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Shooting in Nepal with Leila Hafzi

I am the luckiest guy I know!

I have been saying this for years and it is still true…


My living is made traveling to amazing places, meeting amazing people and have these extraordinary experiences while creating pictures…

Late May this year I traveled to Nepal with Norwegian clothing designer Leila Hafzi.

She had decided to become a designer at the top of the mountains in Nepal 15 years earlier and for this collection she brought myself and the crew back to Nepal with her to capture some of the spirit that made her commit to her path.

It all started in Kathmandu. Our first shoot day was met with a rainfall so heavy it made it onto the front page of the newspapers. Amazingly refreshing to work with a creative like Leila who with ease embraced the rain as a part of the image and it’s time and place.
This set the pace of the shoot and off we went…



We continued with magical moments among Buddhist monks at Bodhanath, and at Patan Durbar Square we drew a crowd of hundreds curious about what was going on. I guess it’s not every day a 6 foot tall blonde shows up wearing an evening gown…





This Tall







We then travelled to Pokhara and the majestic mountains of the Himalayas.

The sense of place at the foot of these mountains are both overwhelming and awe inspiring. In a space like this things truly get put in perspective and one can’t  help but question how insignificant one self is and wonder about how one belong.

How one truly belong in the larger sense of things…

The first day we shot in the village of our local guide and we got welcomed with open arms. We were hoping for a portrait with a few of the local women but ended up with a huge crowd, all wanting to be photographed. We spent the day there shooting through sunset having one unforgettable evening, which at sunset just had gotten started.








After wrapping up we were heading up the mountain to prepare for shooting sunrise the following am. This was an hour drive followed by a 45 minute hike to the top where we would stay at a farmhouse overnight. This would have been all good if it had not been for half the crew walking through an area full of water leeches making it one bloody and sleepless night. Do think I was the only one that caught a few hours of sleep that night…



After a crazy morning rainfall and some local Sage remedy for the leeches we again started taking images. Fog rolling in and out and mountains appearing just long enough out of the clouds…





We then headed down to Pokhara Lake for the last day of shooting….






In looking back at an assignment like this I have to say it’s the  experiences that I take with me.

When home it’s not the pictures that are the most precious. The pictures serve as amazing reminders of a time and place I was allowed to immerse myself in, absorb and take with me.

They also remind me every day of how fortunate I am to be having my camera as my profession through which I get to explore and see this world.

In this I hope the ones seeing the images sense a bit of what we experienced while in Nepal…


To Leila, Stian Foss, Birger Løkeng, Tore P, Jocelyn Whipple and the beautiful Sarah Birkett and the Nepali crew; I’m forever grateful for one unforgettable experience.


And at the end. Please check out the Behind the Scenes Video…