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.

Lately; or thoughts on planting trees and other things:

It really is a wonderful time of year, and I must say the whole experience of it is a lot stronger and more tangible after moving to the farm. I feel we are generally closer to the seasons, and they contain more, they have even more of an identity now. Spring has been very busy, even though we have a small farm with not a lot of animals. Lambing was hectic because we had four orphans and weren't really prepared for that (funnily enough), and Mr. Payne had to organize the sheep a little bit through trial and error while the lambing days went on. All in all we are happy with the result, for first-timers anyway. All of our ewes had twins, so we had twelve lambs born, but sadly one mysteriously died after a week. We think she might have been bitten by an adder, because we found two big ones lurking around our house and in the orchard were the sheep were kept.
With our farm having been desolate and unloved for many years, there are hundreds of jobs to be done to get it into shape and the way we want it. Little by little, we are doing it, but it's taking time and we have to allow it to take time.
The first summer after we bought this place, we took a lot of timber out of our forest (to use for building our house with!). And today, Mr. Payne planted hundreds of new trees up there. Trees that won't be ready for harvesting before we are old and grey and our grandchildren are running the farm (hopefully). The girls planted one each, and those birches will be "their trees". There is something wonderfully patient and loving about planting trees. Something that speaks of sustainability and responsibility. I was extra proud of my man today.
Other things lately: Mr. Payne had his birthday! I think it was more special for the girls than for him, they made him presents and we celebrated with ice cream. Oh, and my birthday present for him was tickets to the Patti Smith-gig in Oslo in a couple of weeks, weeeeee!
Apart from this, life goes as normal, we play, make a mess, faff about, work, sleep a little and all the rest of it. The grand life, so to speak.


She said.