Svalbard Residency

Finding our feet

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So despite a delayed flight and a mad dash at Oslo airport to catch our connecting flight we have made it to Longyearbyen, Svalbard… Yas! We’ve spent the last couple of days finding our feet and trying to get used to the 24 hour daylight (no mean feat) and generally wandering about and getting a feel for the place.

Barnie

Barnie

Barnies and their chicks down at the reservoir

Barnies and their chicks down at the reservoir

A picture of the team… and Emma and Pete

A picture of the team… and Emma and Pete

Yesterday we took a wander down to the reservoir and said hi to our barnie pals… and their super cute fluffy chicks… amazing to think that in a couple of months they’ll be getting ready to head off on their 1600 mile journey to the Solway. We’ll be back down in the next day or two to do some proper filming.

Mine 2B - Julenissegruve (Father Christmas Mine)

Mine 2B - Julenissegruve (Father Christmas Mine)

Today we looked at some different parts of town with more of a focus on the old cable ways for shifting coal from the mines. Amazing structures with loads of weathered wood, paint and rusted metal… lovely.

Cableway

Cableway

Taubanesentrale (The Coal Cableway Centre)

Taubanesentrale (The Coal Cableway Centre)

We also spent a bit of time setting up our work space at Galleri Svalbard.


Week 1

The big development this week has been that we have hired a vehicle. As well as meaning we can venture further afield to film and records it also acts as a portable bird hide… not the most discreet colour but the geese seem to get used to it after 30mins or so.

The newest member of our a team

The newest member of our a team

Pete and Emma on the look out for polar bears.

Pete and Emma on the look out for polar bears.

Emma got a nice wee snap of an Arctic Fox out on the prowl on the road out to Bjørndalen, still with a wee patch of its winter coat.

Emma got a nice wee snap of an Arctic Fox out on the prowl on the road out to Bjørndalen, still with a wee patch of its winter coat.

Another Arctic fox spotted further along the road.

Another Arctic fox spotted further along the road.

We’ve been making the most of having wheels, exploring and scouting out locations for shots. We’ve also been speaking to a few of the locals and have been arranging interviews for next week when the weather is forecast to be not great. One of the people we are due to interview is Eva Grundal, one of the few people to have been born in Longyearbyen.

Maw and paw Barnie crossing the river with their bairn.

Maw and paw Barnie crossing the river with their bairn.

Super cute fluff balls under their maws wing… snuggletastic.

Super cute fluff balls under their maws wing… snuggletastic.