After following Coldfocus videos since the very beginning and collaborating with them in the last couple years, I felt curious to know something more about one of the longest-lived finnish rider in the Matteo Maggi flicks, that hit me hard for his natural style in doin’ things on a snowboard.
To say the truth I felt there was something more to discover about this shy finland Dude that visited Italy several times, had Italian sponsors and didn’t appear to be the average Finland Character. Then after checkin’ his last video part and learnin’ through Matteo about his surname switch, I decided it was the right time to knock on his door and please my curiosity.
All pictures by Andrea Schillirò
Hello Juha, how you’re doin’?
Hey I`m fine a bit of hangover.
Where are you at the moment?
I`m at home. Just came back from Matteo`s place. Helped him with moving. Not the smartest thing to do while having a hangover.
In your summer plans slushy shredding, resting and other activities or all of the above?
The whole summer I` have been working and saving money for a trip to Costa Rica. Only three weeks left to departure. But otherwise I have spent my summer days in golf courses.
How did you meet Matteo Maggi? Yours seems to be not only a longtime professional partnership but way more a real friendship.
Actually I met him at Messilä, which was my local ski resort before I moved to Helsinki. He somehow managed to trash his board on the flat down rail so he came to tell me what have happened. Honestly I did not give a shit about his problem and secondly I was too shy to talk English, but year after we kind of ended up doing snowboard movies.
During these years it has become more than a professional partnership and I believe that everyone within Coldfocus productions are good friends with each other and I cannot personally consider us as “professionals” in any sense. I truly believe that this good atmosphere among the riders, filmers and photographers have helped us to create films which reflects this friendship.
Juha and Italy shares different things, isnt’ it? Some year ago you got an Italian sponsor (Static), you visited more than once our country, you’re still filming with an Italian producer from the very beginning.Do you like Italian country?
I still have an Italian sponsor so nothing has changed compared to those Static years except now I have sponsor who really supports me and does everything to push me forward in my career. So I am really thankful to Fabrizio Messineo and Woodmorning and during these years we kind of a became good friends with Fabrizio.
But it is not always about the snowboarding when I visit in Italy cause I have lot of good friends in Rome so it is nice to meet them once in a while. I could say that I do love Italy, which has become almost like my second home country.
What are the main differences between Italy and Finland? A friend of mine who live in Helsinki told me it is a totally different world.
I would not say that Italy and Finland are so different. Of course we don’t have mountains here and it’s freaking cold during winter. Certainly Finland has some peculiarities that you could only discover in Finland. I would recommend visiting in Finland so you all know what I am talking about. Everyone experiences things in a different way.
And the differences between Italians and Finnish?
Shy vs. extroverted. That comparison speaks for itself.
What please you more when not shredding?
Last winter I was just playing ice hockey so much that I did not have time to film my part. Matteo was not so pleased to my new activity. Even Stefano B. was a bit amazed of my passion to ice hockey.
Some time ago I asked Matteo (Maggi) if Juha Kinnunen and Juha Blid were the same person and he kept tellin’ me your surname switch…do you want to tell it to Behind readers?
I have thought a while to change my surname to Blid, which originates from my grandmoms’ side. So while I was moving muy stuff to Helsinki I lost all my documents; passport, driving license, etc so I decided to print a new surname on my documents. So I kind of took a responsibility to preserve the surname, which would otherwise diminish. I am still the same guy but a different surname. I have noticed that some of my friends have difficulties to use my new surname.
Do you make a living with snowboarding? I bet if you were born in the US you’d surely had the chances…
I still work a regular office hours so pretty much I just receive a free stuff, which of course is a huge benefit. I could say that I had a slight change to get little bit more out of this business, but it was my decision to keep things simple and just to ride for myself. Of course, I would not say no if a company would offer a monetary support, but without forgetting to have fun while doing it.
Do you thing snowboarding is facing a new growth or is just stalling at the moment?
I watched a few days ago Nixon Jib Fest documentary, which was at that time a revolutionary what comes to jibbing and if I compare current level to that documentary I think that snowboarding has done a huge progress. Every year, after seeing the latest movies you think that snowboarding has reached a top level and there is not a possibility to do things better, but somehow the level just getting better and better. I could say that tricks, size of rails and jumps are still getting bigger but more emphasis is on a style, alternative spots, etc. I rather prefer to watch a smooth and alternative riding in smaller spots than a Shaun White kind of playstation videopart.
Why you finnish people are all so quiet so mad (in doing sports) at the same time?
We like to take our sport seriously. Just kidding, I would say that when you get to know a finnish person a better you will discover that they are not so quiet. Only exception are Sundays when finnish people are mad and quiet because of the upcoming Monday(work) combined to hangover results “ Sunday depression”. So I would say that You were in a wrong place at a wrong time when you met a finnish person.
[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/12057054[/vimeo] Juha part in 2009 Ruggine 2.5 Turbo Diesel
Any last word?
I would like thanks family, all my friends(Italian and Finnish), sponsors; Bataleon, Ashbury, Elm. Of course Behind Magazine for a heavy support to Coldfocus