I was first going to write that I don’t many preparations before taking photos. But actually, that’s far from the truth. It might have been true regarding water photography when I was starting out, because then, I had no idea what I was doing or how to do it. I just knew that I wanted to take photos in the water. Because, I love water. I also think that even if you have an idea of what you want to photograph you should be open to what’s around you.
But when I’ve been photographing roller derby or surfing, I’ve been prepared. It’s just that I don’t notice my preparations anymore because I’m so used to them. With roller derby for example, I even watched a couple of games before I started taking pictures. Usually google venues I’ve not been to just to see the layout of them, what kind of lighting there is (usually horrible), what colour the walls are, if there are windows and start thinking about where I might place myself in the venue.
For these photos I felt like I never prepared more in my entire life. When I drove home in april from Riksgränsen I knew I was going to come back during the summer and get into the water to take some photos from there. I thought I was going to go to Trollsjön because the water is so clear and you can see for 35 meters. At least that’s what I heard and still haven’t been there. It was raining when I was going to check it out, and also, i find it quite boring just to take land- and seascape photos with noting special in them. So then I decided to go into Torneträsk instead, where the water is also clear, and cold, and have Lapporten in the background. And then I waited, checked the weather report. And waited some more.
In the morning it was cloudy, and since I wanted Lapporten as a backdrop which was half covered by clouds I just had to wait until the clouds cleared. I’m quite restless so when everything was packed I just went down to the lake and sat on a rock and prayed to the weather gods to move some of the clouds. And them I started preparing, got into my wetsuit, gloves, boots, fins and cap. Checked the settings on the camera, changed the settings on the camera, checked the rocks at the bottom of the lake where I was going to take the photos from, remembered a couple of things about water photography that I had forgot, did some warmups, sat on the rocks some more, did sun salutations and said the opening and closing mantra that we do in ashtanga yoga. Waited some more, until finally, the clouds cleared. I was in the water for 10 minutes, but I got the photo I wanted. So yes, I do preparations before photographing.