Tom A. Warner recently shared a really cool video of Strokkur geyser erupting in slow motion with us on Twitter. I love seeing familiar things being shown in a new light and the three minute video really did that with good old Strokkur geyser which you can see on the Golden Circle route. I looked at Tom´s website and this ex US Air Force pilot has truly created fantastic photographs and videos. He has traveled to many fantastic places in this world. This includes Antarctica, Cuba, Svalbard and different regions of the United States. The beauty and magnificence of nature in these places is in display in Tom´s videos and photographs.

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Photographing the beauty of Iceland

Tom´s creations have been featured both on television and in numerous prestigious publications and web sites. He visited Iceland in 2018 and took many impressive photographs in this country. I especially enjoyed his images from the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon the Diamond beach, Fjallsárlón glacial lagoon, lovely northern lights photos and of course Mt. Lómagnúpur which is one my favorite mountains in Iceland.

Háifoss waterfall in Iceland. Photo by Tom. A Warner.
Háifoss waterfall in Iceland. Photo by Tom. A Warner.

Hello Tom and thank you for sharing the Video of Strokkur geyser erupting in slow motion with us. Can you please give us a bit more background information about yourself?

I am an atmospheric scientist by education, a pilot by profession and a photographer by hobby. I earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Atmospheric Science and flew as a pilot for the US Air Force. After the Air Force, I got the job of a lifetime and flew a highly modified weather research aircraft capable of penetrating severe thunderstorms. This 1949 T-28 Storm Penetrating Aircraft had armor plating and a bullet proof canopy so we could collect data from the inside of thunderstorms, including hail up to 3 inches in diameter. Now retired from flying and formal atmospheric research, I now travel the world with my family. My favorite places to visit are the polar regions as I have been to Antarctica twice as well as Svalbard and the Arctic Ocean. I have explored Iceland twice and plan to return as soon as I can.

Beautiful colors of Landmannalaugar, Iceland. Photo by Tom A. Warner.
Beautiful colors of Landmannalaugar, Iceland. Photo by Tom A. Warner.

Thanks for sharing the Strokkur video. I am intrigued how you go about creating this kind of video, what are the methods and equipment you use in creating videos like this?

I spent the last 14 years of my atmospheric research career studying lightning and utilized Phantom high-speed cameras to record lightning at up to 100,000 images per second. These cameras allow to see lightning like never before, and we have increased our understanding tremendously as a result. During my travels, I always try to bring one of my high-speed cameras so I can capture the scenery in a unique way. I recorded the Strokkur geysir using a Phantom Miro LC321S recording at 1,500 images per second. Following the Norwegian’s lead of “Slow TV” (which I enjoy immensely) I like to create “Really Slow TV.” There is so much to see when things are slowed down by high-speed cameras.

Aurora over Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, Iceland.
Aurora over Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, Iceland. Photo by Tom A. Warner.

What were the main things that struck you about Iceland as being different and unique?

My travels have sparked an interest in geology and glaciology, and I have begun studying these fields. Iceland is a geological, glaciological and atmospheric wonder!! Seeing the many diverse geological features in person was striking, and the ice is what brings me back to the polar regions repeatedly. This combined with the incredible waterfalls, cloud formations and aurora make it the perfect place to explore.

Iceland from the air. Photo by Tom A. Warner.
Iceland from the air. Photo by Tom A. Warner.

What were the favorite places or experiences in Iceland?

So far my favorite place in Iceland is Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and Diamond Beach, especially with with aurora as a backdrop. My most memorable experience was an aerial photography flight in a helicopter. It was a great way to see the diverseness of Iceland and the unique perspective from above. I recommend it to everyone.

Two rivers meet forming a surreal palette of color. Photo by Tom A. Warner.
Two rivers meet forming a surreal palette of color. Photo by Tom A. Warner.

I always ask this question of my interviewees, but what advice would you give to those who are visiting Iceland for the first time?

Although my suggestion may not apply to those who prefer to go where the wind takes them, I did a lot of research and preparation for my trips to Iceland. There are many tools, especially for photographers, that allow you to plan your visit and maximize your time behind the camera or just taking in the sights. Google Maps, Photo Pills and Aurora Pro are some of the apps I use along with TripAdvisor.

Foss á Síðu in Iceland.
Foss á Síðu. Probably the most beautiful setting for a farm in the whole of Iceland.

Follow the etiquette

I would also like to add that with the ever increasing number of people traveling, it is important to learn the driving rules and follow polite etiquette when visiting the sites. Some of the sites have restrictions on where to walk due to excessive erosion, traveler impact or safety. Don’t be those few who disregard the rules and are disrespectful to the people and places that they visit. Most of all, give yourself time to just take it all in with all of your senses. Don’t rush, rather return to see Iceland at different times of the year.

Well put! Thank you Tom!

Video of Strokkur Geyser Erupting in Slow Motion