San Francisco has so much to photograph that there’s always something to see with the lens. You can get lost exploring the hills and side streets of downtown, or immerse yourself in the grand vistas from the surrounding hillsides. We love to take our workshop students around to some of these grand vistas and help them learn more about their cameras and how to get the most out of their photography.
We start our day at Battery Godfrey. This is a perfect location, we have a couple different vantage points of the Golden Gate Bridge, and plenty of space to really spread out and work on the basics of our cameras. Mike and I spend sometime working on going over the different shooting modes, and how the basics relate to one another…we also give a few pointers and tips on composition. It’s a really fun stop, and time just speeds by. Before we know it we’ve been here over an hour, and it’s time to go see something else. Our next spot is a glorious view of the whole city and bridge from atop a birds’ eye view, appropriately named “Hawk Hill”.
I love this vantage point. We had great clouds and light so the images really looked nice. Mike and I helped the group use their polarizing filters and explained a few little compositional tips to help their images look the best they can.
Hours have passed, and everyone was getting a little hungry, so we made a late lunch, early dinner stop in Sausalito for some Italian food and good conversation before heading out to Rodeo Beach for sunset. Our goal for sunset is to work on moving water, and slowing down our shutter speeds to get some silky movement in the water. The rocks and scenery here are awesome…and we had a relatively calm day of surf, so nobody was drenched by any crazy waves. We also had a chance to show some of the students how to use their graduated and solid ND filters.
The sun drops fast this time of year, and it seemed we were just about in the dark as we walked back to the van to head out to our final spot for the night, a view of the Golden Gate from the Marin Headlands.
Though this isn’t a night class, it’s a great shot, so we can’t just drive by it without stopping! This is a great little taste for our newer photographers of all that is possible with photography once the lights go away. I think this final stop is a great way to end the class…we started the class shooting the bridge from one vantage point in the day, and end shooting the same bridge from a different vantage point at night. It really brings the class full circle too. Starting with simple techniques and working towards more complex lighting and settings…great job today everyone!
Until Next Time,
Brian, Mike, and the rest of the Aperture Academy Team
P.S. If you'd like to join us at one of our workshops, you can find the schedule/sign up here.