Today marks Whistler Blackcomb’s online rollout of their “Big Picture” documentaries, a series of short films that unpack some of today’s most pertinent questions for snowboarders. While the focus is on environmental challenges as they relate to folks who work or play in resort environments, the discussions started by these films are relevant to a variety of important social issues. As the documentaries explore conflicts between ideals of stewardship and realities of consumption, the disconnect between children and nature, the problems presented by a public anxious to access the backcountry, and the difficult road ahead for ski resorts, they tap into a number of auxiliary topics such as parenting practice and the benefits of solidarity between industry competitors. We applaud Whistler Blackcomb for approaching the conversation openly, and bringing the inherent compromise of realistic stewardship to light without defaulting to greenwash. The variety and thoughtfulness of the voices included in the videos is also worth noting. Still, the films mark a beginning, more than anything providing talking points. Their success will be determined by the engagement they incite. The project works best if you add your voice through comments, shares, and real world conversations– along with WB, we invite you to participate by visiting the project’s mini-site, and encourage you to explore your own ideas about the bigger picture.

Part 1: Conflicting Passions

Part 2: Tech Trap

Part 3: Pushing the Boundaries

Part 4: Survive or Thrive