Photo of the week: The Peak Stands Proud

An abrupt rock peak rises into the snowy skies in the Lemaire Channel, Antarctica

This image was taken in Lemaire Channel, Antarctica -AKA Kodak Channel because of the photography opportunities it presents. It’s a beautiful, frozen channel, flanked by rocky outcrops, hills and icebergs. We visited over New Year 2006-2007 on the Akademik Shokalsky. Sailing through the channel at 6am, we were lucky enough to capture sunrise in this spectacular setting. We watched the morning light break through the clouds and kiss the tops of the mountains and their hillsides. It was a dark morning, moody and overcast. Any shafts of light that penetrated through the clouds cast shapes and images onto the still water and snow.

This one rocky hilltop caught our eye – seemingly standing proud and alone in the channel, it was cloaked in clouds and intrigue. Balancing our cameras on the side of the ship for stability, we braved Arctic temperatures in our PJs to capture this amazing image.
Many years after our visit to Antarctica we started to experiment with black and white photography, using Bibble Pro (5) to apply black and white plug ins to some shots. We’ve never before considered the impact of changing Antarctic images to black and white – it almost seemed to go against the grain of taking such care with our white balance and taking such effort to capture the blue of the ice.

However, we immediately loved the effect. To create this shot we used camera stock Kodak Kodalith and applied a black and white plug in via Bibble5. We also amended the exposure of the shot to emphasise the mood of the scene. It was taken with a Canon EOS 30D, exposure 1/160 at f/6.3, ISO 100 with exposure bias +2/3 EV.
This picture reminds me to change my perspective on ‘the perfect shot’ – to look a little beyond what expect from our photography and to learn to experiment with post production. That’s why this is my photo of the week.

Further black and white images of Antarctica are available in our online Antarctica gallery.

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