Why Sweden is the worst place in the world.

Have you ever been to Sweden? Don’t, unless you are a supermodel or Thor’s more handsome cousin. When you go to a 7/11 in Sweden you are served by Claudia Schiffer and David Gandy is your taxi driver. It is a land of breathtaking beauty that makes you feel so inadequate you want to hide back under the bridge you feel like you are living under.

So much natural and physical beauty should be good for the soul, but it makes me feel like the runt of the human litter and slices through my fragile ego like a knife through herring.

Plus their salted licourice tastes like the devil’s droppings.

Just because I take photographs, this does not mean I am a photographer.

3.5 billion other people uploaded a photograph to social media today. Mine was lovely, it was of my son sticking his tongue out. It made me laugh, and once i’d filtered the shit out of it, it looked pretty good. I put the coloured version on Facebook and the b&w version on Instagram. People have liked it. Pretty awesome.

Does that make me a photographer? Not really. In fact not at all. So what makes a photographer different?

There might be many answers to this, but I’d like to proffer one. It’s not technical ability, it’s not posh equipment, and it’s not the ability to shout loudest in the room (though that clearly helps).

My feeling is that it comes from the ability to create a narrative in every image they produce. Like all great artists, the single image is just the starting point for a whole series of emotions that are triggered in your brain, creating meanings that take you to a different place than you were before you started looking. Great photograraphy tells stories that go far beyond a single image.

On rare occasions I might produce some of that in my photos, but I can’t do it with consistency. Great photographers can.