Projects by Mikkel Aaland

Mikkel Aaland

"It's All An Adventure"

Presenting Fish Stories, featuring the work of some of the world’s most creative photographers, inspired by stories, legends, and myths of fish and fishing around the world.


Fish Stories combines story telling and visual art to highlight contemporary issues such as sustainable aquaculture, climate change, and social equity. In Fish Stories, we see that fish are much more than sport and commerce, or a savory dish garnished with lemon. Because of their connection with water and the mysteriousness of the unknown, fish—and therefore stories surrounding them—convey powerful symbolic and metaphorical meaning. Fish and humans are also directly related (a human embryo looks remarkably like a fish) and in Native American folklore, giant fish appear as spirits and marry humans and teach them water magic. In Chinese mythology the word for fish is yu, a homophone for abundance and affluence. In Norse and ancient European cultures, fish had symbolic meanings of adaptability, transformation, determination, and the flow of life.


Note: As of early 2021 we are looking for sponsors and collaborators to help produce Fish Stories. We continue looking for more fish stories from around the globe so if you have any please pass them on to Mikkel via the Contact page. Thanks!


Fish Stories will include selected photographers who will turn their cameras and creativity on fish and fish stories from the freezing Atlantic, to the tropical Pacific, to the murky waters of the Amazon, to the clear mountain streams in New Zealand and beyond.  Here are some examples of possible fish stories.


• The story of Christ and fish and how all things are possible.


• The Brother’s Grimm story of The Golden Fish and human frailty.


• Big Fish Stories Getting Littler, a story of how fish in the sea are literally becoming smaller and smaller.


• I Lost a Good One, a story about the fish that got away and human greed.


Here are some other stories from the around the world that are being considered as inspiration for Fish Stories:


The Talking Fish

An Armenian folk tale


I Lost a Good One

A fisherman who doesn’t have a story about the big one that got away is not to be trusted.


Three Fish

A Story from India


Klippe Fisk

How one fish transformed two nations


Māui and the Giant Fish

A story of how birds, plants, animals and the people of Hawaii populated the giant fish caught by the young boy Māui.


The Greatest Fish Story Every Told

The story of how fish and Christianity became intertwined.


How the Monkeys Saved the Fish

A traditional Tanzanian folktale of a beneficial relationship between fish and monkeys.


Big Fish Stories Getting Littler

Fish in the sea are getting smaller. Has anyone noticed?


Koi Story

The story goes the gods recognized the koi for its perseverance and determination and turned it into a golden dragon, the image of power and strength.




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