With winter here for most of us, it’s satisfying to envision new adventures and places to go through videos like Gabriel Desanti’s. His curious and imaginative storytelling uniquely adds to the beautiful landscapes he’s encountering from all around the world.
Whether it be expanding upon new physical and mental boundaries at the point of danger, or breathing in and touring waterfall trails in Bali, Gabe relays a sense of close companionship to all his viewers. His attachment to his audience speaks volumes even when he’s thousands of miles away from them.
Here at Resource, we caught up with Gabriel Desanti for a quick chat on his recent travels and asked him about tips for creating content while traveling. Gabriel is a photographer and filmmaker based in New York City and has worked on projects and collaborations with different brands. He works on many personal creative projects as well that vary in style. He approaches filmmaking in a headfirst, expressive fashion all the while taking a candid approach to storytelling.
Resource Magazine: We’ll just jump right in. Can you tell me a little about yourself? Where are you from and what do you do?
Gabriel Desanti: Well, I’m 21 years old and I’m from Connecticut. I grew up surrounded by the woods and nature. Right now, I’m based in New York City. I love the chaos when I leave Connecticut, I love the energy. New York is full of wonderful, busy people. From Connecticut, it’s about a ninety-minute ride away. I always find myself wanting to get out of Connecticut, even if its just a ride back to New York City.
GD: I basically started shooting professionally after leaving school and my job at the time to travel. I decided to dedicate all my time to work on my films and editing. I would say I started editing my own videos when I was 13 on my Playstation.
RM: Wow. So how were you doing that? Were you streaming and editing your own videos?
GD: Yeah, I would live capture my game and then edit and upload them. I honestly loved the process of it all. In the future, I think I always missed editing and working on these videos. I tried a bit of graphic design and animation, but it didn’t quite feel the same way. It all made sense to me again when I picked up a camera and started editing my own footage. That’s when I knew that this is something I wanted to do.
RM: That’s so cool, it’s like opposites. Playing video games and editing that footage and then going outside in the future and editing your own experiences. So, what inspires you most when shooting and creating your films?
GD: That’s a great question. Hmm. I was in college and I basically had this really good job for a couple years. Like, really good. But, I did not want to be stuck behind the desk at that point. I figured out that this is not what I wanted to do, so I basically did everything in my power to not let that happen again. I wasn’t doing what I wanted to do and I realized it then. So I guess what inspires me is to not be there again.
RM: That makes total sense, to be anywhere else but that point.
GD: Yeah, and this past year has been amazing. I got to travel to Bali, Indonesia, then Finland. I was in LA for two weeks and then Italy for a week. I traveled to the Phillippines for ten days. I feel like I’m at my best when I’m traveling around. That’s what inspires me most, I think. When I’m traveling and doing what I love most.
RM: Do you find it difficult to create content while you’re traveling? Like, you’re experiencing so many new things. Do you find it difficult to create content while you’re doing so much?
GD: I think it comes pretty naturally. I love what I do and sharing that with the world is something I find myself very passionately doing already. Again, its something that inspires me wherever I am. And I love the process. Doing what I love and getting to share that with others is something that motivates me to do more and take more risks, making the most out of what I have.
RM: How has your relationship been with social media during your travels? Do you tend to explore and make content without social media interference or do you enjoy keeping your followers right there with you?
GD: Social media has been a big part of my profession. I love responding to people who message me and commenting back to their comments on my posts. I think if they take the time out of their day to say something on my photo or to me personally, that says a lot.
RM: Yeah, it makes you more human to your followers.
GD: Absolutely. And sometimes they’re so happy when I comment back. So just knowing that I reached out to someone who feels inspired by my photography means a lot to me.
RM: You have people on IG with thousands of comments and messages and they’ll never respond to any of them. It’s cool that you can reach out to your followers and make some of their days.
RM: I read one of your latest posts that you love both Finland and Bali, Finland a little more though. So, what are some of your favorite places you’ve been last year or ever?
GD: Yeah! Finland and Bali are so different from each other. On the one hand, you have a winter wonderland and the other a tropical paradise. So it’s always hard to compare the two to people. I have to say, I had an epic team in Finland that I had the best time with. Great people and experiencing Finland with them was just amazing and I really think if I had to compare the two, my experiences in Finland were just epic considering the amazing crew I was with the entire time.
RM: That’s so awesome. I’m from Hawai’i and people ask me the same thing since I’ve lived in New York City. They’re so opposite in climate and atmosphere but I end up comparing the pace and the people. It’s cool you can relate to that on a global scale.
Go on your dream and see where it takes you.
RM: So, do you have any tips for our readers who are also trying to create content while travelling?
GD: Alright, so I get this question a lot and its best to start for the beginner, the person who is just starting out. You need to save up money to take the trip of your dreams.
GD: I think that a lot of people just assume you get paid right off the bat to start on some crazy project. But to be honest, most of it is self-funded. But it doesn’t cost as much as people think. A tip for someone is if its something you want to do, then save up money, and just go on your dream and see where it takes you.
GD: That’s kind of what Bali did for me. I was supposed to go for a month and a half and I ended up being gone for almost four. It turned into so much more than I expected.
Be very open to whatever comes.
RM: Yeah, and just be susceptible to any opportunity that comes up. Like, staying for four months in Bali.
GD: Yeah, to be very open to whatever comes. That’s a very good tip. And one of my strengths is being very brutal with myself. When it comes to my photography and what I do, I’m very critical of what I do with my own work. And I think more people need to be. Be very brutally honest with yourself and you’ll improve very fast.
- Save up money to take the trip of your dreams
- You’re not always going to be given what you want
- Be very brutal with yourself on the quality of your work
- Be honest with what is good and what isn’t
All images © Gabriel Desanti