Diamond Beach in Iceland | Sunrise
37 Frames

Diamond Beach in Iceland | Sunrise

Have you seen those amazing photos of the black sand beach in Iceland, where it looks like diamonds have washed ashore?

This photo was taken at sunrise during the 37 Frames Photography Workshop we held along the spectacular South Coast of Iceland.

Breiðamerkursandur, popularly known otherwise to visitors as the Jökulsárlón ice beach, is one of the most amazing photography spots on the South Coast of Iceland.

A few tips on safety:

  • Rubber Boots and Waterproof Pants are a must. The water is freezing and once your feet get wet it's very likely that you won't be able to continue shooting for much longer.

  • Watch and observe the strength of the waves for a while before starting photography. Or work with a photo buddy and take turns looking out for each other. This beach is notorious for waves that claim cameras, tripods, as well as lives. Figure out if it's high tide approaching or low tide receding the swells of the water will be different.

Some camera equipment tips:

  • A Wide Angle Lens (for example 12-24mm). This photo was taken with a 24-70mm lens. But ones taken on our wider lense exaggerated the size of the ice pieces the horizon, so a wide angle lens is one to consider.

  • Filters. These will help you to get the drawn-out effect in the water, but also to balance out the exposure in the foreground and the sky. A good place to start is with 3 stop and 6 stop neutral density filters, as well as 0.6 and 0.9 HE graduated filters.

  • A sturdy tripod.

  • A trigger release

  • Make sure to have some microfibre cloths in your pockets to dry off your filters and lens from the water spray.

Tips for Shooting at the Diamond Ice Beach:

When photographing at the ice beach, try to find interesting fragments of ice, which will make for a good subject to focus on. Take a look at this one here - we love it.

It's best to choose icebergs that are blue or transparent in colour, as they catch the light.

Mount your tripod firmly in the sand. Dig it in deep to help prevent the tripod from moving too much once the water swirls around it.

Adjust your camera settings before you start. Set the white balance to Auto, aperture to F11-F16 to ensure that everything is sharp and in focus, adjust your ISO to get the right amount of exposure and you're ready to go.This image was taken at ISO 100 @2sec.

WAVE PAINTING is done as the waves recede around the Ice at a shutter speed from 1 sec to 2 seconds.

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