Made-Up Bits

a personal blog, by Sven Seebeck -


And now it’s almost here.. the year 2011. Traditionally at this time resolutions are made and most likely in many cases not kept. I gave up making those. Doesn’t work out anyway. One thing though which stuck and worked out over the years is my dedication to photography. As with all things it has it’s ups and downs but it’s going steadily forward and evolves to the better I hope. It is the term dedication which actually reminded me of this outing that I had almost exactly two years ago now…

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Storvatnet Reflection #1

Lofoten Islands, Norway, June 2010 The outing for tonight is almost over and we are just on our way back to the beach where we planned to stay to stay the night. The horrific conditions of the previous day are long forgotten and this night had been full of good photographic opportunities. Just on our way back we pass this beautiful and silent lake. The sun is by now high enough in the sky to throw it’s light over the mountains and wonderfully light the mountains in front of us.

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The Second Frost

It had been the third day with gorgeous light in a row, something that I believe to be happening rather rarely during this time of year. Two days ago, I used the chance to visit this small beach, named Isoniemi at sunset and photographed this island in a nice warm light evening light alongside with some interesting structures on the ice. It was very cold then, and at home I got some more ideas for this location.

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Summer Swamp

It’s the end of July 2009, almost on my birthday, and by now I’m already photographing the landscapes up here on the island north of Tromsö for hours. The sun only hid below the horizon giving wonderful golden light for hours and locations to photograph were plenty along the way. I just love to photograph in this area. It is possible to photograph in the mountains and at the coast within a small area.

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The First Frost

“The first frost always feels the worse” were the words our local postman said to me in the elevator the other day. Actually he’s right. It had been very cold during the last weeks and finally the sea started to freeze over. The lack of fresh snow promised some nice and beautiful structures in the ice and I wanted to take advantage of the nice condition and capture some hopefully interesting views.

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Summer Nights

I’m somewhere in the forests near Kuusamo in the east of Finland. It’s early June and during this time of the year it doesn’t get dark at all anymore and it means it’s going to be “happy-hour” for many hours. That is, if the weather agrees with that. Today is one of those days. It has been a long day by now. I left already early in the day to be here in time to explore the area and to photograph a waterfall.

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Australian Pelican

Photography is all about opportunities, and while I usually prefer to photograph landscapes sometimes it’s just fun to do something totally different at times and confront myself with new challenges. This image is definitely one of those. During my last vacation we visited a local bird-zoo and I used the chance to photograph some of those magnificent birds which were around. I’m by no means familiar with photographing birds, or anything that actually moves, but this australian pelican was very willingly posing for a landscape photographer like me… he hardly ever moved.

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Tromvik Boat

It had been a long and eventful shooting this evening here on these islands north of Tromsø and it’s not over yet. We’re in a little village called Tromvik on the way back to Tromsø and the hotel room. Today’s shooting started hours ago, the light is wonderful this night and it gave me quite a few good opportunities to take photographs. Having explored the area earlier that day, we were following the route back along the marks on the map.

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Hailuoto Revisited - November 2010

Hailuoto, Finland, November 2010 It’s early November now, about one and half month’s away from the darkest day of the year, and it becomes increasingly difficult to find the time to do landscape photography. The forecast showed clouds and sun just in time for sunset and I wanted to use this chance. It might take quite some time, before I have another one.… I’m sitting in my car on the ferry which will bring to me to the island of Hailuoto and light snow is falling on the car.

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The Flow

After I passed the border into Norway for a few kilometers my disappointment about the fairly unfortunate conditions in the north of Finland was quickly forgotten, when I faced the drama and the beauty of the landscapes. Without any map or GPS I have driven along the road looking for compositions to jump into my eye, while trying to not get lost at the same time. I already explored a few locations along the coast of the fjord to which I planned to return later that day when I finally decided to wait at this river for the rain to end.

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Tectonic Coast #2

Finmark, Norway, July 2010 By now the sun somehow has long “set” behind a layer of clouds just above the horizon and I continue to explore the coastline. I’m somehwere along the road to the small city of Berlevag, in the most northern parts of Norway. After a well deserved nap and my first few images of this evening, I again notice the frequently changing conditions in this area. Not much earlier I photographed a lighthouse a only a few kilometres from here in a lot different conditions.

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Lofoten Nights

It’s in the middle of the night by now. The sun, even though it’s not setting and is still rather high in the sky, is hidden behind a layer of clouds and the mountains behind us. Occasionally it lights the mountains in front of me with a warm light. Tonight’s photographic journey started at a beautiful beach, which actually should become our home base on the next day. At this moment though it seems we’re chasing a fata-morgana.

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Arctic Beach #2

April 2010, Tromsö, Norway Having arrived early in the morning in Tromsö, we head out in nice sunny and cloudy weather during the day. We have been here before and are little familiar with the area but our path today leads us to, at least for us, yet unexplored areas. During the course of the day the weather clouds up quite a bit. Just in time for sunset to be precise.

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Malangen Mountains

Norway, April 2010. After a day’s worth of exploring the islands around Tromsö the light finally get’s this magical quality that I so enjoy here in the Scandinavian countries. We spotted this location earlier already, but first we headed to the end of this road for a panoramic image of the mountains close to the island of Sommaroy. An area I had been photographing last summer. The sky there was rather dramatic and in fact it got even more spectacular a little later, something that I noticed in the rear mirror while were already on the way to this location.

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The Last Chance

Sometimes things turn out totally different from what you have planned. This morning I planned to do a long exposure of a structure at the nearby sea and since the sun rises nowadays already quite late I wasn’t in a hurry. The sky last night and the forecast for today looked promising, but once I headed out to the car I found out that it obviously started to snow during the night.

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Mysterious Pier

Today’s image is a little bit different from what I usually post, or better, different from the way I process and image. The beauty of the digital darkroom is, that basically all doors are open, and it’s up to one’s own vision what to do with an image. Generally I don’t do much to the images in the digital darkroom. I leave them in color or do a black & white conversion.

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Henningsvaer Harbour

Lofoten Islands, June 2010. Upon our arrival the weather was, well, badly in need of improvement. It’s cold, it rains cats and dogs and the visibility is somewhere around 100m into every direction. We came a long way and after a good night sleep in the car we head out to get a decent coffee and something to eat. Little bit more awake we stroll along the roads exploring the area for good locations to photograph once the conditions are slightly better.

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Unexpected Company

Somehow landscape photography is always full of surprises. Every now and then something unexpected happens. Most of the time it’s just the weather turning bad just an hour before the best light after having a beautiful, occasionally though, something surprisingly nice happens. In the beginning of the year it was a group of whales slowly passing by in the fjord in front of us. Last year it were seals, and this year I got unexpected company by a cute little fox.

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Softly, As In A Morning Sunrise

It’s time for a new image and another audio blog entry. I have posted one before already and considered it to be nice to talk freely about an image from time to time instead of writing much about it. So, without further ado, I would like to invite you to have a look at this image and listen to my Audioboo.

Storfjord Rocks

By now I have passed this site along the E8 to Tromsö multiple times and yet it doesn’t seem to enough. Every time I drove along this road it turned out to be a pure visual pleasure and I found myself always stopping at different stops to take a photograph. I took this image on my first and very spontaneous trip to this country and it marked the beginning of so far five trips.

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Purple Bay Rocks

A little bay, somewhere along to road to the island of Sommaroy, Norway. It’s more than a month since Midsommer now, and even by this time the sun still barely sets. It’s just below the horizon and illuminating the sky just nice for the course of hours. The sky was beautifully lit and the clouds reflected the sunlight in all shades of red and purple for already more than two hours and there’s no hurry to drive along the coast.

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