Finally! The Weather Experience Project is almost done!

June 26th, 2014 by Rebekka in Uncategorized

As of this evening, my partner Óli and I will be embarking on the final trip to complete the Weather Experience project we’ve been working on since April 2011. This has taken so much longer than planned,  and I’m sure all the wonderfully supportive people who have already donated towards the project have begun wondering if this was all just a scam.

For those reading that have no idea what I’m talking about, the idea behind this project is that we’re travelling to each location in Iceland mentioned in the weather forecast on Icelands national radio. At each location I’m photographed, barefoot in a flowy black dress with extra cloth strips attached, which my mom and I designed together, and the point of which is to show how windy it is.

Fagurhólsmýri1 gufuskálar

látrabjarg2small blog3


Each spread of the book covers one location, and in addition to the main photos (with me in the dress), there’s a smaller photo showing something distinctive from the area, a small map showing where in Iceland it’s located, and some text telling the story of our travels.
The following image (click to view larger) shows the layout of the book(so far) in Blurb, which I’m using to make it. At least the prototype. Maybe we’ll find a publisher later.  I have yet to write nearly all the text.

Screen Shot 2013-08-23 at 9.13.43 PM

Of the 62 weather station locations we set out to document, we now only have 8 left and will be completing them all in this trip. After that’s complete, I’ll finish putting the book together,  and everyone that’s donated at least 15$ at some point towards this project will then receive their long-awaited PDF of the book.
As well as exceeding the time frame we first envisioned, this has been quite a bit more costly than anticipated.  Many of the locations are on islands, and to reach them we’ve had to charter boats, take ferries, and paddled out to one in an inflatable two-person kayak.

gulavél_Jun232013_0068 gulavél_Jun232013_0092

Last year we spent five days hiking between two of the most remote locations (neither of which could be reached by car), which was by far the most effort I’ve ever put into two photos.


DSC05878 DSC05884

Also while working on this, our truck nearly sank:

we nearly got stranded in crazy deep snow:


and spent at least three nights camping in subzero weather.


To sum this up, it’s been a lot of work, a lot of fun (the nearly-sinking-the-truck bit excluded), and I can’t wait to share the adventure with readers.

Without the help we’ve already gotten, this whole endeavor would have fallen flat the first year.
This one last time, I’m again going to share a donation link for anyone that would like to help out on this last leg of the adventure.


As before, any little bit will help, but 15$ will get you a PDF copy of the completed book (your name and email will be added to the growing list) , and 50$ or more will get you five 12 x 18cm (5 x 7 inch) prints of your own choosing from the images on my website ( or that I’ve posted on my facebook artist page ( )

Simply send a message along with the donation, including links to the five images you’d like, and you’re mailing address.

Thanks in advance to anyone that decides to help out, it means the world to us!


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Lets take a moment to appreciate the Beatles.

December 10th, 2013 by Rebekka in Uncategorized

I am a HUGE fan of the legendary Liverpool quartet.  Grew up listening to them, thanks to my dad (as well as jazz and classical music which I probably would not have sought out myself before the age of ten).

I recently revisited their music after not listening to them in forever.  Went through their entire catalogue in two days (while knitting) and decided a list was called for.  Everybody loves a good list every now and again.

So, in no particular order,  here are my ten favorite Beatles songs:

Don’t bother me
 (With the Beatles)

She’s leaving home
  (Sgt Peppers lonely hearts club band)

Blue Jay Way
(Magical mystery tour)

Love me do
(Please please me)

I am the walrus
(Magical mystery tour)

A day in the life
(Sgt. Peppers lonely hearts club band)

A ticket to ride

I’m looking through you
(Rubber Soul)

Ps I love you
(Please please me)

I’ll follow the sun
(Beatles for sale)


What amazes me about this band is how much their music evolved over their career while remaining original and awesome, how diverse it is, and how extraordinarily many of their songs are just wonderful.
For me, this is THE go-to stuff when I need cheering up.

Since I never had the opportunity to photograph the Beatles, and don’t like using other peoples images on my blog, but hate blog posts with no pictures, here’s a picture of my dogs instead.

Ok.  That’s all for now.  Carry on with your day.

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New book up on Blurb!

November 9th, 2013 by Rebekka in Uncategorized

I now have two little items available in my Blurb Bookstore.

There’s the Icelandic Horse, and now a book showcasing a collection of  series I’ve made since 2007.

Photographic Series 2007-2012 by Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir
Make Your Own Book

It’s 74 pages,  mostly photo spreads but also text, describing in depth how I think and work when approaching a subject.

Many images in the book have never been online, and are not really typical for what I’m known for.  It’s a pretty cool book.

It’s available in three choices of cover,  three different prices.

Or, I have this neat offer for you:

For 5$,  I’ll give you the PDF version of this newest book.  Simply press the “buy now” button below.  Your email address will turn up in the notification I’ll get,  and I’ll send you the dl link for the “book”.  Easy for all!


In other news, I’ve been dabbling a bit in video and animation recently.  I’ve put what I’ve been doing on my youtube channel, and plan on doing a whole lot more in the near future, so bookmark that if you’re interested.

Here’s a music video I made for my boyfriend:

And a hand drawn cartoon I drew back in 2008 but only just got around to putting together in after effects a few weeks ago:

I have sooo many great ideas for photo projects that I sincerely hope I can get around to doing soon, I’m pretty much broke right now and the process of actually making art is anything but lucrative.
But new work will be on its way soon!

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Weather Experience update #1: Grímsey

August 23rd, 2013 by Rebekka in Uncategorized

This has been one amazing summer! I was a bit glum at first about the prospect of turning 35 (this happened May 25th) but since then I’ve tried all sorts of cool new things and never felt better.  Thus I’ve decided more firmly than ever that I’m actually not getting any older, the number’s just getting higher for some reason.  And my kids are getting mysteriously tall (the 15 yr old is 6’1″ and showing no signs of stopping).

While by brain is brimming with all sorts of things I’d like to share, I’m going to start with a much needed update about the Weather Experience project, especially for those generous people who donated funds to help make it possible, and might be wondering if the book will ever actually see the light of day.  (For those not familiar with it,  this is a huge-scale project I’m working on with my boyfriend Óli, started in April 2011). In my last update I mentioned we had all the most difficult locations yet to do.  I’m happy to say that since then we’ve managed to cover four of those hard-to-reach spots, which is a huge relief.  This means we now have completed 46 locations out of 60, with only four locations remaining that need to be reached by boat.  In early May we made a trip up north to get the island of Grímsey out of the way.  As the red dot shows , its a good ways offshore:

So we reserved a ride with the Grímsey ferry, which we learned would be leaving at 9 am from the small northern town of Dalvík.  We were told to be there by 8:30 am at the latest, so we left the previous evening from our home in Hafnarfjörður, and drove all night.
The trip was uneventful aside from the goose we accidentally hit with the car –  I became a little hysterical that we’d killed it and wasn’t at ease until Óli had turned the car around and driven all the way back to see if its lifeless (or worse, hideously injured) body was lying in the road.  It wasn’t, so apparently geese are tougher than I thought, which came as quite a relief.  I’d rather complete this project without any animals getting killed in the process.  On a happier note, we also passed a field of horses, where a newborn foal was taking its first steps with the help of its mama:


Once in Dalvík, we hurried to the ticket office and spent a few minutes debating wether or not to spend an extra 10.000 króna (80$ or so in addition to the 160$ it cost for just the two of us) to bring the car with us. Since we had a bunch of camera stuff and no backpacks, we decided it would be a lot more convenient.   At that point we were also under the impression that we’d have 4 hours on the island.  So I drove the car on board, all the way as far back as it could get (as i was instructed). Then the dock workers proceeded to load a new dock (partitioned into several huge pieces) onto the boat behind my car.  This did not bother me at the time.
And off we sailed.  As you can see, there was still an amazing amount of snow around Dalvík in May:

Now, the boat ride itself was 3 hours, and since I’d been driving all night, I promptly fell asleep on the floor of the main passenger area and snoozed for an hour.  (We were the only passengers, so this wasn’t as awkward as it sounds).  The highlight of the trip was when the captain let us know there was a group of humpback whales ahead, if we wanted to take pictures.  He actually swerved off course to get us closer to them, which I thought was very awesome of him.

Once we arrived in Grímsey, we were told the boat would only be staying for an hour.  It then dawned on me that my car wasn’t going anywhere until the dock had been unloaded from behind it.  I figured they meant we’d have an hour once we got the car off, but I was wrong.  It took half an hour before we could finally get going, and we were told we had exactly 30 minutes to get our work done.  (Even though Óli had helped with the unloading of the dock.  That should have bought us at least 10 extra minutes)

We’d never been to the island before and had no idea where we should shoot the photo, so we asked one of the dock workers where we’d be most likely to capture the “essence” of Grímsey.   She gave us directions and off we raced.  I threw the dress on in a hurry, and then we spent a maximum of five minutes figuring out the best angles to try.

Once we were sure we had at least one usable picture for the book,  we noticed the puffins nesting all over the cliffs below us.  I figure we managed a maximum of five minutes to take some puffin pictures – something I would happily have spent half the day doing.

I did this while wearing the dumb dress (no time to waste changing back), the cold wind tangling it around my legs, my hair blowing in my face, feeling amazingly frustrated that we’d come to such a beautiful place with all the camera equipment we could possibly need, and had to leave again right away.   We raced back to the boat exactly 30 minutes after we left, to find the ferry guys waiting for us.  (Seriously, after a three hour trip, would it have killed them to go get some coffee and waffles or something??)  I have to say, 30.000 kr for 30 minutes in Grímsey (about 8 bucks a minute) is probably the worst deal I’ve ever gotten in my life.
To their credit though, the ferry guys were very nice and let us sleep in bunks without paying on the way back, since we were still the only passengers.

Side note: On our way back home from this trip, we got a phone call telling us that the dog we were interested in adopting was ours if we still wanted her.  The next day 6-yr old Spíra was brought over for a visit, and she’s been with us since.
Here she is on the right, with our other dog, 12 year old Sámur.  He’s had mixed feelings about her arrival, she’s a bit pushy and boisterous for his taste, (like an annoying little sister) but they get along.  Such a joy to have them both :)

Anyway, donations are still welcome to help complete the book. As before, anyone donating 15$ or more gets a free PDF of the completed book, which is now this far along:

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Yet another bid for help..

February 27th, 2013 by Rebekka in Uncategorized

In 2011 my boyfriend Óli and I (see above) embarked on a journey  in his Land Rover Defender, accompanied by our dog:

to make photo book.  The idea, to make a long story short, was to travel around Iceland, to each location mentioned in the weather forecast on the radio,  and photograph me in the surrounding landscape, wearing a long dress, to illustrate what the weather was like in each spot.

It was often very bad indeed. And so, so cold..

What I found particularly exciting about the idea, was to illustrate what these places looked like, as most people in Iceland (let alone foreigners) have only seen a handful of thees places, if any.
We got very far with the project in 2011, making 4 trips and photographing about 40 locations out of 62.  We worked from april to October, and this hiking tent was our home away from home, even in those colder months:

(and by cold I mean freezing, as in "less than 0°C" )

Our swift progress in 2011 was largely due to the fact that over 120 people were kind enough to donate funds toward the project.  To them I will always be hugely grateful.  Then 2012 rolled around.  I went back to school (to study the more technical aspects of photography),
and was drowning in assignments until the end of november. The summer was spent repairing a leak in the ceiling, hanging drywall, repainting,  and building a shed to have some extra room to store stuff (we live in a tiny 2-bedroom apartment with my two teenagers).

To make matters worse, Óli smashed his hand between a steel door and its frame during a storm at sea in february (he works as a fisherman and is away 80% of the time) He couldn’t drive for 2 months, let alone operate a camera.  All in all we only managed to visit 3 more locations that whole year.  Pretty lame.  Anyway,  I applied for a grant from the Icelandic art funding committee (i’ve no idea if it’s called that in english, but that describes what it does) in order to be able to afford to continue working on this in 2013. (Most of the spots left can only be reached by boat or helicopter, which is going to be even more expensive than travelling by truck).  I was turned down, which saddened me greatly, as the project seemed pretty worthwhile and is already so close to completion.  Nevertheless, I’ve been busy in my spare time putting together what we have so far.  Here’s a screenshot from the program I’m using to assemble the book:
(Click on it to see it a bit larger)

Here’s a closer look at one of the spreads:

As you can see from this spread, the left-hand pages will contain text about each location, maybe a little anecdote if something humorous happened during the shoot, and a small map of Iceland showing where each picture is taken. At the back will be a bunch of behind-the-scenes pictures. It’s gonna be a pretty cool book.

So,  If you’d like to help out,  that would be awesome.  15$ or more works as a pre-order for a PDF of the book once it’s done.   Your name and email will be added to the growing list of people already waiting for theirs.
Here’s a handy button that takes you to paypal:

(The book will of course be available in print as well, but as of yet I have no idea how it’ll be priced)

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