**PRETTY MUCH GOTTA BE VIEWED ON BLACK** The SECOND most over-photographed subject on the planet (right behind “The Tree” in Portland). So how did Breezy and I end up photographing it? Well we drove there. I’ll pause while that last sentence sinks in. *Tap tap tap*. “Is this thing on?” Truth be told, Kirkjufell wasn’t really on our agenda. We had visited most of the icons of Iceland, and we were nearing the end of our trip and discovering that the most inspirational images were made off the beaten path, and that’s where we wanted to stay. But we were hunting aurora, and that meant finding some clear skies. The only sliver of the country not bathed in clouds was the NW, and with zero time to scout we settled on this location 5 hours away for our evening shoot. After arriving I just knew we had made a mistake, as the forecast changed to show solid clouds showing up just before sunset, and hanging around all night. We were treated to a really lovely sunset that Breezy NAILED (see the shot on his 500px page – David Thompson) and I COMPLETELY butchered (see the shot in the trash on my hard drive) but as night fell the skies were staying clear, the moon hadn’t yet risen, and we settled onto the lake shore and waited in the cold. And then the show began. We had seen several good nights of aurora, but none in the total dark of a moonless sky. We knew that a solar storm had upped our chances on this night, hence the mad dash across the country to find clear skies and a compelling subject matter. The display just kept getting better. I think Breezy wept (ok it was me who wept) while watching wave after wave of green energy rip across the sky. Firing non-stop, I was SOOOO thankful that I knew that Ryan Dyar was going to release his 4th video explaining how to do vertical pano stitches because that was the only way to get the scene to fit this way with the rocks in the FG, the reflected aurora, and the sky. The video out now, and I watched it before processing this shot. It’s brilliant for people like me who are not too smart, and can be picked up on his website, a link to which can be found on his 500px page. It was a matter of shoot sky, shoot reflection, and then after getting some good aurora action, shoot a 3 image focus stack for the FG under the same light. Repeat. What step is missing from that saying? “Lather, rinse, repeat?” Well if the Lather is the aurora, and I’ve repeated the process, what’s left? Oh, RINSE you say?? Well screw you. My camera listened. As the lights began to fade, I was panning down for one last FG sequence when I felt the camera disappear from my hand. The following sounds were heard in sequence: air
MOTHERF^&**&KERSONOFAB$TCHMILEYCYRUSSH*TFU#$ER Good news/bad news. Good news, the aurora was pretty much finished anyway. Good news #2, the last day and a half of shooting was socked in with bad weather, so I didn’t really miss the fact that I had killed my beloved 14-24. Good news #3, it was TOTALLY worth smashing my dear lens for this trip as we got so lucky with conditions during our time that I was due for a little bad karma. Bad news, I didn’t realize until later that there were solidly 20 people watching this display of light around Kirkjufell that night, and I’m sure ALL of them heard the obnoxious American swear in a language usually reserved for bad porn at a decibel level only achievable by jet engines and Mariah Carey. I apologize to all.
Miles Morgan: Photos
KirKameraJuFell by Miles Morgan
**PRETTY MUCH GOTTA BE VIEWED ON BLACK** The SECOND most over-photographed subject on the planet (right behind “The Tree” in Portland). So how did Breezy and I end up photographing...