Photographer We Love: Gabriella Pereira Achadinha

WORDS Celeste Jacobs IMAGES Gabriella Pereira Achadinha

The Bloemfontein-born, Berlin-based photographer Gabriella Pereira Achadinha is a sharpshooter with a background in film, specialising in production and direction. Here she shares some insights on what goes on behind her lens.

What is the main subject of your work?

Landscapes, features on musicians and performers, stylised urbanscapes with elements of the surreal via mixed media and collages. The subject matter I focus on has changed throughout the years, it’s been an ongoing experiment in pinpointing what it is I would like to say – or perhaps define a style that could be my own – but the direction is definitely more towards the abstract as of late.

What do you hope people feel when they see your work?

Curious, calm, nostalgic or thoughtful. Looking back on older works of mine, there’s a tendency to reflect the trend of the time – as is normal with the influence of social media – and quite a bit of that is problematic in terms of street photography and consent, the male gaze regurgitated in lingerie and swimwear shoots, etc. I hope most of all to rectify that older way of seeing and create work that is innovative and more thoughtful.

How would you describe your style of photography?

At times erratic, but most often influenced by the cinematic in terms of composition and always colourful.

What drew you to photography and what keeps you interested?

As with most visual art forms, there’s something so mesmerising about the way each particular individual sees a scene and decides to frame it through their lens. Photography has become increasingly more accessible, with the advent of cellphone camera technology, and this has allowed the form to include so many unique voices and viewpoints. This transition is both exciting and challenging – there’s a rise in saturation but also in novelty being represented. This is what keeps me interested, in not merely photographing what is there, but in developing a story.

What are you looking forward to next?

If the past year has taught me anything, it’s to surrender and allow the creative process to flow. Usually, with typical OCD problems, the focus has been on very clear-cut goals and milestones to reach (with the self-imposed pressure digging deep). For now, there are projects in the pipeline, but most of all I look forward to re-examining the way in which I photograph, research as much as possible and simply make as I move.

Keep up with the latest from Gabriella on Instagram.