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Digital Subscriptions > Lonely Planet Traveller (UK) > February 2017 > The Photographer’s Story

The Photographer’s Story

I’ve been taking pictures of my homeland, Finnish Lapland, for the past three years. I never thought I’d be a landscape photographer, but after 15 years living in Helsinki and other cities, I missed the peace of the north. As a child, my surroundings seemed normal, but when I returned, I was blown away by their beauty. In the winter, the lakes and forests are covered in thick snow – it feels like something out of a dream. The trees look like sculptures or alien forms, and there’s complete silence; most animals are hibernating, and there’s no-one around. You can hear every sound, from bark cracking in the cold to snow falling from branches. I often go off on my own deep into the woods or on long snowmobile trips, so it can be dangerous; if something happened, no-one would know. I always consider the safety aspects, and with -15°C temperatures, it’s important to have all the right gear. But the experience is magical. I especially love shooting at night when the stars come out and, often, the aurora. I’ll generally see the northern lights three or four times a week, whether as a slow-moving green mass or a colourful display flaming across the whole sky. In winter, this place is a different world.

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February 2017