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San Francisco/Marin Headlands Photography Workshop - Jan. 5th, 2013

Photography Workshop Students with Aperture Academy at San Francisco and Marin Headlands

Write up by Instructor Brian Rueb

Alicia and I are looking forward to a great day out with some eager photographers in the Marin Headlands. The weather looks like it could go either way today, but the layering in the clouds looks promising, I’m hoping it’ll stick around and the moisture will not make an appearance.

Our first stop is on the beach at Baker, and we work with the class on composition and get to know the students and their gear a bit more.

I had fun here working on explaining shallow depth of field here and how position of the camera and zooming in closer will create better background bokeh. I saw some great, creative shots of the bridge and some of the surfers and fishermen hanging out on the beach.




The next stop was Fort Point, a cool old fort right under the Golden Gate Bridge. Alicia and I split the group into two small pods and showed them a few of our favorite spots in the fort with great repetitive patterns, and light. We work with aperture and shutter setting a lot here, and I think it helps to really visually be able to show the class how symmetry plays a part in the shots.

Once we show them a few spots we turn them loose to let them see the fort on their own and explore. We did a really fun and creative group shot during the final few minutes in the fort. Alicia always comes up with great ways to do the group shot that are fun and different.

From the fort things changed. A slight drizzle greeted us after our group as we left lunch and headed for Rodeo Beach. I hate to stop a class because of a little weather. Inclement weather is a part of landscape photography and with the right gear shooting in rain is very possible, and can often yield some great and moody results. We walked out with shower caps to help cover our cameras, and set up to work on long exposures and get some moving ocean waves. Unfortunately the weather got worse, and after forty minutes we waved the white flag and set off.

Even though the rain was there many folks still tried to shoot the Golden Gate from our Marin Headlands perch…the foggy and gloom actually gave the bridge an ethereal glow which was really cool…those who braved a little rain got some great shots. We bumped up our ISO to allow for slightly quicker exposure times for the dusk. 20-30 seconds per shot is easier and quicker than the 2-3 minute shots we do under dry conditions.

The class was a great bunch of enthusiastic photographers and we sure enjoyed spending our day with them!

On behalf of myself (Brian), Alicia and the rest of the Aperture Academy team, thank you for another great workshop!

If you'd like to join us at one of our workshops, you can find the schedule/sign up here.

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