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  • 16 references 9 Confirmed & Positive
  • Fluent in Ukrainian; learning English, Polish, Russian
  • 30, Male
  • Member since 2012
  • cinematographer
  • Kyiv National University of Culture and Arts
  • From Ivano-Frankivsk, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, Ukraine
  • Profile 100% complete

About Me

Hello, my name is Max Salii and I am a 28 year old cinematographer from Kyiv, Ukraine.

Unfortunately, due to the war in my country instigated by the Russian people, I was forced to flee my home.
I am now a refugee in Europe, temporarily living in the Netherlands.

The russian people brought a lot of blood, violence, murders, kidnappings and brutal torture of peaceful Ukrainian civilians to my country!
Destruction of civilian houses and electric power stations, occupation of a large part of the eastern regions of Ukraine, seizure of the largest nuclear power plant, and terrorizing the whole world!

As a traveler, I am interested in various outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking and photography.
I would love to share my experiences and accompany you on your outdoor adventures, whether it's kayaking, hiking in the mountains, or exploring the city by bike.

It's important to mention that I am a non-smoker, I respect your home and your rules, and I am a clean person. Thank you for considering me as a guest in your home and I look forward to the opportunity to share my culture and learn about yours.

Why I’m on Couchsurfing

I am on Couchsurfing because I believe that it is one of the best ways to truly experience a new culture.
Staying with a local host allows me to gain a deeper understanding of the customs, traditions, and daily life of the place I am visiting.

It also provides me with an opportunity to meet new and interesting people, make friends, and learn about new perspectives.

You can contact me through the following platforms:


As a person who values a healthy and active lifestyle, I am passionate about exploring and experiencing the great outdoors. I have traveled extensively throughout Ukraine and have gained a deep understanding of its people and culture.

In my spare time, I enjoy kayaking, mountain hiking, cycling, photography, and sailing. I am also passionate about aviation, and although I have minimal experience in this field, it is still one of my dreams.

I have a deep appreciation for nature and am drawn to the mountains and the great outdoors. I find the starry sky and camping in tents more appealing than visiting cities. I find peace and serenity in exploring and immersing myself in the natural world.

  • photography
  • film making
  • flying
  • cycling
  • camping
  • sports
  • mountains
  • film photography
  • active lifestyle
  • hiking in the mountains
  • boat trips

Music, Movies, and Books

When it comes to my favorite movies, I am a big fan of documentaries and would recommend
"Salt of the Earth" and "The Living Fire" (UA)
Ukrainian cinema "Pamfir," which screened at Cannes this year.

Martin Scorsese, "Taxi Driver" and I would like to single out the soundtrack of that film, it is incredible.
I also enjoy the work of Terence Malick, my favorites being "Tree of Life" and "A Hidden Life",
Denis Villeneuve, "Blade Runner 2049"

Alfonso Cuaron's "Roma," "Children of Men," and "Gravity" are also some of my favorites.

When it comes to music, I enjoy listening to a wide variety of genres, but my favorites are DakhaBrakha, The Doors, Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Gogol Bordello, Tony Allen, and John Williams.

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

In 2018, I joined the Ukrainer.net team as a volunteer cameraman,
For six years I have been traveling around Ukraine to shoot the beauty of the country.
I have shot over 54 documentaries and participated in expeditions covering a wide range of topics: culture, customs, nature, and people of Ukraine.
Some of my notable works include special projects on national communities, winter holidays, and water resources on the Dnipro River.

Our media has become one of the leading sources of research and information about Ukraine.
Materials have been translated to the 10 languages.
Our materials are used by students and scholars and have become increasingly relevant as the ongoing war continues to destroy many of the historical sites and phenomena we have documented.

A complete list of my materials can be found at https://ukrainer.net/authors/maksym-zavallya.
In addition, you can purchase books containing our research at our online store: https://store.ukrainer.net/en/

Teach, Learn, Share

As a non-native English speaker, I look for opportunities to practice my conversation skills with native speakers.
I believe that living with a local host and participating in everyday conversations is one of the best ways to learn a language.

In addition to my interest in language learning, I am also passionate about various outdoor activities such as cycling, flying, sailing, and skydiving. If you have similar interests, I would love to get to know you and learn more about your hobbies and experiences. I am always open to new experiences and enjoy exploring new places and activities with like-minded people.

What I Can Share with Hosts

As a professional photographer and filmmaker, I would love to share my experience and knowledge with the Couchsurfing community. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced photographer, I look forward to sharing my tips and tricks for capturing stunning images and creating beautiful videos.

I can offer to take photos of you and your city or town and share my insights on composition, lighting, and editing. I can also teach you some basic photography techniques, such as how to use manual settings on your camera and how to shoot in different lighting conditions.

If you are interested in filmmaking, I can share my experience in creating short films and help you learn more about camera movement, sound recording, and editing.

In addition, I can organize a photo or film walk with other Couchsurfers in your area and we can explore the city together, share our knowledge and learn from each other.

Countries I’ve Visited

Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Georgia, Germany, Luxembourg, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, Poland, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates

Countries I’ve Lived In

Georgia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Ukraine

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