Blue Iceberg, LeConte Bay, Alaska, USA by Brenda Tharp

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Picture Story

While working as a photo instructor aboard a larger ship southeast Alaska's Inside Passage, my group set out in small inflatable boats to explore as far up Le Conte fiord as possible in search of wonderful icebergs and scenes. We found many, and spent much time capturing the wonderful shapes, and colors. Then it was time to return, and we were zipping along to get back to the ship on time, when we spotted this incredible large blue iceberg in the bay. My boat was a group of photography enthusiasts and I was the instructor, so we begged our driver for 'just one more photo' and he slowed down a little to let us have a go at getting a photograph. I kept my shutter high to be certain that I didn't have any camera shake, as in an inflatable boat with people moving around all the time, and underway, you can never be too sure with waves and such.

In hindsight I might have lowered the shutter speed a bit, but we had just been photographing harbor seals amidst the ice but I didn't need any more depth of field for the shot and there wasn't much time to shift settings. We were mesmerized by the deep blue and varying hues of this giant piece of ice. A fresh piece that had calved very recently, it contained very densely compressed ice that would not let the blue wavelengths pass through, hence the incredible colors. When working from small boats, it can be a challenge to land your focus on your subject, with wildlife, but thankfully here the texture of the iceberg was enough for the camera to see and grab focus.

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