Interview with Magnus

 (Magnus Lundgren)Three tips for photographers
→  Use your imagination and challenge your ideas
→  Turn your subjects into individuals
→  Respect, relax and enjoy in nature

 

Why nature photography?

It is not really about choice. It is more like a passion, or a nerdy madness and at the same time such a great adventure. It all starts with my admiration for the wild world and continues into something that makes me very happy. My god that sounds so pretentious. Almost like a rock ballad from the eighties but nevertheless that is the way it is for me.

What’s best about it?

At large it is important to make a difference, for the right reasons wherever you can or want. On a personal level life is pretty much arranged in a pyramid of needs with some basic stuff at the bottom like food, air, water and sleep and then it moves up into higher levels. In a great shooting moment I loose contact with the base of the triangle, and the middle part for that sake. A subject, concentration, a piece of glass. And sometimes I anticipate something just before it is happening. In that the moment, quite or chaotic, I spend some time as if only that top part of the pyramide existed. For a little while. Does that make sense to anyone else?

What’s worst about it?

Sometimes my family and friends feel a bit sorry for me when I am spending time in the wet, cold, dark and hostile seas. But this is the best part of it all. To be out there, when you really have to make an effort to sustain and keep the spirit high. Find the way and solve the riddle of an assignment or a difficult shoot. The downside of it all is the afterwork from a long time in the field. Sorting images, retousch, and cleaning gear. This is time that I could have been “out there”.

Favourite places and species?

My favourite place and species are always the around the next place I am going to. Research is building up an energy to meet a new environment and new species. That is my favourite – next expedition. But if I look in the rear view mirror my last years have been spent shooting a lot in fresh water bodies. A great challenge and very rewarding. Looking at species I can see I have been doing quite some sharks shoots as well. That interest started off from a boyish fascination which slided into a group of animals that is massively slaugthered by the millions every year. The seas most magnificent hunters have become a targeted prey and many shark species are under threat from us humans. My motivation to image sharks has changed to a conservation perspective.

What’s in the bag?

Underwater photography is over the top excessive equipment wise. Quite frankly it is a ridiculous. I travel a lot and I always hear myself making excuses like “I really need all these boxes for my camerastuff. I hardly have any clothes with me!” I have always been a Nikon user and underwater photography is a lot about wide angle and short macro lenses. My most used lenses the last year are the 15 mm Sigma FE, 16-35 mm Nikkor and the the fast 105 mm Nikkor Micro. Topside my 24-70 mm, 70-200 mm and the 500 mm are always along.

Your specialities / skills?

I am specialised in nature photography around aquatic environments. I started out in the small world and I was a bit of a “wise arse” purist and did not consider obvious and common subjects to be that interesting. I guess I was just young and energetic. I have changed a lot since then but this “phase” taught me to see both the obvious and the not so obvious in a place. I have been told to make a personal impression in the image.

What will you do in your next life?

Reincarnation? Well, if I do not reach nirvana and I would like to be reborn as a human. I guess geographically ideal would be Norway. Living in a hut, by Lysefjorden two steps from a salty, dark and deep sea full of mysteries. My mother could very well be a filthy rich dive instructor and my father a world-reknown biologist on to something big. I would of course spend my time in the fjord with a camera from a very young age and they wouldn’t mind at all!

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