BiographyHarland Philip Nasvik was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1908. He received his BA degree from Luther College in 1931, with a major in economics and a minor in biology. He furthered his education by taking courses at the Minneapolis School of Art and the University of Minnesota during his years after graduation.
From 1927-31, he owned and operated a photographic studio in Decorah, Iowa. Later he became a photographic technician for Wright Studios in St. Paul, Minnesota, and worked for five years as a photographer for the University of Minnesota. In 1940, Nasvik became an assistant professor in charge of photo-visual services at the University of New Hampshire. At this time, he began to specialize in food photography. During World War II, he worked with the U.S. Army and Honeywell to improve the optic lenses used in tanks.
In 1947, he began working as a photographer for General Mills, Inc., in Minneapolis. There he did the photography for Betty Crocker cookbooks and products such as cake mixes. Nasvik was the head of the photography department before he retired in 1973 from General Mills. His photographs were selected for exhibits by the Annual Exhibitions of Professional Photography and for various traveling loan exhibitions. After his retirement he started Harland’s Camera Graphics in Minneapolis where he continued to do food photography and calendars. Nasvik died on October 22, 1993, in Minneapolis.
Nasvik was a lifetime member of the Professional Photographers of America where he achieved Master Craftsman status. He was the recipient of many national awards for his outstanding photographic achievements. His photographic techniques were featured in slide programs and illustrated booklets. He received a Distinguished Service Award from Luther College in 1978.
The photograph of President Elwin Farwell by Nasvik in the Fine Arts Collection was officially presented to Farwell at Homecoming on October 3, 1981, to mark Farwell’s retirement.
Source of Biography“Nasviks Present Farwell Portrait.” Luther Magazine. October 1981;
Obituary, Minneapolis Star Tribune, October 25, 1993