We recently went on a winter camping adventure to capture Iceland images. After a week driving and camping around the country in all kinds of weather, I’m happy to bring you some of my favorite images.
We had some great weather, and some terrible weather during our one-week stay. I’ve chosen to highlight some of the incredible hues with color images, and contrast some of the stark landscape shots with black & white images.
Scroll to check them out below, or click here to read more about our trip.
Story cont. below…
Let’s Go to Iceland!
I’ve been wanting to go to Iceland for a while now. It seems like in the past few years, it is the trendy and cool destination for travelers and photographers alike. The statistics at Reykjavik’s Keflavik airport confirmed that: tourism is increasing at a staggering rate. In a country with 320k inhabitants, the number of visitors in 2016 incredible: 1.7 million. That’s a 40% increase from 2015!
So, obviously Iceland is popular with tourists. And with good reason. It is one of the most beautiful and interesting locations I’ve ever been!
Business and Pleasure
I found out that Katy and Taylor, a kickass couple from the Bay Area (who’s wedding I’m covering later this year), were traveling to Iceland for a week. My wife and I decided to take advantage of cheap tickets from the West Coast to combine a visit and an engagement shoot with these two (blog coming soon). How could I not jump at the chance to do a winter engagement shoot in Iceland?
Traveling to Iceland in January has some advantages: fewer tourists, cheaper prices for rentals, and a greater chance to see the Northern Lights. The risk of poor weather and relatively short daylight hours made for a more challenging trip sometimes, but one that was definitely worth it.
We found out from some super friendly locals that Iceland was having an uncommonly late winter period. This meant they hadn’t had many major snowstorms for the year. We got the pleasure of experiencing their first big one for the year – on the top of a hill in our Camp Easy campervan, no less. We made our return trip to Reykjavik surrounded by a blanket of white.
Having only one week in Iceland is not enough to see the whole country. Yes, it is a relatively ‘small’ island, but the pure, stark beauty of the landscapes is so incredible, we wanted to take our time. Also, the 2-lane ring road that skirts the whole country is in good condition, but distances between towns are LONG. We did a ton of driving. From the tourist-saturated Golden Circle, to the whole southern coast until Hofn; driving a 4WD campervan is the best way to see the country.
The waterfalls, mountains and beaches were so unique and beautiful, but it was the light and color that struck me the most. With only 5 or 6 hours of daylight per day, the sun stays close to the horizon. It is like having perpetual ‘golden hour’ – one of the reasons photographers geek out so much here. The colors themselves are pure, but muted at the same time: a fine and delicate combination. I’ve never seen tones quite like the glacial blue of the Ice Lagoon, the rich green of the foothills, or the pure blackness of the lava rock beaches.
All this to say, Iceland: you are amazing and I can’t wait to come back.
Want to schedule an elopement or engagement shoot with me in Iceland? Hit me up and let’s make it happen!
Sebastien Bicard is a wedding and portrait photographer based in California. He specializes in international travel and intimate weddings worldwide.