Man standing over campfire at night

Staying True

Ben Christensen x Fjällräven

I’ve always loved nature. Growing up in Arizona, there wasn’t much of a difference between life inside and life outside. When we weren’t in school, we were adventuring, be it in our backyard, the nearest lake, the desert, or mountains close by, you name it.
I got behind my first camera as a young adult. It didn’t take me long to realize how much I loved photographing the world… seeing it through a lens, watching others enjoy what the outdoors has to offer. I guess you could say that my camera strengthened a strong pre-existing love for the wild.
So a few years ago, when I got a call to come work for a leading outdoor retailer, I felt like it was a sign, in a way: it was time to cross over my love of nature with my professional reality as a photographer. I knew nature, it was my home, the very place that fueled my passion for creativity. Nature was a place that made me feel joy as I immersed myself in all the beauty it offers. So when it came time for me to capture that joyful feeling in new a profession, I was ready and prepared. I knew every angle on how to share my love of nature through my photography.
My family and I were still living in Arizona at the time, but we pretty much just packed our things and headed up to Utah. I knew that taking this job would mean traveling the world with some of the most inspiring athletes and outdoor adventurists out there. Needless to say, it was an effortless decision to make.

My first day in the office, I walked in wearing a well-worn and sun-kissed wide-brimmed hat (you’ll almost never catch me without it), some canvas pants I’d probably worn on a hike that weekend, and if I remember correctly, a flannel or something that would’ve done well on a camping trip around a campfire. Oh, and some old boots, of course. I think the entire office was like, “um, Arizona is that way…” 
Now that I think of it, I probably didn’t even look like someone who spent time in nature or had gone rock climbing or skied a day in their life. In hindsight, I totally understand where those confused looks were coming from! But because of the way I was raised, all we did was spend time in nature. And despite my neutral color palette, that’s the way I’d learned to live in adulthood, too. Explore, adventure, repeat.
I did have an issue, though. I had all this awesome clothing…rugged, ready-to-explore, almost-vintage gear that I’d used and loved for ages. But I knew instinctually that I was going to need to outfit myself better, and more according to the job’s tasks and shoots. I’d be in negative wind chill, knee-deep in snow, photographing backcountry skiing; crazy hot temperatures while scaling rock walls, leaning in on that perfect shot. I started looking for gear that I felt fit me--my western-centric, vintage-inspired personality--and could also keep me comfortable and safe. But kept falling short.
Person walking in front of large rock near shoreline


I came across Fjällräven for the first time on Instagram, actually. While at work one day, I was clicking around, looking for inspiration for an upcoming shoot. That’s when I stumbled across an ad for what looked like an old Swedish heritage company. I think the photo I saw was a re-vamped campaign from the 60s or 70s. Front and center in the shot was the coolest military-style jacket I’d ever seen. And a hiker was wearing it. I thought to myself, whoa. That’s it. And started doing some research.
I found out a lot about Fjällräven that day, scouring the site and reading all about how they craft gear to last a lifetime, not a season; how every piece is inspired by nature, which is why it works so perfectly out in it. That’s exactly what I saw in that decades-old ad: timeless, muted, natural colorways that mirrored the earth. A jacket that looked rad, protected its person, and could do it over and over again. That jacket, I remember thinking to myself, was so clearly equally at home on the mountain as it would be taking a break in town. And that’s exactly what I wanted.
My first Fjällräven piece was the Raven Jacket. A jacket very similar to the one I first saw in that ad. I wore it every single day. To work, trekking around on location, hiking with the family, you name it. It became my go-to. And from there I just started trusting Fjällräven to do it right, no matter what the occasion might be. 

The first time I really put their gear to the test was on a backcountry ski shoot in New Zealand. I knew that Fjällräven gear would keep me warm in nature while letting me move like I needed to. I haven’t stopped outfitting myself in (literally) head to toe Fjällräven since getting back from that trip.
It’s always been important to me that what I wear feels honest to my personality. To my adventures. It’s really never been easier for me to fit that bill than it is when I wear Fjällräven.
Man and Woman walking away from camera towards lake
During these times of uncertainty, we like to share ways for you and our community to stay connected to nature anytime and anywhere to prepare, comfort and inspire.
Nature Is Waiting