Sarah Nairalez
Filmmaker/Photographer/Educator

Sarah Nairalez, née Gonzalez

Currently based in Portland, OR, I am a filmmaker, photographer, and educator and a marketer. I got my Bachelor’s in Science in Film Production, Radio-Television-Film Department, with a Concentration in Women and Gender Studies from the University of Texas at Austin in 2008. Equal parts film production, administrative work, and film and arts education, I am a full time filmmaker and mediamaker. I am also a social media witch as creating content and marketing go hand-in-hand. I balance being a filmmaker with various hobbies and a personal life of family and friends.

I have been studying filmmaking since I was a freshmen in high school at my arts magnet school, The North East School of the Arts. I also attended the honors magnet school, the International School of the Americas. In 2002 one of my high school short films, “Store Hours”, was bought by HBO for their show 30 by 30 Kid Flicks. I got to attend the AFI Fest and the Sundance Film Festival with that film. 

While supporting myself through college in Austin, I spent a good deal of time volunteering on as many sets and productions as possible, both undergraduate and graduate. Since graduating I worked on a variety of sets and productions in different positions including doing grassroots distribution for the Emmy-winning and Independent Spirit Award winning documentary, ‘Where Soldiers Come From’, as well as ‘The Future of Food’ and ‘Symphony of the Soil’. I work mostly as a freelance producer and editor, commercial and independent, as those two positions allow me the scheduling flexibility to pursue additional opportunities.

In the past I have worked for production companies working on projects for clients such T-Mobile, Ducati North America, Ex’pressions College of Digital Arts, Trizic, Liquidity, Code for American, Playworks, Autodesk, Peter Nowell Designs, Breed and Co., Town School, Oh Happy Day, Ramit Sethi, Pie Fridays and comedian Brian Copeland, along with working on Academy Award-winning Documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney’s project for Ford, Mustang Moments. I was also one of the producers for Richard Linklater’s 20 year remake, Slacker 2011. I have been a video producer and editor for the popular Youtube channel, Feminist Frequency as well as the producer for the podcast, Cinemaball. I have experience working as a freelancer and working for a commercial video agency. 

Additional credits can be found on IMDb. Please note that these credits on IMDb do not reflect all my credits.

I have been teaching young people since 2009. I have taught videomaking and media literacy to all ages of mediamakers from ages 5-21 years old. I do have a preference for teaching high schoolers. I have taught in an after-school setting for non-profits, in a high school, during day camps in the summer, and as one-off lessons for various topics. Organizations and institutions I have taught for include the Bay Area Video Coalition, Austin Film Society, Femme Film Texas, Cinemakids, Griffin School and The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Radio-TV-Film.

While it wasn’t something that I had set out to do and instead it sort of naturally happened, I have become a social media marketing expert. I have grown followers, enhanced engagement, increased traffic, and ran successful Kickstarter and Indiegogo campaigns. With years and years of generating content for clients while reading and interacting with social, I gained a lot of knowledge and experience navigating the market. I have run social for non-profits like Reel Women and the Bay Area Video Coalition, to working with commercial agencies like Zero Gravity Agency, to working with individuals and groups.

I am passionate about positive social justice, storytelling, and the environment. I aim to use my skills in filmmaking for awareness, activism as well as to highlight / spotlight women, gender non-conforming and queer people working in the arts and environmental justice. I deeply care about having better media representation and creating empathy through storytelling. All that said, I also need to eat and pay bills so I do work that pays and can fit within my scope of things I care about. 

I have a longtime passion for still photography, working both digitally and with various analog film formats. I focus on various artistic experiments including taking portraits as well as doing photojournalism. I came up with the handle “Gonzography” in my teens because it seemed like an obvious combination of my last name, “Gonzalez” and the word “photography” and I’ve kept it ever since. At one point a porn company offered me a lot of money for my handles and this url but I turned them down. 

Personally I am a music lover, movie enthusiast, podcast fiend, camera collector, knitter, cyclist, bread-maker, [an] organic gardener and lover of cat videos. I occupy a lot of different positions in my family including daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, granddaughter, wife, and mother.

Photo by Alex Beckstead, 2018