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Deception Island proves to be the perfect bone-chilling, awe inspiring photography playground

Press release   •   Mar 13, 2015 09:00 GMT

Sony α7 Series used to capture stunning low light landscape photography

  • Striking photographs of the desolate wilderness captured by renowned landscape photographer Joe Cornish
  • Images show an island ravaged by volcanic activity and the eerie beauty of Deception Island – abandoned for several years in the 1960s
  • Photos taken with Sony α7R and Sony α7 II, the perfect all round cameras for low light photography and landscapes

Uncovering the volcanic playground of Deception Island, Sony Imaging Ambassador Joe Cornish went to capture the eerie beauty of the remote island on the Sony α7 II and Sony α7R cameras with breath-taking results.

Completely abandoned in the late 1960s as a result of volcanic destruction, the photography captures the leftover remains of the structures and devastation. The photography - largely black, white and orange colouring - perfectly captures the enchantingly sombre island.

Deception Island is in the South Shetland Islands archipelago in Antarctica, it sits in the caldera of an active volcano and exhibits some wildly varying microclimates. Some water temperatures reach 70 °C (158 °F) and near volcanic areas, the air can be as hot as 40 °C (104 °F).

As part of the Antarctic expedition Joe Cornish explored the island capturing its moving scenery over the course of just 24hours - from the sweeping rivers and harsh mountains to the rusty remains of structures.

Commenting on the photography, Joe Cornish explains “Deception Island is one of those other-worldly places that is hard to reach and so a rare and amazing opportunity for photography.

It provides tough conditions for cameras, but the Sony, α7R and α7 II performed perfectly. I was especially pleased with their low light performance. A tripod was used for the dark interior images but some of the long lens shots made from a ship, at distance, were hand-held. The α7 II proved excellent for this with its built-in stabilisation. Being so compact and light made walking with these cameras around the volcanic hills perfectly comfortable.”

All images were captured on either the Sony α7R or Sony α7 II - both professional, portable 35mm full frame interchangeable lens cameras. The incredible camera’s sensor is able to pull out all the detail, even in low light conditions.


For more information, please contact Hope&Glory PR: David Stitson on 020 7566 9747 / or

Notes to editorsFor more information on all Sony press materials, please see the new Press Centre:

About Sony α7R - key specifications


36.3 MP Full Frame Exmor CMOS sensor

BIONZ X engine for superb detail and noise reduction

E-mount interchangeable lens system

High contrast, high resolution XGA OLED Tru-Finder

Simple sharing and control with Wi-Fi and NFC One-touch

About Sony α7 II – key specifications


  • World’s first full frame camera with 5 axis image stabilization
  • Fast and Effective, enhanced Fast Hybrid AF
  • 24.3 megapixel 35mm full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor
  • BIONZ X image processing engine
  • High 50Mbps bit-rate XAVC S format recording of full HD movies

About Sony Corporation

Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and online businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading electronics and entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $75 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2014. Sony Global Web Site:

Image descriptions

Key to each image, which lens and setting used

1390 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 200mm, f/5.6, 1/2000th sec, iso 500

1404 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 200mm, f/5.6, 1/1000th sec, iso 500

1422 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 154mm, f/14, 1/15th sec, iso 100

1429 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 91mm, f/8, 1/50th sec, iso 100

8546 - Sony α7R, Zeiss FE 16-35mm f/4, @ 19mm, f/11, 8 secs, iso 200

1454 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 75mm, f/8, 1/100th sec, iso 100

1469 - Sony α7 II, Sony FE 70-200mm f/4, @ 177mm, f/14, 1/50th sec, iso 100

8551 - Sony α7R, Zeiss FE 16-35mm f/4, @ 16mm, f/11, 25 secs, iso 100

8561 - Sony α7R, Zeiss FE 55mm f/1.8, f/16, 0.4 sec, iso 100

8578 - Sony α7R, Zeiss FE 55mm f/1.8, f/16, 1/30th sec, iso 100

8585 - Sony α7R, Zeiss FE 16-35mm f/4, @19mm, f/8, 1/50th

About Joe Cornish

A renowned landscape photographer and printer with nearly forty years of experience, Joe Cornish’s working life has been transformed by the digital revolution, yet he retains a rigorous, craft-based approach with his camerawork. An influential writer, thinker, workshop leader and mentor he has been one of the judges of Wildlife Photographer of the Year, a regular host of the Natural History Museum’s Understanding Photography seminars, and is an outspoken advocate of environmental protection. There is a gallery in Northallerton, North Yorkshire, devoted to his work, and he is an honorary Fellow of the RPS. More about Joe Cornish -

Joe undertook the Antarctic expedition with The Luminous Landscape photography workshops -

About Sony Imaging Ambassasdors

From stunning landscapes to action-packed sports to celebrity portraiture, Sony has recruited six wildly varied additions to its Sony Imaging Ambassadors programme (Europe). The new UK based photographers given the prestigious honour are Gavin Evans, Joe Cornish, Michael Wayne Plant, Nick Webster, Dominic Fraser and Andrew Scriven.

The ambassador programme is rooted in storytelling and its aim is to provide photographers with the innovative tools to create beautiful images. The world-leading photographers involved work across the globe and together have documented fame, fashion, culture, sportsmanship, war, human devastation, celebration and environmental shifts.