Erin Hogue is the professional photographer who recently won the People’s Choice Award at the Uprising competition in Whistler with an incredible slideshow featuring shredding moms and their kids. Here’s our Q&A with her.

The inaugural Uprising competition in Whistler on February 22 featured some of the best photographers around including Mason Mashon, Scott Serfas, Mitch Winton, Erin Hogue and Reuben Krabbe, who is responsible for the latest Coast Mountain Culture cover. The interesting thing about this event was each pro was paired with an up-and-coming photographer and they had three consecutive days to capture enough images for a five-minute slideshow to air at the event. The best image award went to Duncan Sadava, best action shot was won by the team of Mason Mashon and Tyler Ravelle but the overall winner of the people’s choice award was the team of Erin Hogue and Vince Edmond, who spent their three days photographing inspiring mountain moms. It was such a beautiful tribute we had to catch up with Erin and ask her the inspiration behind it all. Here is our interview.

Erin Hogue and Vince Emond accept their People’s Choice award at the Uprising photo competition in Whistler, Feb 22, 2020.

Hey Erin. Congratulations on the win. How did you and Vince Emond get teamed up together?

I was sent a list of up-and-coming photographers to pick from. I didn’t really know very many people on the list and was deathly sick on the couch with the flu at the time. I had to pick solely based off the 10 photos the up-and-comer’s submitted. Vince’s portfolio had some creative photos that I thought would lend themselves well to the concept I was hoping to do.

This was a totally new format for a photo competition. How did you and Vince decide who would shoot what?

The concept behind the photo competition this year was a mentor/mentee relationship. I loved this concept! Especially because it is something I would have really valued when I was starting out. As a photographer you do not often have the opportunity to see first-hand how other photographers do what they do. Normally you do not get to see what goes into a photographer’s unique style and voice. Even now I am always fascinated by other photographers’ creative process and still would love to be able to be brought along for the ride. Being a mentor was a different way of working for sure and since Vince wasn’t that into the idea or the subject matter, I let him have first angle on most of the things. I also incorporated as many of his shot ideas as possible. I made sure to set things up so that he could focus on shooting without having to worry about the logistics behind it all.

What inspired the mountain moms theme?

It first started when I ran into Kimmy Fasani in Svalbard last spring. She had Koa, her 18-month-old, with her for a sailboat, splitboarding trip. I loved that she brought him along and was balancing her pro-snowboard career with motherhood. Then, a week after I found out about Uprising, I was riding with Sara Niblock who had a baby three months prior. She casually mentioned that she had had to pump in her car that morning. Aside from that, the day was the same: she talked about competing in the Legendary Baker Banked Slalom, her Prior sponsorship and her shoot plans for the winter. It was from this conversation that I realized that this is a side of our lifestyle that is rarely publicly acknowledged, showcased, and celebrated. It felt like such an incredibly essential aspect of mountain culture and even I knew very little about it. I wanted to highlight this story. I wasn’t expecting to win the contest but simply to showcase what women are capable of.

What was your favourite part of the experience?

My favourite part is seeing so many people relate and connect to a story that I feel is such an important one to show right now. When you set out to do something creative, especially something you are so passionate about, you never know how it is going to be received. I am blown away by the response.

What’s next for you in terms of projects?

Right now, I am working on getting additional funding for a female surf shot film I am creating. The film focuses on the universal feelings that one gets from surfing: empowerment, freedom, strength, community and connection to nature. I also have an action, adventure lifestyle workshop in Whistler at the end of the month and I speak professionally so I have a couple talks to prepare for. Then of course getting out in the backcountry and shooting as much as I can before spring.