Stepping out into the blistering heat of Utah's desert, in the midst of a pandemic no less, was daunting. But the task at hand—a launch video for the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX truck—was too exhilarating to pass up. The nostalgic lullaby rendition of the 1950s classic, "Mister Sandman," gave us our beat, our rhythm to this high-octane visual poem.

Working shoulder to shoulder with my co-director and cinematographer, Eric Crosland, we knew we were in for a challenge. We had to capture the essence of this beast of a truck while also doing justice to the haunting beauty of the desert, and we had to do it fast, on a tight budget. But you know what they say about pressure and diamonds.

We divided our team into independent yet highly synchronized units, each with its own role in this meticulously choreographed dance. Our experience on a previous National Geographic project on Everest informed our approach—a kind of expedition-style strategy that allowed us to make the most of every moment. Especially those fleeting minutes during the magical "blue hours," when the desert landscape transformed into something almost otherworldly.

What we pulled off felt like more than just a commercial; it was a cinematic spectacle. The Ram 1500 TRX burst onto the screen, its raw power juxtaposed against the majesty of the desert. I could hardly have asked for a better canvas or a more compelling subject.