- Gaopie Kabe is a cinematographer
- She has achieved success in a white- and male-dominated South African film industry
- She's keen to see more young women in film
A young cinematographer is making a name for herself in the white- and male-dominated South African film industry.
Gaopie Kabe shared her inspiring story on Humans of New York's Facebook page recently, Briefly.co.za learned.
She said her first job was as a trainee in a film feature. It involved simple tasks such as cleaning and making tea. She received just enough money to cover her transport.
However, Gaopie didn't mind this at all. Her break came after a cinematographer needed to be replaced and she quickly grabbed the opportunity.
She hasn't looked back since then and now counts over 10 years in the industry. It hasn't been without challenges, though.
The camera department can be a weird place. It’s all white and male. And it’s a bit like boot camp. A lot of the guys are mean. They don’t like being approached by subordinates.
And if you make a mistake, they’ll scream at you. A lot of the guys act like they’re curing cancer instead of making beautiful pictures.
Nevertheless, Gaopie has managed to carve out a niche for herself. She has worked on popular TV such as Mzansi Magic's Lockdown and 1Magic's The River.
The talented lady was also nominated for a SAFTA award earlier this year for best Cinematography in a Drama for Lockdown's Season 1.
Gaopie is now in a position to train other young women. She said:
Nobody should be afraid to make mistakes or feel embarrassed to ask questions. And one trainee should always be a girl. It doesn’t matter if she’s studied or not, as long as she’s keen.
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