I grew up in and outside a small town in middle west of Sweden called Lidköping. Life was mostly about education and sports in my youth. Anything including wheels, grass, water, snow, ice or a ball or puck was interesting and when I had to choose the choice fell on football. I was a hard working, hard shooting, technical midfielder who delivered passes for lazy forwards to score easy goals on :) just kidding. I never got bored of training as hard as I could. Likeminded people recognize the wonderful feeling of pushing yourself over the top and the sensation of being strong and fit and capable of anything!
I enjoyed pushing my limits and on August third 1983 I pushed it a bit too far on a family vacation to the beautiful island of Öland on the east coast. We had just arrived and I and my little brother wanted to try the water. Growing up close to Sweden’s biggest lake Vänern we were used to diving in shallow waters so the ‘do not dive’ sign wasn’t intimidating enough. Some very cute girls sunbathing might have kludged my judgement too.
A very impressive dive in not so deep water crushed my fourth and fifth neck vertebrae and caused instant paralysis from neck down. Luckily my brother managed to lift my head above the water line just as I couldn’t hold my breath another second. “You’re not messing with me?’ was his first words but I guess it became obvious this was for real by my weak reply because of my difficulty to breath. As I lay on my side on the pier watching my brother fetching my parents I cursed myself for ruining the vacation and wondered if I would be fit for college a week later?
A long slow and painful ambulance ride with an escorting police car trying to keep track of any bumps in the road that could worsen the injury took me to Kalmar emergency care were I spent a week mostly answering what was my name and social number to keep me awake and out of respirator. They fixated my neck with a metallic ring attached with four screws into the skull and a wire with weights to keep it stretched and steady. I’ll never forget the pressuring sensation as the screws where tightened with a screwdriver several times the first week.
A week later I was transferred to Skövde hospital dressed in a Halo west. The ambulance crew had an equally obsessive interest in my name and social number btw. Skövde hospital had very little experience in quadriplegics and though the staff did their best and the closeness to my hometown felt comforting and made visits from my family, friends and teammates easier it was a good thing I was transferred to Sahlgrenska hospital in Gothenburg three weeks later where the first spinal cord special ward in Scandinavia just had its first anniversary and was packed with mostly young men who had also tried their limits in some way. And a friendly and welcoming staff making the most traumatic time in our lives endurable. Well most of them anyway. Some you fell in love with and some you loathed. For different reasons.
I spent the first three months mostly in bed, hoping the paralysis would vanish and trying to get some rest inspite of incredible cramps and pain that tried to throw me out of bed as soon as someone touched the door handle or on rare occasions came all the way to the bed before my body took notice of their presence and did a crazy explosive outburst of incredible power knocking out atleast one unfortunate young and very kind girl with a vicious knee to the head. Not bad for a paralyzed boy I guess but I would have picked another victim if I had any control over my body,
I shared the room with two crazy paraplegic roommates. We had many good laughs and talks and pranks on each other and on the staff. Luckily we shared the taste of heavy metal music too and sometimes drove the staff mad. One of them even was a Brynäs fan like me, Swedens best icehockey team in my mind and always will be.
Some four months after my accident I visited home for the first time travelling with my fathers truck which made the displacement in and out kind of interesting. Luckily my father was used to heavy lifting and I weighted close to nothing without my muscles that vanished in a chocking rate considering all years of hard training to build them! Luckily the family dog Stella recognized me anyway and was ecstatic to finally see me again and so was I . TO BE CONTINUED...
If you browse through my gallery you'll soon discover that I find many different things interesting to capture and I try to bring the camera with me most places just in case. I'm most pleased when I'm shooting wildlife, nature, landscape, sports, street, portrait or whatever.
Most of the images were captured with a Sony A99ii camera with a 42Mp sensor which offers extremely high resolution and very high image quality sufficient for very large prints if you use good lenses and get your objects in focus.
I've been shooting photos for many years and always used equipment on a tight budget but a MRI xray confirmed my suspicions that I'm living on borrowed time because of the vicious and damaging return of the same desease, syringomyeli, that did quite an impressive attempt at ending my life in the early 90's, made me decide to spare no expenses on the things I love to do and that is why I took my photography to the next level by going full sensor on both camera body and a selected number of lenses to match its size and my interests.
The syringomyeli found the perfect spot to cause the maximum damage and pain. It wouldn't be enough of a challenge to this stubborn and competitive s.o.b otherwise ;) I've had to experience too many times exactely how much the human body can withstand and I've been on the other side atleast five times and I'm on a touch and go a little to often nowadays when the pain and lack of sleep takes its toll. If I were a dog I'd been put to sleep years ago but I'm not in the mood for the afterlife quite yet ;)
Me on Nov 22 1990 a few hours after having done my third neck surgery and the first ever Arthrodesis surgery done from the front in Sweden to treat a herniated disk. I had to do a couple more arthrodesis surgery in the following years to keep my head on place and I needed even more after those two but it was too risky to proceed so I've had to live with a messed up neck since then.
Being a quadriplegic, after a diving accident in my youth with a C4-C5 neck injury and having had way too many complications and accidents afterwards resulting in five operations and a C2-C6 arthrodesis neck and a world of pain, of course I shouldn't be doing this anymore :). But it is simply too fascinating to keep me away and I have been able to come up with new ways of using the hardware and software to produce the images you find here.
I try to block the pain with a combination of medicins and great music. When it succeeds I want to be as creative as I can without destroying the neck entirely but when inspiration strikes it's hard to stop doing what you love to do and I tend to ignore my body screaming at me to put the camera away or turn the music and computer off and go to bed. But since sleeping doesn't comply well with my body I mostly try to persuade it to stay logged in just a little longer ;)
All images are copyrighted by me Magnus Borg and if you want to publish or download any of them you can purchase a licensed legal copy of highest quality at reasonable prices. Photographers have expenses and need to eat like anyone else you know :)
You really should check out the latest Limited Edition Artwork too. At 33% discount you can get this absolutely unigue backlit portrait of a well-known artists eyes ;) The code is a synonym for it's title in English or Swedish in upper case letters. You can subscribe to the newsletter to find out if you want to be absolutely sure to get it right :) I listened to a great swedish artist called Evergrey as I created it.
For every purchase I will donate 10% of my take in your name to a charity organization that I think will make best use of your contribution and you will get a copy of the receipt. Help me help others to make this unique and beautiful planet a better place for every living being to enjoy for a very long time.
In my youth I did a lot of 3d rendering and some of it you can view on my old site
www.3d-castle.com. This were in the early years of the world wide web revolution when everyone connected through landline modems and you had to keep the size down on the content of your sites or they would take ages to load. As you see I also started uploading photos there.
One of my favorite interests are wildlife nature and animals photography. Capturing birds in the wild while using an electric wheelchair is a bit problematic since the animals are careful and suspicious of everything out of the ordinary and the terrain often don't apply too well with wheelchairs.
Lake Hornborga outside Skara in Sweden is one place where you can get pretty close to Cranes dancing in end of March through beginning of April.
You need lenses with great reach and a stable platform to attach the heavy equipment and preferably still be able to point and shoot and occasionally capture something in focus.
I've made a custom solution to attach a monopod with a gimble head on my permobil C500 that is solid and agile enough for a quadriplegic to shoot birds in flight with pretty high hit rate after some practice and you'll find some of these photos in the animals gallery.
Annual half marathon (21 km) running event in the streets of Gothenburg
I had to go by experience this year and point and shoot with the camera in my lap since I was almost shooting blind because of the cataract and the dark sunglasses. I managed to get a few shots that lived up to my expectations for you to watch.
Annual half marathon (21 km) running event in the streets of Gothenburg
Have a look at over hundred photos of some of the happy contenders and bystanders :)
I come from a small town called Lidköping. Classic cars, motorbikes and lots of people watching this annual event is a great opportunity to capture interesting and beautiful machines and people. As much as I appreciate the beauty and powerful sound of these classics there is no doubt in my mind that in a very near future we all need to travel in electrical vehicles instead and stop drilling more holes looking for the black gold which is ruining the planet.
AUGUST 17 2017
Classic cars, motorbikes and lots of people
July 5 2018