Kungsleden, or 'Kings Trail' is one of Europe's most remote and famous hiking trails. The full route is more than 400 kilometres long and established by Svenska Turistföreningen at the beginning of the 20th century and has since been visited by hikers from all over the world.
My brother and I set about the most Northern section of this trail, from Abisko to Nikkualokta taking about 6 full walking days and covering approximately 70 miles.
We passed through varied landscape in the Lapland mountain world soaking in the remarkable changes along the way, such as the low-lying mountain birch forest, white topped dramatic peaks, winding rivers, crystal clear lakes and indigenous Sami villages.
The Kungsleden not only offered a fresh physical challenge, it offered a chance to consider how a remote location, cut off from the everyday tasks of 'normal' life and work would impact me mentally and creatively.
The main revelation has been to slow down and reevaluate what's important in how I make a living . To make for the sake of it, carve time for experimenting, reduce distractions, say no to what does not serve me.
To get out of my comfort zone by finding ways to surpass it's perceived boundaries. To keep walking, regardless of blisters - to keep creating, regardless of constraints.
With all that in mind, I've been experimenting with Kungsleden landscapes which focus on the subtle and quiet colour combinations that changed along the way, from greens to greys and yellows to oranges.
Each painting is quiet, holding only what's necessary to convey the feeling of the Kungsleden and it's open spaces, devoid from life's distractions and noise - because other than your footsteps and breath, the Kungsleden was silent.
Each time I look at these painting on their unmounted free edges, they remind me to continue to walk past the perceived constraints we set ourselves. To ignore life's unnecessary distractions and noise and to seek out those boundaries and push past them.
What boundary or comfort zone must you walk past?
If you want your creative comfort zone pushed, sign up to Studio Notes, a bi-monthly email packed with FREE creative tips, lessons, honest insight into making a full time living from art, as well as first spots on creative classes, portraits and discounts kept exclusively for you.