Gustavo Gomes is a brazilian photographer based in Sao Paulo and part of the Street-Photographers and the SelvaSP collective.
Tell us more about your self. Where you live? And what do you do for a living?
I’m a 32 year old guy living in Sao Paulo, Brazil. I work as an image researcher and I’m still an amateur photographer. I basically do street photography, I enjoy wandering the streets of the city, seeing a lot of things I wouldn’t see if I weren’t there to photograph. I think I take pictures to make my life a bit less boring and to see what things look like photographed, as Winogrand said.
How did you become interested in photography?
In high school I was the one who photographed our barbecues and school parties. Then, in 2001, I went to uni and studied photojournalism as part of my journalism degree. Only in 2007 I started to practice more often and bought my first DSLR. I was very excited about the possibilities of digital, and tried everything: macros, long exposures, portraits, as most beginners do. In 2009 I attended a photography course with Carlos Moreira, a Brazilian photographer who’s been photographing in Sao Paulo since the 60’s, and that was when I started to realize what I was looking for in photography.
What inspires you? Which are your favorite photographers / masters and interests?
I’m very inspired by cities and their people, and by sunlight, especially in early mornings or late afternoons. Light can transform anything banal in something extraordinary. My main influences, when I started to shoot, were Carlos Moreira, Harry Gruyaert, Saul Leiter, Georgui Pinkhassov and Alex Webb. I learn a lot from the work of my colleagues of SelvaSP and Street Photographers, as well as from many contemporary photographers online, not necessarily famous or professional.
Do you think your nationality and culture influence your vision and the way you take pictures?
Well, definitely, though I can’t describe exactly how. But sure, we’re a mix of everything we’ve seen, read or listened to. I guess that any place visuality ends up influencing its photographers.
How would you describe your works?
I’m basically a street photographer, naturally inclined to people, their gestures, and how they interact with urban landscapes, colors and light surrounding them.
What do you like most of your works and what do you like of street photography?
My favorite photos generally are complex and multilayered images, in which the story is not necessarily clear. I like some ambiguity in my own and in other people’s photos. I like vibrant colors and strong light. I like classic and well composed BW images as well, like Cartier-Bresson’s, in which form and content mix well. There is no formula.
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