Aprés-Surf: Gonçalo Vilardebó

In this installment of Aprés-Surf, we delve into Gonçalo Vilardebó‘s journey, tracing the origins of his interest in surfing, skateboarding, and more recently photography. He also shares insights into how each passion informs and enriches the other, and his next projects.

Gonçalo is wearing our Zipper Overshirt Green, 5-Pocket Jeans Washed Blue, and Contrast T-Shirt Black.

FN: You have a diverse range of interests—surfing, skating, music, and photography. What was your first love?

GVB: Ah, living my best life! Well, I started surfing at Foz do Arelho when I was around 10 years old, I guess. My uncle lent me a board for the summer, and with a few friends, we started hitting the waves and naturally learned from each other. At night, during that summer, we all used to gather at Coreto da Foz do Arelho, and there were always one or two skateboards lying around. So, we all started doing tic-tacs, as every surfer does when they grab a skateboard, haha. But soon, those tic-tacs turned into manuals, ollies, shuvits, and 5050s on the sidewalk. Skateboarding was more practical and affordable to practice, and since I didn’t have anyone to take me to the beach regularly, I naturally gravitated more toward skateboarding. I only surfed occasionally during the summers until my twenties.


FN: Do you manage to find time for all of them?

GVB: Yes, to be honest, 2023 was the first year skateboarding wasn’t my top priority. Things changed because of photography. In 2022, I convinced myself I wanted to work in this industry, so I spent the entire year learning as much as possible. In 2023, I started assisting a few photographers, and soon enough, jobs started rolling in. I got so excited about this new world that I  put everything else aside. Now, I’m trying my best to find time for all of them because I’ve realized I need that balance for my mental and physical health.


FN: Are these interests mutually exclusive, or do they inform each other?

GVB: They inform each other! They’re all interconnected. Surfing informs skating, skating informs surfing, skating informs photography, and photography informs skating.


FN: You primarily shoot fashion, right? Have you thought about shooting skate photos, for example?

GVB: Yes, fashion is my focus at the moment. Shooting skateboarding? Hmm, to be honest, I was never a big fan of shooting skateboarding; it never really called out to me. I got my first camera when I was 18 and started going on tours, always having the opportunity to shoot skateboarding, but I’d always prefer shooting the before and after scenes.


FN: Are there any particular photographers or skaters who inspire you?

GVB: Trevor Wisecup, Gregory Harris, Quentin De Briey, Helmut Newton, Cristian Bravo, Arto Saari, and probably many more, but I can’t recall them all right now.

FN: Do you think your background in surfing and skating sets you apart from other fashion photographers? How so?

GVB: Again, I believe that surfing and skating do set me apart, but I also think that photographers from different backgrounds bring their unique perspectives. It’s all about backgrounds and points of view.


FN: Any cool plans for the near future?

GVB: For now, my main plan is to release this book within the next two years. I have a few more ambitions, like filming at least one more skate video part, but I don’t want to set too many expectations. I’m sure the rest will happen naturally—no plans, just going with the flow.

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