ICELAND PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP
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The Iceland photography workshop will begin at the Keflavik International Airport. On your arrival, you will be transported by taxi to our hotel for the night. We will have a group dinner to get to know everyone and discuss the exciting days ahead.
Overnight: Keflavik, Iceland
We will head out early this morning to start our photography at a remote waterfall that has a spectacular blue hue in the water as it trickles down the rock walls. We will take a short hike to get to this waterfall and most likely be the only photographers there. This waterfall lends itself to many different compositions as we can walk all around the area. We will devote plenty of time for everyone to work the scene and capture the images they desire.
We will then continue our travels to two more spectacular waterfalls. At our first waterfall, we will put on our muck boots and rain jackets. We will take a short walk up the canyon for spectacular photos as the waterfall drops into the canyon. This waterfall lends itself to use of HDR bracketing due to the dynamic range of the canyon as the water falls into the dark canyon.
We will then head to the next waterfall that drops 200 feet (60 meters) from the rocky cliffs. This waterfall is unique as you are able to walk behind it into a small cave. The 360-degree access around the waterfall provides us with stunning opportunities to capture unique images. As the sun sets, we will hope for the sky to glow with colorful pinks and reds adding to our compositions.
We will hope for clear skies and Northern Lights as the light fades. If we are treated to an aurora, we will use one of the many waterfalls in the area in our composition.
Overnight: Skógar, Iceland
The next morning, we will head out before sunrise to photograph the iconic Skógafoss waterfall (foss means waterfall in Icelandic) situated on the Skógá River. This is one of the largest waterfalls in Iceland with a width of 82 feet (25 meters) and plunging 200 feet (60 meters) down. This waterfall produces a lot of spray due to its size which can lead too colorful single or double rainbows for our images.
We will work many different compositions from below and then those opting to get a different vantage point can take a short hike up to the top of this impressive waterfall.
We will then continue our journey to the site of a US Navy C-47 Dakota Airplane (military version of Douglas Super DC-3) with its remains on the black sand beaches.On November 24, in 1973, the World War II era Dakota crashed on the black sand beach on Iceland’s shoreline. Luckily, all the crew members survived the crash, and till this day, the remains of the aircraft create a dramatic photography spot.
We then continue on towards the coastal town of Vik and will stop off at a two scenic Icelandic churches, a lighthouse overlooking rugged sea stacks that jut out of the ocean, and an arch the sea has carved out over thousands of years.
In this coastal area, the black sandy beaches and interesting basalt formations set in the rugged cliffs will provide countless compositions.
If the Northern Lights are visible tonight, we will visit a couple of sites in the area that would add interesting foreground subjects to our images.
Overnight: Vik, Iceland
This morning we will setup for a sunrise shot complete with waves breaking on the black sand beaches and sea stacks in the background.
After sunrise, we will continue photographing the South of Iceland as we head towards Vatnajökull National Park. Our first stop of the day will be to do a little photography of the mossy covered black lava rocks.
We will continue to the beautiful Fjaðrárgljúfur canyon. The canyon is 330 feet deep (100 meters) with the Fjaðrá river flowing through it. We will head down to the river, and photograph the many compositions with the towering walls. If we have any extra time, we will continue and photograph it from up top. As we continue to the east, we will stop off at a couple of other sites and a location for the Icelandic horses. As we enter Vatnajökull National Park, we will then go to the Skaftafell preserve, home of the Svínafellsjökkull glacier, where we will have many photo opportunities. After a 40-minute hike you will be rewarded with a stunning black waterfall off the beaten path with impressive basalt columns on either side.
We will then continue to an abandoned farm with turf covered roofs. The farm dates to the Middle Ages, however was moved to the current location in the mid 1800’s as the river rose. The views from the farm overlooking the valley are impressive.
After leaving the preserve, we will continue east to a beautiful Icelandic turf covered church. It is surrounded with a volcanic rock fence and colorful grasses that will make great compositions.
We then continue in the Vatnjökull region to the Jökulsarlon Ice Beach. As the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier calves off large ice chunks, the ice is washed out of the glacier lagoon and into the ocean. As the waves pound the ice back to shore, it then washes back up on the black sand beach. The beach is littered with the beautiful glacial ice which has been compressed over centuries.
As the sun sets, we will hope to catch the colorful light reflecting through the ice for incredible images.
Overnight: Jökulsarlon, Iceland
We will spend another day in the Vatnajökull Glacier National Park and focus on the famous Jökulsárlón black sand ice beach and the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon (a glacial lake famous for its colorful calved icebergs). The lagoon is right next to Europe’s largest glacier, the Vatnajökull glacier.
During the day, we will work on photographing the light rays through the glacial ice chunks as well as visit the Fjallsarlón Lagoon and photograph the enormous blue ice chunks as they float in the lagoon.
While at the lagoon, we will be keeping an eye out for the Northern Lights. If the weather corporates, we could be treated too colorful green and red skies over cold blue glacial ice.
Overnight: Jökulsarlon, Iceland
We will enjoy a sunrise at the Jökulsárlón Ice Beach and then make our way out of the Vatnajökull National Park as we head west to the gorgeous Snæfellsnes peninsula. As we work our way west, we will have the opportunity to revisit some sites if the weather did not cooperate on our first pass.
We will visit the stunning Mount Kirkjufell with the gorgeous Kirkjufellsfoss waterfalls in the foreground. There are many different compositions at this location, each as special as the other. As the sun sets we will hope for a great colorful display.
We can only hope for a Northern Lights display at this photogenic location with the waterfalls, mountains, and Grundarfjörður Bay as the backdrop.
Overnight: Grundarfjörður, Iceland
Today we will explore the Snæfellsnes peninsula. There is so much to see in this region including more Icelandic churches, lighthouses and sea stacks. The Snæfellsnes peninsula is heavily populated with Icelandic horses and we will photograph the horses when we find them with dramatic backgrounds.
We will also explore a small volcanic crater, and those wishing to take the 10-minute walk can venture inside the caldera.
Overnight: Grundarfjörður, Iceland
This morning we will head to Mount Kirkjufell for another photo opportunity and hope for a colorful partly cloudy sunrise. After the sunrise, we will begin our trek back to the Keflavik International Airport to catch our afternoon flights to our next adventure.
(Workshop schedule and planned locations are subject to change due to weather or other unforeseen events.)
PRICE INCLUDESThe cost of the Iceland Photography Workshop includes all the following amenities:
- 8 days/ 7 nights of lodging in Iceland. Double occupancy (Single occupancy available)
- Transportation during the workshop
- Transportation to/from the Reykjavik-Keflavik, Iceland airport
- All meals during the photography workshop
- Park entrance fees
- Instruction in the field with your photographer guide all day long
- Photography classes and photography workshops on photo editing techniques
- Planning package including recommendation on the proper camera gear and clothing
- Prior to embarking on your journey, we are happy to provide a free phone consultation with your trip leader, who will give you guidance on what equipment to bring, answer questions about the locale, and give general photography advice to make sure you are ready to capture your dream image.
- We take care of all the trip logistics once guests reach Iceland, so the only thing you have to concentrate on is having a fantastic time and capturing beautiful images of this stunning country
- A GREAT time!
- Transportation to/from Reykjavik, Iceland
- Alcoholic drinks
- Travel/Cancellation/Emergency evacuation insurance
- Personal Items
You should be in good physical health. We will be planning a couple of short hikes with photography gear to get to fantastic locations.
Most walks are under an hour and surfaces are typically dirt and uneven. Our biggest hikes are a 2.4 mile (4km) each way, on a smooth gravel road with no altitude gain taking normally 1-1.25 hours each way and a 3.4 mile (5.5km) round trip on improved trail with 700 feet of elevation gain with multiple photographic opportunities breaking up the hike.
If you are concerned about the physical demands of this trip, please contact us and we would be glad to discuss the typical day and options for your needs.
PHOTOGRAPHY SKILL LEVEL
The Iceland Photography Workshop is open to all photographers, from beginners to professionals.
Fall temperatures in Iceland are normally very pleasant this time of year, with lows around 43 degrees Fahrenheit (6 degrees Celsius) and highs of 52 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius). This time of year, we have 12 hours of light each day, leaving opportunities for Northern Lights photography.
Matt Shetzer – Matt has been leading photographic workshops all over the worlds since 2011 and loves being outside enjoying nature. To read more about Matt, click HERE.
INSTRUCTIONAL TOPICSWhile our primary goal is maximum field time, we will take advantage of non-optimal photography conditions to provide photography workshops, discussing the following subjects in detail:
- Night photography
- Aurora photography
- Long Exposure photography
- Achieving the best composition
- Motion blur to add movement to your images
- Proper exposure for the scene
- Focus techniques for that crisp image
- Filters for the digital age. Split ND filters and polarizers
- Getting the most out of the histogram
- Mastering the modes (when to shoot manual, aperture and shutter priorities)
- Taking images for HDR (High Dynamic Range)
- Image workup techniques with Photoshop and Lightroom. At each workshop, we demonstrate how to work up attendees’ images from scratch, displaying our nondestructive techniques to produce the highest quality image.
- Best Plugins to use
- Color Correction
- Layers and Masks (Targeted adjustments)
- Noise reduction and sharpening techniques
- Lightroom and portfolio management
- Photography discussions – Review select images and discuss which images work and why to expand your skills and move to the next level
Over the course of the Iceland Photography Workshop you will learn photographic techniques to hone your digital photography skills, learn how to achieve the perfect exposure with the camera and take control of your camera to achieve the sharpest and highest quality images.
CAMERA EQUIPMENT TO BRING
- A wide-angle lens from 24-80 for landscapes
- A wide-angle from approximately 14-24 lens for landscapes and Northern Lights photography. Faster the better (f2.8-f/4)
- Tripod with a ball head
- Polarizer filter
- Graduated Split Neutral Density filters. 2 or 3 stop with a soft edge is normally preferred
- Cable release/Wireless release
- Camera Bag/Backpack
- Camera rain gear for misty waterfalls
If you need assistance in selecting gear to meet your photography goals just let us know. All guests will receive a detailed planning package to assist in the process prior to the trip.
The magnificent setting provides a spectacular experience for anyone involved in the Iceland Photography Workshop. Non-photographers are welcome to join us in the field and join in on all activities with a discount of $250.
Read what our fantastic guests are saying about our Photography Workshops. Client Comments
CANCELLATIONS/TRIP INSURANCEWe recommend trip insurance purchased from a third-party operator to protect your travel investment against medical emergencies, attendee trip cancellations, travel delays, and emergency evacuation coverage. All tour cancellations must be submitted in writing and will result in loss of deposit. Full tour fees are non-refundable if cancelled within 90 days prior to start of trip.
WAITING LIST – IF A TRIP IS SOLD OUT
Over the last few years all of our trips have sold out. We start to fill up about a year before the workshop and keep the website updated with the current workshop availability. If a workshop is full\sold out you can add your name to the waitlist. If a spot becomes available we will contact the guests immediately on the waitlist in the order they signed up. We tend to have the most cancellations 90-180 days before a trip starts so being on the waitlist can help you get on a sold out trip. We require no deposit to be on the waitlist.
The cost for the tour is $6995.00 USD. There is a single occupancy option at a cost of $650.00.
To reserve a spot on this tour, we require a $1,000.00 deposit per person that is paid by credit card at the time of registration. Full tour payments must be completed 90 days prior to the start of the tour and are paid by check or bank transfer.
Once the final trip payment has been received, the detailed trip planning documents will be sent to each guest to assist in planning for the best photography workshop.
Our workshops are based upon a first come, first serve basis. Workshop availability will be updated on this page.
If you have any additional questions or would like to speak to us, please contact us at 303-888-2710 and we would be happy to answer your questions.
ICELAND PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP
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