Elvar Ørn


Elvar Ørn Kjartansson is a self-made photographer and has worked professionally for the last 6 years. In search of motives, he has traveled around the world, from the deserts of Namibia and the US to the icy desert of Antarctica and the Arctic, exploring a wide range of techniques within the art of photography.
For two field seasons, Elvar Ørn has traveled to Antarctica as a field assistant and a photographer with the Norwegian Polar Institute. There he has captured and documented the determination, the hardship and the unbelievable beauty that awaits an expedition that enters this last frontier. Not least has he had the opportunity to photograph the wildlife, in particular the amazing Emperor and Adelié penguins.
His true passion lies in photographing the Earth from the skies above. His perspective of the earth changed when he captured his first frame from the tiny open, microlight aircraft above the highlands of Iceland. The colours and patterns of the earth from above constantly draw him back up.
For me capturing the image is just the beginning of the journey of the photograph. I have to master the art of print making so that I can end the journey. Over many years I have mastered the technique of ink jet printing. But this was not enough, the images deserved more andI am always looking to develop and push my own limits higher. My search did not lead me to some new printing technology but back in time, to the beginning of photography.
For a long time I had dreamt of mastering the craft of Photogravure which is considered by many as the ultima in fine art photography printing. It is one of the oldest, most laborious and expensive method to get a photograph onto paper. It is the very same technique as Edward Curtis used to print all his photographs.
This year I finally dived right into it, full on, and have produced many Photogravure copper plates from my images and made many prints from those plates.
In the discipline of Photogravure the color photogravures are by far the most challenging, involving 4 copper plates to make a single image. Each plate is assigned its own colour in a CMYK colour separation. It takes over 3 days of very intensive work to make the plates ready for printing The outcome is a print that is no longer a photograph but Intaglio print that will last for millennium.