Iza Lyson shares her inspiration, gear, and advice from a whirlwind photography trip around Norway with her dog, Opi.

I’m Iza Lyson, a young dog photographer from Poland. I started my adventure in photography nine years ago, taking photos of my adorable new puppy. Although I now take photos of other dogs for their owners (last year, as many as 100 sessions!), my own dogs are still my favorite models. My dog Opi inspired my recent trip all across Norway—9,420km by car, 320km by ferry, and 50km on foot to reach 20 photography spots.

It may sound ambitious, but once I imagined my grey Border Collie in the grey, mysterious Norwegian landscape, there was nothing that could’ve stopped me from getting there.

Kannensteinen by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

Svartisen by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

I found all the beautiful spots I wanted to visit on 500px and created a Norway gallery to compile them. Next, I checked to see I’d be able to get to the places safely with a dog, and added the destinations to our map. Ultimately, we didn’t have enough time in our schedule to reach all of the locations, so I had to make some tough choices and pick the ones that seemed the most spectacular.

Segla by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

Tungeneset by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

For my gear, I used mainly wide-range lenses (Sigma 35mm f/1.4 and Nikkor 20mm f/1.8, and a Sigma 15mm f/2.8 fisheye) with a Nikon D610 or D750. I tried to take the lightest possible luggage I could on long hikes, but I still usually packed a Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR II in my backpack, although I didn’t end up using it all that much.

Way to Nusfjord by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

The photos from the trip are especially valuable to me, because apart from the phenomenal landscapes of Scandinavia, they showcase my beloved dog, who turned out to be the ideal model in all circumstances.

Hi guys! by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

Storm by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

My advice for anyone considering a photography trip is don’t think twice—just take a car, your friends, and hit the road! Everything gets sorted out along the way. Traveling is not as hard or expensive as it looks, especially when you take into consideration the fact that in Norway (for example), you can camp almost anywhere.

Segla by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

Glacier by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com

If you want to take your dog with you, like I did, remember to make the journey as comfortable as
possible for them. Don’t forget to make frequent stops and plan physical activities for them on long traveling days spent mostly in the car. If you’re visiting mountain trails, always check to make sure they are safe for your dog. Take your dog’s favorite snacks and toys to encourage them to cooperate when it’s time to pose for photos. Have fun!

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500px: 500px.com/izalysonarts
Instagram: @izalyson
Facebook: facebook.com/IzaLysonArts

Senja by Iza ?yso? on 500px.com