Golden Gate Bridge from Fort Point

| February 13, 2010

The Golden Gate Bridge from Fort Point

My goal was to take two shots while I was in San Francisco last week. One of the San Francisco skyline at night and another of the Golden Gate Bridge from the the quintessential money shot location at Fort Point. Unfortunately I was not able to get the skyline shot from my target location because hotel security would let me on the roof. Imagine that, even after I asked nice! I stayed at the Grand Hyatt at Union Square, where on the 36th floor of the hotel they have the most premium view of downtown San Francisco with the Transamerica Pyramid in the foreground. I highly recommend eating there one night or grabbing a drink in the bar just to take in the view. Just go into the lobby, board the elevator, and press 36! I didn’t want to shoot through the glass of the restaurant so I ordered a drink and marveled at the skyline that can only be San Francisco.

So, reeling from my defeat at the hotel the night before, I was determined to get the best shot of the Golden Gate Bridge I could, which would mean a trek across town to Fort Point. Light was dwindling, so I decided to grab a cab at 4 o’clock in the afternoon to the base of the bridge. If you ever want to go yourself, just ask the driver to take you to Fort Point.

Although I have driven past Fort Point before, I did not realize that there is an awesome walking/jogging trail all along the water leading up to the base of the bridge. I had the driver drop me off short of the bridge so the view would reveal itself as I approached it. The light was a little flat due to the unpredictable cloud cover so I shot quite a few compositions and exposures to try and capture something worthwhile. I did not think I was going to get much while shooting but when I returned home to process the images, I was very pleased with the shot above. I wish the cars and motorcycles were not in the image but I thought the police would not take it too kindly if I told them to scram because I had some shooting to do. I am continually amazed at how much data the camera sensor picks up in the way of color and detail. Tis a great time to be a photographer! One reason I think I like this image so much its visual path. The old rusty chains take my eye along the path to the base of the bridge tower and up and over the water.

Late day at the San Francisco Ferry Building

Late day at the San Francisco Ferry Building

Just above is another fun shot of the ferry building at the Port of San Francisco. It is a really neat looking building and a great place to walk around. In 2003, the building reopened as an upscale gourmet marketplace, office building, and re-dedicated ferry terminal. The restoration project spanned several years, with an emphasis on recreating the building’s 1898 ambiance. San Francisco’s most well known farmers market is held there on Saturdays from 8 am to 2 pm, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 am – 2pm, year-round. The blue and yellow caught my eye so I set up the old tripod and snapped the picture!

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Category: Photography, Travel

Comments (4)

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  1. Suzanne says:

    I just found your site and Blog and have joined. I love what you are doing as I am on a similar path.
    Bonny Doon, California

  2. Lee says:

    Thanks Suzanne. I am glad you found something of interest. Take care and stay in touch!

  3. Perry says:

    Lee- My favorite city in the states. Thank you for sharing your story and the fantastic images once again!

  4. Lee says:

    I agree. Donna and I have visited San Francisco more than any other. I especially like the outlying areas too like Napa, Monterey, Carmel and Half Moon Bay. Quite a beautiful place. Congratulations on the upcoming show. I just saw the ad in the March/April issue of Art of the West!