George, or Gee, Milner is a 19 year old video chap from Holmfirth in Yorkshire who sold his bikes to fund his movie ambitions and help in his PWDS treatment (Post Whistler Depression Syndrome). His first film, Boundless, should be out in June.
From Dirt Issue 136 – June 2013
Words by Billy Thackray. Photo by Gee Milner
My first video camera was probably a little Sony HandyCam. I got started on a tiny low–resolution camcorder owned by my friend’s dad in May 2010 after being dumped by a girl who said I was a boring bastard. Friends suggested I come film them ride at the local woods, I did and slowly my interest and passion for filming grew.
Although the first riding films I’d watched were Sprung, Earthed, etc. I’ve kind of developed my skills in the age of the ‘viral video’ so I’ve been heavily influenced by what I see online. I also owe a lot of where I am now to riders like Josh Lewis and Jack Reading, they took me on board when I was producing complete rubbish and their faster riding allowed me to hone my filming skills.
I class myself as a videographer, I can take photographs but I personally think I’m much better at filming. I only started taking photos after upgrading my filming kit to be based around the whole ‘video DSLR revolution’; it’s good to be able to do both. One thing with viral videos is that they’re all online, obviously, and you don’t get to see anything in print, so it was nice to get my first Dirt photo article printed a while back.
My style usually depends on what day of the week it is, what beer I have consumed the night before, if it’s a full moon or not, ha! Actually my style annoys me at the moment, it seems very random depending on whatever video I’ve watched most recently that’s got me stoked (yes I know, I’m not Canadian and I just said ‘stoked’!) If I watch Life Cycles I’ll film all arty, if I watch Earthed I’ll try be Rankin for the day. Although saying that I definitely seem to be getting pretty loved up with my fisheye at the moment.
I’m still running Canon DSLRs, I’ve not made the leap up to super slo–mo cameras, yet. So these days my bag contains a Canon 5D MKIII, a host of Canon lenses, batteries, magic bag of secret R.A.D. dust, for producing rad footage.
Facebook is getting overrun with lots of ‘media’ pages. At the end of the day I think the real decent video work is only going to be handed out to the guys that earn a living from it, doing it in a serious way. They are the dudes who can spend the time and have the experience to produce something company’s want to spend money on. Arguably there is a lot more ‘competition’ as there are more people with cameras, but is that credible, serious competition? The majority of the time it is not.
In my mind a pretty averagely shot web edit can be saved by the fact that the person riding is a complete wild–boy on a bicycle. But when you take another look at it you get more critical of the piece as a whole. Everyone wants to see a well thought out and constructed video, but at the same time all that is pointless if the rider or location is whack. A web edit that can be watched time after time is something very special and isn’t something I feel like I’ve managed to achieve yet, but everyone’s learning right?
Alex Rankin inspires me. That guy is a boss and his filming style is so sick. Also, Joe Bowman, because he’s constantly working on something new, constantly running around like a labrador on ecstasy and films some bloody good videos. And there’s a young kid called Max Berkowitz who is going to kill it in the video world! He just needs to stop being so Canadian and hipster!
Riders that I’d like to film? Well, Ben Reid combined with a mountain bike and a flat–out rock downhill trail, well, that’s just ‘pure f–king sex’ as he would say. Then Scottish young gun Innes Graham, dude that kid is pinned! His attitude is spot on and he whips big and can pull off suicides, shame he’s a vegetarian though, oh well…no one’s perfect!
Be it in MTB or not, I’ll definitely be a videographer, I’m doing the whole ‘Uni’ thing this September at Sheffield Hallam and I can’t bloody wait to get stuck in learning new stuff whilst studying how to party hard at the same time.
Keep it real, have a laugh, don’t take yourself too seriously and live your life to the max whilst you still can, no regrets! #freerideforever.