A mother of four, photographer, nature lover. Someone trying to make sense of it all, through photos and stories. 

I try to be free in all senses of the word, so I made the leap and now work with what I love doing; taking pictures, storing this life in moments, both for myself and for clients. My heart is in photographing birth and motherhood, but I take on just about any photography job. 
(See my birth photos at www.birth.no and the rest of my work portfolio at www.mariavatne.no.)

I live on a farm in Norway with my man Nik and my children Ronja, Freja, Falk and Ulv, plus a bunch of animals. We grow our own food as far as the seasons allow it, we don't go to kindergarten, the three youngest ones will be homeschooled.

We govern our own lives, we strive for independence, we want to be in this life wild and free and full of love.

Weekend in paradise, part 2.

Another one of those sunny weekends, where the days just float by in a lovely stream, and the word that sticks to my mind is freedom. I have to pinch my arm sometimes. I feel so privileged, so in the right place. And no: We don't always have happiness and contentment and harmony in this family, we're normal, we argue and make a mess and get confused about things and miscommunicate, just like the rest of you. But on days like these, all that seems so far away, and what is left is freedom. Just openness, the day is there, in all its simplicity, and all we have to do is to live it, without stress or hurry. So that's what we did!
On a farm, there's always things to be done, and especially on a farm that has been desolate for so long, like ours. So having time off does not mean sitting on our behinds and enjoying the view (we do some of that, too, of course). Saturday morning started with the sheep mummies being sheared, so they now walk around looking embarassingly naked and very humiliated. Although I think it felt wonderful for them, really, to get that thick coat of wool off in this heat. When they were done, Mr. Payne sent them up into the forest with the rest of the animals. So now, if you sit in our garden and look up towards the forest, you might catch a glimpse of a lovely cow or two, or some sheep, or a beautiful brown horse munching away up there. Quite a cool sight if you ask me.
After that we had a visit from two friends of mine from the olden days and their kiddos, we had pancakes and ice cream and strawberries and coffee and spent the afternoon indulging ourselves while catching up. Such a healthy way to spend a Saturday!
My Dad, whose name is now The Amazing Carpenter, came to continue on the deck, and all I can say is IT'S GOING TO BE GREAT.
And then there were all those other important things: planting seeds and seedlings, tidying up here and there, dressing Daddy up as an old lady, catching a big adder in our orchard, collecting eggs, feeding and super-cuddling the orphan lambs, eating more ice cream and pancakes and strawberries, cutting the "lawn", cycling a hundred times back and forth on our little road while singing, and ending the day in the evening sun on the front porch.
I don't ask for anything more, just let this last a little longer.

We just call him Little Buddha.