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One hundred days in Iceland, with Mike Seehagel

7 years ago
Mike Seehagel is a commercial and lifestyle photographer based in Canada and the United States. We recently featured his images on the World Photography Organisation Instagram feed, from his one hundred day trip to Iceland. 

Mike transitioned from his role at a motion design studio a few years ago to make it as a photographer. He now creates images and commercial campaigns for a wide range of clients, including: American Express, Google, The Lincoln Motor Company and Mercedes-Benz. 

He is also co-founder of Great North Collective, a Canadian-based photography community that spans worldwide, promoting artists and inspiring others who enjoy photography, to travel.
Hi Mike. Tell us about the series of images we featured on Instagram. Do you have a favourite or a most memorable, and why?

All of the images were taken on a one hundred day trip last year, living in Iceland with my wife. I do have a couple of personal favourite images in there, but mostly because of the moment that lead to the photograph. You'll have to use your imagination to guess which ones.  
Why photography? What does the medium mean to you?

I used to (and occasionally still do) motion design and animate, which always was (and still is) a passion of mine. I just love drawing, painting, animating – art in general really, and photography always felt as an extension of all of that. Creating art with the real world, opposed to everything else came from creating myself. Photography is a nice balance of both aspects, and I've always found that to be really interesting. 
Iceland is obviously an extremely photogenic destination. How do you ensure your work stands out?

My best work is created when the subject means something to me, or if I have a personal connection to it. My wife and I changed our lives drastically to spend 100 days living in the country, and spent a lot of time getting to know Icelandic people, living through the snow and darkness into the Summer and really feeling connected to where we were. We could have easily gone for 5 days and gotten some great images, but that wouldn't have meant much to me.

On your website you make the statement: "Photography influencing design, and design influencing photography." Is this what drives your photography? 

I try to keep that in my mind when I'm making photographs, or when I'm at my desk working on something else. Trying to approach each subject differently or with a different mindset helps keep me inspired, and hopefully create something unique. 
Where in the world are you, what's next?

Currently I'm living in Vancouver, British Columbia Canada and if things go as planned, the next couple of months will be spent up in the Rocky Mountains and across Western Canada.