South Iceland Winter Adventure
I have been travelling to Iceland for nearly a decade now. It is, for me, one of the best places to go and photograph. It is so varied. Flat plains near the coast, rugged mountains with dramatic peaks and a wilderness in the interior, all of which changes with the seasons. Of course, what is characteristic of the place is the ubiquitous black sand, a constant reminder of the past, and current, volcanic activity. Given these characteristics, the whole place has become a mecca for landscape photographers, and rightly so.
When you first visit Iceland, it is difficult not to photograph the iconic sights that have been presented to us on social media and in numerous photography magazines. These scenes are compelling, and the results never fail to satisfy. Even having visited so many times, it is difficult the resist the gravitational pull as you drive past the basaltic columns of Vik Beach and the mighty cascades of Skogafoss. However, now I feel less hurried and I don’t have the compulsion to get those fabulous sights in my camera viewfinder. Now when I return, I like to take my time, to look around and find different subjects to photograph, and that is what I did on this trip during the winter of 2021.
I think it does pay dividends to slow down, to stop and look at what is around you and, in this case, what is at your feet. Having visited this beach before, I was seeking out something different from the powerful waves crashing on the black sand before they retreat back into the sea. I was drawn to the angular snow line created after the advancing waves had receded. It was kind of quirky as it did not conform to the velvety curves the waves formed on the slope of the beach.
This would be a very abstract image if it were not for the very clearly defined cloud formations in the distance. However, the rest of the image is suggestive of the location and of course features the hall mark black sands of Iceland.