Introducing Jan Dančák

Photographer Jan Dancak
Photographer Jan Dancak

"My name is Jan Dančák, I’m 25 years old. My story begins in a small town in the Beskydy Mountains in the Czech Republic. Since I was a kid, my family taught me to love and appreciate nature and the outdoors. I suppose that grew on me quite fast. I started biking, skiing and playing around in the local woods with like minded friends. That love for freedom and no rules was subconsciously dragging me out there and I remember, it might had been around my age of 17 when I saved up for my first camera and started capturing those moments. I immediately fell in love with the whole process off getting the shot. Ever since then I never left my camera at home.

Moving in time, when I got accepted to the University I suddenly found myself living in a big city. I felt trapped, constantly looking to escape from the rush and grey color of the streets.  A few months later I came to a breaking point, realizing it’s time to stop doing what society wants me to do and forge my own path. I quit the school and moved to North Iceland to work with my childhood friend who’d already been living here for a while. Since then, I went through so many shitty jobs, but I didn’t care. I was out here in this big playground surrounded by mountains and fjords. It’s an outdoor enthusiast’s dream place and a photographer’s paradise. That’s also when my love for photography really kicked off.

The thing about Iceland is that, if you come here for the first time as a foreign photographer, everything looks so fascinating and you just want to keep shooting. To put it in perspective, I ran out of storage space on my second day! Everything looks so interesting. The shapes, the colors…The local terrain being so diverse, there are just so many places to photograph, new mountains or fjords behind every next turn. It can be really overwhelming but in the best sense of the word. If there was one thing I could recommend to anyone coming here for a photography trip, then it would be - don’t plan too much. Sure, have your list of places you’d like to visit, but don’t build your schedule around it as there’ll be way too many other unplanned stops. I promise. This is actually something that’s been shaping my photography for the past few years without me even realizing it. Capturing the mood of places you’ve most likely never seen before. If you scroll through my photos you’ll understand. There’s something special about being the only one out there with your camera.

Almost 5 years since my first visit. I have settled down on the Troll Peninsula, North Iceland, writing this from my little mountain cabin, enjoying the view on the glacier and white peaks with camera set up on tripod, waiting for the sunrise. It’s crazy, man. This whole journey has taught me how important it is to follow your own dream and simply ignore what everybody else thinks. Especially in these difficult times we live in. Get out there, be stoked, do your thing. My recipe for freedom."

Check out for some great images and follow Jan on Instagram @jandancak