Icelandic Culture
Practical info
18 September 2019

Iceland Winter Photography

One of the best things about Iceland is that no matter where you look, there is something spectacular to photograph.

Below we will give you some ideas on what to do if you find yourself on your way to Iceland, with dreams of taking beautiful, instagrammable photographs.

What do you need to bring?

The most important thing to bring, apart from your smartphone or camera, is a tripod. When photographing during winter in Iceland, it is probably more likely than not that you will be taking photos in darkness or during the incredibly long twilights. 

Are there any special settings for winter photography?

Most smartphones have some sort of “pro” settings in the camera app. You can change the ISO and shutter speed there. Those are the two most important things to fiddle with when photographing in something other than daylight (and even in daylight it is handy).

To be able to photograph the Northern Lights, for example, these are the basic settings:

  • Change the ISO to at least 800, but the ideal would be 1600
  • Change the shutter speed to at least 10 seconds, 20 seconds is great
  • If you can, put your focus setting on infinite
  • Use a timer to take the picture

Play around to find the best setting for you, your camera and the area you are in. You have the power! You have the machine to take all the fantastic photos you dream of – you just have to find the right setting!

Isn’t this only for professionals?

That’s the beauty of this whole thing! If you follow the directions above and play around a bit with ISO and exposure, you will be able to take just as beautiful photographs as the professional photographers. Just remember, most fix their photos a little bit in Photoshop or a similar photo editing software. 

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