Stabben Lighthouse in Norway

Posted by HH on Jan 19, 2018

This illustration was included in the online article “Fyret på skjeret“, published January 19th, 2018 by Kystverket, the Norwegian Coastal Administration.


The tiny little «Stabben» lighthouse is found on an islet right outside of Florø in Sogn og Fjordane, Norway. The building covers almost the entire islet. It is a wonderful and slightly strange sight when you glide past it in a sailboat, as I did in May 2014.

The name «Stabben» can mean round, steep stone. It can also come from the Norse word stabbi which means short, cut off part of a log, or solid stocky person or plug. All of these words can easily be used to describe the little islet that Stabben lighthouse has been built upon, as well as to describe the building itself.

The lighthouse was manned and inhabited from October 1st, 1867 to 1975. Unfortunately, in 1975 the lighthouse was automated and unmanned. Legend has it that at some point in time as many as 30 members of the lighthouse keeper family were living on Stabben – at the same time! This legend inspired me to make the drawing. Although my originally plan was to fit all 30 people into the picture, I soon realized that I was facing an impossible task. In the end I included only 6 people – and even that looks a bit crowded. The characters have clothes and styles based on photos from the 1860’s. The weather on Stabben is seldom as quiet as portrayed in this drawing. I was tempted to draw a story scene, but ended up portraying a quiet sunny summer day.

Size: 21 x 29 cm (8 x 11 inches). Materials: Pigment ink pen and colour pencils on acid free drawing paper. The image shows a high resolution scanned copy, true to original colours.

Where is the original drawing?

The drawing was on display in our bed & breakfast for about a year, and was then bought by a visitor from the Netherlands. She lives in a maritime environment in the Netherlands and said the picture would fit perfectly on the green wall in her living room.

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