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Swedes’ snap wins ‘most awkward ever’ family pic

The first prize in a worldwide competition to find the most awkward family photos, recently awarded by a British newspaper, went to a Swedish couple in northern Sweden, whose take on a pregnancy snap has raised a few eyebrows.

“We wanted to have an original pregnancy picture and for us the image means happiness and expectation,” Anna Olsson said to local newspaper HelaHälsingland.

“But, I have understood that this can be interpreted in another way,”

The couple, Olsson and her partner Olof Joners, wanted to try something a little different, and decided to have the unborn baby feature in the picture in more detail than just a baby bump.

They enlisted the help of a friend to paint the unborn child onto the woman’s stomach, in watercolour, complete with facial features and umbilical cord, and had the photo snapped in autumn.

The photo shows the pair, both in their underwear, smiling lovingly at the watercolour baby.

The couple didn’t realize that the picture had been shared online, and heard from a friend that it was making the rounds in Brazil. While not certain, the pair have their suspicions how the image spread.

“I only uploaded it on Facebook and a modeling page,” Olsson said.

“It was probably taken from my Facebook site.”

Soon, it was on the homepage of Awkward Family Photos website, a page that specializes in shedding light on “spreading the awkwardness” and displays a collection of cringeworthy family snaps.

The photo even made the website’s hall of fame, and has been shared almost 42,000 times on Facebook.

By the time British tabloid newspaper The Daily Mail ran the picture with the headline “Is this the most awkward family photo ever?” on Wednesday, the photo had gone well and truly viral.

“It was weird that the picture made it to Sweden. I had hoped it would stay on the other side of the continent,” Joners told daily Aftonbladet.

The couple were not prepared for international fame but are not letting the hullabaloo worry them too much.

“I wouldn’t want to have the same old pregnancy photos as everyone else anyway,” Olsson said to the paper.

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OFFBEAT

Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim

Police on the island of Gotland removed a public sculpture from the Galgberget nature reserve near Visby on the grounds that it is just too creepy.

Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim
The gallows at Galgeberget. Photo: Artifex/WikiCommons
According to local news site Hela Gotland, someone was out for a stroll on Galgeberget (the Gallows Hill) on Wednesday when they saw what they thought was a body hanging after a suicide. Local police were contacted but when they went to investigate they instead found a sculpture by artist Jessica Lundeberg. 
 
The artwork, entitled ‘The Watcher in the Woods’, is a partially transparent plate sculpture that looks like a spooky little girl. 
 
 
Despite discovering that the suspected suicide victim was actually artwork, police determined that Lundeberg’s piece could scare others and thus took the sculpture down. 
 
“It was decided that if it were to remain, more people would likely be frightened in the same way,” Gotland police spokesman Ayman Aboulaich told Radio P4 Gotland. 
 
Lundeberg told Hela Gotland that the sculpture has been at Galgeberget since a public art project last summer and that this was the first time it had caused any concern. She said ‘The Watcher in the Woods’ was the only piece that was allowed to remain after the end of the project. But now it is there no more. 
 
 
Lundeberg has taken the sculpture back to her studio. While she hopes it will eventually return to Galgeberget, the artist told Hela Gotland it seems unlikely.  
 
She said that the sculpture was damaged by police. 
 
“It was ragged, dismantled and broken. I was horrified when I saw it,” she said. 
 
Police have reportedly promised to pay any necessary repair costs.
 
Although the person who reported the sculpture to the police has not spoken with the media, their jump to conclusions could perhaps be attributed to the nature reserve’s macabre history. Galgeberget is still home to gallows that were used to hang criminals for centuries. The last execution to be held at the site was in 1845, according to Hela Gotland
 
 
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