Portrait photo of Anja Axelsson, a VAST photographer creating extremely high resolution photographs

Anja Axelsson

Brevik, Norway

Anja Axelsson is a Scandinavian Photographer and Visual Artist devoted to capturing the beauty, mystery, and inherent power of nature on her doorstep. Growing most of her subjects in her own garden, or gathering from nearby forests and meadows, she has accumulated an extensive botanical image library that’s in constant growth. This forms the foundation for her unique botanical artwork.

Anja took her BA (Hons) in Theatre Design at Nottingham Trent University, in the late 90’s, and has since had diverse experience in design and photography. As a photographer, she has for many years taken private portraits and editorial assignments, but mainly working as a photojournalist in the UK.

Now you find her immersed in flora in her garden in the south of Norway, seeking to tell a whole different story. Finding her inspiration in folklore, mythology and symbolism in the botanical world throughout human history, Anja explores the past but embraces modern technology in her digital artwork.

Anja creates exceptionally high resolution images by combining several photographs together using the VAST technique. The play with size is an important element to Anja's work. Enlarging subjects to larger than life formats, to highlight, focus and observe what can often be overlooked.

A ladybug features in all of Anja's work, sometimes hidden. Cultures around the world see ladybugs as a very positive influence. They are often tied to love, prosperity, and good luck, and wherever you see them, good omens usually follow. In mythology and folklore they grant wishes and protect.

"When I study a flower, I don’t only see a beautiful object in front of me. I see a bloom opening like an old book, each petal paper thin. It’s an ancient historic tale, reaching far back in time... whispering symbolism, myth and folklore. Each bloom with a unique story to tell, full of magic and awe." - Anja Axelsson