Tag Archives: Alcatraz

Bright afternoon light

My commute photos are mostly taken between the hours of 2:30 and 4:00 PM. Not the best time for grabbing scenes with dramatic light, but I work with what I get. Here are a couple of shots I took during yesterday’s commute, one towards and the other away from the direction of the sun.

This is the ocean view just southwest of the Golden Gate Bridge.

The coastal view just south of the Golden Gate Bridge

And this is a bay view of Alcatraz from the upper Presidio (for people not familiar with the Bay Area, the dome is part of the Palace of Fine Arts).

Alcatraz from the upper Presidio

Lens: Canon EFS 15-85mm.
First image: 20mm, f/16 for 1/320 sec, ISO 200.
Second image: 70mm, f/16 for 1/200 sec, ISO 200.

Canon T2i working with the light.

Alcatraz in the mist

This hazy shot of Alcatraz in the distance is another example of my current penchant for moody black and white. This style of post-processing appeals to my aesthetic sense so I’ll probably be producing many more of these kinds of scenes. The process only takes a few minutes. I choose an image, crop if there’s too much busyness around the edges and then convert to black and white with Nike Silver Efex Pro. I have a half dozen or so “presets” that I’ve created that serve as a base. I preview the image flipping through the presets until I find one that suit the scene. Once I’ve found the look I like I’ll usually do a few tweaky adjustments and save. This particular image I fussed over for about ten minutes–from opening in Photoshop to web ready.

Hazy view of Alcatraz from Chrissy Field

Lens: Canon EF-S 15-85mm.

Canon T2i gathering pixels for a mood.