opening piece we just did.

 

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Why did you want to intern for at Brain Farm?

I was lucky enough to meet Chad Jackson, the head of production at Brain Farm about 2 years ago. He met with us early on in the project and provided his thoughts on Far From Home. We reached out to him whenever we hit a road block in production and he continuously gave us insight and mentorship through the process. When the internship opened up at Brain Farm, I thought it would be the perfect place to be to get first hand experience at a world class production company and learn from the incredible team here while at the same time finishing our film . From my perspective, Brain Farm essentially created their own pipeline and market for TITA and AOF that didn’t exist for traditional snowboard movies before. What better place to be when finishing Far From Home than Brain Farm.

 

What do you see as the future for Brain Farm?

Brain Farm has so many different projects in development right now and so many new frontiers they are expanding into; their future is truly limitless. Brain Farm will only continue to push the boundaries of film making. I believe that their future involves combining extremely cinematic elements and action with powerful story lines and themes that bring their films to wider and wider audiences. They are combining narrative, documentary, and action sports in a way that has never been done. My hope is that we see Brain Farm movies in theaters across the country just as you would see any major motion picture.

 

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If you are interested in applying for an internship with Brain Farm, please email intern@brainfarmcinema.com


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Asymbol Gallery Space Opening !

Posted in Video on August 1st, 2014 by Steph

It is always great to see a close friend suceed and even more so when that friend is a small business. Asymbol is proud to announce the opening of their first gallery space opening!

Check out the video recap we put together of the opening party:

Asymbol Gallery Opening from BrainFarm on Vimeo.

Asymbol has opened the doors to its new Art + Essentials gallery and retail space, located in downtown Jackson, Wyoming. Asymbol was founded by pro snowboarder Travis Rice and artist Mike Parillo in 2009 to showcase art and a curated selection of apparel and merchandise from surf, snow and skateboarding subculture.

The new Asymbol Art + Essentials gallery is housed in an 8000 sqft. retail and commercial space. To create a truly unique offering, Asymbol collaborated with board sports retailer Jackson Treehouse on this concept. The two companies share adjacent spaces, and visitors can pass seamlessly between the gallery and retail areas. In addition to original art, limited edition prints, apparel and merchandise, the spaces feature many of Travis Rice’s personal objects showcasing his professional career and journeys around the world.

Asymbol represents artists and photographers such as: Jamie Lynn, Mike Parillo, Adam Haynes, Jimmy Chin, Dean Blotto Grey, Todd Glaser, Cole Barash, Hydro 74, Trent Mitchell, Corey Smith, Tim Zimmerman and Ari Marcopoulos.

From Asymbol – - “Since the day Asymbol began, it’s been our dream to create a space where art, passion and board riding culture intersect, showcasing this company’s unique and electrifying vision for the world.

Our community of artists and adventurers is fueling a movement of innovation and expression unlike any other.  As we’ve carved out our presence online, our desire to truly connect with each other has become increasingly essential.

For years, we searched for the ideal spot to house our dream gallery – a physical space for Asymbol to call home, and a meeting place where our art and stories can be shared with our friends around the globe.

In the shadows of Wyoming’s immense Teton Mountain Range, we found just the right location. Over the past several months, teams of contractors and artisans worked tirelessly to help us make this dream a reality.

Home to Asymbol’s co-founder Travis Rice, along with some of the most adventurous and passionate individuals we know, it is with great pride that we announce the new Asymbol Art + Essentials gallery, located in the heart of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. “

More info at: asymbol.co 


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Brain Farm Skate and Digital Sputnik’s High Output LEDs

Posted in #brainfarmskate, Photo on July 28th, 2014 by Steph

Technology is advancing in the film industry at an incredible pace and we find ourselves constantly testing and refining our gear. We film in harsh conditions and have to be quick on our feet.  Gear that is lightweight, easy to set up, and durable are essential traits for getting the shot when under the gun.

Nothing gets us more excited than new film equipment that raises the industry standard. Within lighting there have been some amazing changes to the game. One of a few manufacturers that we have been using is Digital Sputnik who has recently released a set of LED lights that has allowed us to change our game on our latest Brain Farm Skate project.

In order to get the shot, we often find ourselves filming late into the night. This means generators, lights, ballasts, and stands are coming out of the truck and getting set up. This is not only time consuming, but the gear also weighs a ton. The first thing we noticed about the  Digital Sputnik, DS LEDs, was how small they are. They are half the size and weight of a majority of other light packages. Set up is a breeze and we can power three light heads per ballast, which cuts down on excess gear. One crew member can have a skate spot lit up and ready to shoot in ten minutes.

The DS LED lights draw only 400 watts at full power, but have the output of a 4000 watt light. By consuming less power our generators are running longer, and lasting the entire session without a refuel. The light output is simply amazing. We are able to use our high-speed Phantom 4K camera, shooting 900FPS at night; a set up that is typically achieved only in full sunlight. Digital Sputnik LEDs are flicker free as well. The days of being locked into a certain FPS based on your lights refresh rate are gone.

Stay tuned for reviews and information on other lighting manufacturers that have gotten our attention.

DS LED Features:

  • White balance control from 1500K up to 10000K with option to change tint (+/- green)
  • Full RGB control, with pure primary color rendering
  • Range of softboxes and grids available
  • User changeable lenses and diffusers (30 and 60 degrees)
  • Up to 3 Lightheads per power supply
  • Power draw up to 140 watts per Lighthead, 420 watts per power supply when using all the lights at full power
  • 5m/15ft and 10m/30ft cables available
  • World compatible power 90-260 VAC
  • 0-100% dimming without flicker or color shift
  • Controllable locally, over Wifi, over DMX or over wireless DMX
  • Ambient temperature range 0ºF ~ 115ºF/-20ºC ~ 45ºC
  • Dimensions of Lighthead: 116 x 116mm/4 x 4 in square
  • Weight of Lighthead: 1.3KG/2.8lb
  • 36 Months Worldwide Warranty

Brain Farm Skate & Digital Sputnik Photo Gallery :

Brain Farm Skate crew gets lit  up - @dgphotographs 

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Paul Rodriguez skates in the night to the DS LED lights - @hermanjshots

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DS LEDs light the way for Oscar Meza down this steep stair set - @jip_01

 

 

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Lighting prep for this stair session - @tyevans

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Ty Evans sets up the DS LED lights - @mdpoore

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Brain Farm Skate – Go Skateboarding Day 2014

Posted in #brainfarmskate, Photo on June 27th, 2014 by Steph

The Go Skateboarding Day 2014 event  in LA lived up to the hype – It was MADNESS !

PRod, Ty Evans, other pros and the Brain Farm filming crew got worked trying to manage the thousands of skaters that showed up to Hollenbeck Skate Plaza.

The plan was to capture the flock of skaters crossing the 6th St. bridge with aerial cinematography. The timing had to be perfect and at the end of the day  Brain Farm and Ty Evan’s got the shots.

These photos highlight the longest day of the year -

@HermanJShots photo of the Brain Farm prep – all the toys are out and ShotOver in the air:

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Ty Evans and the crew prepping all the RED cameras for the day at Radiant Images :

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4 PM hits and the kids line up for action @BrianHansen‘s photo:

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producer, @dgphotographs sends people to mad the starting line:

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The kids take off on to the 6th St bridge, @hermanjshots:

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Push Push Roll – @gabe_lheureux

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Bridge gets light up at sunset @gabe_lheureux

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Thousands of skaters catch up to PRod @gabe_lheureux

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Ty Evan’s wraps up @jaredslater photo

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The end result of a long day of work @TyEvans photo:

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What you Need to Know on 4K Digital Storage

Posted in Tech on June 19th, 2014 by Steph

4K has brought new challenges to the post production world of digital cinema.

Brain Farm’s Post Production Supervisor, Danny Holland, and Media Manager, Justin Smith take a second to answer real questions on the best practice for storing data in 4K.

What sort of storage challenges did you have going in to multiple productions in 4K ?

In pre production, we knew that storage was going to be an issue. We knew we were going to have multiple cameras shooting at 4K or higher for over 100 filming days for one project.  We also knew that the solution needed to be portable and could scale without being a pain to carry around.

Maxx Digital had just come out with their Thunder Raid minis that had thunderbolt connectivity and the ability to swap out internal drives. After testing we saw that they would be the great solution.

As an example, For our snow film we estimated we would need 70 x 4 TB drives for this winter season alone. We utilized 4x ThunderRaids and then carried pelicans of blank HGST drives to fill them with as needed.

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How do you create the workflow for 4K storage?

Offline to online scenario

Most of the transcoding happened in the field which helped speed up production. With some on location shoots being 2 months long, the editing media was almost ready to go and the raw was able to transfer to LTO.

 

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How does Maxx work better than (Brand X) ?

We went with Maxx Digital because of their solid products we have used for years.  They have a great support system that helped us on each production with our 4K planning.

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What tools do you need to make it all happen?

Starter Kit Details :

Thunder bolt mini

Thunder bolt chassie

Thunder raid

REDCINE – X 

ShotPut Pro

ChronoSync

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How do you predict storage needs? 

We have not taken on multiple films at this magnitude so we have to use our best estimates from previous shoots. We utilized what we learned filming and managing one recent film project .

Looking at how many cameras shooting per day, average daily media created and then applying the length of the trip. Adding room for on the road variables gave us the number of drives needed in the field.

 

How do you make the field DIT kit work for you?

We opted to go with the Rogue DIT kit to help keep our DIT needs in one package. The kit has RED ROCKET X and different types of I/O for monitoring.

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How did the maxx drives perform in the field?

The chassis’ (drives) performed extremely well given the conditions we were using them in. We were traveling with them constantly; through airports, on planes, helicopter, vans and snowmobiles to remote mountain lodges and locations all over the world. They were dealt a fair bit of abuse and were consistently reliable throughout the production. You need that kind of reliability when you’re in a foreign country or remote area because you know it’s not easy to get supplies in.

What was it like to deal with 50 TB of media in the filed?

It was definitely a full-time job and by that I mean, it’s a job that takes up the entire day; non-stop. It required a lot of late nights and early mornings, sleeping next to the DIT station. Because we’re shooting with cameras that capture an image up to 6K, we’d shoot anywhere from 3TB’s to 7TB’s per day. When you’re dealing with that much media you are constantly offloading magazines from the camera operators and backing up those files. Using software, I was simultaneously offloading media to 2 Maxx ThunderRaid Mini Chassis’ at once, ensuring that everything was safely backed up everyday. Traveling from location to location, you never take your eyes off of your media. We had 4 Pelican cases of hard drives; That media is your entire film so naturally you’re eyes are on that media case like an over-protective mother; You protect it like it’s your child.

How much did the chassis help with the transcoding?

The Thunderbolt chassis is lightning fast, making it possible for us to be constantly transcoding in the field. Offloading cards and backing up our footage was extremely quick too. We had 4 ThunderRaid Mini Chassis’ daisy-chained to a Macbook Pro and the system was cranking nonstop, 24/7. When you’re spending 16+ hours shooting and working during the day, a faster connection like Thunderbolt, means 1 more hour of sleep. The Maxx ThunderRaid Mini Chassis’ was an absolute necessity in the field.

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Real Questions from Real Fans –

Ask: I just bought a gh4, I know it’s nothing compared to the phantom, RED or Arri raw 4K, but what changes should I expect in workflow in terms of importing/transcoding? I used to work with a 7D.

Depending on the NLE you are using little might need to change. Adobe Premiere for example has such a wide range of support for most native formats that it is likely that you can edit with the RAW material directly out of the camera.  That said, editing with the native material can be processor intensive and therefore might slow down your ability to edit. If this is the case going with HD proxy media such as ProRes might allow for a more efficient editing experience. When your edit is locked you could then recomform to your 4K material and finish the project.

 Ask: Do you transcode RED footage, and if so do you do it in CineX, or edit natively?

We traditionally use a offline to online workflow for most of our larger project for a few different reasons. For RED material we do utilize REDCINE-X for transcoding to different flavors of ProRes. For smaller projects we sometimes edit natively just depends on the situation.

Ask: Something that seems to be a bit of a grey area on the internet is using LUT’s in Premiere grade S-Log. I have a found a few resources but it would be so nice to have a thorough understanding. Hoping Lynda tackle that soon!

We have utilized LUT’s mostly through our grading and transcoding process of ARRI RAW material. I am not as familiar with S-Log but guessing it is similar.  ARRI RAW material it comes out of the camera really flat and LUT’s allow for a quick and easy way to turn that really flat looking file into something much more viewable for editing or when finishing. When finishing in Resolve I like to use a 3 node system where the LUT is applied to the middle node and then you can make pre and post LUT corrections.

Ask: What storage systems are you using on the new movie with Travis Rice? G-Drive? Or…

We have been using MaxxDigital’s ThunderRaids for all of our latests productions. We choose these because of their thunderbolt connectivity as well as their ability to scale and expand by swapping out drives as they filled up.

Ask: What is the final editing best compression for a movie shoot in 4K ?

We have used DPX or TIFF sequence for all final outputs of 4K material, they are the highest quality output formats.

Ask: All your final export settings with example ( HD Vimeo, 4K youtube, HD Blu ray ….?

Pro Res HQ is our main finishing format for most HD content. From a ProRes master we will then encode different web related formats.

Ask: In your opinion what is the most useful piece in a 4k editing computer, graphic cards/fast writing discs such as SSD’s, RAM, processor…? what do you use?

To work at 4K it is the right combination of CPU, GPU and storage speed. You can have the faster graphics cards and processors in the world but if you don’t have fast enough storage then you are not going to get smooth playback of certain 4K formats.

www.maxxdigital.com

www.ditstation.com/rogue4

www.red.com

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ON 4K CONTACT US ON FACEBOOK  OR INFO AT BRAINFARMCINEMA DOT COM


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First Documentary on Curt Morgan & Brain Farm

Posted in News, Video on May 15th, 2014 by Steph

The first documentary on Curt Morgan and Brain Farm released recently and fans are loving it. It was created by one of the company’s biggest fans, Paolo Aralla from Bapu Film.

Words from Paolo about his documentary :

“I went to Jackson Hole to met Curt Morgan, I was excited to met his crew and know how could be possible to be the best production company in the world.

Curt his a super easy guy and he is an innovator, he could invent a new way to film extreme sports, I get inspiration from his movie everyday.

It was a pleasure to see where “that’s it that’s all” and “the art of flight” born, I visited the equipment department, the editing room, the post production room, the cinema room where they check in 4k all the footage …was simply perfect.

One day I hope to be part of Brain Farm team, and till that day I’m going to improve my skill and film as much I can.

Thanks. ”

- a filmmaker -

Bapu Film produces high-quality documentary content for television, the web and action sports. Our clients include Red bull media house, National Geographic, Sky sport, Mediaset, RAI, Discovery channel, Redemption choppers, Midland Radio and others. Bapu Film was founded by Paolo Aralla in 2006.

 

Curt Morgan’s documentary – a day in Brain Farm from Bapufilm on Vimeo.


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MoVi M5 Giveaway !

Posted in Tech, Uncategorized on April 9th, 2014 by Steph

MOVIM5Giveaway

 

Brain Farm is giving away a MoVi M5 from Freefly System  via Instagram!

A picture is worth a thousand words. Brain Farm wants to know why you want, need or deserve to win the MoVi M5.

To Enter: Instagram a photo that shows why you want, need or deserve to win a MoVi M5 and tag @Brainfarm, #BrainFarmTech, #BrainFarmMoVi .

To Win: Curt Morgan will chose the most deserving photo through the specific hashtags used.

Starting WEDNESDAY 4/9/14 applicants can use the proper hashtags to submit their photo to win. Winner will be chosen by Curt Morgan / Brain Farm CEO and announced FRIDAY 4/11/14.

Photos not tagged #BrainFarmTech, #BrainFarmMoVi @BrainFarm will not be entered.

 

MoVi M5 Details:

Bring big-budget camera moves to your productions. The MōVI M5 draws on the advanced stabilization technology developed for the MōVI M10 allowing for amazingly smooth footage in even the most demanding situations. The compact form factor and lightweight nature of the MōVI M5 allows camera movement that would be impossible in the past. With the release of the MōVI M5, Freefly aims to bring big budget caliber camera moves to a wider range of productions. Introducing a handheld 3-axis digital stabilized camera gimbal, so advanced, it redefines the possibilities for camera movement. The heart of the gimbal is Freefly’s proprietary high performance IMU and brushless direct drive system. The gimbal is 100% custom designed in-house by our engineering team. No compromises were made to accommodate off-the-shelf brushless motors, motor drives or IMUs. Creating the gimbal from scratch allowed Freefly to precisely execute our vision for the next generation of stabilized camera gimbals. In creating this camera gimbal, we aim to empower a new era of stabilized cinematography. Freefly MōVI – “The New Moving Picture.”

Via  http://www.freeflysystems.com/products/moviM5


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Interview with Grind TV: Snowboarder Travis Rice is taking flight again

Posted in News, Press, The Art of FLIGHT on March 18th, 2014 by Steph

Snowboarder Travis Rice is taking flight again

Fans are eagerly awaiting the newly announced sequel to the groundbreaking ‘The Art of Flight’

“That’s It, That’s All” and “The Art of Flight” are firmly entrenched in the pantheon of great action sports films. Both movies featured epic cinematography, incredible riding, tight editing, pumping soundtracks, and riveting story lines. They appealed to both hardcore snowboarders and people who had no interest in the sport because they were drawn in by their majestic quality. “The Art of Flight” came out more than two-and-a-half years ago, so fans of filmmaking and top-notch snowboarding were excited last week when the team behind those movies, Travis Rice and Brain Farm Digital Cinema, announced that they had just started work on a new project. Not many details of the new film have been released, but we do know that it will take multiple years to produce, that it will feature extremely remote locations and innovative camera techniques, and everything will be shot in ultra-high-definition 4K. Rice and the director of the film, Curt Morgan, were both unreachable as they are currently deep in the Alaska backcountry nailing clips, so we caught up with new film’s producer, Chad Jackson, to hear more about the project.

 

Full Interview Here : GrindTV 

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“That’s It, That’s All” and “The Art of Flight” were both incredibly successful, but how difficult was it to make them? Did you ever think that Brain Farm had made its last snowboard movie?  Curt Morgan and Travis Rice have been hard at filmmaking for a lot of years. Curt got his start filmmaking with Grenade many years ago, and they both came together for their first film, “Community Project.” This film was very progressive at the time. Then they took a big leap with “That’s It, That’s All” and employed more camera technology and the best riders they thought represented the sport. This is when Curt experimented with the Cineflex system to get the amazingly stable aerial shots. It was a long road to get that one finished for sure, but it was worth the reaction it received from the fans. I saw it change the game for all action sports filmmaking. “The Art of Flight” was the next natural step for Brain Farm and Travis. Along with the amazing partnership with Red Bull Media House, a new snowboarding adventure was dreamed up. It was all about one-upping the last film with filmmaking techniques, action, and adventure. Curt, Travis, the riders and the film crew including Jared Slater, Greg Wheeler, Gabe Langlois, Stephen “Bungee” Scherba, Clark Fyans, and many others really went to the end of their sanity to get the shots. It was lots of hardship just to make a snowboard film, but when it was released we all felt like it was worth the long hours. I can’t remember one easy thing about it, and it was a long period before anyone even thought about making another. But, it was a given—everyone was planning the next one. There was no doubt, but I think there was a lot of the team wondering how they could go through it all again. Well, here we are.
When will the film be released? Will you be releasing clips as you shoot? Red Bull Media House and Brain Farm have not set a release date yet, and we are still determining when we may release a trailer or any other clips, so stay tuned …
Full Interview Here : GrindTV 
by Jamie Tierney

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The Skateboard Mag features Ty Evans & Brain Farm Skate

Posted in #brainfarmskate, Press on March 17th, 2014 by Steph

In this months issue of The Skateboard Mag, Ty Evans gives an interview on the  Brain Farm Skate production. Read the article to see which skaters are involved, the new tech and a couple of the international  locations.

 

 

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Check out the full article HERE

 

 

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Behind the Shot: Brain Farm’s Use of MoVi

Posted in Tech, Video on March 6th, 2014 by Steph

Don’t miss this behind the scenes look at Brain Farm’s use of the MoVi .
The MoVi M10 has already made its mark as a game changer this year and Brain Farm knows how to maximize it’s potential.

Brain Farm Behind the Shot – MoVi Snowmobile from BrainFarm on Vimeo.

 

 

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