Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Bridges at Night - Some of my favorite images!

For the last 6 years, as I have traveled around the world, I have captured night images of some really amazing bridges. I am not sure why I am drawn to these images so much, but they still remain some of my favorite shots in my portfolio. In that spirit, I have collected some of my favorites (mostly in chronological order) to share with you in this week's blog post.

I took this photo back in 2006, in one of my favorite places in the world. There is just something magical about Sydney, Australia. This was shot with a Canon 30D and processed in Adobe Photoshop CS2. This is considered old technology now, but it goes to show you that even the older cameras and software worked well.

This was taken the same evening as the first photo, but just later in the evening, after the evening light had disappeared. I had my taxi driver go to the North side of the city and shoot back in the opposite direction, this time facing the front of the Sydney Opera House, with the Harbor Bridge as my main subject.

I shot this photo from a freeway overpass in Bristol, England. The sun took forever to set, so I sat there on the overpass (on a sidewalk) for almost 3 hours waiting for the best light. For those of you who know me well, you know that I can not usually sit still for this long, but I really loved the composition of this shot and wanted to capture it in the best light. (Taken with the Canon 30D, ISO 100, f5.6, 8 second exposure, -1 stop of exposure compensation. Shot on a Gitzo tripod and using a Lexar 300x CF card.)

For those of you who have ever been to the world's largest photo show (photokina) in Cologne, Germany, you will surely recognize this bridge. It is funny how each of these photos bring back memories to me. I distinctly remember shooting this image while being sicker than a dog. I was flying home the next morning and was determined to get this shot before leaving. I am glad that I did.

A shot taken of the Bay Bridge from Treasure Island, across from downtown San Francisco. I had to climb to this position, as parking is not allowed in this area. I like this composition but still want to head back to this same spot to capture this image with the deep blue night sky, as opposed to this pitch black.

Believe it or not, the next two photos (above and below) were taken within 24 hours of each other. I was heading on yet another trip to Australia, and decided to have dinner with my mother in San Francisco, before flying out. Since we had a little time to kill, we drove over to the Marina area in the city and I shot this sunset image of the Golden Gate Bridge...

...And then many hours later, and not wanting to sleep just yet, I went and photographed the Sydney Harbor Bridge at sunset.

This is yet another sunset shot looking over the San Francisco Bay Area (my home). I was shooting a Bar Mitzvah somewhere in the Oakland hills, and with some free time in between the service and the party, I went up to the highest point I could find and shot this. At this point, I had upgraded to the Canon 40D.

And then, believe it or not, I was back in Australia for visit #12 and wanted to shoot something different. I took 6 or 7 images and stitched them together for this wide panorama of Sydney Harbor. I was lucky enough to have the wedding couple in one of the shots, which really enhanced the overall photo.

I shot this photo from the base of the Brooklyn Bridge in New York. Even though most of my images were of that bridge, I really like the composition of the Manhattan Bridge with the Empire State Building in the background.

Back to the Golden Gate Bridge, this time to teach someone how to shoot night images. You will notice that the large rock in the foreground is slightly lit. I turned my car to face the right direction and used the car's headlights to help illuminate the rock.

And then, after shooting for a little while, and getting ready to pack it in, I decided to show my friend one last technique. This is basically the same composition as the shot above (headlights now off), but I rolled the zoom during the exposure to create the light trails that you see. For those of you who want to try something like this, here is how you do this: First you set your camera on a steady tripod, you then set your ISO to 100 to give you a long exposure. I then set my aperture of f/5.6 to give me a 15 second exposure. Then I hit the shutter release and carefully (as not to move the camera) rolled the zoom out. I do not remember exactly what focal length I was shooting at, but I would guess that I started this at 200mm and rolled it out to 40mm. This works best with lenses that roll, not the push/pull lenses. Try it - it's a lot of fun!

This photo was taken very late on a Saturday night in 2011, after a long day of shooting in Tiburon, CA. I remember this so well, because I was with my son (who was shooting video with me that day) and he convinced me to stop for this shot. I was so tired, that I almost passed this up. Once again, I am glad that I didn't. It was so clear that night and amazingly warm, which is almost never the case for the Marin Headlands, where this was shot.

And the most recent night shot of a bridge was taken last year in London, during the Olympics. This was such an amazing time to be in London, and I loved capturing the Tower Bridge and the Olympic Rings in one photo.

Writing this blog post was a fun experience for me, since each and every one of these photos brings back so many memories for me. I find it nostalgic and exciting to relive each of these times. I hope that you enjoyed viewing this post as much as I did writing it.


City Mouse said...

Love all the photos. Beautiful...

King Arthur said...

Every pic is beautiful..I found you from b&h are the bomb

King Arthur said...

Fantastic photo's