exploring norway with jonas jacobsson
If you have ever felt the urge to grab a camera and disappear into a faraway land, this photo essay and Scandinavian journey may just inspire you to do so right now, rather than sometime in the future.
In July last year, Swedish photographer Jonas Jacobsson headed across the border to neighbouring Norway on a photographic odyssey that took him to a summer wonderland within the Arctic circle.
We love every moment and every shot that he has captured in a series of photo essays as he ventures further away from known-Europe and into the wilderness.
His shots concentrate on the depth of the landscape, but each offers a gentle reminder of the sparse inhabitants and visitors that either inhabit or pass through the land. We particularly like the wistful shot above of a woman overlooking the water.
What is shrouded in darkness and ice most of the year is now opening up to the long Northern Summer and welcoming the adventure.
This is Tromso, home to the world's most Northern University as its charming old wooden buildings sprawl across the mainland and onto a couple of different islands. It's a mesh of bridges surrounded by boats and blue waters, with snow brushed slopes in the background.
Like all of Norway, it is pretty, organized and made for strolling, at least at this time of year.
The best way to get around Tromso is by bicycle, and when you leave the city you can also explore roads lined with fields of wild flowers. Jacobsson has harnessed the midnight sun in many of these shots. The midnight sun can be caught in the region between 18th of May until the 26th of July each year in this part of the world.
Moving on to less tread ground, the next stop was 20 km west at a small fishing village called Ersfjordbotn. This remote village offers unique views of the Ersfjord-sound facing towards the Norwegian Sea. It is rarely visited by outsiders and is cut off from the world for most of the year.
It is his haunting photographs of the dim sun as it fights its way through moody ink cloud and onto endless water that captured our attention. Is it midnight or midday, or somewhere in between? It's certainly another world.
But while at times the landscape is dramatic, it can be just as equally light.
In fact the deeper that Jacobsson went into the Arctic Circle, the more surprising landscapes he found bathing in the sun. Imagine having a beach like this all to yourself- a secret paradise for just a few months of the year when the sun melts the landscape reveal white sands and sparkling clear waters.
This beach is situated on a tiny island that lays to the Southwest, Sommarøya. Translated into English Sommarøya means “Summer Island”.
During the summer months the entire island is covered in fields of buttercups while during the winter it houses an ice hotel.
Next he went on to Reinebringen which was a steep and spectacular climb up gravel and slippery rocks that might trigger a small land-slide if you’re not careful. It took about an hour and the resulting images are just stunning.
Jacobsson has actually made three photo essays of different sections of the trip which he has uploaded to exposure.com. We've just picked a smattering of pictures from the first two to give a taste of the trip. For the record, the trip was also inspired by the discovery of Wideroe Airlines 'Explore Norway' ticket which gave him unlimited flights for two weeks!
The early summer months are perfect times to explore Norway and enjoy the long, long days of sunlight, so if you only have a few days as opposed to a few weeks, who needs to go further afield? Europe has its own wilderness just a few hours away.