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Sunset Nostalgia

Posted by
Darkelf Photography (Perth, Australia) on 6 January 2021 in Landscape & Rural and Portfolio.


Hello in 2021! When we visited Iceland back in 2019, we kept waiting and looking for a beautiful sunrise or sunset with colourful clouds and golden light. In the end, we kind of found it right on the very last evening of our trip at Garður Old Lighthouse on the north western tip of Reykjanes Peninsula, not far from Keflavik Airport. At this stage I was willing to take any hint of colour in the sky and at least that evening gave us a lovely send off. Some northern lights would have been nice but that was just asking too much ;-)

We spent a bit of time in the afternoon and evening discovering the area of Rekyjanes to the west and north of the airport. There are a couple of lighthouses there and interesting bits of coastline can also be found when driving around. I was looking for some interesting compositions in case aurora was forthcoming but the forecast was not favourable and after driving back and forth we returned to Garður ready to call it a day.

This is where I noticed hints of possible colourful sunset. The clouds were hovering nicely just over the horizon and sun begun to break through after what started as a bleak and gloomy day. We had enough time to explore around the Old Lighthouse and I was able to to look for possible spots to take photos later. We were lucky enough that the tide was quite low and that uncovered enough of the shore to use it as for a foreground. I was able to walk out on the fields of seaweed and jump around some water pools to see if I could work them into the photo.

The seaweed was rather slippery and slimy and I found myself ending up in it a couple of times as I carefully threaded my way around, while keeping half an eye our on the sea in case the water level was beginning to rise. I managed to find a couple of compositions that I was happy with and where I could extract enough detail to add interest in the foreground. I had no problem keeping the foreground darker and I felt that it gave the seaweed additional alien like feeling, especially to the piles closest to the camera.

The light and colours in the sky were on the subtle side but still very beautiful and they reflected nicely in the water. That added a bit of separation to the seaweed, which I do not think would look too attractive on its own, if it engulfed the entire foreground space. I had my polarising filter on, as I usually do, however in this instance I turned its effect to almost minimum to retain the reflected colour in the water and also to give the seaweed a bit of extra shine in the highlights. I was hoping that it would result in better texture and detail.

It was a nostalgic evening in a number of ways. I was really longing for a decent sunset by that time of the trip and also I knew were leaving Iceland in the morning. It is my favourite travel destination outside of Australia and while we always hope to return, one never really knows if that will ever happen. Still it was a lovely evening to finish and a beautiful sight to take in before moving on.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV 30 seconds F/8.0 ISO 100 20 mm

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