2023 in Review Part 2

Test tes

2023 in Review Part 2

Part deux is here (Part 1 if you missed it here). Mid-August 2023. The scene is a wee campsite in the middle of the Icelandic Highlands. 6 photographers with far too many gadgets and a healthy supply of Irish Whiskey and Bourbon. Thor was the organisational backbone of the whole operation supplying all the necessary gear for a great week away with some top lads and great photographers. Our time in the Highlands was immortalised by the highly talented Thomas Heaton and Nick Page via their YouTube channels. I thought Thor was the only God on the trip but, I feel like it’s starting to rub off on me after my cameo appearance on the guy’s channels. For Nicks click Here and Here. For Tom’s check out Here. Plus don’t forget to check Tom’s video on how he got to Iceland in his van from the UK. Video Here. Fantastic week away with a top bunch of lads.


From left. The Might Thor, Thomas Heaton, Sean Bagshaw, Nick Page, Peter Gordon, Norman McCloskey. Click on their name to see the amazing things these guys do.

We had hummed and hawed about moving campsite but once the whiskey den had been set up and the backdrop was the towering peak below, there was little moving this band of merry men.  A mightily fine thing to wake to every day.


Image by Peter Gordon – Room with a view! What a stunning place to camp.

My photographic goal for the week was to shoot drone. I’ve been to Iceland numerous times and I wanted to photograph differently on this trip. I didn’t even take a tripod, and I just brought one camera body with my 24 – 70 and no filters. Sometimes you just have to commit to an idea.


Image by Peter Gordon – Just another amazing view driving through the Icelandic Highlands. It wasn’t a planned stop but the light screamed, ‘Thou shalt not pass’. and Im not one for arguing with Gandalf. I tried the shot handheld with the Z7 but the drone got me squarer to the river which I liked. Processed with TK 8 but looking forward to upgrading to TK9.

Image by Peter Gordon – An Icelandic riverbed as the tide drops out and the patterns pop through.

Image by Peter Gordon – A volcanic crater Iceland style. Sean got a great shot of this by hiking up. I can safely say it was easier to fly the drone.

Once September arrived it was unrelenting with a packed 2-month schedule of trips. We were blessed with some fantastic light and some great workshop participants. Things kicked off for me in the Faroes. Michael and Dino were also along for the ride getting trained up for a second Faroes workshop in 2023 and taking the reins in 2024. A slight bit of a bromance there, I’m not going to lie!


Two happy men at sunrise in the Faroes.

Image by Michael McLaughlin – We were treated to some epic light over at Saksun.

Image by Michael McLaughlin – Expect the unexpected with the Faroes. The islands are so exposed to the weather the light can pop in amazing ways.

Image by Michael McLaughlin – Spectacular location perfect for black and white.

Image by Michael McLaughlin – Layer upon layer ..

Dino had to get in on the action too!


Image by Dino Marsango – Stunning sunset light after a tricky hike.

Image by Dino Marsango

Image by Dino Marsango – Texture and so many patterns

Image by Dino Marsango – The clouds can have such unusual shapes as the weather systems pass.

And I edited a few too for good measure ..


Image by Peter Gordon – If you want to see epic dramatic light there’s just no place like the Faroes. Here’s one from Saksun. I had to tone the yellows of the waterfall down the colours were so intense. Ages to blend it and get the contrast looking respectable.

A classic view from the Faroe Islands. Risin and Kellingin. The larger stack is 71 metres high. Take that in, and hopefully, it gives you a sense of how vast and stunning these cliffs are.

Having Thor, Michael, and Dino away with us for the week in the Faroes was fantastic, and hopefully, you can see from these images what the Faroes are all about. Drama, with a capital ‘D”. Speaking of ‘D’, the Muldowney fella was busying himself with a very different type of imagery further south in amazing Brittany. The workshops were happening simultaneously. I’m happy to report the Canon camera worked throughout this time. Some stunning subtle imagery from Daragh.


Image by Daragh Muldowney – Serpent d’Ocean at sunset…this time from the viewing platform. f11 30 secs, 15 secs, 8 secs blend iso 100

Image by Daragh Muldowney – At Mont St. Michel. A stunning morning was had…mist and all and then a shot looking the other direction…always nice. 1/15 sec, f11, 50 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – Perfect calm and a wee bit of mist was just immense at Mont Saint Michel.

Image by Daragh Muldowney – Small thin sticks mark out a route to the Mussel farms in Brittany. F8, 2 minutes, ISO50

Image by Daragh Muldowney – A Diving Platform in St. Malo. f8,2 minutes, 200 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – A long exposure of this iconic lighthouse. Long lens so it was key to get a sheltered spot. 2 mins f11 50 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – A lighthouse sitting out on a small spit of land. 15 secs, f14, 50 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – An old and knarled groyne protecting the shore in St. Malo. f9, 2 Minutes, 50 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – The mussel farm…I normally shoot this from a side angle but I loved the sky and the rock at the back so tried a straight on version. F11 2 minutes ISO200 Kase Filters

Image by Daragh Muldowney – A Carrelet with lots of sky…I love a bit of minimalism. f8, 30 secs, 50 iso

Back from the Faroe’s and IrishLight was happening in Dunlaoghaire and the amazing Nick Page was presenting. Myself and Nick also managed a wee spin down the west coast to take some photographs and play some golf. For anyone familiar with Nick’s social media you’ll know the man is not just a great photographer but is also a very good golfer. I think 4 months is long enough to let the wounds heel. Hard luck Nick – hopefully you can beat me next time.


The weather was a little crazy wind-wise, but we did manage to take in one beautiful sunset and we caught up with Mads Peter Iverson, Nigel Danson, Michael Shainblum and Darren Spoonly for a bite to eat.


Image by Peter Gordon- The light was amazing and the rock structures out Dingle way provide such dramatic foregrounds. Great fun shooting this scene with Nick Page.

All hell broke loose in October. We had trips to the Dolomites, the West and South West of Ireland, Slovenia and Scotland. And before you ask, Daragh’s Canon camera worked throughout.


Image by Michael Mclaughlin – There’s nothing quite like the peaks in the Dolomites glowing at sunset.

Image by Michael Mclaughlin – Did we mention the glowing red peaks?

Image by Michael Mclaughlin – An unusual comp of this iconic location.

Image by Michael Mclaughlin – Layers upon layers. Not Photoshop, just mountains.

Image by Michael Mclaughlin – Light breaking on the stunning Cinque Torre

Image by Michael Mclaughlin – A top man for an architectural detail.


Back to the Celtic shores. Here are a few from an amazing week in the West of Ireland and a couple from Scotland.


Image by Peter Gordon – Front lighting is something I would only seek out on those changeable days when there’s a chance of rainbows. The light on this shoot changed so many times. I’d need a dedicated gallery for this just morning. Amazing Irish light ..

Image by Peter Gordon – A special morning of light in Connemara on Ireland’s west. Great clouds, stunning side light, and that all-important reflection. A morning to remember.

Image by Peter Gordon – A shift in the weather and a late change of plans. The mystical mystery of the mist was called upon and boy did our lady deliver. One of those special mornings.

Image by Peter Gordon – Just a calm and very beautiful sunset in the bogs of Connemara.

Image by Peter Gordon – The afternoon showers were coming and going so we decided to set up shop in a good position for a rainbow. All good things come to those who wait. More epic light Irish style.

Image by Peter Gordon – Perfect calm in Connemara and really low water levels allowed for this perspective.

Image by Peter Gordon – The tree that keeps on giving. There’s nothing like the west of Ireland to give a tree some character.

Image by Peter Gordon – Doo Lough is a stunning Irish location and one I have photographed many times. The wind was moving overflowing parts of the lake around and I managed to capture this unique foreground. There’s always another shot no matter how many times you’ve been.

Image by Daragh Muldowney – The Skelligs are always a sight to behold and on this evening the mist had just cleared in time to give us a light show above these iconic islands. 1/1250, f6.3, ISO 320

Image by Daragh Muldowney – The Beara Bowl….overflowing this time so I decided to shoot from a higher (and safer) location. 2 minutes, f11, 200 ISO

And Scotland

Image by Daragh Muldowney – Buachaille Beag, Scotland …a small reflecting pool in the foreground catching a fine sunset. 1 sec, f11, 100 ISO

Image by Daragh Muldowney – A new location for me in Glencoe, Scotland….looking up at the 3 sisters. .8 sec, f11, ISO 400

Slovenia is somewhere that you always hope for some stunning mists and we were not disappointed again this year. Some incredible moments and the flooded rivers created some unique situations. I also took this workshop with Jelena this year so the office was totally abandoned. #liberating


Image by Peter Gordon – One of those really special moments. We arrived in dense fog with zero visibility. A bit of patience – the clearance was just immense.

Image by Peter Gordon – At one point the mist enveloped the island and the big lens was perfect for isolating the floating monastery.

Image by Peter Gordon – Pre-dawn at always stunning – lake Bled. The excitement is palpable when there’s mist and reflections. It’s a place where the mist rolls in and out so waiting through the phases of light is key. Here it is pre dawn.

Image by Peter Gordon – Waiting for the mist to clear in the foothills of Slovenia. Amazing to see the shapes of the trees coming in and out. Love this type of long lens detail shots in conditions like this.

Image by Peter Gordon – We experienced some torrential downpours in Slovenia this year and the rivers were flooded. It mostly made shooting quite difficult but we managed to find a few spots where the heavy run on the water worked great..

Image by Peter Gordon – Using the crazy water depths to our advantage.

Image by Peter Gordon – Ive never seen this lake so flooded and the usual comp wasn’t available. Great to get something different.

The year of travel ended as it had begun. Thor and I,  on the road, post-sunset beers, and lots of laughs mixed in with some great photography. We were back in Iceland. For the first time my 15-year-old daughter came to a workshop with me as part of her work experience for school. Fantastic to have her on this trip which included helicopter rides to ice caves, plus some amazing aerial photography from a six-seater plane.


Image by Peter Gordon – Flying above the glacier.

Image by Peter Gordon – Flying over endless sheets of ice is quite the experience. The blue patterns just go on for miles and miles. I was lucky to have a warm sky in the backdrop.

Image by Peter Gordon – A quick grab out the window of our helicopter en route to the ice cave.

Image by Peter Gordon – Off-the-charts sunrise for our final shoot in Iceland this year. This was 1.5 hours before sunrise. The light was off the scale.

Image by Peter Gordon – Waves and textures at the ice beach. Ignoring the ice.

Image by Peter Gordon -Wet feet assumed but oh my, that ice is glorious. Only in Iceland ..

Image by Peter Gordon -Aerial picture from a 6-seat plane. The black sand beaches were awash with golden sunset light and the glacial river was glowing too. Amazing colours to witness

Image by Peter Gordon -The sulpher-rich sediment gives Icelandic rivers this rich yellow colour. Just a wee splash of light for good measure as we flew overhead in a six-seater plane.

So that’s it for the 2023 review. We have so many more images to process that will come out during the year but hopefully, this gives you a good account of our adventures. Thanks as always for all the support and hope to see you guys for sunrise in 2024. Best wishes for now .. Peter



Sandymount, Dublin : 19 Jan 2024 : 4 Places Available

Coliemore Harbour, Dublin : 20 Jan 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

The South Wall, Dublin : 21 Jan 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Lanzarote : 22 – 27 Jan 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Lofoten, Norway : 29 Jan – 4 Feb 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Lofoten, Norway : 6 – 12 Feb 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Senja & Lyngen, Norway : 6 – 12 Feb 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Donegal, Ireland : 7 – 10 Mar 2024 : 1 Place Available

Isle of Skye : 7 – 11 Apr 2024 : 2 Places Available

NEW Dingle : 11 – 14 Apr 2024 : Available

Morocco : 17 – 27 Apr 2024 : 3 Places Available

NEW Kerry : 25 – 28 Apr 2024 : 3 Places Available

Tuscany : 29 Apr – 3 May 2024 : 1 Place Available

North Coast Ireland : 1 – 7 May 2024 : 2 Places Available

Namibia : 19 – 29 May 2024 : Fully Booked : Join Waiting List HERE

Provence : 23 – 28 Jun 2024 : 2 Places Available

Faroe Islands : 16 – 22 Sep 2024 : Available

Brittany : 16 – 21 Sep 2024 : 1 Place Available

Senja & Lyngen Alps : 27 Sep – 3 Oct 2024 : 5 Places Available

West of Ireland : 7 – 13 Oct 2024 : Available

Dolomites : 7 – 12 Oct 2024 : 1 Places Available

Montenegro : 9 – 14 Oct 2024 : 3 Places Available

Connemara, Clare & Mayo, Ireland : 17 – 24 Oct 2024 : Available

Slovenia : 21 – 26 Oct 2024 : 3 Places Available

Scotland : 28 Oct – 3 Nov 2024 : 4 Places Available

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