Roy Mangersnes - Nature photo


I have noticed a difference in Nordic and central European nature photography that I find interesting. My impression is that nature photography in the Nordic countries is a wider term than it is in the rest of Europe. In Norway at least photographing remains of human settlement and old farmland are also considered nature photography. But is it? My colleagues in Europe seem to have a more puristic view, only working with the untouched natural habitats. But what is nature? In my picture above I photograph the drifting snow, the clouds and the light, but with a clear human element in the form of the stone fence. Is this nature photography? What if I was photographing a Short-eared Owl sitting on this same fence? I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter.

Location: Rogaland, Norway

Tags: Jæren, Norway, roy mangersnes

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  1. Margi Todors said:

    17/03/2012 09:18

    Nice and cosy with the stone wall!

  2. Sandra said:

    17/03/2012 11:12

    Although I consider myself as being central European ... I can only agree with you. Europe is completely formed by the human hand ... so almost nothing we photograph is really pristine ... not only because we don't include fences etc. in our images. :)
    After all ... all forests have been replanted by men (except some pristine areas in the eastern parts of Europe).
    I like your image ... and I consider it nature photography. Wouldn't classify it as completely wild though. :))

  3. Dirk said:

    17/03/2012 15:21

    I fully agree with Sandra and I got the idea, that lack of nature not formed by human might be the reason itself. As a nature photographer I got a deep desire for landscapes, plants and animals undisturbed and unaffected by humans because this is so costly in the world I'm living. In northern Europe wilderness is much more common.
    But at least all this is based upon a fundamental misunderstanding. As every species we are part of the ecosystems we are living in, affecting landscape as well as every other species. But our concept of nature is drawing a line between human world and the rest. This concept hinders nature conservation and sustainabillity land use in many ways, and I think it could be a pretty rewarding challenge to correct this, even for nature photography. In this sense, a Short-eared Owl sitting on the fence in your photo would make it a perfect nature photography.

  4. Alunfoto - Jostein Øksne said:

    17/03/2012 15:24

    Being Norwegian, I am of course biased. However I think the Nordic way has more merit. In some form or another, nature photography is about the way we humans relate to nature. The human element in nature photography is always present in one way or another; whether as a recognisable element of the image, or indirectly through the photographer's presence or humanity's general impact on ecosystems. I see the Nordic stance as the only credible way of acknowledging this relationship.

  5. Olivier Esnault said:

    18/03/2012 15:33

    Wow !
    I really appreciate the nice compo. Refreshing for me ! ;)
    I'm living in the indian ocean.

  6. Photo Restoration said:

    06/04/2012 03:32

    Really great, it shows beauty, scale and power all in one.