Between autograph signings and hanging with his six-month-old daughter, Pep had time for an interview with me at the High Five Festival.
Pep Fujas is a legend in freeskiing: his segment in Session 1242 is counted among of the best in the sport. A backcountry style king, he has influenced countless kids as well as pro skiers of the younger generation. After ten years as a professional skier, Pep has more projects than ever, and a huge desire to share his passion with his audience.
Hey Pep, how did you start skiing?
I started skiing because my parents put me on skis, and I liked to go downhill. That’s it.
Your career started with contests, right?
I did contests because I liked the focus, I liked to learn different techniques, and I did very well and had fun doing it. I did racing, then moguls. Then park jumps started to be built, and it was a way to kind of fly on skis.
Why did you stop competing?
I enjoyed it for a little bit, but coming from moguls skiing, I saw the same thing happening in freeskiing. Everything was about the judges, what they liked was what would score, and I didn’t really fit into it.
After working with large film productions, you embarked on your own path with Nimbus. Why?
One of the main reasons was to have control of how you want your skiing to be seen. We worked really hard for other companies, and a lot of stuff was cut out during the editing. It’s like a part of our work disappeared. So we were able to show more in our movies, and we had the creative control.
What’s your part in the Nimbus production process?
Every year it’s a bit different, but mostly I contribute to the ideas and do a bit of directing. Eric does all the editing, and though we help him with the marketing, he does the majority of the work.
I watched your last movie, and it looks really chill for you guys now. Are you still challenging yourselves?
I do have the possibility to chill, but my nature is to push my boundaries and myself. So yeah, I still like to charge hard and in different ways. This year I was shooting for three different projects while shooting for Nimbus, so that’s already a challenge. What we really want to show is that freeskiing is fun, regardless who you are and what your background is. It’s just great to go out there.
During the second year Eric’s family came with us, my family came with us, and a part of my family was created during the trip. It’s just not all about the biggest and most badass stuff—it’s also about traveling together, discovering new places, the simple things.
Your family is also involved in your projects, but what’s it like to raise a kid as a freeskier?
Well she was born three months ago, so I haven’t really had to deal with it yet (laughing).
OK, so how will you make it work?
Right now I’m planning my year in segments, so I will be gone two weeks of each month and be back two weeks each month to spend time with my daughter and girlfriend. Hopefully it will work, I have the feeling it can and I won’t be away too much. There’s so much to do in the place I live, so it will be good to stay home and I have some projects I want to do there.
Talking about projects, where’s your skiing going?
That’s a good question. I have a trip to Marocco planned with Patagonia, and one to Alaska to go camping. I think it’s really interesting to formulate a small story and relate it to the masses, to the people who are interested in that.
I’d like to start an event as well. I haven’t shared that yet with anybody, and I’m not going to say what it will be yet. I like to share with people, so this year I’ll be working with Alta and go ski with people for a “Ski With Pep Day,” and maybe teach them something.
Are you aware of your big influence on people?
I’m proud of the mark that I made in skiing, but I still want to continue to provide inspiration.
Is that what the video side is about?
That’s the hope.