Across the Universe

One positive thing the pandemic has instigated, is reaching out to one another using various digital platforms. It has opened up our eyes for new ways of collaborating. Or rather, made us adapt to and learn to use technology already existing, but maybe haven’t familiarized ourselves with enough to utilize to the full potential in the past.

One such example is Frank Girolami’s blog Beach Walk Reflections: Thoughts from thinking while walking. Frank invites photographer to collaborate by sharing their images for his beach walks. In his latest post 29 – Sea, Frank invited me to such a collaborative effort. His words and my photos. The topic: the sea—naturally.

In the post, Frank reflects on the relationship between man and the sea. He walks the beach and contemplates about the endlessness of the sea, and how it connects with us human beings through time and history. Water is vital for any life on earth, and that transcends in Frank’s words into poetry and philosophic consideration. Mirrored and expanded by my photos.

Beach Walk Reflections is only a couple of months old. Frank wrote the introductory post in last October. The aim is to share his thoughts hoping to stimulate the readers’ thoughts. Frank and have been walking beaches together with his wife for many years, and that is the origin for the blog.

The blog may be new, but Frank has been blogging before. For many years he brought out A Frank Angle. After a break he is now back with Beach Walk Reflections

Take a look at our collaborative effort: 29 – Sea.

Photo Workshops and Tours in 2021

In the hope that the world will return to some normalcy and open up again, hopefully towards this summer, I and Blue Hour Photo Workshops are announcing new photos workshops for the later part of the year.

These are the workshops we plan to offer later this year:
“The Personal Expression”—a weekend in Bergen, Norway with focus on how to develop your personal, photographic expression. June 11th to 13th 2021.

”Telling Stories with the Camera”—five days in the beautiful village of Bleik in Northern Norway. A dream spot for any photographer. The focus will be on storytelling and the visual language. September 15th to 19th 2021.

”Photo Tour in Granada”—a week in Nicaragua for the adventures. We will explore the colonial city and its extraordinary countryside. November 6th to 12th 2021.

Are you interested in developing your photographic skills? Do you like to travel? Do you want to make your photos tell a story in a much stronger vocabulary? Find your own expression? Develop your vision and become more creative? Any of these workshops would take your photography to the next level. I promise you, you will be in for an amazing experience. Click any of the links for more info.

Creative Collaboration


One of the things being a photograph that I often find limiting, is the fact that I usually work by myself. Limiting is actually not the right word, since being out on my own forces me to focus and use all of myself in the interaction with the world I photograph. It actually gives me strength. So I guess it’s more about the joy of working together with somebody else that I often miss when I work alone for too long. And also the different experience it involves.

It is really a great experience to work creatively together. You push each other further than you would maybe do alone. You inspire each other. You find new solutions together. And more than anything it’s simply fun. Or as Corwin Hiebert writes in his e-book Your Creative Mix – Growing Your Photography Business through Creativity and Collaboration: «The creative process, as chaotic as it can be at times, is a beautiful thing when the hard work involves an experience we can truly share. […] Together we can spur each other on to create more, and do more».

Creating together is a wonderful example of a dialectic method. The idea of the dialectic method is an old theory going all the way back to Ancient Greece, in which you put a thesis and an antithesis up against each other, and the combined solution between the two not only makes for a compromise, but creates something that is better than the thesis or the antithesis alone, what in the theory is called the synthesis.

Theory away, collaboration is truly inspiring and can be done on many levels. My good colleague and friend Sven Creutzmann, who is an eminent as well as awarded photographer, and I have over the past many years and from time to time been photographing together side by side on more personal related projects. In doing so we push each other further, we encourage each other, we enjoy the time together being focused on the shooting, and despite the fact that one would think that we might end up with pictures looking similarly, the collaboration spurs our separate creative visions and results in quite different pictures even at occasions when we stand side by side. Finally when working together like this, the help and encouragement we give each other in the editing process and even how to photoshop the pictures, is almost worth the whole process in itself.

The collaboration between Sven and me has also lead to various photo workshops we teach together. This is really collaboration as intimate as it can possible be. We develop the programs and classes in tight partnership, we teach the workshops together and of course we get to spend a lot of time socially together. As a matter of fact we have two workshops up in the air this year, both in Cuba. One takes place in the beginning of May and is the workshop Street Photography in Cuba that Sven and I have run for many years. New this year, is the workshop In the Footsteps of Che and Fidel in November. This is still in the planning, but will be a two weeks photo tour where we travel to the important, historical places of the Cuban revolution. This workshop will take the participants to areas not travelled a lot and will be quite an adventure.

Creative collaboration is so stimulating and so inspiring; I can only recommend it to everyone involved in the creative process. Of course it’s not limited to photography, but holds value for any creative outlet or artistic expression. To quote Corwin Hiebert one more time: « A successful collaboration provides credibility, it gives you an opportunity to gain experience, it expands your knowledge base, widens your sphere of influence, deepens your relationships, and gives you a real-world resume. But one of the most important takeaways from a collaboration is that it promotes your work ethic».

Creative Collaboration


One of the things being a photograph that I often find limiting, is the fact that I usually work by myself. Limiting is actually not the right word, since being out on my own forces me to focus and use all of myself in the interaction with the world I photograph. It actually gives me strength. So I guess it’s more about the joy of working together with somebody else that I often miss when I work alone for too long. And also the different experience it involves.

It is really a great experience to work creatively together. You push each other further than you would maybe do alone. You inspire each other. You find new solutions together. And more than anything it’s simply fun. Or as Corwin Hiebert writes in his e-book Your Creative Mix – Growing Your Photography Business through Creativity and Collaboration: «The creative process, as chaotic as it can be at times, is a beautiful thing when the hard work involves an experience we can truly share. […] Together we can spur each other on to create more, and do more».

Creating together is a wonderful example of a dialectic method. The idea of the dialectic method is an old theory going all the way back to Ancient Greece, in where you have a thesis and an antithesis up against each other, and the combined solution between the two not only makes for a compromise, but creates something that is better than the thesis or the antithesis alone, what in the theory is called the synthesis.

Theory away, collaboration is truly inspiring and can be done on many levels. My good colleague and friend Sven Creutzmann, who is an eminent as well as awarded photographer, and I have over the past many years and from time to time been photographing together side by side on more personal related projects. In doing so we push each other further, we encourage each other, we enjoy the time together being focused on the shooting, and despite the fact that one would think that we might end up with pictures looking similarly, the collaboration spurs our separate creative visions and results in quite different pictures even at occasions when we stand side by side. Finally when working together like this, the help and encouragement we give each other in the editing process and even how to photoshop the pictures, is almost worth the whole process in itself.

The collaboration between Sven and me has also lead to various photo workshops we do together. This is really collaboration as intimate as it can possible be. We develop the programs and classes in tight partnership, we teach the workshops together and of course we get to spend a lot of time socially together. As a matter of fact we have two workshops up in the air this autumn, one in Norway and one in Bolivia.

Another example of a stimulating creative collaboration for me is the one between me and another colleague and friend of mine, Øystein Mikalsen, a resourceful and very creative writer. We work together as a team reporting from countries around the world, although mostly from Africa. For both us these trips we do are among the most worthwhile in terms of journalistic and photographic projects. We work with themes that matters, we challenge each other, and we return with some of the best reporting we ever do. Some of you have already followed us on the latest trip to Western Sahara on our combined blog. In addition we also teach workshops together.

Creative collaboration is so stimulating and so inspiring; I can only recommend it to everyone involved in the creative process. Of course it’s not limited to photography, but holds value for any creative outlet or artistic expression. To quote Corwin Hiebert one more time: « A successful collaboration provides credibility, it gives you an opportunity to gain experience, it expands your knowledge base, widens your sphere of influence, deepens your relationships, and gives you a real-world resume. But one of the most important takeaways from a collaboration is that it promotes your work ethic». (His book by the way is available at Craft&Vision).