Where the Ice Flows



Exit Glacier er en brearm til den store isbreen Hardings Icefield


Exit Glacier er en brearm til den store isbreen Hardings Icefield

På vei innover mot en brearm til Portage Glacier



About a week ago I got back from a quick trip to Alaska. First time visit for me. We were there for a wedding, but of course we took the opportunity to roam around a little and discover what Alaska had to offer – an abundance of nature and wildlife, and some really nice small-towns spread among fjords, white caped mountains and gigantic glaciers and ice fields. Unnecessary to say I took a lot of photos. Although we got to see all kinds of wildlife, ranging from humpback whales, orcas and sea lions to sea otters, moose, eagles and all kinds of other birds, it was more than anything the vast fields of ice digging their way through mountain ranges and throwing themselves into the fjords or lakes, that impressed me. Coming close to a glacier brings forth a sense of prehistoric era, of gargantuan, almost threatening organisms and of coldness, slow-moving danger and respect. The photos shown here are taken around the Kenai Peninsula and processed in Photoshop to create some of the feeling the glacier struck with me. This will not be my last time visiting Alaska.


112 thoughts on “Where the Ice Flows

  1. What an amazing glacier. Otto.

    I would love to visit Alaska and the National Parks there. The best I can do is look at this type of glacial formation on my Alaskan and Himalayan dvd documentaries (of which I have quite a number).

    I like the editing effect you gave your images – make them look like photos or film from the early 20th century explorers.

  2. Wonderful captures! I really like what you did with processing. I visited Alaska years and years ago and would like to return one day.

  3. Your interpretation via processing reminds me of archival photographs by earlier explorers. You’ve given the scenery a past-meets-present ambience. Truly, capturing the confluence of environmental issues with the wild. As usual your skills and talents show. How fortunate you are to have had this experience.

    1. I am glad you see my processing as a reminder of earlier explorers. That’s the feeling I wanted to convey. Thanks for the wonderful feedback, Sally.

  4. You have captured “The Flow” perfectly with your photos and processing. Everyone I know who has ever been there is totally overwhelmed by the beauty and majesty of the ice. Most, like you, say they will go again.

  5. your amazing photos of ice look paradoxically as warm as the summer in Berlin: hot! for, to me, some of them resemble deserts. great effect! 🙂

    1. The processing is a little bit elaborate. I first processed the pictures regularly in Lightroom and Photoshop. Then I made a mask for each photograph as a mapping for the filter Lens Blur to make a resemblance of having used a tilt-and-shift lens. I continued with adding different pictures of rusty metal plates to each photo, desaturated them, set the blending mode to vivid light or pen light or some of the other blending modes in that category (depending on each photo) and lowered the opacity to around 40 percent. Finally I used the Bi-Color Filter in Color Efex Pro and again lowered the opacity of the layer to around 40 percent to offset the colours in the photographs.

  6. So beautiful! I love your processing of them. My husband lived in Alaska for a year or two before we were married, and we’ve always said we’d visit. Still haven’t!

  7. Stunning images Otto that really convey the enormity and beauty of the glacier and the processing in photoshop has really added a terrific finish to already intersiting images. One gets the feeling of the coolness of the ice as well as the fact that they can be very dirty due to the scree debris. Thanks for sharing these and have a great weekend. James

  8. Great shots and with great processing. While I think the shot themselves are terrific, it is the processing that makes me stare at each one a little longer as I gather in the mood you generated. Very good, like Edmund Hillary should be walking down one of those glaciers.

  9. Underbart att se dina bilder från Alaska, tusen tack för dem!
    Jag längtar!
    På väg dit…åker till Anchorage 14 augusti och hem från Seattle en månad senare…däremellan väntar sköna vyer, strapatsrika utflykter, kryssning från Whittier till Vancouver och mycket, mycket mer:)
    See You!

    1. They do look like glaciers in Norway except these might even be more grandiose – and we hardly have any glaciers calving in the sea, which is quite a spectacular scenery. Thank for commenting, Nina.

  10. The master photographer…as always, inspiring and bringing wonderful places I would love to visit. Grateful for cyberspace travel…are there polar bears? Saw a documentary about the rapid loss of ice space for these beautiful animals and their problems coping. Hope they can keep up with environmental changes.

  11. These pictures are very beautiful. I was just scrolling down but they got me stopping… Mountains can be so haunting in some way. I recently even wrote a post about how much I love them :). The effect you put on the pics make them even more nostalgic to me. I’m really glad I saw these!

  12. Stunning images and very effective processing to give them a vintage look. I have been to Alaska and was in awe of those spectacular glaciers.
    The processing gives me a nostalgic feeling similar to what I experience when I look at old postcards I have from Yellowstone.

  13. Alaska has always been on my list of “must-see” places. Your photos make that desire even stronger. Very nice processing, too! It reminds me of old slides (which, to me, is a good thing).

  14. Great photos, Otto. Is it just the time of the year or does the ice seem thin? Still beautiful though. Have never been there. I should probably put it in my list of places to see

  15. Thank you for liking “The Witching Post.” These photos of Alaska are wonderful. The shapes and textures of the ice and the landforms are interesting to look at. I like how the vintage look of the photos taps into the “prehistoric” quality of the glaciers.

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