Dogwalk

Sometimes, think… don’t wait for a special occasion to shoot something. Just shoot it. How stupid simple it ever may be. Actually, don’t think very much at all. Don’t care and see what happens. Just throw away the lens at something and click.

Don’t bother what camera you use. Use the one you have right here right now, which almost always is your smartphone. The soul of a photography is far more interesting, exciting and important than fabulous quality and fantastic views.

This is what I do, this is what I see a couple of times everyday – walking our dogs, and anytime in between. It’s so everyday common insignificant that I wanted to make some photos of it (ok, this particular moment occurred some weeks ago).

It’s easy to go blind and forget the beauty that actually live in those insignificant moments. Take care of them. They are more important than you may think in making life more interesting than you may think. Penetrate and go beyond what you take for granted.

This is my way to achieve more mindfulness in life. Even without making photos. But you need to remind yourself constantly about it to not forget it.

a different view

One last trip with the family to the end of days. Tomorrow working class hero life begins again.

This was a wonderful nice moody day. Cloudy but warm and almost windless. Lovely relaxing atmosphere, far, far away from the streets.

That was needed. I have almost forgotten how energizing it can be to flow my mind in the nature. Don’t ask me why, otherwise I should have known why and done it more before.

Blinded by the streets I suppose.

This is a place called “Hanhals holme” (Hanhals islet), located by the sea in the city of Kungsbacka. Just a couple of miles south away from Gothenburg.

Once upon a time, in the Middle Ages, a castle once stood here named Hunehals castle. Today, there’s not even ruins left to find, only traces and findings that reveal its physical history.

The “ruin” itself is not much to see. But knowing about it feels nice. It’s more the place and itself as it is that makes it a nice place to be. Especially all the sheep that you share space with when walking around here. You find them in small groups little everywhere.

It might not seem like that when looking back at my photography since this blog was born. But I actually love being in the mother natures green room, or fifty shades of naked dull, as it looks more like during the dark half of the year.  Not just as much as I used to. Occasionally still do, but almost never make any photos of it.

Nature photography actually used to dominate my photography once upon a time. Then I suddenly more or less got fed up totally of it. Probably because I got stuck in the search of serious perfection.

Thanks to iPhone, Instagram and later on, the curiosity of the myth of street photography, I found a newborn relationship between photography and my mind. I see and feel many things very differently now. So this might be a new beginning of my approach and perspectives towards my photographic relation to nature.

Sea and water usually always is something I’m drawn to make photos of from time to time. And like to just stare at. And clouds, I love clouds. I’m an addicted cloud gazer. Clouds make my mind flow free and probably the best practicing of mindfulness meditation I know.

But me making close ups of flowers… that’s extremely rare. And I enjoyed it with something that almost felt like passion at the moment. So this was a really unique happening that occurred today.

More missing links found today, it seems.

 

 

The camera I didn’t knew I had

This is actually very strange indeed. I found a Casio Exilim EX-G1, hidden in a drawer. Apparently I bought this little thing some years ago, and then forgot about it. I think it was at the time when I was heavily dedicated into outdoor training.

A lot of trail running and using the nature as my gym. Today I’m too comfortable and like the lazy comfort of being in a gym instead.

However, I often enjoyed documenting my life even then. And for this I wanted something rough. At this time my photos seldom got any further than stuck on a hard drive, somewhere.

I think I remember that I also used it during some family vacations and weekend trips.

But I don’t think I made that much photos with it. The mobile functionality evolved and I found the ease of using the mobile for photography instead (it seems that the rough need wasn’t that needed).

It can also be so that I began to grow an aversion against computers during this time and made as much as possible with my phone instead and finally forgot it. I have no other clues of why I finally put it away and forgot it.

I better search through some of my old external hard drives one day, to see if I can find what I have made with this camera. I’m curious. But not today and not tomorrow.

Right now I’m more curious about just using it and see what it’s capable of and the feel of it. So this day I was carrying it around all day and used it sporadically during a quite lazy day. And this is what I got.

My choice for this post, however. Was post process them all into rough, moody black and whites. Just because I got that feeling.

I really like its design. Very easy to handle, light and ridiculous compact, but surprisingly easy to use even with my big hands. This camera easily disappears into any pocket almost unnoticeable. Or just let it hang around your wrist without any big distraction.

In many ways, a perfect casual everyday every time shooter. Fast focus and no significant shutter lag to bother about. Ok, maybe not an action sports camera.

What I find especially nice about the camera is that it’s water resistant. Meaning I can get out in any horrible shit conditions without caring a shit in return. Even take a dip in the sea. Yeah! It would be fun discovering underwater footage. Hope the seals still are fresh and resistant.

It definitely has potential of being a fun favorite as a complement to my iPhone and Fuji X100T. So far I like it. But I will probably only use it when I want to get out and shoot in bad weather. I mean, two is more than enough for my regular shooting.

 

Ás and new friend Glóinn

Sometimes I follow my wife and daughter to the stable. To help and make some shots. This is our two Icelandic horses Ás and Glóinn. The latter is not trained for riding yet and my daughter’s long term project making him a competition subject.

Ás is a horse of some kind of wonder in its own way capable managing almost anything with smooth calm. Nicer horse and willing to collaborate is probably hard to find.  But since my daughter also wants to evolve herself and a horse made for competition, which Ás is not – he’s too calm, she bought another one, to raise from scratch.

A real challenge, but I have no doubts. She’s a wonder just as Ás with a heart and soul just where needed when it comes to making connections with the mind of a horse.

 

 

Ás and Embla

and others

No long words here. Just some horses, my daughter, wife on a bench and thats it. And some words to say something.

Ás is the name of our icelandic horse. It’s pronounced “aus” meaning God-like as in Æsir. He truly is.

Embla is the name of the first woman in norse mythology and means little elm. She’s our first daughter, so that’s true.

No, we don’t have another daughter, she’s the one and only.The other one is a son, but he’s name is not Ask (the first man in same mythology).

But just like our daughter he also have an old name connected to the norse mythology – Terje, a merge of Thor and geir meaning Thor’s spear (more common name in Norway, maybe Iceland too, I’m not sure).

He’s not in picture here because he study miles away in a town called Lund. He’s brain is from another planet. Or maybe the future.

 

The enemy of good

… is someone of yourself who think too much about you.

It happens to me all the time.

I really love my Fuji X100T. But honestly – this camera is much better than I need it to be. At the same time, ok… It’s nice to have a camera that is capable of more than you need. It gives you more space to play with possibilities.

The problem is not owning a camera that is better and more expensive than you need. The problem is your mindset. It’s way too easy to get caught in some kind of imaginary pro mode. Affected by an enforced feeling to level up the whole process to make things as perfect as possible.

The better the circumstances are, the more and better we want and the more distracted by flaws we get.

What is perfect? What makes one thing more perfect than another? And for whom?

Nowadays digital cameras generally produce image quality that is so close to perfect that it needs to be imperfect to feel alive.

The more you stare the more you dissect and get distracted by technical details. Obsessed with making Frankensteins monsters and forget the importance of soul. It looks well made technically, but the soul is dissected and disconnected.

It’s awful simple to get stuck in the hunt for technical perfection and almost feel guilty of a crime if you don’t make use of the maximum possible advantage that your hard and software is capable of to perform, and catch this perfection. Afraid of failure.

The technical maximum high quality preservation of the original information that the camera or the editing tool you are using are capable of. Is not the same as the quality within the photography itself.

But I have to admit. I often find myself being way to careful with my photos during the post process. I would actually like to challenge my thoughts about perfectly good enough more often than I do and screw things up a little more.

Alien drive

I think one major problem here is your imaginary thoughts of what other people think about your photography when you make them. – You have a superior camera and high end photo editor software, and this is what you get?

And that we compare ourselves with others too much.

I think we all to often deal with too much worries and doubts about what we are doing.

This is a ghost. Don’t try to please others – find out what pleases you to pleas others. If other people happens to like what you’re doing, then you have found a nice roadmap how to both express and attract. But don’t expect it.

Never give up. Do what you feel is you and continue to deliver, explore and develop your way.

This is a self exploring therapy journey we need to go through and accept if we want to do what we like and like what we do. A travel we do until we die. In one in another way.

A nice workaround to deal with this anxiety is to be more rough when shooting and make more experimental photography. Not purposely shitty photos, but with the same mindset just to make you less serious. Lower your guard and let the child in you enter the scene.

Don’t get stuck in feelings of lack of nice conditions. Make it a reason to conquer the conditions. Try to create fascination out of the ordinary, almost boring.

Don’t get stuck in boring results out of your camera. Make it a reason to find something. Your soul, not according to what you think other people think. The soul is everywhere but looks and feels different for everyone.

Many of those photos will probably give you a lot more fun while post precessing them than the more regular and better shots. This is a nice way to explore possibilities and develop personality in your photography. With photos like this you will be less careful and willing to experiment more without distraction of any level of technical quality. This is pure mood mode. This will crossbreed your attitude towards your photography. And make you more laid back.

Finding the beauty and the drama in the seemingly daily grey and boring around the corner is a satisfying challenge to aim at. To create something out of barely nothing where you are with what you have.

One of the best cameras to use for assignments like this is probably your smartphone (the majority of the photos in this post is made with an iPhone7 and post processed with Snapseed). For some reason we lower our guard when shooting with our smartphones, just snap and don’t think too much more than just catching the moment.

If you ever made photos as a kid, try to imagine and revive to be there again. Otherwise, just try to imagine and revive the uncomplicated conditions needed to make fun.

After I bought my Fuji X100T I rarely used my iPhone as camera any longer. Thats sad. So I decided to make use of it more often again. Much just because it’s effect on my mindset. It’s just so ridiculous easy to just shoot it. And you don’t care so much.

You have probably heard of the mantra cliche that the best camera is the one you have with you. That’s true. Any camera is best, the one you choose to almost always have at hand, not which brand or model.

When I bought my Fuji camera I decided to start bring it with me as often as possible just to make it an automatic behaviour. But soon I found that this was wrong choice. I was thinking too much photography for the sake of making photography.

It isn’t the need of your best camera at hand that is important. It is the most simple and easy mindset that triggers and make you shoot whenever whatever and develop your intuitive photographic behaviour.

If you want to explore and develop you intuitive photographic behaviour. I think you really need those moments in the making of photography when you care less and make the process almost unnoticeable simple. Just like breathing.

I’m quite sure that using your smartphone as camera more often makes you a more personal and better photographer. And not being so loyal to hi-tech quality regardless of what you use.

Poetry for lost

I think too much. I write too much. I try to understand myself too much. I’m too complicated to understand myself. So I’ll try to not.

This is kind of follow up from my last post, Moods part II – the poetic version. It make sense…

Time by passed and over again
Always again as ever before
Hollow cup of coffee
Never here seems to already exist
Unknown friends itching backwards
We travel through skin and bone
I can see the back of my head
I see white on black
I can’t find my bed
Someone stole my hat I have no pillow

… ghosts have no shadows. And are only visible for mirrors when nobody looks in it. Dreams are like water

I really like pigeons

Follow my wife

Sometimes it happens that I follow my wife to the stable to help her. Not as often as I should, it’s actually quite hard workout she’s doing. Not the most fun, but when done it feels good and you have got a nice time of fresh air, happy body and refreshed head. Human bodies are created for work. Hard physical work.

It happens that I even take ride on our horse occasionally. Not as often as I should. That’s even better workout. And fun. But I’m not very good at fine tuned riding, I’m more the rough full speed galloping guy, or terrain riding. Mostly it is our daughter who rides him. And she’s a hell of Icelandic horse equestrian.

But today it only was a visit to look after the horses and take care of things. It’s no secret that I prefer the summertime when being here. During the dark half of the year it’s usually awful raw cold to be here. And pitch black.

Strangely it have it’s own remarkable attraction of being exposed by this cold darkness, and dirty rough work. After it’s over and done. But at this time of the year you definitely feel that spring is on its way after all. It’s not that cold any longer and the sun goes down later for each day that passes by. A nice way to get in touch with the seasons and feel the world.

To bring the camera along makes things even better. It’s my psychologist.

Lately I also have started to play around with colours to break my monochrome habits. It have its own language that differ from black and white. Telling a different story, a different touch. Actually I don’t favour either. I like both. But colour is much harder to find out how I like to use them.

My choice of camera

I’m happy with my choice of camera. It makes me pleasantly satisfied and inspired to make photos just by its presence, just looking at it and feel the camera in my hands. Actually just hang it around my neck and wear it, as an accessory, makes me happy.

It’s probably not just only because of the specific camera itself. But it sure help. I love the retro design, the size and the weight of it in my hands, the mechanical dials to control some of the most basic settings you probably want simple access to change quickly. And I really like to use the electronic viewfinder.

I could keep babbling on about everything I like about this camera, but it would feel more like idolize than real facts. After all it’s mostly more about feelings than facts what you think about a gizmo you bought and happen to like.

But it have flaws, like that I would prefer a more traditional “analog” lens feeling when used in manual focus mode. Though not a big thing to bother much about. It’s not needed that often and easy to find workarounds to deal with in other more effective ways. And X100T is missing an iso dial that the newer X100F have.

And as with almost all digital cameras. Heck of many settings in menus that always take time to learn and deal with quick and easy. The Q button is a nice and smart function however, making some things a whole lot more easy and effective to control (when you get familiar with the configuration and how to use it). I’m actually not the biggest fan of working with multifunctional buttons and settings in menus.

I also think that I would like to mount a thumb grip to get a more solid steady grip, even if the camera already feels very nice in my hand. But it can be even better I think. I have big hands.

In the beginning I actually was looking for an interchangeable camera system. But I quickly reminded myself of what I want and actually really need and don’t need. I have owned a couple of slr and a dslr system before. Always sooner or later ending up disturbed by the size, weight or the more complex nature in general.

I have learned and found the love of simplicity and the freedom of using my iPhone as only camera for some years now. And i asked myself when I was in my deep agony doubts about what camera to choose – Do I really need much more than a little more possibilities than that. No!

I wanted things as simple as possible, but not too simple or too cheap. Something solid with nice finish and building quality to rely upon. But most of all – something I with ease would consider to carry with me wherever whenever without hesitation. And then I always have had a vainly craving for an analog retro design. Cravings are indeed a really dangerous guide. But this have been an impossible craving to resist.

Actually I probably would have been just fine ok going on shooting with my iPhone. But after all, good enough or not. I had for some time been dreaming of owning a “real” camera agin. Something with little more control and little better possibilities. And the feeling of a camera. For me it’s an important emotional connection after all.

That it all ended up in a quite advanced and expensive Fuji X100T that is capable of more than enough in comparison of my needs may sound like a huge overkill. But so it went and happened to be. Life is strange and full of surprises. I simply fell in love with it.

Somehow I wanted a little more than just a little more than I thought that I needed. After all it feels good to have a camera you know is capable of to deliver a little more than you think that you need. Just in case. And then I like the fact that the X100T actually is a great piece of building quality worth to suffer the scary passage through my thin wallet. Although not that incredible exclusive and expensive, but definitely the most exclusive and expensive camera I have ever owned, yet.

And that can lead up to other unexpected reactions in your mindset. I’ll be back about that later.

 

Oh no, Petshots!

This is Shiro and Grima. A Whippet and a crossbreed (mostly Icelandic shepherd dog).

Together - the crossbreed Grima and the whippet Shiro

I was really very uncertain until the very last touch of this post if I actually should make this “yet another pet” post at all. But after all, how many pet posts have I done here?

Dogs and Cats. Mostly a whippet called Shiro and a crossbreed called Grima.  All shot with an iPhone

 

Dogs and Cats. Mostly a whippet called Shiro and a crossbreed called Grima.  All shot with an iPhone

Our dogs have always been, and will always be, a natural source of inspiration and a reason to pick up the camera. Even if you know that you alreday have houndreds of photos of them. You always see something new, or very special in just this moment, too strong to resist. What really happening is that you actually try to take a photo of your feelings rather than a portrait. That’s why it is so easy to get a growing pile of photos of your beloved pets that never ends. It’s actually photos of love. And just another photo is never one to many in this world.

Dogs and Cats. Mostly a whippet called Shiro and a crossbreed called Grima.  All shot with an iPhone

To much oxygen

Nowdays this behaviour very easily becomes a craving need to share those moments on the social media. We are not alone. And the rest just look straight through that just another pet photo and don’t see what you see. At some point it can easily become a forced hunt for satisfaction and nothing but a giant colllection of same, same but not so vey different. I think it is very important trying to resist this lust to avoid becoming a manic collector.

Or, if you change the “pet” into something else you burn for. In general. To much same, same but different may not be the right way to search what you looking for.

Paw of Grima

Today I try to be much more restrictive when it comes to taking photos and sharing photos of my pets repeatidly. Or anything else of to much of same kind that grows very big too easily. In time it will grow big anyway and will probably be of much more interest. Another way to do it is keep on shooting but avoid saving too much, beeing quite hard to Yourself.

A pillow, nice

Best place on earth

All photos in this post are shot with an smartphone. The perfect camera when that sudden lust to catch the moment occure. Especially when it comes to animals (and kids). Just a second of to much preparation is sometimes enough to break that magic moment. The phone is for the most no further away than in your pocket.

Food for everyone

Shiro and Grima

Don’t bother craving for the wishful need for super quality. That’s definitivly the most less important. Actually, more important I would say. I often like to push the quality limits at free will and I am not ashamed to play with filters from time to time to mess things up. I don’t mean that you should avoid to push for better quality. What I try to say is about developing your skills with what you have and searching for satisfaction through creativity. But when you want and when the circumstances are right (good light for example). You can get quite impressive results with a smartphone.

Grima loves water

We have a cat too, that used to be two – two different cats, not a siamese…
So maybe there will be cats here one day too. And there will be more dogs from time to time. And other cats, and other dogs.

Never to small