"The Hyphen Project" Trailer

Saturday is coming up quick, and I can hardly believe it! You can watch "The Hyphen Project" on CBC Ottawa Television this Saturday at 7pm ET. It will be playing as part of the Absolutely Ottawa series.

Producing something this big has been a first for me, and it definitely gave me an idea of what I will be facing when I return home this fall with all the footage of my roadtrip and the participants.

"The Hyphen Project" features what I've done so far and what my plans are for Hyphen. Here is a little sneak peek! 

"The Hyphen Project" on CBC

This has been a big summer for Hyphen, and it's about to get a lot bigger. For the past month, I have been busy working on a "behind the scenes" piece, which will air as part of the "Absolutely Ottawa" series, presented by CBC Ottawa Television. CBC was introduced to Hyphen through SAW video's RESOLUTION 2016 screening, where my short film "Hyphen: Gabriela's Story" peaked the interest of a CBC Executive Producer. This led to the production of a special one-hour feature on me and my larger documentary project, called "The Hyphen Project".

On July 30th, tune in to CBC television at 7pm E.T. to watch my one-hour episode. The episode will also be available online after the broadcast.

During that hour, you will see my journey in making Hyphen: 2 short films, my personal exploration of my own multiracial experience and my introduction to the 20 multiracial Canadians who will make up the film.

This project includes a lot of on-camera interviews with me. The interviews were done in-studio; lights, 2 cameras, makeup, the whole thing. If you know me, you know how comfortable I am behind a camera. I had to sit for hours doing the interview, because when I face a camera, I somehow forget how to say words. Not only that, I have also been editing the hours of footage. And it's been a whole lot of this:

I digress, it's also been an amazing piece to put together, with a lot of this: 

I then discuss the production of the short film about my own experience of being multiracial. I got to talk to my mother about the integral role she had in recording home videos since before I was born. Her meticulous documentation of my childhood was the building blocks for the short film "Hyphen: Gabriela's Story".

I also share my short film, "Go West, Young Women" which features the cross-Canada roadtrip I did with my good friend Melissa after deciding to leave my job to pursue filmmaking. This is the trip that ultimately inspired Hyphen and began my journey as a documentary filmmaker. 

I end with the big picture: the people who are in my film. Hyphen will feature around 20 multiracial Canadians who live in different parts of the country and who represent a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds. The one-hour episode will introduce these participants and the stories that will makeup Hyphen. Here's a little sneak peak:

Producing "The Hyphen Project" has really given me the opportunity to take a step back and observe the evolution of my documentary project. I have witnessed my own growth and journey to self-awareness and acceptance and am confidant that this process can do the same for others. 

The episode airs July 30th and I leave for my solo two-month cross-Canada roadtrip the very next day! I leave Ottawa and set-off for Cape Breton and will be driving all the way to Vancouver. I can't wait to hit the road and meet with all the incredible people who are participating in the film.

You can follow along with me here, or on social media using the tag #HyphenRoadtrip. 

Joining Third Son Laserworks!


I am happy to announce that I have joined my friend Jesse Kaunisviita in his new business, Third Son. Third Son specializes in handmade lasercut products for you and your home. Jesse and I met while we both worked at MediaStyle, a digital public affairs company here in Ottawa, Ontario. When I decided to take the leap to leave the team at MediaStyle so I could focus on my filmmaking, I turned to Jesse for advice, as I knew he had made a similar jump a few months before me. I admired his dedication to his passion and was thrilled by his supportive attitude. During our chat, we realized that I would be a good fit for Third Son. I wanted to focus most of my time on filmmaking, but didn't want to lose the skills I had acquired during my time at MediaStyle. I now have the opportunity to practice my communications and marketing skills with Third Son, while still having the time to pursue filmmaking.

My role within Third Son is to manage and produce our online content, from video production to social media. The small nature of our team also means that I get to be involved in many aspects of the business, from brainstorming designs, to attending craft shows and even lending my seamstress skills to textile productions.

I am very excited to have the opportunity to work with Jesse and can't wait to see what's in store for Third Son! As my first project with Jesse, I produced a video about his vision behind his business, and the process that goes into the production of his merchandise. Enjoy!

And you can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

Go West, Young Women


Last month, my good friend Melissa and I went on a cross-country adventure. She was moving to BC, I wanted to accompany her, and we both really like the movie Thelma and Louise. So we set off, leaving from Ottawa and arriving in Vancouver 2 weeks later. We were equipped with a tent, 3 iPods full of music and podcasts, a huge thermos for coffee and high spirits. I brought my trusty camera along on the trip, not really knowing what I intended to do with the footage. Once I came back and went through the weeks of footage I had, I discovered a story. A story of a friendship growing and changing with the landscape. It's hard to explain what makes a great friendship, and I'm lucky enough to have more than one. Through the crazy amazing adventure we had, I have come to realize how much this person means to me. So this short film is dedicated to you, Melissa, my road warrior partner in crime.

And here are some photos I managed to snap while I wasn't filming!

The Cutting Room Floor


A few weekends ago, the MediaStyle team ran the on-site communications hub at the Broadbent Institute's inaugural Progress Summit. In three days, we created some pretty killer content. As the lead on the A/V team, I shot, edited and uploaded all the keynote speeches, a handful of the panel discussions and some of the interviews we lead in the MediaStyle cube. Once the last keynote speech ended, I wrapped up the edit of the weekend's roundup video so the Broadbent Institute could share it across their network.

I then managed to take some shots of the team working away in our custom cube in the lobby of the Delta Hotel. I think my film production teammates from Concordia would appreciate the DIY dolly solution we came up with to get the tracking shots for the video: me sitting in the hotel luggage cart being pushed around the lobby. It wasn't as smooth as our wheelchair dolly, but I think it worked out pretty well.

After the craziness died down and we were back to our normal workload, I was faced with the inevitable conundrum of having too much content. Between the video and graphic material that we created over the weekend, I had no idea where to start. I wanted to properly showcase the quality of the content we produced, without overwhelming the viewer. I was browsing through possible music I could use, and once I found it, all the pieces came together. Editing to music is a style I really enjoy, as you can see in the web series I produced for local boutique, Victoire.

After a few different versions, a fun audio recording session with the team (the blooper reel from this is particularly pleasant), I finally finished it! I think it's a great way to capture what we were able to accomplish over the weekend. I must admit, I'm quite proud. Proud to have been the only woman on the A/V team at the convention, proud to have witnessed the great ideas shared amongst the attendees, and proud to have been part of the team that hustled to the end to produce some really great content.

Check out the video below. You can also see our photos from the event here, courtesy of Benjamin Dickerson. Lastly, you can find the full handout infographic featured in the video here.

The Playground of Light & Shadow

This is a short video I have been playing around with. I have recently found myself being quite inspired by the shadows around me and how the light creates interesting effects on the colours and objects it hits. I decided to see what I could come up with, so I hope you enjoy my little project! I hope to work on my own soundtrack soon, but I thought the song I chose fit the mood I was trying to convey. Thank you to the vast creative commons material on! Check out the video on my website.