What started as a coincidence — me filming at the Swedish Freediving Championships – has turned into a five film project for the Swedish Sportsdiving Federation.
Sweden's underwater sports athletes form a tight-knit community. From the Polarbears underwater rugby team up north to the freediving clubs in the south of the country. The films promote and showcase the beauty of underwater sports, and the shared experiences of competitive freediving, underwater rugby, diving, underwater photography, and recreational freediving. A vital part of my work is to show the appeal of underwater sports for kids and youth.
I spent four days with Sweden's best freedivers as they competed at the Freediving Championships in Alingsås.
The arena would be full of athletes, yet completely quiet. They were breathing calmly, inward-facing, focused, lowering their heart rate to preserve oxygen for the race.
In a split second everything changed! The race was on and the athletes pushed themselves to the limit. The line between success and passing out could sometimes be just a millisecond.
Shooting for SSDF means short and intense 1–2 day shoots.
The key to success is planning, scheduling, scripting. Going through as many details with the athletes as possible before getting on set and in to the water. Once we're below the surface communication, retakes and directing becomes very hard.
Location scouting and access can be difficult since pools and arenas are runt by cities, councils and departments that all need to coordinate.