Today we’d like to introduce you to Brian Bitterfeld.
Brian, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
It really all started as a teenager in high school in 2008. I became interested in skateboarding and had a large group of friends with similar interests. We spent most afternoons after school skateboarding which is where I developed an interest in filmmaking. While my friends would skateboard I would use a small Sony handy cam to film the different tricks and stunts we performed around town.
As I approached college I really didn’t know what to major in so I settled with a small private college in Baltimore, MD studying digital media production. After two years at Stevenson University in 2012, I transferred colleges to The University of Colorado at Boulder in Boulder, CO. I continued to study filmmaking but it was in Colorado where I became more interested in ski filmmaking specifically. After graduating in 2014 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Filmmaking I packed my bags and moved to Aspen, CO for an internship at a local television station. It was living in Aspen for about 3 years when I became fully dedicated to making backcountry ski and snowboard films. While I still spend most of my time working for the local television channel Aspen82, my passion revolves around working for myself (Bitter Pictures) and filming skiing.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I think everyone has a different perception of what “smooth” means. Especially when it comes to the film industry. Before I was hired at Aspen82 I worked for free for a ski pass while also serving at a local restaurant in the evenings. During college, I had worked 3 unpaid internships solely for the experience. With that being said, I have spent many days working from sunrise to sunset for zero cost, but it is that experience that has gotten me to where I am today. So personally, for myself, it was a rather smooth road. I had the work ethic and networking abilities to use all those unpaid experiences as a source to move me forward in the film industry.
Bitter Pictures – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
At Bitter Pictures, I do digital video and editing. Since it is a lifestyle company I film everything from music videos, wedding’s, documentaries to extreme sports. However, I feel that I dedicate most of my time to extreme sports being that Aspen has a lifestyle that revolves mostly around that. As a company, I am most proud of how versatile we are. One day I will be shooting a beautiful wedding on a nice ranch and the next to be in the mountains filming mountain biking at 8,000ft. We are able to stand out because the area we live is so unique and different. Compared to a larger city or coastal town, we have a greater ability to film a greater variety of things and that really gives us the ability to be different.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
The proudest moment of my career so far is having found a group of not only talented snowboarders but friends that took me under their wing and helped me work my way into the backcountry filming industry. Before meeting them I was on a networking binge trying to meet the right people and make the decisions that would hopefully steer me in the right direction to start filming skiing and snowboarding professionally. It was when I met Doran Laybourn that changed the direction my career was going in. I met Doran during an interview on a television show that was run by the local television channel I was working for that we were filming on location at The Little Nell. After chatting with him for a bit I told him what I wanted to do and he took a chance at letting me a film with him and his buddies. After meeting him, wanting to film snowboarding professionally became a reality, not an easy reality, but a reality that was worth the challenge.
- Address: 1023 East Hopkins Ave. Aspen, CO 81611
- Website: www.bitterpictures.com
- Phone: 410-212-8359
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @bitter_pictures