View Full Version : Hello from Longyearbyen, Norway

Eirik Berger
4-Jul-2006, 10:57
Hello all.
My name is Eirik Berger, I am 31 years old and come from Norway. I recently moved to Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen that is a group of islands located between the Norwegian mainland and the north pole.
I have been a LF photographer for 8-9 years, and I hope I will have time to do use my LF gear up here. The landscape is truly amazing. I have been using this forum for some time, even if I do not have many postings here. That will change I hope.

I mostly use my Toyo GII 4x5 kamera with 90, 135, 180, 210 and 360mm lenses. The last lens I also use on a Calumet C-1 (Black Beast) 8x10" camera. It is a big and heavy bastard, and veeeery fun to use. I also have a Mamiya 645 ProTL with several lenses that I use for action photography.

My traditional darkroom is sold (please forgive me), I still have a Jobo ATL 3000 to develop BW negatives and E6 films, but there my "analogue" way of life stops. I scan my films on a Screen DT-S1045ai drumscanner. I do not have equipment to print color images yet, and for BW-images I print on a Epson 7500 wit MIS Ultratone inks and Bowhaus RIP. This combination makes great BW prints for a reasonable price.

Ole Tjugen
4-Jul-2006, 11:11
- And Eirik is probably the northernmost LF photographer in the world. At least most of the year!

Good to hear from you - and watch out for polar bears!

Eirik Berger
4-Jul-2006, 11:32
Hey Ole.
Goo to hear from you as well. I will watch out for white fuzzy animals, I am told to carry a firearm when travelling outside town. As if I did not have enough to carry with me. I hope I dont need to use it.
You know, several photographers seeing the Toyo for the first time tells me that I have to photograph polar bears with it. "It will capture the texture of its fur in a nice way" -they says. It will not be with the 90mm lens, that is for sure.

One guy passing me one day thought the Calumet was some kind of self-shooting-trap ment for foxes. When I told him it was a camera he wondered where the LCD display were. It is not easy beeing a LF photographer.

4-Jul-2006, 12:19
Hi Eirik,

Greetings from Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada... nope, no polar bears running around here of late! :)



4-Jul-2006, 14:12
Hi Eirik,

Greetings from hot Miami!

Kind Regards,

Barry F
4-Jul-2006, 14:40
Hi Eirik,

Welcome to the forum - they're all a really friendly bunch here.


Helen Bach
4-Jul-2006, 14:58
Welcome from New York. I sailed to Longyearbyen and Ny-Ålesund from Bergen on the Statsraad Lehmkuhl (http://www.lehmkuhl.no/) back in '89. I loved the place and was sorry to leave. Are you involved with the mines?

Best wishes,

Eirik Berger
4-Jul-2006, 15:19
That must have been a wonderful trip. Hopefully I will soon get a chance to see other places than Longyearbyen, preferably by boat. Or snowmobile in winter of course.
I am not involved in the mines, I just started to work in the local newspaper.

4-Jul-2006, 16:31
Hi Eirik!!

Sounds like a great place and job. Could Longyearbyen by a place for a LF gathering?? It surely are on my list of MUST visit places, and I have quite a few euro bonus air miles to burn, so why not? What is the friendliest time of the year?? Spring, summer, autumn?

Best regards

Eirik Berger
4-Jul-2006, 22:19
Hi Morten.
A LF Gathering up here sounds like a great idea. As I said in my first post i have a Jobo ATL 3000 machine that takes care of developing pretty much anything, which would be useful for a gathering since the closest lab is in 3-3500 km away (I knew it was a clever thing to bring it!!!). But I do not know if there are any traditional darkrooms left, I doubt it at least darkrooms with enlargers for LF. Maybe a digital post-film workflow will be OK? I have not joined the local photography club yet, but I will one of these days. They might have som useful info and inputs.

I think mid summer (july) would be a great time for a gathering. People have holiday and the climate is OK. The sun is above the horizon 24 hours a day, making it possible to photograph at all hours. Summer up here is short and most often between 6-12 deg C and cloudy/foggy. Of course the sun can appear here too, but dont count on it.

I have thought about doing several (Black/white) LF projects. On at the old coal mines that surrounds Longyearbyen and another from Pyramiden, an abbandoned russian settlement. Of course is landscape and nature photography an option.
There are many possible topics for a gathering.


Michael Daily
6-Jul-2006, 19:25
Welcome to the Zoo, from your southern friends. ;) With the sun all day long, you can make contact prints with printing out paper... I just looked up Longyearbyen, Norway, on Google Earth. You are a long way from nowhere! The closest I've been is Iceland and on the way to Germany. Is there an English version of the newspaper there? My norwegan is not good enough to read anything. Enjoy.

Eirik Berger
6-Jul-2006, 23:04
The paper is only in norwegian, I am sorry. We dont have a descent website yet, that will be one of my tasks. There realy should be an english version on the web since there are a lot of tourists here. I will talk to my editor.

17-Jul-2006, 15:21
Hello Eirik!

It seem all is well with you. What got you so far north?
I am game for coming next summer!


11-Apr-2010, 10:43
I was on the trip from Longyearbyen back to Bergen. It was my very first sailing experience and it changed my whole future life.
Kind regards from Nicole, a Tall-Ship Friend!

Vick Vickery
11-Apr-2010, 13:36
Welcome to group therepy, Eirik! :) Hmmm...maybe you need somebody to carry the rifle on the polar bear photo outing...just send a ticket and an expense check to cover travel, lodging and food and I'm your man! Can't be too careful around those big white fuzzy critters!

Jan Pedersen
11-Apr-2010, 18:25
Although Eirik still hang out here he posted this back in 2006 :)

Vick Vickery
11-Apr-2010, 20:18
Ha! Didn't notice that!! :) Guess my trip's off!