Disguised behind a dirty denim jacket and ripped black Witch tee is one of the most motivated and multitalented individuals I know. Editor, writer, photographer, filmer, producer, director, entrepreneur, salesman, marketing guy, bassist, frontman, booking agent, emcee, promoter—put any of these titles in front of Mike Goodwin's name and it stands. He wouldn't tell you this. More likely, he'd ask about the last good concert you saw or maybe where to find a good margarita. Goodwin's genuine inquisitiveness makes him a natural journalist, but it's also part of what makes him so damn likable. This charisma combined with drive and talent have taken him far. Connections are important, and if you know Goodwin, you're down for Goodwin. Perpetually balancing productivity with pursuit of a good time, he's always scheming on something.
Goodwin has long been inspired by a sense of rawness. It bleeds through in everything he produces, and the first notable example transpired while he was double majoring in journalism and marketing at the University of Colorado and holding down simultaneous editorial internships with Snowboard Colorado and TransWorld Business. The Bangshow movies he worked on in college were a refreshingly rowdy display of snowboarding that built the DIY momentum he's still riding today. Following those debauchery-fueled days, Goodwin became the editor of Snowboard Colorado, where he helped launch the Snowboard On The Block Festival, before subsequently venturing across the pond to sit atop of Method Magazine's masthead. Here, he not only guides Method’s editorial voice but works on the title's namesake film projects as a director, filmer, and photographer. Snowboard-focused endeavors, however, are only a portion of where Goodwin's baffling productivity is focused.
When he's not pushing a shutter or tapping a keyboard, he's often gripping a bass guitar and microphone. During his tenure in snowboard media, Goodwin's band The Munsens has steadily gained momentum, touring in support of multiple album releases. This musical inclination has evolved to involvement beyond the stage and studio. Two years ago, Goodwin launched a media outlet of his own, Ritual of Sin, focused on the heavy-music scene, and, shortly after, worked with his brother Shaun to found a booking agency called Dust Presents that produces a Denver festival by the name Electric Funeral. Oh yeah, and now he's being hired to photograph other concerts and festivals.
Don’t let that greasy mop fool you. With the same amount of time you have today, Mike Goodwin will probably accomplish twice as much, then make it to a beer-soaked venue tonight in time to catch the headliner. — Taylor Boyd
Birthdate: October 11, 1988
Current title: Editor of Method Magazine and co-director of the Method Movie series of films
What does your current position in the snowboarding industry entail? Describe a typical day on the job.
Overall, I am responsible for the content production of our magazines and work in coordination with my colleagues Chris McAlpine and Maciej Przezak (Pwee3000) to shape the Method Movies.
A typical day lately: wake up, question my existence, battle some self-doubt, drink a pot of coffee, take a walk around the block. Once the shakes wear off, I take a quick peak at my emails to make sure there are no major firestorms brewing and resolve to answer them later. I try not to get bogged down in emails first thing, as it can easily become an unending cascade that derails the day.
Then it's the usual editorial routine—work with our contributing photographers and writers, select and edit photos, conduct interviews, write and edit copy, assign, edit and place features and so on. I'll spare you the minutiae; it's a variety of tasks, almost all of which entail staring at a screen. A midday skate, surf (if location allows), read, jam, or simply a walk is absolutely crucial. I am thankful to have flexibility in my schedule, and minus the sheer amount of screen time, I love the gig and cherish working with so many talented folks. I'd argue it's one of the most rewarding aspects of the job. We are a small, tightknit shop over here at Method. Whether it's working on our films, magazines, or other endeavors, we all wear many hats.
Where are you from and where do you currently call home?
I grew up in New Jersey, and currently split my time between Denver, Colorado and a roaming Method office in Europe, most recently in Biarritz, France.
How did you start snowboarding?
I started skateboarding when I was pretty young, and my parents took us skiing a handful of times each year during my childhood. Naturally, around 12 or 13 I decided that I was no longer going to ski on family trips and wanted to be on a board. I got a cheap deck with some step-ins from a ski swap or something, and it was on. The scene in New Jersey was quite strong at the time. Mountain Creek was very much a place to be. Danny Kass and crew were crushing life—the coolest dude in my young eyes. The park at Creek was wild, and there were even Grand Prix stops being held in New Jersey. Unfathomable now. It was an exciting time, and I jumped in completely. I didn't live all that close to the hill, but I'd hitch up to Stratton with my man Adam Slover, bum rides to mountains closer to home anyway I could, and once I got my driver's license I'd rally up with my friends after school (Viva Disco Vietnam!) as often as possible. The availability of night riding on the East Coast made that feasible.
At what point did you realize that you wanted to work in the snowboard industry?
Around 19 years old or so I was in Colorado making the Bangshow movies—pretty sure most of the videos/edits have been scrubbed from the Internet but the first one might remain—alongside some of the best and wildest people around. We couldn't believe anyone actually cared to watch what we produced. In retrospect, I think the timing was just right for that type of rowdy, lo-fi movie. I'd say it was then that I realized that I would like to continue contributing to snowboarding in some way since it had shaped such a large part of my young life. As someone who liked to write, and a student studying journalism at the time, pursuing work at magazines seemed like a reasonable route.
And how did you make that happen?
I needed an internship to complete my journalism degree and began there. I applied for two simultaneously—one at a then-fledgling publication called Snowboard Colorado and one at TransWorld Business. I ended up landing both and had one of the busiest, most fruitful semesters of my university career.
Who did you look up to in the industry for inspiration?
Growing up I was heavily inspired by the video crews of the day. On a major level, the Neoproto crew and, closer to home, the Grenade dudes. I just loved the rowdiness and the carelessness of their approach. And man, the soundtracks of those films! TransWorld actually ran a feature way back detailing the Grenade boys' move to Mammoth, and it just hooked me. I still have that issue in a box somewhere. On a more relatable and local level, I loved what the Trash Attack crew was doing. Funny enough, Alexis De Tirade, who was involved with those movies, is a friend I met early on at Mountain Creek, who, many years down the line, helped plug me in at Method.
On the mag side, I had subscriptions to both Snowboarder and TransWorld growing up and loved receiving and devouring them. So many talented people have held positions with these titles. Their work was certainly inspirational and helped establish what I am able to do today. I don't remember having a preference between titles when I was young, to be honest. Without the deluge of content from the Almighty Internet, I was just hungry for more snowboarding. I did always like when a mag ran lesser-known riders.
These days, I have the utmost respect and admiration for all my media colleagues. These are not glamorous or lucrative positions and require a genuine love of snowboarding; its culture and way of life. Despite the talk of print's demise, there are numerous excellent titles still in circulation. Cheers to all of you. I envy and am inspired by Chad Otterstrom's persistent optimism and pursuit of new zones. I love Brendan Gerard's carefree inhibition and Halldór's vision, intuition, and generosity. I admire people who self-publish their work. Sammy Spiteri sent me a really cool zine he made last year. I admire Corey Smith's ability to invent, reinvent, and continually push the envelope. The Yawgoons, Stan, Warp Wave… I could go on and on! So many of y'all are crushing it! Finally, Taylor, I admire your drive and ability to roll with the tide.
What do you feel has been your biggest impact in your line of work?
I like to think that some of my work has encouraged kids to think outside the box, to pursue what makes them happy; to ignore what the in-crowd is doing and create their own path.
What do you want to accomplish that you haven’t yet?
Get more people to bail on Vail Resorts and the like and actually support the companies/brands they love and align with ideologically. Our favorite brands aren't fading away by accident. Ultimately, I'd like to be part of a solution that makes snowboarding more approachable, more affordable. And I'd like to stay at the Spotted Ox Hostel.
Anyone you’d like to thank?
Thank you, TransWorld and Taylor Boyd, for including me in this series. I made it by a slim few weeks. I'd like to thank the whole of the Bangshow crew for some of my best memories on and off a snowboard. The chronic aches linger as a reminder of the good times and poor decisions. I'd like to thank Adam Schmidt for giving me so much freedom at Snowboard Colorado, helping me establish my voice. I'd like to thank Mike Lewis for bringing me on as an intern at TransWorld Business and for his advice and stories as we've moved in different paths through the industry. Thank you Alexis and Diggles for introducing me at Method—and remaining great friends, Chriso McAlpine for giving me a shot and subsequently taking me around the world, and the one-and-only TAG for showing me the ropes. An extra special thank you to Chris, Pwee, Klaus Lotto, Will Rad and my current Method family for some of the absolute wildest and most unimaginable times I've ever experienced. Thank you for your hard work and for tolerating my peculiarities. I am very proud of what we have produced together.
I'd like to thank my friends in Innsbruck and Krakow, the Helgasons, Kevin Backstrom, Tor Lundstrom, and everyone else. I know I am forgetting so many. Everyone who welcomed this American into Euroland with open arms. Finally, I'd like to thank my brother Shaun, my girlfriend Kate, and my family and friends for remaining by my side through the super stressful times, and Canadian Mist for producing a whiskey so cheap I was once afforded a courage I cannot fathom now. I love you all. Stay loose!