There are some things I miss about living in Norway. One of those are celebrating the national day. What I particularly like about it is that it’s popular not only among adults, but among children and youths as well. It’s not often you get to see people from all ages gathered together voluntarily, but on this day you do. When school classes, teams, organizations and unions are parading through the streets most people goes out to watch and look for people they know. Many people wear traditional folk costumes and most areas in Norway have their particular kind of costume. Besides all the parades – which is the main thing – it’s a day for school games, good food, socializing, endless cake eating and coffee drinking.
This is a photo which won’t fit into the “Go to sleep Lydia” project obviously, but I think you can tell it’s taken during the same period. Playing around with different light sources. Trying to see the world through her curious eyes. It’s helping me to stay curious as well.
One of those photos I think will mean a lot to me in 10 years. Even more in 20 years. And so on.
Keep taking pictures [Bjarte]. Not so much for the sake of the present, but for the sake of the future.
Lydia gave me an idea. She’s been showing great interest for a red flashlight which has been laying around in our bedroom. So also tonight during bedtime.
We might continue play around with it when it’s bedtime. I’m curious to see how this will develop.
This is a photo which is very special to me on several levels.
The person through that opening was at the time my girlfriend whom I had known for some months. Now my wife.
The river you’re looking at was at the time just some river. Now the main view from where I’m sitting right now.
The village you see there a bit hidden in the background was an unexplored place to me. Now my home.
So, this photo illustrates the starting point for the biggest change in my life. The year after this photo was taken I moved from Norway to Sweden for the sake of love. Pretty much everything which has happened after this moment I can relate back to this photo. It’s where my new life started.
I have 12 photos stuck on my wall right now. This is one of them. I’ve gathered and edited photos in the hope I might find a project in there somewhere. It’s often like that. I shoot whatever is going on my life and then try to find connections between the various moments. Most of the prints I have are from 2009-2010. During that period I was good at editing the archive and getting 10x15cm prints for editing. Small prints are great when you’re working on a project. Put them on your table, on your wall, on the floor. Get an overview, move them around, remove some, keep some. Sleep on it, return to it, live with it. It’s just much harder to do that kind of work on a computer.
When the baby is asleep it’s possible to find time for some photography work, which is the case right now. I’m slowly starting to dig into the 2015 archive since it’s soon time for the annual the year in photos. This recent winter view from our kitchen window is one of the current candidates. I think it will be a collection dominated by “silent photos” with reflections and shapes such as this one. I think this year I’ve settled with the style I have. I’ve had to tell myself a photo doesn’t necessarily have to have a person in it to be interesting. And I think it’s when you’re able to settle with the style you have that you will start making good photographs, because they will be interesting to you and you will be motivated to continue. Why am I writing this? Because for some years I’ve searched and struggled with my photography because I took photographs in a certain way and published certain photos on this website because I was trying to please others in order to get work from them. This may have resulted in some good shots for sure, but since the motivation for taking the photographs was all wrong in the first place I didn’t find much joy in my photography. And when the joy disappears I think it will eventually show itself in most of the work. This year I’ve been able to break this trend and feel more free when choosing what and how to take photos. Therefore I’m looking forward to publish my favorites from 2015.
My familiar surroundings have started becoming too familiar for me. Ever since I moved to the village Västra Spöland I’ve been very enthusiastic about photographing the place, but this year I’ve noticed a growing lack of motivation for documenting “my village” even though I get some good shots now and then while at home. And I have a dream project in mind still; a project I started last year but quickly put on pause and which I keep on delaying. Fingers crossed I will press play soon!
On a more positive note: This year travelling has really helped trigger my desire to take photographs. Here’s a photo I took while travelling to the Lutheran Seminary in Leipzig Germany where I studied for a week (yes, theologic studies has occupied a large amount of my time this year). I found myself back to the habit of photographing out of windows…
Finally I got to see the northern lights for myself. The shifting green shapes against the dark backdrop were spectacular. I believe it was God saying “hey, look what I can do!” to us.
As a photographer I often find it hard to really experience an experience, because I’m so eager to photograph it. This was definitely the case here. Since I’ve never experienced northern lights before I had no idea how long it would last and so I was very focused on getting good photos. Next time I’ll try to remember to take a deep breath and just enjoy the sight for a moment inbetween the shooting as well.
Now I’m posting photos simultaneously to my ongoing archive digging. Whenever I find something interesting I’m going to post it here. So, the website will finally serve a purpose which makes sense to me.
I didn’t have to dig far to find this one; only five days back when visiting my hometown Ålgård. Reflections has become something I keep looking for when I’m out shooting. I could write something deep and sophisticated about that, but it’s actually really simple: Reflections look good and they make photos more alive.