Since a couple of years, I live in the southern regions of Sweden. Blekinge is the name of the county should you find the need to get into more details. We are in the middle of the festivities also known as Easter and I have never seen a colder Easter in these parts of the country. Or even spring. The first breath I took was when I was born on a warm summer day roughly 36 years ago. The winters of my childhood, and perhaps also an Easter or two, was filled with huge piles of snow and crisp, cool temperatures. But down here in the south I am greeted with a much harsher coldness when I step outside my house.
Up in the northern parts of the country, there is not unusual to experience temperature far colder than -20°C. That is really cold, but I would take that dry, nice coldness over the wet, grim coldness that comes from the sea and furiously sweeps in over the land down here. I can not hide from it and I can hardly dress for it. It is bone chilling when it is at its worst and I really just want to stay inside.
I realize that this makes me sound like a grumpy old man that only enjoys himself when the temperature hits +30°C but I really enjoy the cold. I would choose a cold, clear winter night over any warm, sticky summer day if I could choose.
No winter – no snow
White, snow landscapes are also something that I have to learn to live without since moving to Blekinge. A typical winter here consists of a couple of windy days that takes most, if not all, leaves out from the trees, and before you know it spring knocks on the door again. This year things seem to work a little different.
Usually by this time of year all the roundabouts and plantings in the municipality is filled with flowers in all shapes and colors. Tulips and a lot of other flowers that I can not name greet me on my way to work. But now this year. the plants are exchanged with snow.
Dogs really love snow
My household has 2 rather peculiar dogs. One of them really loves snow and the other one enjoys it, but he doesn’t get too excited most of the times.
- Dog number 1 is a German Shepherd and she is like a German Shepard is for the most part. If you throw something past her, she will collect it. If she sees a lawn filled with snow she will runt through it like a maniac.
- Dog number 2 is a Chinese Crested Powderpuff and as such he is not too keen on finding snow tangled up in his fluffy fur. But every now and then he loses his coolness and goes all in! With his nose a couple of millimeters of the ground he plows around in the deep snow like a submarine.
When Iso, that is the name of the Powderpuff, is done and just stands in the middle of the snow heaving from excitement the best way to get rid of all the cold, sticky snow all around him is to put him in the sink and let the warm water melt away all of the snow.
Wood anemone and other typical spring flowers
At this time of year me, and a lot of other landscape photographers, get overrun with spring feelings. Up here in the cold north, the return of the sun and light is very well received and most of us interested in the nature spend a lot of our time out in the woods or at the sea. Instagram seems to get filled up to the brim with pictures of pretty flowers and the first green plants poking up from the ground.
It’s been a couple of weeks since I took my camera out on an adventure. I usually bring it with me everywhere I go but I haven’t planned a photo trip in ages it seems. I just don’t have the time. Or more specifically I haven’t made time for it. Life gets in the way sometimes and I have to choose carefully where I spend most of my time. I just wish I was able to choose photography a little more often.
The smartphone – the constant companion
I usually carry around a smartphone in my pocket and I suspect that you do the same. Every now and then I try to click off a few photos to keep my creativity flowing and for composition practice. Lately, I have found myself switching over to video mode a lot more frequently. Look at the end of the post for some examples.
How do you manage to stay creative during the long, cold winter? I read several photoblogs and most of the keep a steady flow of photos coming no matter what time of the year it is. I find that really inspiring.
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