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Birthday : December 14, 1993
Gaëlle is 24 years old. She lives in Grenoble in the amazing french Alps.
She studied software and electronical engineering and worked as an engineer for a year. After one year, feeling that job was nice, but didn't make her really happy, she quit. At that time, mid-2017, she had been slacklining for 6 years.
Like a lot of slackliners, she was introduced to slacklining through rock-climbing, in 2011. Even before she started slacklining, she read an article in a newspaper about the Flying Frenchies walking "tightrope" in Verdon. She found it awesome and kept the article... "One day ..."
For two years she didn't slackline much. In 2013 she went to Canada for an Internship. The climbing gym was expensive, and slacklining was the only sport she could do for free, while in the city. She trained almost every sunny day.
In 2015 the slackline communities evolved in the Facebook Age, and thanks to some local group, she met awesome people that took her to Verdon.
Five years after reading that article, BOOM she was finally walking those lines in the sky, at the exact same place the Frenchies were.
A dream come true.
For two years she kept highlining, but didn't improve much. She loved being out there, in the wild, hanging out in beautifull places with awesome people. Sadly, once on the line, she couldn't overcome her fear. Each line was a battle, rewarding in some ways, but it was hard for her to actually enjoy it. Still, she kept trying, hoping that one day, the fear would go away, and she would eventually have fun on a line.
When she quit her job, everything changed. Her mind was lighter and happier, she finally felt free. At the same time, she met a really inspiring girl, her motivation so strong, she would inspire everyone around her : the crazy Louise Lenoble. They went on a highline trip together, and for the first time Gaëlle actually had fun on a line. She went on bigger and bigger lines, not afraid anymore. Or just the good kind of fear: just a touch, mixed with a lot of fun and happiness.
It was at the beginning of that road trip that she bought a notebook and some watercolor. At every spot, waiting for her turn on the line, she would start drawing people around her and the landscape. For her, painting is much more than just art. It actually helps her to be better on the line.
Drawing and painting forces you to pay attention to every detail of the landscape that surrounds you. It makes you analyze everything, and look at your environment with another perspective. When mounting on a line after a drawing session, she feels calm faster, and much more immersed in the landscape.
As far as drawing goes, Gaëlle never took classes. She taught herself, doodling in the margin of her school books when she was bored in class. Every time she would see a drawing, she would stop to look at the sketch and try to memorize the style. She is very good at drawing all kinds of octopus... because it was her engineering school mascot, and she was the one doing the drawings for the tshirts and posters.
The summer of 2016, she was lucky enough to be part of an expedition in Greenland. A painter, Aurelie, was also a part of the expedition, and she was using mainly watercolor. Gaëlle got to try it for the first time, and Aurelie gave her some basic advice on how to use it. Gaëlle loved it straight away because it's lightweight, easy to carry outdoors, and allows you to paint really fast.
She had the idea of drawing comics straight away. The highline world is full of very funny situations, where everyone can recognise itself.