Norway

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A little throwback to our trip to Norway earlier this year.

One of the highlights of the trip was going up to the top of Mt. Fløyen in Bergen. I loved riding the funicular to the top because it seemed like it would have been a pretty steep hike up. The views were nice but for the way down, Andrew and I decided to just do it on our own and walk it. I’m glad we did it that way because we were able to capture the things that we weren’t able to photograph on the way up. Plus it’s a whole lot easier going down then up.

So as we started our descent, Andrew and I were talking about how glad we were to be in Norway. Then I just stopped in my tracks. I saw this scene and knew it was going to make an amazing photograph but it needed a person in it. I asked Andrew if he could stand in the middle and he walked over without any hesitation. It was a little awkward because the city itself is so quiet while I’m over here trying to yell posing directions to him. Sign language worked a bit, but next time I know to pack the walkie talkies. LOL just joking. I don’t actually have walkie talkies and I’m sure Andrew would not like having to carry one, on top of all my other camera equipment. LOL.

The rest of the hike down was easy with a lot of switchbacks making it even easier. So if you ever find yourself in Bergen, I’d highly recommend just buying a ticket to go up and making the trek down.

My camera settings for this image is F5.0 at 1/40 sec and ISO 2000 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned this at least 100 times since we’ve been back from Norway, but my favorite part of our whole trip was our stay in Geiranger. It seriously took my breath away and every time I think of our trip, Dalsnibba pops straight into my head.

I know if I had to do it all over again, I would have wanted to cut out a few things just so we could have stayed in Geiranger an extra night. The cabin, the scenery, the atmosphere was absolutely perfect. I even found myself thinking about Norway the other day and being amazed how a place like this even exists in the world. It was truly breathtaking and I’d highly recommend anyone visiting.

After driving up the long, windy road to the top of the mountain, Andrew and I were greeted by snow and lots of wind. It was an unexpected surprise but in some ways it felt more like “Norway”. I loved it. We got to see the mountain tops in a whole new way. The sky was dramatic so I thought I would take advantage of the textures in the clouds by making them more than half of the image. I love how it’s blue monochromatic and in some ways the clouds are sort of imitating the mountain tops. I don’t have too many images printed of mine that are hanging in our house but I’d definietly consider it for this one. I feel like I could stare at it for hours and it bring back so many great memories of our trip.

Other photographers reading the blog- do you print out your images and hang them in your house?

My camera settings for this image is f4.0 at 1/1000th sec at ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

All photos available for print and licensing >

There are scenic views EVERYWHERE in Norway. It’s hard not to fall in love with the country. If you haven’t already, check out my road trip guide and everything we did on our getaway. If you remember I mention the fact that there’s always a bench somewhere scenic in the country. I forgot to mention one big difference difference between Norway and Iceland.

Iceland is great because just like Norway, its an amazingly beautiful country. But it was a little easier to take pictures there because the roads are a little bigger with pull off areas anywhere you want to go. In Norway, the roads are way smaller and it would be dangerous to pull over just to take a picture in a lot of places. So for that reason alone, I found it a little more difficult to take all the pictures I wanted while in Norway.

Luckily, there was a huge pull off area on the way down from Dalsnibba where we were able to park the car and get out to take a few pictures. It’s hard not to feel like the king of the world from this viewpoint.  What really attracted me to this scene was the yellow/green grass compared to the blue mountains. I just loved the natural color contrast.

In order to create this image, I asked Andrew to walk over and stand on that rock. I think by this point he was used to be the subject of many of my images and just naturally stretched his arms out like that. It made for a way more interesting photograph however can someone please get this man a red tshirt or something? LOL.

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 1/2000th sec at ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm. 

PS: I updated my gear page. Click here to check it out 🙂 

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One really cool thing that Norway does is that they build these skywalks at really cool places. For example they had one in Flåm at Sognefjord, Dalsnibba in Geiranger, and a few other spots that we got to visit. It’s cool because sometimes they’re built so that there is just glass underneath you and when you look down it looks like you’re floating above a valley. If I had a fear of heights, this would  not work for me. Luckily I don’t so I thought it was the coolest thing ever.

This image was taken along the walkway to the Trollstigen skywalk. I was so excited to see the views from the skywalk but I got stopped in my tracks when I saw these orange/yellow wearing people. They’re jackets are so bright and colorful, I loved the way they stood out from the mountain behind them. Also the perspective here is kind of crazy.

PS this is the view.

After I took this picture I showed Andrew what it looked like on my camera. He thought it was really cool, especially since the jackets were so bright. I immediately told him that’s why I wanted him to wear bright colors so that when I photographed him, he would stand out more in the landscape. But to be honest, neither one of us are bright color wearing people. You can mostly find either one of us in a dark black tee shirt and be totally comfortable. I tend to take it a step further and wear all black… all the time. Blah, I dunno. I’m posting this in hopes that it will change my mind about colors. Or at least influence others to wear color so that if I see on you the street wearing something that stands out, I’ll want to take your pic 🙂

My settings for this image is F10 at 1/80 sec ISO 200 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

 

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If you asked either me or Andrew what our favorite part of the road trip was, we would both say Dalsnibba. I think it was both of our favorites because it was so unexpected. Let me paint you a picture.

So driving from Flåm to Geiranger was our longest day of travel. Not to mention that the day before we had put in the wrong address in our GPS and ended up driving an unintended extra 2 hours. So when we left Flåm we made 100% sure we had the right address and I think we both just wanted to get to Geiranger as fast as possible so we didn’t have to spend another day in the car. Midway through our drive, Andrew and I stopped for lunch which was just a quick sandwich from the grocery store and we switched places driving. It was my turn to drive. Andrew was tired so he put his seat down and took a nap while I navigated the Norwegian roads.

It was rainy, it was foggy and hard to see even 5 feet ahead of me but I made it through all the downhill hairpin turns. We finally got to our cabin that we were staying at and decided to walk around the little town area. That’s when we saw a poster and sign for Dalsnibba. It looked beautiful so we took a picture of it and kept it moving.

The next morning we ate breakfast and went on a little hike. After the hike was over, we knew we still wanted to stay in Geiranger but didn’t know what to do. Our next destination was only 2 hours away so we wanted to make the most out of the the beautiful Geirangerfjord. Luckily we took a picture of that poster and decided that we should just go checkout what it was. When I put the address in the GPS, I realized it was probably off the road we drove in from, but couldn’t see it because it was so foggy. Holy COW. As soon as we started making our way up the mountain, my jaw immediately dropped. I could not believe that both of us had missed out on such amazing views! Like seriously, it was probably one of the most surprising and beautiful things I’ve ever seen.

This was taken on the very top of the mountain at the Dalsnibba skywalk. I used my 70-200mm to zoom in on the snow because I thought the low hanging clouds would bring in this extra moodiness. But I’m also in love with the texture. Man, I loved that long lens while on this trip. There are just so many details that would be difficult to see if it weren’t for that extra zoom.

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 1/8000th ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm lens. 

All photos available for print and licensing >

About 20 minutes before I took this image, I was fortunate enough to capture this image. They were pretty much right across the Romsdalsfjorden from each other. But I say that I was fortunate because I felt like I was in the right place at the right time with the right lens. One of the great things about Norway was that I didn’t see very many birds. LOL not even kidding. If you know me, then you know I have a slight fear of them. It’s a long story but it’s a fear that I’ve had since I was little. But I think that they can make interesting subjects in pictures (as long as they stay further back).

To be honest, these were the only 3 birds I remember seeing the entire trip. I saw them flying from far away so I brought my camera to my eye and just started shooting. I was hoping I could capture them in some type of way that would be interesting. I think I accomplished that when they were flying over this mountain peak. I love how they are lined up similar to the shape of the mountain.

I still haven’t gone through all my images from Norway yet, but you may have noticed that I’ve already gone through so many from Åndalsnes. I loved it. The entire place is so photogenic. I remember feeling so small because you’re basically surrounded by beautiful mountain peaks like this one. You can see why we wanted to stay here for two nights instead of one. So I highly recommend staying here for at least 2 days if you really want to make the most out of your trip to Åndalsnes.

My camera settings for this image is F5.6 1/500th ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.