Magical Iceland Landscapes


Glacier pearl on a pink planet.

Iurie’s workshop in the background.

Tagged: , Iceland , ice , ice lagoon , glacial laggon , Jökulsárlón , magic cloth , magic cloth technique

“Buckle up, It’s going to be a bumpy ride”!

What a fantastic moment it was to have the chance to capture such wonderful scenes in a fantastic setting.

“A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed.” ― Ansel Adams

“A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people.”
— Annie Leibovitz

The Magic Cloth Technique

The Magic Cloth Technique is a an exciting technique to expose a scene with high dynamic range.

When you have to balance the highlights in the sky with the shadows on the ground like a average aurora display, the The Magic Cloth Technique is a great gadget for your camera kit – so convenient and inexpensive.

Magic Cloth photo tips


ND Filter: (not at night, only in daylight)

I prefer round filters for wet weather.

strong Tripod:

I like to get as low as possible for foreground detail so no center column are certainly nice features to look out for on your tripod. Stabilize your tripod so it becomes sturdy. Moving the Magic Cloth can introduce vibrations. But, this is good practice for fine art long exposure photography.

Avoid raising the center column unless you really need to. The center column is the weakest link of the tripod.

If your tripod has a hook between the legs, suspend something from it to give extra stability. Many travel photographers carry a special harness to put stones in to give a good weight which will support the tripod steady – even in strong winds.

Some more Long Exposure hints…

Shoot Stunning Seascapes With These Long Exposure Tips

Shutter bulb:

Exposure times can be longer than the 30 seconds your camera will allow. Having a Shutter bulb (sometimes called “infra red Shutter release) will allow you to expose: as long as your power allows.

Magic cloth:

Choose a large cloth like a hat, or black card of similar size. Should be able to cover the whole surface of the glass. Better to be Black. A dark colour is better. Use any shaped cloth, as long as you can get a straight edge.

What to do:


Start with a filter or low light for a longer exposure time, then over expose the image by 2 – 3 stops.

Shutter speed

There is an advantage to a long Shutter speed. 2-5 seconds requires a fast, but smooth action to cover the sky within a reflex time. 5-10 seconds lets you have a controlled exposure of the middleground.

Magic Cloth Motion

I usually bring the cloth down as fast as possible and bring it up slowly.

Different Methods

Change the Motion to allow many short exposures of the clouds, rather than one initial exposure (30 seconds and over exposures only).

Spot meter for the highlights and {multiply that shutter speed by 3 or 4|then x 4 to get the total exposure time.

Witness more Ice and Auroras on our Photo Workshops.

Thanks for popping by

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