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Yorkshire based Professional Landscape and Wildlife Photographer

Iceland 2016

Posted on 26/01/17

It's currently snowing outside so I'm writing up last years Autumn Iceland photography workshop I co-led with friend and pro photographer Mat Richardson (Mat's website is here). I'd worked with Mat a few years previous in Abisko and we had got on really well. He did plant the seed with me at this stage about running some workshops in Iceland. His brother had bought an old property in Akureyri (in Northern Iceland) and was renovating it.

The idea of these workshops appealed in a number of ways;

1. I love Iceland it's an amazing country. I am quite keen on going to areas with not that many people and the South (and South West and South East) is now very very busy. This can IMHO lead to sites with to many photographers and also producing images which are very similar to what I've already seen. The North however is a lot quieter and even at some of the iconic sites like Goðafoss waterfall at first light you can be the only people there.

2. Both Mat and I both get on very well and also have very different styles, approaches and strengths therefore as guides we bring more experience to the workshop. Neither of us are just landscape photographers either and we wanted to build different elements to a workshop depending on what people wanted to learn (i.e. macro, portrait, aurora etc)

3. I'd seen the photographs of the house in Akureyri and it's amazing. Plus as we where doing the tours via an Icelandic company we where keeping things above board.

4. We both had the same idea about small groups so we could travel comfortably and provide a maximum of one guide to 3 client ratio for plenty of 121 time.

So in 2016 the house was finished and was a perfect base for the tours. As well as being super comfortable. By far the best base I've ever used for a photography workshop. Pictures can be found here.

I'll let the pictures from the autumn tours do most of the talking.

This 1st section of shots was more your classic Icelandic landscapes and where done either targeting a location and going for a set time or just casually driving round a number of photogenic driving routes where theres many great views.

Refelected light in the valley II

Autumn Grass Seascape


Goðafoss II

Church in Stormy Weather


The next section is dedicated to the Icelandic horses. The horses provided a wet weather option but also an option to work portraits and think about how subjects can fit with the environment to combine with landscape photographs.

Fighting Horses

Wet Horses

Horses and Rainbow

Reflected horses

Horse Smell

We didn't market the trip as an Aurora tour as the weather in Iceland can often be cloudy but we did have some great auroras during the trip and the 3rd shot here actually made my 1st front page before the season had even begun!

Reflected Aurora

Mat and Aurora

Aurora Factory

And of course I can't go a few weeks with doing some wildlife and macro photography. Gave a great opportunity to show people how to stack images and how handheld stacking is not really that difficult!

The humpback whale, the gull and the jellyfish shot where done whilst we took the clients on a whale watching trip.





There are still insects to be found in this region during both Autumn and Spring so finding this small crab spider was a perfect opportunity to do a demonstration on handheld stacking.

Spider Stack


After such a superb trip we are running another 2 trips in the Spring. Exactly the same format maximum of three clients to one guide, 2 large vehicles so plenty of room and the same fantastic house in the quite North of Iceland. Will give us an opportunity to see the amazing country in different conditions.

If your are interested either drop me an email at or enquire through the Landleit website here.

Any questions, please let me know, happy snapping!


1 Comment
  • Great write-up Oliver!

    I participated in the workshop this past Sept and it was truly a fantastic adventure.  Well structured and organized and chock full of a variety of locales and activities. Superb instruction and guidance by Mat and Oliver.  Their styles are different, yet totally complimentary, so you get exposed to different approaches and techniques for every shooting opportunity. I loved their balance of helping me while valuing my input on what I was seeing and trying to accomplish in a shot.

    Great accommodations at the newly remodeled guest house, very comfortable.  The transportation was comfortable and well suited for some of the rougher areas we ventured in to.  Plenty roomy for all of our gear. Some of the places we visited are quite remote and offer no safety railing or fencing.  I was impressed how Mat and Oliver started the trip with a safety briefing and stressed it every day while we were out in the field.

    Their approach to an open schedule to best deal with changing weather conditions was great and they discussed next day planning and options with the group every evening. They really worked hard to be at the right places when the weather was most cooperative.  Very professional guides with great senses of humor who were always working to maximize our experience.

    I had a truly wonderful time and highly recommend this workshop for everyone regardless of your photography expertise level. Not to mention you’ll get a chance to photograph some of the best scenery Iceland has to offer.

    It was certainly the greatest adventure I’ve ever been on!


    Glen Pierson - 27 January, 2017
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