Not many photographers have had the success and left a longer paper trail than Scott Serfas. Ironically enough, he started taking photos of his shred buddies back in 1992 as a bit of an after thought while completing his plumber’s apprenticeship in his hometown of North Delta, BC, just outside of Vancouver. The fact that his buddies grew into arguably some of the greatest snowboarders on the planet certainly may have helped, but his 65 covers, 20 with Transworld alone, are a testament to his ability on the shutter. Only Jon Foster has matched Scott’s 20 covers of TWS. When asked how many different publications he has been published in, Scott humbly responded, “I don’t know to be honest, could be 50, could be 100, It’s all a blur, especially back in those days.” Currently a senior photographer with Transworld, a position he has held for 11 years, Scott just finished shooting with Travis Rice and the Brain Farm Digital Crew for Art of Flight. – Peter Andersen
Before the days of digital cameras and Lightroom, if you wanted a tweaked look to your photos you needed to plan ahead with film stock and processing techniques. And once you found a look you liked you didn’t share the information. It was these little things that helped separate you from the rest of the pack. Now there is an app for that. This is a special Black and White film stock overexposed and processed C41. Max Jenke, Whiskey Booter. Mt. Seymour.
Before the days of snowmobiles, our only option was to shoot on ski hills. We were lucky then because we could shoot on weekdays when it was sunny and there was new snow while everyone else was at the office. This photo of Kevin Sansalone was taken under the Mystery Peak chair. Rob Dow and Sluggo wait for their turn on top.
Dave Boyce or SLB (Sluggo’s little brother) as we liked to call him was always in the mix. Indy drops back then were a bit smaller.
I always wanted to shoot a pow turn on the top of Seymour to give the illusion we always had deep, untracked pow to ride up there. Truthfully, these days were few and far between. And even then we had to crop out the tracks all around us. Here you can see the first track that Rob Dow layed down behind his spray. Snowboarding…its just an illusion.
I feel like I have told this story a 1000 times. This was my first time hiking the Seymour Backcountry. I was with Devun Walsh and Kevin Sansalone. After building this jump Devun told me to hike up and look at it from where they were dropping in from. Wow! Vancouver in the background. My first photo published in Transworld, and I still wonder why it wasn’t a cover.
In 1994 you didn’t have to go very big to get a photo published. You just needed a hard working rider with a good method and some nice light. I was experimenting with an off camera flash at the time and was stoked on my results. Vancouver sunset and city lights from the top of Seymour.
This was one epic day on Seymour. The snow was exceptionally dryer this day, a lot deeper than normal and we had some dramatic light. This was the first day that the film company Mack Dawg Productions came to town. The session was Rob Dow, Joey McGuire, Devun Walsh and Graham Clements. Lots of big spins went down but sometimes all you need is a classic method to get the shot.
It seemed like as time went on we found more and more and bigger and bigger jumps to build. This hip is just down the ridge from the quarter pipe and the other hip similar to this one. The difference is this one shoots with trees in the background and not the city. After a few years of shooting up there people were getting sick of seeing the city in all the shots so we had to change it up a bit. Here is Alister Shultz sending it all the way to Grouse Mountain.
Again, its all about the light. It was another beautiful sunny day and then all of a sudden the clouds started to roll in quick. If the sun didn’t pop through for this split second there would not be a shot here to show you. I can still remember yelling up to Rob Dow to drop, drop, drop….right now…light is sick! This was the last shot from the day.
This day was a session with Dave Lee and Devun Walsh for a Mack Dawg movie. They both wanted to hit this gap but were not sure if it was possible to make it. Devun went first and did this indy, maybe the biggest air ever on Seymour. Dave followed it up with a back 3 and then a back 7. The jump then became known as the Dave Lee gap.
There came a time when it got a lot harder to shoot up there. A lot more crews were showing up to shoot, not to mention everyone else that saw the photos in the magazines and wanted to build the same jumps. Finding powder and untracked landings became hard. This photo of Peter Line was one of the last photos I took up there, a switch backside 360.
Building the QP up there was a full day of digging and shaping, maybe 2. And then most of the time it was built wrong and riders couldn’t get more than 3 feet out. I remember thinking that I would only build it and shoot it with Jorli Ricker and Derek Heidt. They were the transition go to riders back then. They built it right and would hit it the fastest. Here is Jorli showing how it’s done.