Carsten René Nielsen


At the photographer’s, you can get a portrait of your likeness after

death, but the process is painstaking. A newly engaged couple once

proved so hard to satisfy, the photographer had to continue the shoot

the following day. Finally, at closing time he’d managed to position

them, and the light, the mark of such photography, was also perfect.

He turned off the lamps, locked up the shop, and left the couple to

stand in the studio overnight. “I love you,” whispered the girl in the

almost total darkness. Only a thin streak of light from the street lamps

pierced the studio from the store front. “I love you too,” replied her fiancé,

“but stand still now and look right into the camera.”


Translated from the Danish by David Keplinger
“Photography” first appeared in English in House Inspections (BOA Editions, 2011). Trans. David Keplinger.


Read and listen to “Photography” in the original Danish by Carsten René Nielsen