Central Highlands of Iceland

In September I returned to Iceland to conduct a photographic tour in the central highlands of Iceland. It´s a place that has been drawing my interest for the past few years as I´ve made several visits there over the Summer and Autumn months.

Hraybeyjalón,, Central Highlands, 2016 Image © Bruce Percy

Hraybeyjalón,, Central Highlands, 2016
Image © Bruce Percy

I think this is a very beautifully stark, exceedingly special place. A jewel amongst jewels in the Icelandic landscape in my opinion, but it is not for everybody. Those that seek to shoot sunsets and sunrises will be mostly disappointed here, because this landscape really doesn't suit that kind of treatment. If one embraces the monochrome aspects of it, then I feel we may be on the right path to not only accurately represent what we saw and felt, but also, to excel at getting the best out of this landscape.

Veiðivötn, Central Highlands, 2016 Image © Bruce Percy

Veiðivötn, Central Highlands, 2016
Image © Bruce Percy

The central highlands is abstract. It is a photographer's building site of strange shapes and minimalist tones, and it is also often highly complex.

Being able to see motifs and graphical elements that work well to make a beautiful photograph are often at odds with what the landscape offer. These elements are often suggested, or hidden in a complexity of fractured geology. This I feel, is the skill in photographing this place: to tell a clear and concise story that can be easily read and understood without any overcomplexity.

And what about visiting here? Well, the Fjallabak nature reserve requires delicate handling. although it can be a harsh place - you need to understand and respect that you are dealing with a less adulterated version of nature, it is also a place that requires your respect because it is delicate. It's remoteness and difficulty in getting in here for the general tourist has to a large degree, saved it from being damaged. If you do come, treat it well and understand that it is one of the last true wildernesses that most of us can visit in northern Europe.