At the time of writing, it’s rather cold, around -20°C, here in Helsinki. To make this a bit less insufferable, let’s enjoy some summery pictures. Almost.
Sixteen-year-old, award-winning photographer Markus Watkins has just published a very timely set of summer activities set in freezing cold Asikkala. We asked some questions about his set, which he named The Impossible Contrast.
How did you get into photography?
“My brother inspired me to pick up a camera on our first photography-inspired trip to Morocco when I was 14. Ever since that trip I’ve always had my eyes open for a great photograph. What I really love about photography is that I love creating my own scenes and sharing my point of view with the world. I always get a buzz when I click the upload button :)”
What inspired you to do this set?
“All of a sudden after 3 days of gloomy, grey darkness there was light! It’s photographed at my summer cottage in Asikkala Finland, where we spend a lot of our summers. I thought ‘what would happen if we recreated our summer scenes in the winter?’ I wanted to create images that made the viewers feel the cold.”
Did any would-be models of yours bail at the last minute, considering the cruel and an unusual punishment you were going to be subject them to?
“The sun is only up for a few hours in winter so we shot the most extreme shots (the sunbathing, and ice breaking) first. It did take A-LOT of convincing but the images worked out well so it was all worth it in the end :). I decided to put the sauna on, so in between shoots the models would run In and out of the sauna so we could photograph them very quickly before they got too cold!”
What competitions have you won so far?
“I have submitted a couple of my images to the photography app scoopshoot. I won the #concertphotography competition with my photo from the Project X concert in Helsinki. My Instagram portfolio was the gateway to being able to shoot the concert! I’ve also been asked to shoot portraits for many Finnish bloggers. Ilona Ylikorpi being the main one! Also one of my photographs has been in the Minä olen magazine, with a portrait of Laura Tuomarila.”
For more fantastic shots from Markus, check out his Instagram.