And what about the animals, birds and plants that you work with? I’ve heard that you are now known in your community for your work, and that neighbours will offer you dead things when they find them. With such care for the process in your methods, do this open up an element of spontaneity – that you work with what you are given – or do you have clear ideas of the flora and fauna you want to photograph next?
As the project has become known in my hometown I have had a few strange phone calls… I also have a brother who lives further north in a rural area and he does some collecting for me. Hunters I know about have also been very helpful – and I make “orders” with them constantly. Both the deer and the beaver were been planned works. The others have been fitted in, but I wouldn’t say spontaneously -I see what I get and plan what to do based on that. I have a freezer where I keep the objects in waiting…
I have some “dream objects” that I wait, with specific plans. Living in Norway the flora season is rather short and so I have also started to conserve leaves and plants, just to have something to work on during the winter.
Your care for detail extends to the careful selection of paper and framing. Can you describe how this part of the process works? It’s perhaps an area that many photographers are less attentive, or comfortable with.
I do all the printing myself and have spent a long time getting it right. It is very confusing when you start – so many brands, so many qualities to choose from. I have ended up with Epson Hotpress paper and a big Epson printer. The hotpress comes as “natural” and “bright”» and I use both. I try to print every day that I take photos – for me an image isn’t ready until it’s printed. In that way it is a very slow process – I can’t take many pictures at a time and I like it to be that way.
Printing has become an obsessions for me, and I wouldn’t be comfortable sending files away to be printed by others. I don’t do the framing myself. We are very lucky here in my hometown (Sandnes) – we have a really good local framer who really knows what he’s doing.