People at Goðafoss

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People at Goðafoss

Aren’t people lovely? This waterfall was designed by The Gods, for The Gods, and yet all we see there are lesser mortals!

Godafoss selfie

I didn’t even see this guy when I was taking the shot. Of course, I had all that Golden Sun in my eyes, it was only the Magic Cloth that allowed me to see him afterwards! Selfie-photographers are a new species in Iceland. They appear regularly at Jökulsarlon and sometimes in large numbers.

Wouldn’t it be great to see his shot as well?


Famous People at Goðafoss

The Icelandic sagas will tell us about people at Goðafoss waterfall many hundreds of years ago. Apart from the famous denunciation of the Old Norse Gods a thousand years ago that gave the waterfall its name, Godafoss was visited by one of my favourite Saga Characters – Grettir The Strong. Strictly speaking he was thought of as half man half ogre. But for the purposes of this article, Grettir was a person at Godafoss.


This guy is in the same spot, but in the Summer. Also, you might notice he is trying to avoid being in his shot. He has the camera between himself and the subject (which gets my respect). Shorty after this shot was taken, the young photographer became frustrated and threw his Nikon into the falls. A drone appeared and dropped a Canon Camera onto his tripod.

I shot this from the other side of the river with my Canon EOS 135mm f/2. It is a beautiful prime and I was at a good distance to balance the figure with some interest at the bottom of the falls. The single fall is very beautiful really deserves a vertical frame of its own. The person gives a great indication of the height of the falls.

Trend setting

Basically, people are becoming more and more common at these beautiful Icelandic locations. This is mostly a response to all the pictures we and our customers have been posting on the WWW and this in turn attracts other photographers and photo tour companies who do the same. The result is an influx of people who want to see what us photographers have seen.

On our tours and workshops we can’t avoid tourists at the top locations. I tell my guests that every person who gets into your shot is teaching you something about photography. The biggest lesson of all… if you can’t handle it, you should give up photography.

This was a super clever magic cloth shot with a reverse cloth to preserve the sky and the guy was very still taking his iphone picture so it worked out. Except that I don’t like the sky after all. I think the long exposure destroyed the magic as the clouds must have been blowing quickly.

My photography companion was not so keen to go down to the spot where this guy was due to a fear of heights (I guess that includes slippery slopes down to waterfalls). Also he was with many thousands of dollars of Phase One medium format camera. This camera is as heavy as my whole back pack.

Anyway, he decides on second best with a composition from higher up the bank (to my right). Then this guy just walks down the wet muddy slope to shoot the scene with his phone.

Godafoss tourist

My next question… why do people flock to waterfalls? What is it about falling water that attracts so many people?

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