di Erika Scafuro
Looking at João’s photos while surfing he seems almost dancing on the waves, so much is great his style on the longboard. Portuguese surfer from the famous spot of São Pedro do Estoril, Freitas experiences the ocean above and below since he captures all sides of it as both a surfer and a filmmaker. Freitas started, a year ago, to work with photos and videos, a job that is engaging him with various projects.
We interviewed him, also remembering the shooting of Bear Surfboards he took part.
You are a longboarder surfer, how did it start?
«Growing up on the west coast of Portugal I’ve always been connected to the ocean. From a very young age I started playing in the waves with all kinds of boards – bodyboards, softboards, shortboards. Then about 7 years ago I decided to try out a longboard after seeing few friends having fun with it. I’ve never really looked back. I love the freedom it gives to you to ride a wave however you feel like in that moment and being able to create your own style is a lot of fun».
You currently live in Ericeira, can you describe it from a surfer’s point of view? I know that your home spot is São Pedro, right?
«I grew up in Cascais, São Pedro do Estoril and moved to Ericeira for a job in the surf tourism industry about 7 years ago. It’s easy to explain Ericeira – it’s one of the best surf towns in Europe and maybe one of the best in the world. It’s a world surfing reserve and along a small stretch of coast there are several world class surf breaks. It attracts crowds but has managed to maintain its charm».
As a surf coach, what is the one thing you value most about teaching?
«Sharing the stoke, making people happy, the joy in their faces and of course, the wipeouts (laughing)».
How long have you been working as a filmmaker?
«Filmmaking is quite new to me. Roughly a year ago I started playing around with cameras and waterhousings and everything felt quite natural to. It’s slowly getting bigger and bigger with new projects on the horizon and I’m stoked to see where it’s going to take me».
You took part in a shooting with Bear, tell us about this experience.
«I’ve been a fan of Bear since the iconic movie Big Wednesday so taking part in the shoot was a cool experience. Everyone was amazing, from the surfers Fillippo and Filipe to all the crew – I’m still in touch with everyone today. Having the opportunity to surf, along the coast of Portugal, with an iconic brand and a bunch of cool people, doesn’t get much better than that».
Among your recent surfing travel is Mexico, what struck you most about this country?
« Mexico was one of the best trips of my life as a surfer. I spent the whole of January there with my girlfriend, and quickly fell in love with the country. The locals are welcoming and friendly, the food is delicious, the water is warm and the waves are a lot of fun. Definitely a place to go back!».