Obscured by fog and thick with film grain, photographer Dora Kontha’s dreamy images of empty natural landscapes feel like enigmatic stills from a long-lost movie.
Kontha, who is based in Copenhagen, documents landscapes from all over the world. Her frequent use of expired 35mm film adds unusual color casts and a sense of cloudiness to her photography, which she describes as “unreal.” Kontha is definitely expert at finding unreal locations, and her photos of island countries are particularly captivating. On visits to the Faroe Islands, Iceland, and the Azores, she documents the eerie appeal of these isolated places, with dreamy landscapes backgrounded by cloudy skies and murky sea water.
Kontha expertly shoots that sense of surreality you feel standing in an empty field, or walking on the beach alone in winter. She captures the feeling of each scene by focusing in on its textures: blades of grass on a cliff, the jagged edges of winter ice, vibrant moss growing in a rocky pool. Despite the natural beauty of Kontha’s settings, her photos are more than postcard-perfect landscapes. There’s a melancholy feeling to the images that makes them foreboding, like photos taken just before a storm.
Find more of Dora Kontha’s photography at her online portfolio.