WPY 2016

Photograph Details

Finalist 2016


Alexandre Hec, France

Blast furnace

Returning to Kīlauea, Alexandre found a new crater had formed as lava flowed into the ocean. Even 100 metres away, he was blasted with heat and noise ‘like a jet taking off’. Despite the rough sea, he achieved a dramatic image of glowing lava flying 30 metres into the air against the night sky.

Kīlauea is one of the world’s most active volcanoes, and has been erupting constantly since 1983. As red-hot lava at more than 1,000 degrees Celsius flows into the sea, vast plumes of steam hiss up, condensing to produce salty, acidic mist. Gas bubbles explode through the molten rock, which freezes mid-air into glassy fragments.

Technical specification

Nikon D300; 70-200mm f2.8 lens at 70mm; 1/350 sec at f4; ISO 800.

Kīlauea, Hawaii, USA: latitude 19.329878, longitude -155.01419 Kīlauea, Hawaii, USA: latitude 19.329878, longitude -155.01419

Kīlauea, Hawaii, USA

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Alexandre Hec

Alexandre Hec, France

Alexandre is a wildlife and landscape photographer. Open spaces and volcanoes are his favourite environments. He has always been fascinated by images of nature.