Nick Young got a taste of life in the half-pipe at Breckenridge Ski Resort on Tuesday, but it wasn’t from stomping 1260s or switch 1080s — it was through the lens of a camera.
Young was chosen by his Colorado Mountain College photography professor Matt Lit and the Breckenridge Resort Chamber for a new program, Day in the Life, which allows one local photographer VIP and media access to the Dew Tour venue and athletes.
“The Dew Tour has done an awesome job of including the community,” said Rachel Zerowin, with the Resort Chamber. “I think this is just another really cool opportunity that lets them work with us and the local community.”
Young’s photography will be promoted via the Dew Tour and Breckenridge Resort Chamber social channels. Young said spending a day shooting for the Dew Tour was a great chance for him to get a foot in the door with his photography, as access is typically only granted to working media on assignment.
“It’s what I want to do for the rest of my life, events like that, pro athletes like that,” the 21-year-old said. “It’s an amazing opportunity to come my way to get to shoot the Dew Tour and being right up in the action, right there on the pipe, that was a great experience and it taught me a whole lot about how to be a photo journalist and really cover an event.”
Young knew early on that he wanted to pursue a career in photography. He traces his interest in the art all the way back to middle school.
“I was never really a team sports guy,” he said. “I was into skateboarding and snowboarding. It started when me and my friends wanted to get pictures of our tricks and stuff. None of my friends knew how to work the camera very well, so I picked it up and fell in love with it.”
Continued encouragement came from Young’s high school photo teacher, Jennifer Martin, who was passionate about photography and taught Young enough for him to realize he wanted to get serious with the art form. After high school, the fledgling photographer followed his passion to Breckenridge to shoot was he was really after: action sports.
“I didn’t really want to move too far away from my family, but I wanted to get out of the Loveland-Fort Collins area, so I moved to Breck to get closer to the action sports world, submerse myself in snowboarding and skiing, and I feel like it’s the best place for me right now,” Young said.
“My main thing in photography, what I love to do, is action sports. There’s all kinds of activities up here, great events and contests like the Dew Tour — there’s a ton of amazing athletes up here that I get the pleasure to photograph. If I don’t have great athletes to take pictures of, there’s nothing for me and my photography.”
Young’s mission as an aspiring photographer is to capture individual expression through creativity and style. Thus far, he’s done that mainly through snapping pictures of friends on the hill or kids hanging out at the skate park, he said, along with photographing the occasional portrait and photos for his job with Virtuance, a company that specializes in real estate photography and virtual tours.
“I’ve done big events with my photography before, but it’s never been what I love to do, which revolves around action sports,” he said. “This is my first really big event doing what I love to do, what I’m good at. It showed me what it’s like to be a professional photographer shooting action sports.”
Putting in the time on this Dew Tour project will get Young’s name out there in the photography community and help him network for future opportunities.
“That’s the biggest thing that will help me,” he said. “All the articles that were done on me by GoBreck and the Dew Tour and now the Summit Daily will get my name out there and promote my business; that’s what it’s all about. It showed me what it takes to be a professional photographer, what you have to do, what you have to cover, how to work with other professionals in the business. Mainly, it’s just a chance for people to see my work, which is what matters most to me.”
“I was never really a team sports guy. I was into skateboarding and snowboarding. It started when me and my friends wanted to get pictures of our tricks and stuff. None of my friends knew how to work the camera very well, so I picked it up and fell in love with it.”