David Gifford Photography

Making the Galley Head

Photo: Making the Galley Head

Less than a month to go now until Up Helly Aa 2013, so an appropriate time to look back at my time over the last 18 months 'embedded' with the 2012 Jarl Squad with a small selection of photos. I was fortunate to be asked to take photos for the squad, and have to thank Jarl David Nicolson, the squad and all involved with the festival for the privileged access - and for the fantastic and unique experience.

The photo above is of David shaping the galley head for his 2012 galley. It was the twelfth and final time David has made the galley head, handing the role over to a future Jarl, Brydon Wright. With the shield designs and bill heads from previous decades hanging in the background, you can begin to get a sense of the history and tradition involved in Up Helly Aa; the large quantity of wooden torches already piled against the wall meanwhile show the rapid approach of the big day!


Image #477