Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down and chatting with Brian Davis – founder, creator, and visionary for Motion Distillery. Motion Distillery is ‘… a handcrafted film company inspired by the untamed wilderness, the unplanned road trip, a fresh powder day and you’. Here at Seattle Backpackers Magazine we have created a thriving community and budding business from the pastime of human powered travel in the wildplaces. So we teamed up with Brian Davis and his crew at Motion Distillery to tell the world our story, what drives us, and what has kept Seattle Backpackers Magazine going strong for over half a decade. 

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SBM-Brian can you explain to our readers what Motion Distillery is?

Motion Distillery was founded on the premises of visual storytelling. The idea being that everybody has a story, whether it’s a person, a brand, a non-profit…the idea is to take these stories that are already written and capture them in a cinematic way. Filmmaking is our way of doing that.

SBM-Looking through your portfolio it’s pretty obvious that your passion is telling stories through the video and visual medium. What made you start Motion Distillery?

I had been doing commercial production work in Los Angeles. It taught me a lot and working on set and was great but I wanted to be out telling real stories. It has kind of become a new way of advertising in a sense – making a small short films about a brands. This goes a long way in the culture we live in and I saw potential in that. So I started to dream up Motion Distillery and purse that passion.

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SBM-I completely agree with you, it seems that short videos about everything from brands to trip reports have been exploding lately. How many years has Motion Distillery been making videos?

We are coming up on two years. It’s been an exciting two at that, challenging at times but also truly filling when we get to do what we love for a living.

SBM- Let’s talk about our collaboration for second – I think it perfectly captures what drives the crew at Seattle Backpackers Magazine and what we are all about. First let me say that I was surprised at how much work went into the creation of this video. From writing the screenplay, choosing shots, audio recording, mixing, etc… It has given me a whole new respect for the industry. For you though what is the most challenging aspect of telling people’s stories through video?

Well for me it’s doing my best. As you mention there is a lot that goes in to producing video, but it ultimately comes down to getting their story right. These brands or Non-profits I have worked with are all important to me and I want to send them the final cut and be just as excited as they are when the get it. The challenge really comes when I’m out shooting there’s a lot that has to come together at the right moment to get those great shots, because when you get home to edit and you don’t have the shot you need or it is out of focus them that affects the story. It’s challenging especially when working outdoors because there are so many variables involved.

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SBM-I can imagine the difficulties of film are magnified in the outdoors. A lot of the time a second chance to get a particular shot is just not possible. I think our readers are going to enjoy watching your handiwork. Before we wrap things up though I am curious – do you have any upcoming projects or trips that you are excited about?

Well as you know I have a huge love for for the outdoors, so I’m always on the hunt for those types of projects. My next project is a little different, and it is still under development. What I will tell you its about something that a lot of people enjoy drinking in the morning, or anytime for that matter. I know for a fact the people in the Northwest particularly love it. I’m excited to get that project under way and I’ll be sure to send some fresh beans you way once it’s completed. 

SBM-Oh that sounds awesome! I can’t wait to get some samples in the mail. Where should our readers go if they want to stay abreast of your adventures and projects?

You can find Motion Distillery on Facebook, Vimeo, Instagram and Twitter for all our latest projects and adventures.


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