Travel Photography

Casey Kiernan’s Iceland Images Workshop Evaluation

A images workshop is a good way to discover a brand new location, study a brand new approach, or shoot with out the pressure of getting to plan something.
Earlier this yr I attended Casey Kiernan’s (from Joshua Tree Workshops) Iceland Workshop. I had such a beautiful time that I needed to share my expertise with you.


What Made Casey’s Workshop Distinctive

The distinctive half about Casey’s images workshop had nothing to do together with his intensive data of the nation. Nor his expertise in images, or the detailed guides he supplied us with. You’d count on that from any high-end workshop. No, probably the most distinctive half was our mode of transportation. The camper vans.
In contrast to conventional images workshops the place you’ll keep in motels or campsites, crossing fingers that the climate performs good (it not often does in Iceland), we took to the street and had the liberty to discover.
We had been a pack of 5 totally different vans, and each day, we’d test the climate, choose a location that had what we had been in search of, and drive. Most nights we’d scout out the Auroras, typically driving late into the night time, chasing them down.
Over 8 days, I drove a complete of two,500 kilometers, exploring the japanese and southern components of Iceland. On the finish of it, I got here away with a number of the most beautiful pictures of my life.

View over the Gulfoss Waterfall in Iceland

What I Cherished About Casey’s Images Workshop

The Prep

A couple of weeks earlier than we left for our journey, Casey supplied us with an in depth PDF of all the things we would wish. This included:

  • detailed info on the totally different areas we’d and wouldn’t go to collectively (nice for these of us who had been arriving early)
  • clothes to deliver – I’d have frozen with out my ski pants, headlamp, two pairs of gloves, and waterproof boots
  • digicam gear to pack – I invested in some ND filters which made all of the distinction to my pictures

The information actually made all of the distinction. The climate was brutal after I arrived, and with out it, I’d have been very misplaced and really chilly.
Natural ice sculpture in the shape of a large blue crystal, coming out of the waves

The Location Scouting

Casey has been to Iceland a number of occasions, and his data of which spots to go to and through which climate situations actually made all of the distinction. Not solely had been we in a position to go to a bunch of areas that you’d by no means have noticed from the street, however we all the time arrived in probably the most beneficial situations.
Kirkjufellfoss seemed nice within the snow, however the 3km trek out to B-52 Fuselage would have sucked within the rain.
Photo of the Kirkjufellsfoss, taken during Casey Kiernan's Iceland Photography Workshop

The Settings Assist

Casey may inform you which digicam settings to make use of for any shot off the highest of his head. I assumed at first that we would wish lengthy exposures of 30 seconds or extra for northern lights images, however the fact is that they transfer quicker than clouds, dancing round above you. Along with his assist, I settled on a excessive ISO, a large aperture, and a shutter pace of between 2 and 5 seconds per publicity.
Northern lights picture with a lighthouse to the right, showing the Aurora Borealis colours

The Modifying Assist

This journey was after I first realised that I wasn’t actually doing my pictures justice with my enhancing course of. Casey would sit down with us most days, stroll us by enhancing the pictures we had taken, and present us his strategies to take advantage of out of them. This was an enormous assist, a lot in order that we later even made a course on it.

What May Be Improved within the Future

There’s little or no that I’d have modified about this journey, however there’s one factor that’s value mentioning.

Backup Gear

I’ve by no means given a digicam such a tough time in my life. I misplaced a part of the mode dial and my eyepiece, and cracked the top of a lens hood. Icelandic climate is brutal. We had two Canon 5Ds break throughout this journey. I believe it was resulting from moisture, and we had been fortunate that with some intensive drying they got here again to life.
Had photographers not had backup cameras, their journey would have been ruined. There wasn’t actually an emphasis on this within the PDF that Casey despatched out.
Bear in mind your cameras are climate sealed, not waterproof!
landscape picture of ice river with frozen pieces of ice floating in it and mountains in the distance, taken in Iceland


Right here’s a number of the areas we visited. The pictures converse for themselves, and it was actually one of the crucial thrilling journeys of my life. I used to be like a giddy baby after I first noticed the Auroras. Take into account that bucket listing merchandise checked off!
landscape picture of the Northern Lights, shot during Casey Kiernan's Iceland Photography Workshop
black and white photo of three horses, shot during Casey Kiernan's Iceland Photography workshop


This journey was actually particular. Certain, the climate was harsh, the dwelling situations weren’t snug, and the Wi-Fi was unreliable, however I got here away with some actually beautiful pictures and improved as a photographer.
That’s all I can ask for from a images workshop. I need somebody to indicate me one of the best areas, plan all the things for me, educate me one thing new, and assist me produce some wonderful new pictures. Casey ticked each field.
The workshop was certainly not low cost, nevertheless it was value each penny. I’ll benefit from the pictures I took then for many years to return.
I additionally totally intend on taking extra images workshops with Casey, and I hope to see you there!
You possibly can try Casey’s workshops right here.
Milky Way photography showing a shooting star

Landscape photograph shot from above of Black Sand Beach in Iceland
picture of man on the wing of an abandoned plane wreck, part of Iceland's Ghost Fleet
panoramic landscape photo taken during Casey Kiernan's Iceland Photography Workshop