I first met Amber on a road trip from Portland to San Diego a few years back. She slept most of the way and then when it was her turn to drive, she drove fast. When she sits back in a chair, she lounges the way a cat might. Maybe it’s because she’s plotting. With her co-conspirator, Fabia Gruebler, she started the first successful all-girls film crew (Misschief films), effectively changing the face of snowboarding. Amber is one of a handful of pro shreds who can claim a contribution to snowboarding that will last beyond her years in the spotlight. She is thoughtful and athletic, shy and stylish, a traveler with a fondness for the comforts of home. And she’s just getting started. — Rian Rhoe
1. How has starting Misschief films changed your winter snowboarding experience?
It’s changed it in so many ways. I think it’s changed every girl’s winter experience because now going out to film is a huge priority. Where as before it was’nt really even an option. And when you open the door to filming you find yourself changing the way you look at the landscape around you. Everywhere there could be some kind of shot possibility, and it is really fun to search for them.
Also, it means spending a lot more time in the backcountry, which has been a really exciting new area to explore. I think the best thing is that it brings us girls together and gives us all a focus—something tangible to work towards.
2. How is the reality of running a film company different from what your expectations were?
I think it is a much bigger endeavor than I ever expected it would be. In the beginning it was like, “this is a cool idea”, but the actuality of it is that it takes a lot of grunt work. The emails never stop flowing and you don’t really get a break. We have been really successful, which is great, but with this success comes a lot more responsibility.
3. When you’re old and gray, what do you hope to have contributed to snowboarding?
I just hope that I help to encourage more girls to get out and snowboard.
4. What do you think is the most common misperception people might have about you?
I am really shy, and I think people who do not know me might be inclined to think I am just being a snob.
5. You’re easily one of the most stylish girls I know. What’s your relationship with Roxy like? (Besides being sponsored by them)
Ah, thanks Rian, I’m flattered. My relationship with Roxy is really a win-win situation no matter how you swing it. I get to contribute my ideas to the design process, and then I get to wear sweet outfits and ride solid gear all winter long. It is awesome. The team that works on all of the lines is really good at what they do, and they are a pleasure to work with. All of us riders contribute a lot to the design and construction process, so we can really stand behind Roxy 100%.
6. What’s your prediction for on hill style this winter?
Hmm … there will be more stripes … lots of technical fabrics, like waterproof tweeds, wools, and corduroys. Skinny pants will loosen and baggy pants will tighten. All in all over the next few years I say on-hill clothes are going to be looking more and more like street clothes.
7. Do you think it’s possible to be a female pro-shred and date guys who don’t snowboard?
I sure as heck hope so, but I can’t say from experience. Because of the intense travel schedule, there would probably be issues that would develop out of not seeing each other enough, and perhaps some jealousy as well. A lot of guys would probably feel insecure about being in that position, so it takes a special man to fit the bill. I haven’t met him yet …
8. If you had to pick five qualities you couldn’t live without in a boyfriend, what would they be?
3. Sense of humor
5. Handsome good looks
9. If you could snowboard anywhere in the world that you haven’t yet, where would you go?
Japan. It looks soo< fun!
10. How is filming with an all-girl crew different than filming with the boys?
I can’t say from experience on this one because I’ve never filmed with boys. I think the cool thing with all-girls is that we all egg each other on in a positive way. When girls go out with guys that are on the guys program they probably end up hitting stuff that is way out of their league. Where as with girls we are in control and can hit stuff that is a challenge for us but within our reach. It helps technical progression to move forward, and it develops style.