Sunrise View Above Ilulissat, Greenland

Sunrise view looking down onto Ilulissat, GreenlandCanon 5D Mark II camera and Canon 24-105mm f4 L series lens @ 47mm.

Ilulissat is one place that's right out of the box. Sadly, there are far too many countries where you're likely to see local lads wandering around with rifles slung over their shoulders. But in this sleepy backwater, the town where most tourists end up, the only folk likely to be toting arms are local hunters.

But its one of those things that give this distinctively Greenland town just enough of a wild west feel to make it interesting. But there's also the midnight sun and, from mid June to mid August, the opportunities for great landscape photography are everywhere. Keen photographers need to adjust their body clock as the best light is likely to occur from around 9pm till 3am or later. You can now wander and linger without the rush that usually exists, as we chase the light around the edges of the day, in environs closer to the equator.

I made the above photo just after 3am towards the end of a long hike around the Ilulissat Ice Fjord, a huge area filled with icebergs varying in size from that of an outhouse up to that of a skyscraper.

After leaving the ice behind I followed the track up to the top of a small mountain range and set my tripod up in very blustery conditions. The textural qualities of the scene suggested a black-and-white rendering. But the color of the light, and that of the town below, won out. The shapes in the foreground rock, together with those on either side, produce a natural frame for the town below. The warm and cool colors in the foreground rocks are repeated within the buildings in the mid ground and again in the mountain range and sky. This helps to increase the sense of 3-dimensional space.

While a long way from my home in Melbourne, Australia I'd love to return to Greenland. And I think it would be just as interesting, albeit more challenging, in mid winter as it is during the time of the midnight sun. ©

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Glenn Guy, Travel Photography Guru