Thirty years ago I called myself a photographer for the first time. I was attending photography school in Stockholm, Sweden, had won first price in a photo contest, shot a paid gig and participated in my first gallery show.
Two years earlier, in 1990, I was visiting a friend in Los Angeles. I had him chase sea gulls on the beach while I was snapping away, capturing their flight, with my first SLR camera, purchased from my brother.
I remember that as the moment I decided to become a photographer. For real.
I always loved taking pictures but was discouraged by a job coach after high school, intending a photography eduction. “There are no jobs for photographers!” she barked at me. I took her word for it. Years later, one of my photo teachers in Sweden told me about the school in New York he had attended. I remembered reading an article about the same school, ICP. It had felt like a dream that could never happen to me.
I applied, was accepted and in September 1993 I traveled to New York to attend a one-year program at the International Center of Photography. Love kept me in the Big Apple.
1995 I interned at Weil Studio, an art photography studio. It turned out to be a 15 year journey,from working in the darkroom, going through the digital revolution. I earned a position as the director of photography. Together with Amanda Weil, the owner, we designed and produced large art glass installations including photography, working with high end architecture firms.
In 2005 a friend of mine working at the Swedish Church in New York suggested that I list myself on the their website as a photographer and I ended up finding my niche. Wedding portraits in a New York environment of couples coming to NY to get married.
My Mom thinks I have too many kissing pictures on my website...(She also claims that when I was a little boy I told her I'd move to America and that I would send her a ticket to come see me). Funny how life turns out.
30 years as a photographer and still counting!
I am 56 years old. Home for me is New York City. My family is in 3 different parts of the world, Sweden, Spain and Brooklyn.
Enjoy! - Michael