“Me and my friends would spend the whole day/night playing with this shitty camera my dad had and making our own skate films.” That’s how things started for Brazilian cinematographer, director and editor Gabriel Novis, 26, a nomad who counts LA, Europe and Bali as “homes.”
Right now he’s traveling the world, making commercials and films that come his way. Projects have ranged from the Hermes commercial he shot in Paris to a video he did for Nectar where it was “just me and my friends surfing this empty secret spot in North Sumatra.”
Novis says, “I have had some big challenges working for worldwide companies and celebrities, but I like to be challenged.”
One of his latest pieces was for Desillusion Magazine with surfer Alex Smith, which is making a few festival premieres right now. “It's really beautiful, and the process of making it was really fun,” he says.
Another positive project was Novis' documentary on one of his own—director, documentary filmmaker and photographer Sebastien Zanella. “He is one of my favorite humans ever, so portraying who he is and even getting an Vimeo staff pick award was really special,” he says.
But it’s hard to rank your work. “I don't have a best project because my mood changes and a project that was my favorite a few months ago, it’s the worst one for me now,” he says. “My favorite thing to shoot would be something where I have full creative control.”
Like his portfolio, Novis is still defining his style. “It takes years to get there and find out who you are, but I have been working hard to find myself. I love to create this surreal world and try to portray in my films the way I see things,” he says. “The unknown is what keeps me creating. I love when you see something and you question yourself: Why? How? WTF?”