Abandoned Farmhouses

 

The weather was so beautiful last weekend (unlike today) and like always when the sun is shining I wanted to take photos of something. My friend Ragna and I went on a little road trip just outside of Reykjavik and went into a couple of abandoned houses. In one of the houses I kept hearing a mouse and I was trying to figure out where it was, well the city kid in me didn’t really appreciate this invisible rodent but I tried my best to ignore it (in another words: every time I heard it squeak I would jump about two meters in the air) and kept taking pictures. We drove around for about 5 hours. Went to this little town called Hafnir and it honestly felt like going back in time. The houses were pretty old and there were hardly any graves in the cemetery. However it was interesting to see, some of the houses were so old I didn’t know if it was someone’s home or if it was abandoned. The church there was this lovely black color, however the paint was chipping so it gave the house a little of a ghostly feeling which is exactly what I want in churches. We decided to head home after a fun day of driving and I was a little tired after being behind the wheel for so long. Well kids, do not drive fast! You could end up hurting someone or you could have a similar experience to me and get pulled over by the cops for speeding and get a fine that you can’t possibly afford. Til next time!

I dwell in a lonely house I know

That vanished many a summer ago,

And left no trace but the cellar walls,

And a cellar in which the daylight falls,

And the purple-stemmed wild raspberries grow.

– Robert Frost

My First Attempts at Film Photography

I’m one of those weird people that like to give themselves presents. I love giving myself presents if it’s for my birthday or a certain accomplishment, this time it was for my graduation, I’m sorry but graduating university is a BIG deal and I thought it called for a present. So I decided to buy myself a Pentax K1000, mainly because I’m a huge fan of The Blue Hour and I think that film photographs seem more authentic and more truthful (if that makes any sense). So I went to Brooklyn to visit my sister and got so excited to photograph Brooklyn on my new camera… turns out that this is a lot harder than I thought and I managed to screw up my Brooklyn photos, I was sorely disappointed! When the photo developer called and told me all 6 of my films were blank I started to think where I could go in Reykjavik to take pictures. The idea came to me a couple of hours later: Kolaportið! Reykjavik’s main flea market. So on I went to the flea market with my camera and a brand new film took what I thought would be amazing photographs and then I went straight to the developers. Well at least the film wasn’t blank, but the photographs turned out all grey and a little foggy. Now I was getting annoyed and realized I needed help! I decided to call my uncle who has a lot of experience with these types of cameras and boy, did he help me. So with my brand new knowledge of film photography I tried it again. My parents and I went to this small town Hveragerði, which is about 40 minute drive from Reykjavik. We go there in the beginning of every summer to buy flowers to put on the porch. I started taking photographs of the surroundings but something was off… I got home and started rewinding the film and there wasn’t enough restraint. But I decided to take the film to the developers and waited for the phone call telling me that the film was blank but the phone call never came yet I was still a little pessimistic. On my way home from work I stopped by the developers and picked up my photos. I was half right, the film wasn’t secure enough in the camera and it did get loose but before that happened I managed to take 5 photos! I have to admit after ruining about 8 rolls of film I am happy to finally see some results, even though they are not the best I promise I will practice and get better. This experience actually reminds me of a quote I heard once:

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time. – Thomas A. Edison

Birds

Birds are my all time favorite animals (penguins and owls being the best) and I used to envy them as a child, the thought of being able to fly anywhere seemed so freeing to me and still does, I guess. I actually drive far away from Reykjavik in the hope of seeing and owl or eagle somewhere, I am that obsessed.

A forest bird never wants a cage. – Henrik Ibsen

Autumn and Blueberry Picking

Autumn. I don’t know how to describe this wonderful season. I always feel like there is change coming my way when the colors start to change and darken and you start wrapping your sweater around you and see the first signs of winter. Autumn also means blueberries here in Iceland. My mother and I drove an hour out of Reykjavik until we saw these gorgeous blueberries all over the place, got a bucket and started picking. My mother put the blueberries in the bucket at great speed while I sat there and enjoyed eating them. Afterwards we came home and made a blueberry rhubarb crumble and ate it hot with vanilla ice cream. Unfortunately we had to get the rhubarb from my uncle’s farm but I am hoping my mother gives in and starts growing them in our garden.

Delicious autumn!  My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. – George Eliot

Sunny Afternoon in a Caravan


Oh, the north. I love travelling north, I don’t know why, I just do. This time it was to the north of Iceland. My family and I decided to spend one week in a caravan, which we hardly ever do. My grandmother’s caravan is located in an enclosed area in the north and is only moved in the winter. When I got there after a long drive I sat down in the caravan to rest for a while and realized that the light was beautiful and the caravan had this wonderful 1970’s retro feeling. I assembled my camera and started taking photographs and was so delighted with the outcome.

It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to. – J.R.R. Tolkien

Fog

I love taking photographs in fog. The colors change and everything seems so mysterious and magical. When I saw there was fog I decided to grab my camera and my dog and take a walk in my favorite place in the Reykjavik area: Grótta. There is a gorgeous lighthouse there and birds everywhere. It’s especially gorgeous in the fog. When my dog and I got there I turned on my ipod and enjoyed the voice of Stephen Fry reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in my headphones and started walking. I walked for almost two hours and photographed everything around me.

It is not the clear-sighted who rule the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm fog. – Joseph Conrad

Animal Farm

I love it when Spring arrives and with a short drive out of the city there are lambs everywhere! How cute are those little animals? These specific photographs where not shot just outside the city, actually far from it, in fact this is about a 5 hours drive outside Reykjavik, but you get what I mean. My uncle’s farm is located in the north of Iceland and my family tries to go there as often as possible since it’s where my mother is from and judging from my northern accent and way of speaking some people jump to the conclusion that I am also from the north (I have no idea where I am from since I was raised in Japan, live in Reykjavik but speak with a northern accent, it’s all very confusing). But getting back to the point. I got to go into the barn and take few photographs of sheep, cows and all the other creatures that were hiding there.

FOUR LEGS GOOD, TWO LEGS BAD – George Orwell