Fyn – A Photographic journey – on sale now and available in all book stores on Fyn and in Arnold Busck & Politikens Boghal in Copenhagen.
FYN ~ A FOREWORD
Fyn has been my home for the past 15 years and my association to it goes back more than twice as long as that. I have explored almost every little corner of the island of Fyn by car, bicycle, on foot and by air for as long as I have lived here. I think I can claim to know the place as well as anybody else who calls this beautiful island their home and yet I am always discovering a new spot or aspect of the place which keeps it exciting to me. It maybe even a place I have been to before or even many times but suddenly you come over a hilltop or a bend in the road and you see something anew, or are simply reminded of the beauty of the place and realize once again why so many other people come to Fyn to sightsee or holiday. The same place can look completely different, depending on the time of year. Northern Europe brings its four very distinct seasons to Fyn and many subtle moods in between. As a photographer it has become my self-appointed job to capture as many of those moods as possible. I feel very fortunate to live in such picturesque corner of the world and it is both challenging and very rewarding to try and do the island justice by capturing it through the camera lens.
Nature has been generous to the island of Fyn, moulding its gently rolling hills and valleys, over which is laid a rich tapestry of fields and forests, lakes and streams. The soil is rich and fertile, bringing wealth and prosperity to its inhabitants and is reflected in its many castles and manor houses across the island. It could be said to be the poetic heart of Denmark, not least of all on account of it being the birthplace of its most famous son, Hans Christian Andersen, and its most famous classical musician, Carl Nielsen.
Like all islands, Fyn is defined by its coastline, more than 1,000 kilometres long, along which are its many fine harbours, coastal villages and towns, and a generous endowment of beaches of sand or pebbles. Like the rest of the country, it has a strong maritime tradition, which goes back to the time when a large number of its inhabitants made their living from, on or by the sea, and indeed many still do. Countless generations of the islands men and women took to the seas, long before and after the Vikings set sail, to fish the Baltic and beyond or to explore or trade with the world around them. Fyn has always been home to highly skilled mariners and shipbuilders, so if boats and harbours are generously represented in these pages, this is at least part of the reason. Boats, ships and harbours are simply at the heart of the life-blood of Fyn and the many churches where beautifully constructed models of sailing ships are suspended from the ceilings above the congregation are a testament to that.
For most of its long and colourful history, Fyn was only accessible by the sea. Islanders are by nature independent and resourceful people who have a strong sense of community and the people of Fyn are no exception. While modern engineering has given Fyn splendid bridges, motorways and an undersea railway tunnel to connect it with the rest of the country and Europe at large, the people of Fyn still wear their badge of being a Fynbo with pride. They have been the butt of good-natured jokes about their provincial country bumpkin ways, particularly from their countrymen on Zealand, but consider themselves richly blessed by the charm of the island and remain fiercely loyal to it.
If there is a red thread in the photographs I have chosen for this book, it is the natural beauty of the Fyn and its surrounding islands. It can only ever be an eclectic sample or taste of Fyn and its island neighbours and there are countless places to photograph. Multiply that by the four seasons and even the different times of day and the possibilities are endless – so please forgive me if I have failed to include your favourite part of Fyn or, in your eyes, done it justice. Having said that, I hope these photographs will speak for themselves and introduce something of Fyn to those who are not familiar with it and, hopefully, introduce some new aspects of this picturesque place to those who are.