Ahh….California Street in the mystical City By The Bay. Oh how I love San Francisco. The architecture, the sea, the people….I love everything about this great city. You can easily walk around and see iconic landmark after iconic landmark. I actually conducted an experiment when I was there last. I walked around town for a week shooting with exclusively with my Nikon D700 and 28-300 VR. Well, that and some iPhone. You can read about the experiment over on my review of the Nikon 28-300 VR.
This was one of the most creatively heartbreaking images I had ever shot. The night before, the staff of the Fairmont (find out more about it in our travel guide) arranged for me to photograph the sunrise from the hotel’s roof. Pretty cool right?!?! After hanging out and chatting with a very friendly security guard, the sun slowly made its way up. Not being familiar with a San Francisco sunrise and not wanting to overstep my welcome, I gave up, shot this photo and returned to my room. I peeked out the window only to see a hint of what I was sure was the most incredible sunrise I have ever seen. Imagine all those clouds lit up as if they were on fire…well, I never made it to the roof in time to photograph it. That sunrise will forever be my white whale…it was the one that got away. Ah well…it made for a good story and this photo turned out alright.
Photographer’s Note – This is a single image shot with a Nikon D700 and 17-35mm 2.8 (I longed for that lens for over a decade). I brought it to life with Lightroom 4 and a few Nik Software filters. Did you see that you can get the entire Nik Collection for only $149.00 now…WOW!!!
Click Here To Get It – If you use the coupon code LIGHTASMAGIC you save even more money and get it for $126.00…yesterday it was $500!
This is easily one of my favorite places to visit. I often wonder what it would be like to live here. I actually don’t think I could. I’d be afraid the beauty of the Golden Gate Bridge would eventually fade and I would begin to take it for granted. I would never want that to happen.
This image was a lesson in paying attention. I was up shooting close to the Twin Peaks overlook (you can find it in my travel guide) and I thought to myself…”self, next time you are up here you will have to coordinate with another person to stand on top of that hill down there.” Just as I said that, myself quickly said…”hey, quit talking to me and pay attention. Someone is standing on top of that hill!” The light wasn’t great, but I had enough shape and contrast in the scene to make it work.
Photographer’s Note: I shot this image using my trusty Nikon 28-300 VR. It really is the ideal travel lens. I actually ran it through a field test in San Francisco. If you are interested in the results you can read my review of it here.
The Embarcadero, pictured here, is in the heart of the San Francisco financial district. It is bustling during the day, at night it falls silent. I spent an evening, all alone, exploring this area with my camera. I love nights like that. Just the sound of the city in the distance and creativity in your heart.