Born and raised in Reykjavík, photographer Axel Sigurðarson was lucky enough to grow up exploring the magnificent Icelandic Highlands—a location that many landscape photographers only dream of. On a road trip to Holuhraun, a large lava field just north of the Vatnajökull ice cap, Sigurðarson managed to capture the spectacular eruption of Bárðarbunga. It was the largest volcanic eruption in Iceland since 1783, which lasted from August 29, 2014 to February 27, 2015.
The resulting series of photographs document nature’s incredible fury from both land and air. Sigurðarson’s aerial views show red hot molten rock, blasts of lava, huge clouds of dust and gas, and an airplane dwarfed against the epic backdrop. On land, Sigurðarson photographed numerous scientists he met along the way, including renowned Seismologist Ragnar “Skjálfti” Stefánsson, who was conducting on-site research at the time.