Annundshög Labyrinth - Light Painting

Light Painting the Anundshög Labyrinth

As the main feature in this blog post, I want to lead your attention to the small replica of the Labyrint of Tibble which is within walking distance of the Annundshög sight.

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This shot is a 106-second long exposure at F11, ISO 100. For it, I had to run around with a white and a blue flashlight maze. That's the same for all the following shots.

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The purpose of these labyrinths is not entirely clear. Its best guess is springtime rituals. One version says, there is a girl standing in the center and a boy is to walk through the labyrinth to her.

as also mentioned by @corvidae it is also presumed that these labyrinths may have been designed for walking meditations.


The labyrinth of Tibble is one of the largest and oldest so-called "Troy castles". It is not far from Anundshög and the Hornåsen burial ground in Västerås. Tibble is one of the 20 labyrinths in the Swedish countryside that are directly related to graves that are thousands of years old. Tibble is said to be more than 2000 years old, as the burial grounds nearby show. With a size of 12 × 14 m, it consists of two to three thousand stones.

The labyrinth of Tibble

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The stones have sunk so far into the ground that the labyrinth is difficult to see today. That has completely preserved the system. The purpose of the mazes is unknown. Presumably, certain spring rites were held here. Since this maze was not so visible anymore I light painted the one in Annundshög.

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The Main Attraction of Annundshög is certainly the assembled rock formation Ships, at the Anundshög historic sight. Here is my reason to go there at night and get a Light Painting of the spot in the first place.

Visiting Sweden you find a lot of Viking historic sights. In Anundshög. you find here the largest tumulus in Sweden.

Maps and Information signs help you when you walk along with the different features of the sight. This one was very useful when I arrived.


The Featured Shot

How did we get there? Like in always I build up the shot in a few steps. Here is what happened on that warm short Swedish summer night.

This shot is a 106-second long exposure at F11, ISO 100. For it, I had to run around the maze. The trick here is to apply the light from a low angle from the two different sides. Blue and white are always a bit of a different angle.

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But make no mistake what you see as the main image is not a composite of all these images. It is me taking the experience and knowledge about each individual step and perform it all together in one go.


The Location

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The ships from the main burial mount, during the daytime during the location check.
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As seen in my previous posts here is the view from the main burial mount at Anundshög. The mount is 14m tall and 60m in diameter. So perfect for this kind of birdseye view shot. Almost like a drone shot. Although the drone would not hold still for more than 6 seconds from my experience. This shot is a whooping 723-seconds single exposure with the camera set at F9, ISO 160. That's more than 12 minutes with an open lens!

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The entire area is very well developed and holds no surprises walking around at night.

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There is more in the neighborhood than just the ships and a dirt mound. This map lays out what else there is to explore right after. Everything is close distance to drive or hike.

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My step counter was totally happy after that Light Painting night.

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I hope it was informative and maybe also somewhat inspirational. If you have more questions please do not hesitate. I am happy to share my knowledge.


Gunnar Heilmann Photogrpahy

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