(Sorry for the extremely delayed posting of this diary entry! I wrote it weeks ago now but forgot to post it here! Oops.)
I’ve been in Iceland for almost six weeks now and it has absolutely flown! I can’t believe I only have a few weeks left! I don’t want to leave. I am so in love with this country!
The artist residency is awesome. It’s the first residency I’ve done and it definitely wont be my last. I love the community spirit and energy that comes with living with other artists. So far I’ve shared this gorgeous little red roofed house on a sheep farm in Laugarvatn (aka- the middle of nowhere) with a couple from Spain, five girls and one guy from different parts of America, a Canadian and a girl from Amsterdam.
The first week I got here I witnessed the spectacular northern lights and then again a week later. It was very late in the season so I was super lucky to see them! I’ve been photographing a lot! I have a really exciting project/collaboration I’m working on at the moment but it’s a secret…for now! My brother arrives in a few days and we are going to road trip around the whole island making a short film together.
Inspiration is everywhere here.
Iceland itself is EVERYTHING I remembered from my last short trip and more. Whenever I am driving through the landscape and think I couldn’t possibly see anything more beautiful than what I just witnessed, I turn a corner and Iceland provides me with something more soul-enriching, breath-taking & life-affirming to feast my eyes and lens on. The wild beauty of the icelandic landscape is like no where else on this earth. I feel like I belong here. I feel such a strong connection to this land.
Iceland: the land of fire and ice. Of light and dark. The land of contradiction and diversity. Perhaps that’s why I feel such a strong connection to this place. Iceland represents human nature and its conflicting, harsh extremes. For a country that is so cold and laden with some of Europe’s largest glaciers, deepest fjords and most powerful waterfalls, it also is full of thermal hot springs and hundreds of volcanoes. Red and white sand beaches. For a country that spends half a year virtually in 24 hours of darkness, it spends the other half of the year in 24 hours of light. One minute in Iceland it is raining and snowing and the next minute the sun shines a beautiful soft golden light and produces the most magnificent rainbows. The weather here is NEVER predictable and it’s often that you will experience four seasons in one day.
But what makes this country so divine is that it seems to thrive and function in harmony despite these dramatic geological forces. Mother nature rules this country. It is so unique because it gives you a glimpse into what this planet looks like when left to it’s own natural devices. It’s harsh and it’s extreme and dangerous and scary but it’s also breathtakingly beautiful, pure and strangely peaceful. That is what Iceland has figured out that most of us don’t…how to make peace with our differences, our inner conflicts, contradictions and inconsistencies. How to be comfortable with our extreme opposing emotions and to see the beauty in destruction.
Most of us are yet to find peace within ourselves and accept that we are complicated human beings, constantly changing. Sometimes our heart is cold and frozen like a glacier floating unconsciously through the waters of life. Other times it is so full of energy and fire that we feel like a volcano that could explode with love at any minute.
I am learning so much from this country. Artistically, I’m finding new ways of incorporating these ideas and themes into my artwork but personally I am learning to accept the multifaceted human being that I am. To accept who I am today, tomorrow and next week. It is okay to be different and complicated. It is okay to be fire AND ice. To be both light and dark. After all that is what makes this country so god damn interesting. It’s ever changing landscapes are what I love the most about Iceland, maybe it’s what I can learn to love about myself too. That I am ever changing and I will never be the same as I was yesterday. I will never be able to describe myself in a few simple words. Condense myself into a perfect little package that is always the same, uncomplicated & predictable.
I am Iceland; wild, unique and diverse.