Take me to the Parmigiani blog!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Golden Gate Bridge, California

The Golden Gate icon, a symbol of San Francisco. Photographed millions of times, yet, each time, different. I wanted to capture some of the beauty, the grandeur and essence of this wonderful bridge.

The first shot was taken from the Yatch Club at Horseshoe Bay. I selected the 80mm normal lens for this photogrpah. The clouds were rolling into the harbour and the bridge, as it often does in San Francisco. We were hoping for low hanging clouds/fog, which frequently leave the bridge almost completely shrouded, leaving only the top pillars of the suspension towers peeking out. But the clouds were higher that afternoon. And covered the tops of the towers, leaving the lower level clear. Metering was done center weighted average.

From roughly the same vantage point, but with the 28mm wide angle, and lowering the camera position gives a completely different perspective. You can also see the scale and expansion of perspective caused by the wide angle lens - maing the bridge seem quite far away. The depth of field of the 28mm lens at hyperfocal extends from about a meter to infinity. And I used this optical phenomena to achieve full depth of field from the rocks which were no more than a meter away from the lens, to the bridge, which effectively is infinity.

The sun was a bit harsh, beating down from the right of the frame. You can catch the flare from the 28mm lens, as the sun was shining directly on the front element.

I like this next picture the best. Somehow it captures the, strong, somewhat shrouded within the clouds, and the ship passing provided some balance to the photograph.

Shot from the Golden Gate Recreation area, the wind was strong. Gusts threatening to upset the tripod. As I was using the H3D with a Gitzo 3541LX tripod, which was fairly large and heavy, and very stable, I had little problems. The wind also brought with it low temperatures...I don't know what it was, but it was very cold. The Hasselblad battery keep threatening to shut me low battery warnings, though it never shut down for the 30 mins, and about 12 photographs I shot there.

We then moved to the viewing point just off Vista Point Road. Using the 120mm, my intention was to show the details on the bridge, bringing out the technical and mechanical aspects. Shot with the 120mm macro lens.

The next and final shot I moved a little bit further left, with the 28mm gives a completely different photograph. The wide angle lens, the equivalent of 20mm on a full frame 35mm DSLR, the field of view is altogether wider, and the perspective exaggarated.

The foreground is emphasized and the background made smaller, providing additional depth into the photograph. The foreground also provides the near-far landscape arrangement suggested by Adams in his book The Camera. I could have cropped the shadow in the foreground right, but I though I'd leave it, because it was the shadow cast by the small stone wall which I rested the tripod on. But in the larger 1920 pixel wide image you get when you click on the image, I cropped the shadow off to show a 16:10 aspect ratio.
Post a Comment