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Helsinglight AAiR - Tankar och reflektioner av Myrkky Photography

Helsinglight AAiR - Thoughts and Reflections by Myrkky Photography

Mexican-British special effects designer and photographer Rubén Gerardo Alfaro Moreno and assistants Laura Alfaro Moreno & Monica Rodriguez Rodriguez also from México stayed at Helsinglight AAiR - Alternative Artist in Residence, 22- 30th November 2019. This is what they had to say about their stay and experience at House of Helsinglight.

Thoughts and reflections by Myrkky Photography

Our time at House of Helsinglight was a great and very unique experience. I applied to Helsinglight for AAIR from London, UK, in summer, and a few weeks later I received an e-mail from Petra inviting me to stay at Helsinglight to create a project I have been wanting to do for a long time. T

he project consisted in Horror Photography based on Scandinavian mythology. We set the dates for Late November & beginning of December. From the very beginning Petra was great helping us sort out anything we needed prior to our arrival. I travelled with my sister Laura and my friend Monica who came all the way from México specially for this trip to be my assistants and models for the shoots I had in mind. On the day we arrived, Fredrik picked us up and we headed towards Helsinglight to meet Petra, their 1 y/o daughter Liv and 2 awesomely crazy dogs, Dash & Nox.

From the moment of arrival, we were impressed with Helsinglight and arriving after dark made it even more of an experience. The house, previously used as a school is massive. We were given a tour of the house, the ground floor consisting of a very nice gallery for events and exhibitions, the Special Effects workshop which is incredible and on the 1 st floor, the newly redecorated apartment used for AAIR guests. The apartment is beautiful and cosy, and has everything you will ever need for your stay at Helsinglight.

When Petra and Fredrik left, we unpacked and as it was just past midnight, what better way to get inspiration for horror photography than by roaming around the abandoned rooms of Helsinglight with torches. The place got even more exciting! We found 4 rooms which are not refurbished yet and were the perfect set for some of my photos, there was also a loft with a lot wooden student benches dating 1920 which we later used for one the images we took in the same space.

For our stay, they guys had organized a rental car to use for the duration of our stay, this was very handy to go and do food shopping runs and also to venture to nearby cities like Hudiksvall and Sundsvall. Our days were spent mostly doing photoshoots and retouching straight after the shoots. There is so much to take in as Helsinglight is in an area where you are surrounded by forest and lakes. There is a lot of space to use just within the walls of Helsinglight that even though we visited only 9 days and 2 of those days were just spent in travelling to and back from Helsinglight, I managed to do 11 photoshoots in 7 days and I still came back wishing I could have shot more but there will be another time do more.

Creative collaboration with House of Helsinglight & Myrkky Photography

Petra and Fredrik were amazing throughout our stay, it was great to see them every day and have a chat or a coffee when possible as they were also busy working on their projects. We also had a chance to do a photoshoot with them both which all of us were very happy with.

During out stay we had 3 days of rainy days but soon after we had snow for the rest of our stay, it was the perfect setting to shoot outside, something that in London would have been impossible to recreate. I also had my face cast in plaster by Petra and my sister Laura and friend Monica helped with the whole process.

The house is also very close to a very nice lake which was almost covered with ice sheets, I have to say that since before travelling to Helsinglight I had in my head to do the representation of the Näcken, a water spirit, well, I did jump into the lake and after a minute and a half I was out of the water feeling like an ice cube in pain and feeling pins and needles, nevertheless, I think that if I shouldn’t have done that, it would have been the only thing I had regretted not done.

Hudiksvalls tidning did an interview with Rubén about his projects at Helsinglight

On the last day during the day we had the visit of a reporter from the local newspaper who wanted to do an interview about Myrkky Photography and House of Helsinglight, we had a great time talking about how we all got to where we were at the time, talking about the actual shoots, what are we planning in the future and about everything that Helsinglight is working at the moment.

Viking horror movie

That night at Helsinglight, we had a film screening of a Viking horror movie in the gallery which was pretty cool. We got to meet a lot of creatives and people involved in the film, had a coffee and chat before the film and also after. It was perfect to meet new people with similar interests.

Check out  RAUG the viking movie:

We want to thank once again, Petra and Fredrik, for this incredible and unique experience. Visiting Helsinglight boosted my imagination and creativity as I haven’t seen it in a few years, to be out there as it could be put in the middle of nowhere, with nobody to bother you and just sit and create is simply a dream come true, and even though we arrived as a group of 3 to work in this project together, all the things we created were extraordinary. Looking forward to come back again to House of Helsinglight sometime soon. Wishing you all the best and missing you guys already! Rubén Gerardo Alfaro Moreno (MYRKKY PHOTORGAPHY) Laura Alfaro Moreno Monica Rodriguez Rodriguez

IG: @myrkky_photography
IG: @myrkky_horror_photography

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