Sofia Hellsten enjoys building anything from the ground up.
From snapping photos to painting to whipping up a delicious breakfast, this Sweden-based photographer and student thrives off of creating things with her own two hands.
Sofia’s whimsical Instagram feed plunges us into wanderlust mode. From her adventures through Europe to a mouth-watering shot of her favorite meal, the beautiful simplicity in her photos captivates us.
As our Guest Instagrammer of the week, Sofia will be taking over our feed, sharing some of her favorite photos. Follow along with the hashtag #SOFIAaboutdotme and read on to hear about how she got her start in the photography world.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m from a city on the coast, about two hours north of Stockholm, Sweden. However, since I started university five years back I’ve been living in Stockholm, with two breaks – a few months in Singapore and one semester in Copenhagen.
I’m 26 years old and I’ve just graduated from a master’s program in marketing and media management and am now working as a planner and project manager at the Stockholm-based creative agency House of Radon, as well as running the art start-up Early Art with a friend.
Apart from experiencing various kinds of art I love cooking (and eating) good food. Something about the kitchen has always drawn me in and I find it meditative to whip up a nice breakfast or carefully prepare a dinner for friends. It’s nice to work with my hands.
Also, I’m a sucker for skiing. It’s probably when I’m the happiest. Like laughing out loud happy. Probably I should also mention my unexpected and passionate relationship to Japan stemming from having spent 1 year there as an exchange student at age 18, plus a few months later on (also the point in time my fascination for tea started), ever since this has been vital part of who I am.
How long have you been involved in the photography world? What inspired you to start taking photos?
I think it must have been since 2008 – I had just been in Japan for a year and felt so inspired by the beauty of that country. It inspired me to really take in the environment I reside in or visit, the small moments of the everyday and the beauty in life passing by around you. So, upon my return to Sweden I bought a camera.
But really I think my interest for visual art is something I’ve been brought up with. My grandmother painted a lot with aquarell and my sisters and I did a lot of painting when we were kids, both when traveling and at home. We painted everything from street corners in Greece to the water lilies in Monet’s garden outside Versailles. Probably that’s when it started, my interest in capturing the beauty around me through light and colour.
What’s your favorite thing to photograph?
If you look at my feed the most common photos would probably be of breakfasts, landscapes/nature/flowers and cityscapes.
I cannot really say that I have one particular thing that is my favorite – I try to challenge myself, especially to take photos of people, something which I find really, really hard. You usually only have one shot, before they realise they are subject of your photo – not like a cityscape which allows you to snap away without changes. It’s that small moment which I try to challenge myself to capture. Then none the matter how cliché it may sound, it’s always the light I’m chasing.
What do you like most about photography?
That it allows me to be creative a little bit every day, and that I get and outlet to show fragments of beauty of the world as I see it. But the major benefit is that I’m constantly reminded to appreciate and take in the moments I experience throughout the day and this, I dare say, makes me a happier person.
Who are some photographers that inspire you?
This one is hard. But maybe Hideaki Hamada, Cecil Beaton, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Denise Grünstein.
Interested in doing a takeover of the about.me Instagram? Let us know here.