How one night gazing at the moon led to Gabriel Gabriel Garble’s psychedelic animation

The animator reminds us of the beauty of our connection to nature and the universe-at-large.

14 August 2023


Standing by a large body of water often leads us to contemplate our pasts and future. Maybe it’s in its vastness and flow, or maybe its ability to make all our worries and problems feel both insignificant and urgent. In 2018, while standing by a pier onlooking the ocean, animation filmmaker Gabriel Gabriel Garble was led to the concept for his new film Well Wishes My Love, Your Love. “At the time I was undergoing a process of queer unbecoming. I must have gone to the pier to mourn. I studied the way the moonlight sparkled off the peak of the waves and my mind drowned in the shimmer. The moment felt so mobile, like I could carry the feeling wherever I go,” he tells us. Now, five years later, his film has toured everywhere from Sundance Film Festival in Park City to festivals in Trinidad, Tobago and London.

Throughout the film, you get the feeling that Well Wishes My Love, Your Love has no particular narrative or fixed theme. The trippy psychedelic-esque style brimming with lines pushing in and out of each other make familiar scenes found in nature. The film shows the boy as he navigates his surroundings with a new prosthetic arm gifted to him by a companion, and the lines that make up his figure merge with Gabriel’s stylistic lines which form the birds, trees, sand and water. “Until the very last scene, you’re not quite sure what’s going on or where the film is going to go. The meaning of the film isn’t so important, it’s more about the boy’s journey and how when looking at a solar eclipse or the moon in general we may have the same feeling,” Gabriel explains. The film, through these interactions with nature, encourages us to live in the moment as it portrays the wonders of love and our connection to the universe; the movement of the trees and the boy’s awestruck eyes, the gushes of wind that come in like a wave through the grass blades and the tender hugs that he gives other characters.

GalleryGabriel Gabriel Garble: Well Wishes My Love, Your Love (Copyright © Gabriel Gabriel Garble, 2023)

Alongside his deeply personal and transfixing film, Gabriel can also be found creating animations and illustrations for frequent clients such as The New York Times. He also works on editorial commissions that usually have very short turnaround times – less than 24 hours, to be exact – so experimentation is usually a gamble. However, he continuously pushes himself to go beyond his comfort zone with every single project. “One strategy that I’ve found works is experimenting with one low-risk element per commission,” he tells us. “Treating each commission as a style experiment can add a lot of unnecessary challenges to my work and make me quite nerve-wracked for that 24 hour period, but the payoff is great when it’s successful because I get to make a pretty film like this one,” he adds.

All in all, Well Wishes My Love, Your Love makes us want to dig our hands into the sand, observe the grass blades as they sway in the wind and find our nearest pier so we can observe the moon’s reflection on the water. Currently finalising merchandise for the film that is set to release by the end of the month, and developing a debut feature in the longer term, we don’t doubt that Gabriel’s experimentation will continue to remind us of the beauty of all that is around us and within us.

GalleryGabriel Gabriel Garble: Well Wishes My Love, Your Love (Copyright © Gabriel Gabriel Garble, 2023)

Hero Header

Gabriel Gabriel Garble: Well Wishes My Love, Your Love (Copyright © Gabriel Gabriel Garble, 2023)

Share Article

About the Author

Yaya Azariah Clarke

Yaya (they/them) was previously a staff writer at It’s Nice That. With a particular interest in Black visual culture, they have previously written for publications such as WePresent, alongside work as a researcher and facilitator for Barbican and Dulwich Picture Gallery.

It's Nice That Newsletters

Fancy a bit of It's Nice That in your inbox? Sign up to our newsletters and we'll keep you in the loop with everything good going on in the creative world.