The Westfjords – Vestfirðir – region is the most affective landscape in all of Iceland, with a power to seize and move the soul like perhaps only the best of Indian classical music can. Towering flat-topped mountains define its fjords and give the area its topographical signature. But such supreme beauty also exacts a price: this remote and sparsely populated corner is burdened by harsh, unforgiving weather. The land here has been steadily emptying out the past 75 years. Geologically the Westfjords are older than the rest of Iceland – glacial fingerprints are everywhere.

Selárdalur is located on the southern shore of sublime Arnarfjörður. In this valley lived Samúel Jónsson (1885-1969), often referred to as an “artist with a child’s heart.” His is said to be a form of naiveté art, and his work survives today near his dwellings which include a church and a house. A restoration project is currently underway at the site.

Selárdalur was also home to another maverick, the hermit Gísli Gíslason (1907-1986), who lived alone on the farm Uppsalir, completely sealed off from all human contact. It is said that when he eventually ‘came back,’ the prolonged isolation had impaired his ability to speak Icelandic.

Selárdalur

Selárdalur: Samúel Jónsson's dwellings
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 
Midnight sun in Selárdalur

Midnight in Selárdalur
5D Mark II, 70-200L f/2.8 IS II

 
Artwork of Samúel Jónsson

Artwork of Samúel Jónsson
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 
Golden light

Golden light in Selárdalur
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 
 
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The scene around midnight tonight at the Smáratún farm in Fljótshlíð in south Iceland. In the backdrop, obscured by mist and clouds, is the active volcano Eyjafjallajökull.

In Fljótshlíð

Midnight at the Smáratún farm in Fljótshlíð
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar + 3-stop Singh-Ray GND Filter

 
 
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Sunset tonight a little before midnight from Heimaey in Vestmannaeyjar.

Sunset from Heimaey

Sunset from Heimaey
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 100 f/2 Makro Planar

 
 
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The view from my room a few moments ago at the Gerði farm in south Iceland.

View of Steinafjall mountain from Gerði farm

View of Steinafjall mountain from Gerði farm
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 
Wide angle view

Wide angle
5D Mark II, TS-E 24L II

 
 
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  • S.Suresh - June 21, 2011 - 3:55 am

    Like Arun, I too feel the 50mm one is a shade better than the other picture.

    Looks like you have settled down in Iceland. Have you? :)

    S.SureshReplyCancel

  • [...] more: (Another) Room With A View Posted in General Tags: makro, makro-planar, please-view, see-full-size, [...]ReplyCancel

  • Arun - June 20, 2011 - 8:59 pm

    The 50mm view is somehow better.ReplyCancel

  • Jon - June 20, 2011 - 6:24 pm

    These photos make me long for the Icelandic countryside. Thank you!ReplyCancel

This morning on our way to Loðmundarfjörður in the Eastfjords of Iceland, we descried a hapless ewe and her lambs in distress, buried in a snowy ditch at the top of the mountain pass between Loðmundarfjörður and Borgarfjörður Eystri. My friend and guide Börkur Hrólfsson pulled off a heroic rescue with his bare two hands. Mother and lambs are reported to be doing fine.

See video of the rescue operation below.

 
Börkur preparing for the rescue

Börkur launches the rescue operation
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 
The hapless ewe in the snowy ditch

The hapless ewe in the snowy ditch
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 Makro Planar

 

 

Update: This event received coverage in the Icelandic media. See here and here. Note that these links may be active for a limited time only.

 
 
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  • Kjartan P. Sig. - June 28, 2011 - 4:36 am

    Great trip you have been on with my friend Börkur. You have been to some of the most isolated places in Iceland.ReplyCancel

  • Bibliophile - June 20, 2011 - 2:03 pm

    I saw the video on the news the other night. Nice rescue.ReplyCancel

  • Sanjeev - June 19, 2011 - 5:13 am

    Amazing !!

    A Nat Geo moment !!ReplyCancel