Mikko Lagerstedt – Atmospheric Photography

Mikko Lagerstedt – Atmospheric Photography

By Arden de Raaij

When browsing, you’re never more than two clicks away from something beautiful. I’m not sure which two mindless clicks lead me to the epic Landscape photography by Finnish photographer Mikko Lagerstedt, but I’m glad they did! Mikko has been photographing since 2008 and since then quickly grew into landscape photography. By dedicating himself to taking his photos at the most gorgeous times of day, he knows to capture a perfect light (or lack off) and mood in any one of them.

“I feel somehow obligated to go out at night and in the early morning.”

'Noctilucent Clouds' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Noctilucent Clouds’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

I’ve read you began photographing in 2008. If you look at your pictures from back then, how do you feel you have progressed since that time?

I think my vision has changed in the fact that I know what kind of pictures I like. My first year I just spent time photographing everything. But since then I think my interest and style has developed to direction what I call ‘atmospheric photography’.

'Circle' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Circle’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'Shipwreck' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Shipwreck’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

You take a lot of your pictures at dawn, dusk or night, and in all kinds of weather circumstances. How do you keep yourself dedicated to going out and photographing all the time?

I just feel that I need to. I feel somehow obligated to go out at night and in the early morning. I want to capture interesting sceneries in different conditions, so I have to get motivated. Of course sometimes it’s hard, but then I just decide that if I’m not inspired or in the mood to go out take pictures, why should I. Usually the best ideas and inspirations comes to me when I’m doing something else than photographing.


Have you ran into any exciting adventures during your photographing (running into bears, etc)?

I have ran into a moose and a deer and it was quite scary and funny at the same time. Both were in the middle of the night near a forest and they just ran back to the forest after hearing or seeing me. I once saw a raccoon dog puppy really closely. I guess it was a deaf, because it didn’t get scared after I walked right past it or didn’t even notice me. The puppy ended up in a road and died after car hit it. I tried to make a contact to it when it ran to the road, but it was too late. That was a sad end to the night..

'Dark Road' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Dark Road’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'Stranger' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Stranger’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'Strange ways' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Strange ways’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

What kind of camera gear / equipment do you take on your photo-trips?

I have a Lowepro backpack which is packed with all my stuff and usually I take it all with me. In it I have my camera Nikon D800, and lenses Nikon 16 – 35 mm f/4.0 VR, Sigma 50 mm f/1.4, Sigma 70 mm f/2.8 Macro and Nikon 70 – 300 mm f/4.5 – 5.6 VR. I also carry a tripod and remote controllers and filters with me most of the time.

'On my way' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘On my way’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

Can you tell us a bit about your post-processing process? Do you do a lot of post-processing or nothing at all?

Yeah I use Lightroom and Photoshop for the post-processing. Depends on a picture, sometimes I only adjust the main settings as Exposure, Contrast etc. Sometimes I might do a composite with Photoshop.

'Tree of life II' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Tree of life II’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

Do you have an ideal shooting location/situation?

I do love to shoot in foggy situations. Location wise, I don’t really have a certain place, but when I’m doing night photography especially star photography, I need a low light pollution place to get as much as possible stars in the picture.

'New night' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘New night’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'Endless night' by Mikko lagerstedt
‘Endless night’ by Mikko lagerstedt

What can we expect from you in the future?

I would love to get exhibitions in Helsinki and other European cities and later next year I will be making a book to be released on 2015.

'Night' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Night’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'Children story' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘Children story’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'hypnotic' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘hypnotic’ by Mikko Lagerstedt
'follow' by Mikko Lagerstedt
‘follow’ by Mikko Lagerstedt

About Mikko Lagerstedt

My name is Mikko Lagerstedt, I’m a self-taught fine art photographer from Kerava, Finland. I was born in November 1982 in a small town in Finland. My photography journey started in December 2008 and I...View profile