I caught the bug when I lived in Stockholm, Sweden on exchange for my university course in 2013 and those six months were jam-packed with new foods, cultures and experiences that will live long in the memory. After finishing my marketing degree the year after I travelled around the west coast of America with over 5,500 miles and 11 states covered in a month. My passion for photography became nearly obsessive during this time and I realised I wanted to capture both my home country of Scotland and also discover completely new places and show people what they can unearth if you jump out of your comfort zone. I’ve been to some incredible places since then, including photography commissions to the Faroe Islands, America and Switzerland.
As good as those trips were, the one place that stands out was the land of fjords and the midnight sun: Norway. In particular, the islands of Lofoten made a huge impression on me not only visually, but mentally too. It felt like a perfect mixture of all things a landscape photographer dreams of: incredible mountains, tropical beaches (minus the weather), untouched land and dramatic views around every corner. We were in the area for four days on a project with Visit Norway and made the most of the 24 hour sunlight by adjusting our sleep patterns to stay up during the nights and crash throughout the day.
The highlight of the trip was the area of Reine, a fishing village above the Arctic Circle with a population of just over 300. Around the tiny town are a collection of huge, jaggy mountains as well as the Norwegian coastline as far as the eye can see. We climbed one of the most famous walks in the area, Reinebringen: a one hour hike up scree-like rock that overlooks the village. All I can say is I would do that hike over and over again if I could: the views at the top are out of this world. Even thought you are less than 500 metres above sea level, you felt like you were on top of the world, with a birds-eye view over the islands and the surrounding landscape. No pictures I took there did the vista justice and if you are in the local area, I couldn’t recommend you to do this walk enough.
A life changer? No doubt.