Sakari Viika

A snapshot: A pedestrian passes through a shaft of sunlight reflected from a window on the opposite side of the street.


A glow from around the corner. How many times has light drawn me to it? Seduced me to follow. Taken me in the wrong direction and changed my plans, to reward me later with a picture.


I am cycling home at night. Gigantic cable spools stand in the park, left over from construction work. Streetlights colour the fog orange.

The silhouettes of people at dusk or in backlight are interesting. An anonymous black figure plodding through everyday drudgery.


Many of my most important pictures are taken in autumn or at night: at times when the lighting is limited or otherwise tricky but has a definitive impact on the picture. Darkness and shadows make the available light visible, material; a tangible component of the photograph. The purpose of the robust graphic elements in my pictures is to awaken the viewer’s emotions rather than to reveal the subject.


I once shot a series of photographs for which I waited year after year for the meagre grey gloom and minimalist colour palette of the sunless time in the north. In the series, I searched the grey for feelings of the season: melancholia, introspection. I wanted to discover positive dimensions in the greyness. For me personally, at least, working on the theme brought the desired results. The short days of the toughest time of the year became a period of activity.


I cross a bridge in sparkling sunlight. The ice is breaking up, like gigantic sheets of paper. You can see the photographer’s shadow on the ice.


You Say Light - I Think Shadow


One hundred and nine perspectives collected and visualized by

graphic designer Sandra Praun and visual artist Aleksandra Stratimirovic

© Sakari Viika - All rights reserved