When the first volcanic eruption started in March, I adamantly refused to be one of the herd flocking to the site to take pictures of it. Literally thousands of people did so, and the thought of the crowds and the traffic to and fro was seriously offputting, so I figured “someone with a plane and better lenses is going to get better pictures of the lava flow anyway” and left it at that. (i’ll leave it unsaid if all parts of me agreed with this reasoning)
Then ANOTHER eruption.. Come ON.. This one getting itself all in the news and annoying the hell out of Europe as a whole, keeping everyone from catching their flights, and whatnot. This time people were being politely asked to stay away from the area, unless they had a good reason. Since there was no longer a steady stream of people going, I figured now was the time to finally drive out there and at least get a look at it, even if I wouldn’t be able to get any spectacular photos out of it. Set out yesterday morning (4 am on april 20th) and actually had the road to myself. Awesome. Got a few worthwhile photos too- nothing mindbogglingly awesome like the long-exposure lightning shots some guy took at night, but I’m pretty sure I’m not able to get to where-ever it was he took those from, so I won’t beat myself up about it.
Edit: My sister has written a more detailed and accurate account of the eruption, by all means check that out.
I’ll let my photos do most of the talking:
Taken along the Fljótshlíð road. The summer cabins give a sense of scale.
farmhouses nearly obscured by the ominous fog of fine ash
Geese paddling around in an ash-coated pond by the road..The air was uncomfortable to breath at this point, and i was still far from the worst of it.
Shortly before turning around on the main road, and heading back to take the Fljótshlíð road instead..
These horses are lucky for now. Farmers caught in the worst of the cloud have been forced to slaughter their animals (at least cows, not sure about horses) due to their land being devastated by the ash.
sheep resting in the morning sun, oblivious to the troublemaker behind them..
Took this when i was still pretty far away. From this distance the eruption looks like a very innocent cloud clinging to the mountaintop.
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Closer up it's slightly less innocent looking
Other peoples portraits aren’t really my “forte”… not that i don’t , occasionally, succeed in getting some decent portraits made.. Its just that i tend to get immensely stressed at the prospect of photographing people. I myself become extremely uncomfortable whenever someone points a camera in my direction (somewhat ironic considering my vast colletion of self-portraits.. but in turn it probably explains why most pictures of me ARE selfportraits). Anyway, i suppose i’m too sympathetic to the plight of those i point my camera at, and that somehow makes me uneasy about the fact that im putting people in this situation. Which is dumb, because in most cases i’ve actually been hired to do this…So they did ask for it. Anyway, i’m really selling myself as a portrait photog here, no doubt..
Anyway. While digging thru my archives the other day, i noticed quite a few portraits that i’ve taken, that i’ve never shared on flickr.. figured i’d gather a bunch of them together here, just for the hell of it . And also because after not updating this blog thing for 3 months, i figured i’d better make a BIG post :p
Daughter of a woman who graciously offered me a place to stay in barcelona last year..
Outtake from a drummer series i did in 2007..
Another outtake from the drummer series ..
miss reykjavík 2006. shot for a magazine..
Painter Hlaðgerður Íris, shot for a magazine..
sister of a girl i was hired to photograph, took some extra's of her while i was at it..
singer Kate Havnevik backstage
from a band photoshoot 2008..
confirmation photoshoot for the girl on the left, here with her sister..
politician, magazine shoot..
dubstep artists Mala and Sgt Pokes
Mala & Loefah in London..
icelandic band Dikta
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.. and then reaching those goals, is that once the goal has been reached and is behind you, you can’t just kick up your heels and say “there. I totally aced that. ” and just feel content. Not if you’re me at least. You have to set a new one, otherwise, you get the feeling you’re not going anywhere…
To clarify: In March this year i started running again.. (i’ve been jogging off and on since i was 16, but became somewhat lazy in the last few years)
30 minutes on a treadmill was exhausting to begin with. I kept at it , and started running outdoors as soon as the weather started getting better.. Going from half an hour to 45 minutes , to an hour or more , in a rather short period of time. By May, when i managed to run for 84 minutes nonstop, I decided I would aim at competing in the Reykjavík Marathon in late August, and run a half marathon (21 kilometers)
So, i’ve been training all summer, steadily increasing my distances until the other day (or night) I ran for 108 minutes.. not sure about the distance but i figured somewhere between 16-18 km. Being impatient, I felt compelled last night to just go ahead and try for half a marathon. Yes, in the middle of the night. Alone. With no one to witness it. Doing it the other way, with the crowds and the accurately measured distance and people cheering, is altogether too ordinary.
Got up around 3:30, was off at 3:50, and ran, for what seemed like an eternity, in the morning stillness (well, it was actually quite windy and chilly, but I wasn’t passed by a single car or pedestrian, so stillness of that sort at least) . At one point, when running past a field where there’s a nesting area for several kinds of birds, I had to dodge a gull that did its very best to shit on my head.. Seriously.. it spotted me, turned and dived low, and let go with a generous glop , which landed approximately 2 feet to my left. But only because I veered two feet to the right. Too close for comfort that was. I added a generous extra half hour loop to the approximate 16 km I ran a few days earlier, and when i finally arrived back home, (ending the run with a looong grueling uphill climb, with plenty of headwind) it was 6:08. Two hours and 18 minutes of nonstop running. If that wasn’t at least 21 km, i’ll eat my running shoes. For at least an hour, I allowed myself to bask in a feeling of accomplishment, trying to ignore the fact that my knees seemed to have stopped working temporarily, and my right ankle refused to properly carry my weight.
But now what?? Does this mean i actually have to aim for a full marathon one of these days? Knowing me… probably.
But hell. For now, yay! I did it !
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for each view:
ha. Well, it felt wonderful last night to go out for the first time in AGES and do something foolhardy like jump into Kleifarvatn half naked at 2:45 am , in wind and drizzle, just to make this photo.. I’ve missed doing stuff like that, and coming home, having cocoa and being able to check off yet another seemingly too-uncomfortable-to-justify-doing idea off my mental checklist. I was becoming worried that turning 30 the other day would force me to grow up an put an end to this sortof behavior, but no. I’m still ok. Whew. Actually, i’m reallly enjoying being 30. It sounds so.. distinguished.. and i can always pretend to be grown up , on occasions when such a thing may prove beneficial in some way..
There. Now that i’ve blown the dust off this blog of mine, maybe i’ll try to post something here more frequently..
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(apart from stowing away on a freight ship or something similarly uncomfortable and time consuming), is flying with Iceland Express. Also, they have pretty good taste, because they’re collaborating with me on boosting the appearance of their website.
Every week, starting today until early July, a new photo of mine will be displayed on their site, some of them being displayed for the first time. (they also made an extra page about me, which is a nice touch)
All in all, pretty neat thing for me. ‘Bout time someone figured out my photos could be useful for this sortof thing… Oh, and if anyone feels like popping over very soon, i’m opening a large exhibit in Reykjavík, January 19th, so obviously that’s reason enough to come here. (Besides, the night life will make up for the cold). And you can always come back in july or august. I’m not being sarcastic about that either, summer in iceland is definitely something worth experiencing at least once, trust me. But as the picture above shows, January does have its charm ..
More on the upcoming exhibit in my next post.
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