Monday, January 31, 2011

Ursaphobia Anyone?

Polar Bear

I spotted a polar bear up on a barn roof the other day. That's not something you see every day.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Winter Vs. Autumn

Winter Vs. Autumn

This is the Hagstugan at Skogs Ekeby in Tungelsta. Three hundred years ago it was a Rättarbostad. That's where the foreman of the farm usually lived. It belonged to the Skogs Ekeby Mansion. I shot the winter half of the diptych just a few days ago. The right part of the photo is from November 2004. I think the old cottage is used as a summer house these days.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

A long long time ago...

...three brothers lived at a farm at Tuna in Tungelsta. This is the Skogs Ekeby runestone in Tungelsta. The inscription reads: Vigils and Gerhjälm had this stone made after their brother Gudbjörn -björn cut the stone. The road here, Skogsekebyvägen, dates back to the Viking Age, as does of course the runestone itself. The three brothers lived at a farm at Tuna one thousand years ago. Something I always think about whenever I walk by here. Over the centuries the runestone has been moved around. The original position was probably on a field nearby Tuna. A little over a century ago in 1886 the runestone was found at a bridge where it had been used as foundation! The reason for that is most likely that the people who lived here a few hundred years after the inscription was made didnt understand the runic alphabet.

Friday, January 28, 2011

That Old Tree

That Old Tree

This is a rare sight. A car driving on the snowy path at the old tree. But there's no need to worry, because the driver from the Mulsta horse farm, was only preparing the path for the sulky training you sometimes see here. Oh, and in case you say what does he mean one car, I see two? It's the same car, I just had some fun with a software. And there's been two day with sunshine and a blue sky!

Skywatch Friday.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Fire in the Sky

Afternoon Sky

A couple of years I took many photos of sunsets for some reason. These days it doesn't happen all that often as it isn't a very exiting type of photography. But after this long winter with so many grey skies and all that dark it was hard not to notice the fire in the sky yesterday afternoon.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Frozen Stiff?

You Can't Sit Here

It's been a long and cold winter. And there's more to come if you want to believe a report from Weather Services International. It is that North Atlantic oscillation that is the problem once again. I really hope they are wrong.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011



The traditionalist in me told me not to buy this semla yesterday, as it is way too early for that sort of thing. Luckily I didn't listen to that voice. In fact I never do!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Welcome To Nedersta

One Year Later

The sad remains of the old barn at the Nödesta farm. It collapsed last winter. It is owned by the municipality. They don't care much about it. It is a leasehold estate but the farmer care equally as little. But it is a lovely sight none the less.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Few Splashes of Yellow

A Splash of Yellow

A Yellow Cottage

Winter in Sweden

Yellow is a popular color among house owners in this part of the world. Here are three examples from Tungelsta. The first photo is from Fornminnesvägen, which could be translated to Archaeological Road. Second winter house is Oak Hill at Skogs Ekeby, the road here date back to the Viking Age. The last one is a little cottage ad Frideborgsvägen. Frideborg is an old female name that is a combination of piece and protection.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Winter Gates

Gates of Winter

This is Upper Välsta. Looks a bit snowed in here doesn't it. The white building today belongs to Christina whom you have met here before. Välsta became a farm sometime during the Iron Age. That was back when Tungelsta was known as Thungirsta. On one of my visits (when there was no snow), Christina showed me the remains of a Domarring from the Bronze Age. A couple of decades ago the little village still had a genuine old feel to it, but that is not the case today as some of the old buildings are gone and a few new ones have been built. You have a decent view over the surrounding areas from Upper Välsta and you can actually see the old tree from here.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Full Moon

Full Moon

I obviously don't believe in Astrology, but once in a blue moon I will take a photo of said satellite. Three years ago I did shoot a red moon during the Lunar Eclipse. Actual blue moons does really happen. When it does, it is because of dust in the atmosphere, like after the Krakatoa eruption back in 1883 when the moon looked blue for two years.

Skywatch Friday.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Changing Perspective

Optical Illusion

I walked by the Visual Illusion Company again yesterday. The first time I saw this trick of the eye was back in November. That time I didn't notice it until I looked at the photo on the computer. This time I saw it as I lifted the camera. The perspective of the barrels change back and forth all the time.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

That Old Tree

That Old Tree

That Old Tree from steffe on Vimeo.

Two weeks ago I decided to test a new online tool. It is called Pummelvision and with this fun toy you can make videos using your own photos. If you have a flickr account you can easily make a video from a set, and that is what I did with my 230 photos of the old tree. People seemed to like the video and a few days ago ABC World News from New York asked me if they could show my video in a piece about Pummelvision. Oh, and the latest photo of the tree is from yesterday.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Rail Track Maintenance Equipment Operator

The Rail Track Maintenance Equipment Operator

Last winter I saw several derailed locomotives around Haninge. This time around the municipality is trying their best to avoid such problems. And as it was a warmish day (5C), it was the perfect time for such measures today. This guy was busy removing ice from the rail track at the Håga Industrial zone, where one locomotive got stuck back in March of last year. He told me that Greif Sweden was expecting a rail delivery this afternoon. And he was a bit mystified about the fact that locomotives no longer are equipped with snow ploughs.

Wasn't that a long title!

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Mold Inspector Was Here

Some Mold For The Kids

Remembers those lazy pre-school kids I mentioned in a post about some tire swings at a playground? Looks like more problems heading their way now. The nice looking school building at Lida in Tungelsta have now been condemned! Apparently it's not just the kids that spends a lot of time here, but also millions of microscopic organisms. There was a meeting last week when the parents were informed that the school will be teared down because of the mold problem.

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Puzzled Me

This post is a bit different. Last year someone came up with a social photo game in one of my flickr groups. The idea was to take a photo and cut it up in 35 smaller pieces. Each participant was then given one piece of the puzzle, but we didn't know anything about the other pieces, and only one person knew how the original photo looked. Our mission should we choose to accept it was to go out and find something that looked like our part of the puzzle. When I received my piece I was as puzzled as the above self portrait shows. After two months I was close to giving up but in the end I decided that my piece looked a bit like a railway track. A couple of days ago the puzzle was finished and below you can see the final result. It is of course impossible to see that this is supposed to be a famous painting! But if you would like to find which painting it is, hop over to Dopiaza's blog for a cool widget that has the answer.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lunch in the Pasture

Lunch in the Pasture

I took a promenade around Tungelsta today. A few people out and about. And heading home I stopped at a horse pasture where the owner was busy feeding the horses. Looks like hay was on the menu today.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Tree Framed Entrance

Oak Framed Entrance

If you look closely at this photo showing the populus framed entrance to the former Vassal's place at Mulsta, you will probably notice the difference compared with the photo I took here just six weeks ago.

Skywatch Friday.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Winter vs. Autumn

Winter vs. Autumn

Time for another post in my series Different Seasons. This is the tree lined avenue leading up to the Nödesta farm. The left half of the diptych shows how the avenue looked yesterday. It snowed a bit, but it wasn't very cold. The right half of the photo dates back to October 10th.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Winter Scene

Winter in Sweden

On my walks around Tungelsta I sometimes stop for a photo at Sveaborg, which is the name of this property at Skogsekeby. I showed you a great winter photo of Sveaborg a little over three years ago and this is how it looked a couple of days ago.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

That Old Tree

That Old Tree

I had to wade through the semi hard snow to get to the tree yesterday, only to realise that the farmer from Mulsta had ploughed the path from the other direction. The good news of the day is that the recent (six week long), cold spell is over. In other words, the negative phase of the North Atlantic oscillation phenomenon is over. From now on it will be a normal winter. Whatever that means these days.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Icy Workout

Icy Stairs

The cold spell seems to be over. At least for a few days. We had +2C today. Can't remember when that happened last time. I got a pretty good workout yesterday when I spent some time removing the thick layer of ice that had formed on the stairs. Tools used for this free workout routine was an axe, a snow shovel and a spud bar.

Sunday, January 09, 2011



Swedish word of the day: Uteservering. In English, Outdoor Café. The restaurant at Allévägen in Tungelsta looked a bit more inviting back in May when I took a photo for a New York Times project.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Taking the bike for a walk

Taking the bike for a walk

Tricky to use a bike on days like this one. The roads were very slushy yesterday with the temperature hovering around 0C. Later in the day the temperature fell and the roads become dangerously icy. The walkways are even worse as there's a decimetre of snow on most of them. So it's a tough life being a cyclist these days. My bike has been locked away in the basement for two months now, so I was very impressed when I noticed this man out walking with his bike and dog, heading towards the grocery store. I hope he made it home in one piece.

Friday, January 07, 2011

The Winter Saab

The Winter Saab

Remember that stolen Saab I showed you back in December? That had been badly dumped on the 200 year old tree lined avenue Allévägen at Hammar in Tungelsta? When I took that first photo it had already been there for two weeks. I emailed one photo to the municipality and they responded within a couple of hours, promising to deal with the matter. Two months later it is still there. It has snowed considerably since, and the snow ploughers have been forced to drive around it. Some of the local morons have of course been at the scene and vandalized the car, smashing a couple of windows. I have taken a few more photos of the wreck since, and figured it was time to make a flickr set and show you a slideshow. I will add more photos over time. I wonder if the Winter Saab will be here come Midsummer?

Thursday, January 06, 2011

How To Build an Igloo

Spot The Kid three easy steps.

1.Move to Haninge.
2.Step outside.
3.Persuade someone else to build it.

I found this heap of snow at Hagavägen in Tungelsta yesterday. I was admiring the snow bank together with this very impressed kid and his grandparents. Sure looks like it would be enough to build a group of igloos. So if you are up for it, be sure to read this article before you get going.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The Winter Photographer

The Winter Photographer

I took my first street portrait of the year yesterday. This is Ulf Andersson. He was out on a winter photo promenade (-10C), and when I spotted his Nikon camera I moved in for a portrait. He already knew who I was so I didn't have to explain too much. Uffe is a former engineer that for many years worked for Ericsson. Today he has his own company in a completely different field. Ulf repairs windows made from hand blown glass, and he also designs new windows in an old style. His parents owned one of Tungelsta's many greenhouse businesses, a place called Erikslund. The greenhouses are long gone, but today Ulf lives with his partner Maria at Erikslund. He is yet to set up a flickr account, but you can see a few photos at Fotosidan, and he also told me to visit Handlaget where you can see some of his work.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Partial Solar Eclipse

Morning Light

There was a partial solar eclipse this morning. I headed out between breakfast and coffee to see if the light would change, which it did. It did get a bit darker as the sun was blocked by the moon. This is a school building in Tungelsta where I was a student many moons ago. And I have played football on the pitch, but I think it will be a while before anyone will try that this year.

Monday, January 03, 2011

A Prisoner of Winter

A Prisoner of Winter

Out on a winter promenade yesterday I spotted my friend and former class mate Åke up on the roof of his house at Fornminnesvägen in Tungelsta. He was busy working out. Shovelling snow is a good way to stay fit, and way cheaper than going to the gym! I think it's possible that I have seen too many Hollywood movies lately, because as soon as I noticed Åke's outfit the phrase orange jumpsuit came to mind, hence the title. If you are curious about how the house looks press here.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

That Old Tree

That Old Tree

The alternative title might have been:

Wading Through the Snow

I had to wade through what must have been sixty or seventy centimetres of snow yesterday to get to the old tree at Välsta. After a long cold spell with temperatures between -20C to -10C the new year started a bit warmer, and it was 0C as I took the first promenade of the year. As you can guess it was quite a tough walk through all that snow, but as I knew that the result would be another fine photo of the Swedish Whitebeam I carried on regardless. Oh, and the eye is much better today.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Best of 2010

A Summer Wedding

The new year kicks off with the theme Best of 2010. For me it is always the people I meet and the portraits I shoot that are the highlight of the year. It would be impossible to pick the best one as they are all great, but here is one fun meeting. The Summer Wedding. And if you would like to see the other portraits have a look at the 140 first photos in the slideshow.

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants