In Conversation: Ólafur Arnalds

At the start of January, Spitfire flew to Iceland to visit Ólafur Arnalds in his studio. Here Christian sits down with Ólafur to discuss his creative process when it comes to music making, as well as influences and how to overcome writer’s block.

Christian sits down with Ólafur in his studio to discuss his career of music composition and film scoring. They unpick the differences between creating original music and scoring for motion picture, alongside musical education (or there lack of), pop music, the magic of single notes and making people smile. The pair go on to discuss various techniques for finding inspiration, from cheap gear to travelling and dispelling preconceptions of foreign lands. Clearly, Arnalds has found an inner muse in challenging himself. Removing himself from the ordinary creates a spark that provokes his imagination;

“You need to have something to write about. I like to going to places that aren’t relaxing”

In the least egotistical sense, they go on to touch on ego within composition, and its fundamental necessity when composing original music.

Watch how the delicate balance between artistry and accompaniment is discussed, for a window into Ólafur’s unique career.