By: Mats Alfredsson | October, 2022

Street Photography by Niklas Lindskog
My Own Shelter | Niklas Lindskog

Street Photography is all the medium of moments, a happenstance in our shared spaces. The images nearly always are of humanity. It is never arranged, and you don’t know the people performing their play in the theatre of the street.


Niklas Lindskog is a part of this.


– Street Photography is just as life itself. It happens just now. I am self-taught, but this isn’t about theory. Street is flesh and blood. Smack in reality.

Niklas is a fascinating person with strong character.

I meet him in a popular café in central Gothenburg. A busy space for an interview. Young people, students, come and go. Noise from the kitchen. But the buzz inspires. It is “street”. An environment which is a natural part of the reality of a seasoned street photographer.


–I actually grew up in Gothehburg, in Frölunda, until I was 14 years of age. So I feel for this city.


Today he lives in Umeå, a thousand kilometers away, where he has for the last 32 years worked as a Track & Field coach. This particular weekend he’s in town with a group of pole jumpers at Gothenburg’s arena, Ullevi.

– Initially I wanted to do films. Got into a program. The age limit was 18 and I was 13, so my mom had to go with me.

’The dream was

to be a musician

One thing led to another. The first SLR camera. A photographer while doing the compulsory military service. Photographed for the regiment. Insurance work. Group pictures. Anything and everything. The actual dream was to be a musician…


– But I’m not actually much of a musician, he says with a loud laugh. My son became one instead!

Street Photography - Niklas Lindskog 2022
Parkour | Niklas Lindskog

The big push came after a visit to the Tate Modern Museum in London. Niklas walked straight into a painting by Mark Rothko. A viewing that would change everything and perhaps bring him where he is today.

– It was a large red painting. I almost felt vertigo, got sucked right in. It was a physical experience.


Right there and then, an epiphany; that was the feeling he wanted to communicate with his images. To move people.

– Then we have to see what other people think…

A visit to Genoa made it crystal clear. Niklas was there at a training camp. The camera was there of course and, in an alley, it came to him.

– There was a dove and a girl and together they created a fantastic composition. Everything in motion, a completely random happenstance. Just at that moment I knew that I had found my medium, my channel to the external.


’Photography is

like breathing

Niklas Lindskog_Interview
Jumping Puddles | Niklas Lindskog

– I’ve known the craft since childhood. I don’t have to think about equipment, settings. It’s just there. Like riding a bike or breathing. I just need to think the image forth.


Niklas talks about photographing with pure instinct. That is how he wants to photograph. The composition is in his DNA.


–Like Nike says: Just Do It!

Niklas’ day job as a Track & Field coach also plays a part in his photography.


– I train all the time! Photography! Read Eric Kim on composition in Street Photography. That gave me a lot of insight. Very important to be able to break the rules. There is joy in looking for lines, colors, patterns, repetition and different shapes that work together in harmony. But to break the rules you must know them!

When I dig deeper the unmissable question arises. Can he define his style of photography?


And I get a quick answer!


– I care. I photograph for myself, for my own pleasure and enjoyment. I don’t think of a career, I don’t care what style I express.

’That gut feeling

is critical’

But I want the viewer to get close when they view my images. Not physically. But closer in feeling. For me Street Photography happens in the moment. That gut feeling is critical.


Niklas’ philosophy is built on the fact that he likes people. You should see that! That is why he will edit out images that in any way would embarrass anyone.

’I am a citizens of the world

I realize quickly that I am sitting with someone who is a master at blending in.


– I am a citizen of the world! I mirror people everywhere. The whole of the world is home. The big thing for me is the experience of meeting people in other parts of the world and blending into that environment.

Niklas Lindskog Interview at SPART
We are animals V | Niklas Lindskog

He starts to recount an anecdote from a small restaurant in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. A part of town that rarely or never you would bump into a tourist from the west.


– You wouldn’t believe how well they took care of me. I was invited everywhere. Ninety-year-old ladies would walk up to me to feed me a taste of their food. In amongst this hospitality, I photographed. Images that would help me process the experience.

’Proof of the ultimate kick you get out of photography

Niklas gets lost in a train of thought regarding the ultimate kick one can get out of photography. He brings me with him to Beijing, where we have the well-known CCTV building that looks like a square. He goes across the street, catches a similar square. A repetition. Straight towards him walks a man wearing a t-shirt with a square symbol on it. The scooter that drives by has a square luggage rack. The rider’s jaw is square. Perfect!


– It is like being one with the universe. Everything falls into place. Unpredictable things. That is why I do Street Photography.


But most important. You have to train – to see.


With that realization we exit Café Viktor. Niklas leaves with two friends, Street Photographers from Gothenburg.

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