Man vs Nature - Black & White

Like everybody else this year, traveling for tourism was not really an option for most of us. Luckily though, right before the world started going into lockdowns, I had the chance to go on a trip mid February to Iceland with the Offbeat crew led by my favorite photographers Paul Zizka and Dave Brosha.

Every year the offbeat community has a photography theme, where this year's theme was Black and White. Before 2020, I can count on one hand the photos I processed as Black & White, yet without realizing, a lot of photos I took in Iceland fell naturally into Black & White mostly due to the black lava sand and large silhouette mountains. 

Without further ado, here are my favorite captures from this year showcasing humans in the face of nature. Iceland was a constant reminder of the power nature has, whether it came in the form of beauty, force or size. I constantly felt in awe and I hope I was able to portray this in my photos.

You will notice that every single photo in this series has water in it in different forms. One of my favorite philosophical sayings is by Bruce Lee where he says:

Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle, it becomes a bottle. You put it into a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can flow, or it can crash. Be water my friend.
Alternatively, water can be as soft and nice as a smooth splash in a safe pool, or raging over our heads in a form of a rainstorm or flood. It's beyond me how we only remember the power of nature only in bad moments. We ought to give it the respect it deserves, at all time.

I was struggling to find the proper frame to capture this waterfall specially with so many tourists around, but then it dawned on me how small in comparison do they appear and used that as the main component of the framing.

Don't underestimate these sneaky waves!

When we went to Mount Vestrahorn, we had a chance to play with reflection, one of my favorite style of photography.

This view felt like it transported me into an old time. I particularly enjoyed the exposed left side and the haze coming out of the mountains, making it a bit of a magical moment for us.

The only landscape photo I have in this series, I also have a vertical one but I felt this one really portrayed the man versus nature. Look at the man, and look at the wave, and you can start to imagine the splendor we witnessed. It was also a beautiful colorful sunset.

For the last two photos of this series, it was not easy to let go of the beautiful hues of blue that we see in ice caves, glaciers, and icebergs. Specially the way they reflect light at different times of the time. 

I hope you enjoyed the black and white journey through Iceland. It's a magical place. I have been there twice already and I plan to go again. 

Happy 2021!


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