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Orsolya Haarberg

I am lucky for my passion became a fulltime job after some years of hard work. Right now I feel extremely lucky to be a WWoE photographer.

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Featured Photographer

Orsolya Haarberg


I was born in 1977 in Hungary with the maiden name Orsolya Bozsér and grew up in the countryside, nearby Baja. I started doing nature photography in my early twenties, and became a member of the Society of Hungarian Nature Photographers in 2001. Obtained a degree in landscape architecture in 2002, worked for a decade in the beaver reintroduction program of the WWF Hungary, and started a PhD course focusing on the foraging behavior of the Eurasian beavers in Norway.

Then I met Erlend Haarberg and life has changed - nature photography became a lifestyle. I moved to his small wooden cottage in the forest nearby Trondheim and started to do photography for a living. In the last three years my images were awarded in the international contests of the GDT, Glanzlichter and BBC. Our first book “Lapland – the Alaska of Europe” has been recently published in English and Hungarian.

Website: www.haarbergphoto.com/


Why nature photography?
Because I am fascinated by nature, and wanted to capture the beauty and harmony found there since I was a teenager. In the beginning I was painting, but after I got my first camera I realized that for me, the right tool to create images is nature photography. The palette of nature has all the colors and forms I would like to capture in my images - I just have to be on the right place in the right time to compose them into the images of my own impressions of nature.

What's best about it?
The freedom, and the feeling when I loose my sense for time and pain, and cannot think about anything else but the topic I am working on.

What's worst about it?
That you are dependent on the weather. If the weather is not favorable, you can find the best topics on Earth, but cannot get the best out of it. And "favorable" does not always mean clear weather - as for a landscape photographer blue sky is more often useless than advantageous.

Favourite species and places in Europe?
I am very lucky for I have my favourite places in the part of Europe (Scandinavia) I am living in. I love the Varanger Peninsula because of its special geology and harsh winters, Pasvik for its endless, silent waters and rich birdlife, and many of the national parks in North-Finland because of their fairytale-like winter-forests.

What's in the bag?
Actually, nothing special. I could never afford buying the best equipment, but for the moment I am happy with my Nikon D200 and a manual Nikkor lens (3.5/400 mm) that I use for animal photography. For landscapes I have a Nikkor 2.8/80-200 mm and two wide angle lenses (Nikkor 4/12-24 mm and Nikkor 3.5-4.5/18-70 mm) – these are always in my bag. And a tripod, of course, a Gitzo 1507 with an ArcaSwiss monoball head – I never take a picture without them.

Your specialities / skills?
I put most emphasis on the composition, lights and colours, and I hope that through the way I see, think and experience things I act as a good medium to reflect the art of nature.

What will you do in your next life?
If I had a next life, I would do the same as in the recent one - I would dream and do everything to make my dreams come true.

3 tips for beginners
I give only two:
1) First of all, do not travel the other side of the planet but look around the place you live - nature is everywhere!
2) And do not buy the most expensive equipment by all means – that is just a tool in your hand, the most important thing is the way you think.


I have never been to Iceland, so I do not have ready pictures in my mind - it comes after I saw the possibilities. And even then, a special moment can any time overwrite my ideas of a certain situation. I know which species and landscapes I would like to work with and I also have the idea of where and when I shall do that. According to my knowledge about the country, it is a place of unique colors, forms, natural phenomena, and relatively easily approachable wildlife - a perfect place for me!

Best Picture

Best Picture

What's cool about it?
I like it for its simplicity, low-key colours, and impressive, clear expression of standstill and silence.

Could it be better?
I am very critical with my images but I like this one. This means that I do not think about how I could have made it better.

Behind the Scene
This image was captured a little over midnight on a summer day in North-Norway. I was canoeing on a lake when the fog appeared above the water surface, and the sky turned pink just above the horizon. Then I found these scattered bunches of grasses, standing still in the water. Luckily there was a stone in front of them that I could stand on so the water surface remained still while I took the picture.

Date: 30th July 2006
Location: Řvre Pasvik National Park, Norway
Gear: Nikon D200, Nikkor 4/12-24 mm, tripod

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