Yesterday, I talked about Battery Crosby, an absolutely fantastic place to make photographs of the Golden Gate Bridge. In that post, I mentioned stairs that offer a good vantage point of the bridge and here they are. These stairs lead from the concrete bunker down towards the ocean. I didn’t have time to explore so I didn’t go any further. What looks like gently curving stairs directly to the ocean actually stops short and runs parallel to the water line, according to Google Maps.
As you might have guessed, this is another HDR photograph. Processed in a more painterly style and not my usual, more realistic approach. I don’t think it’s over the top but it definitely passes that fuzzy line between realistic and artistic, at least in my book. Your mileage may vary. Why do I process some HDRs realistically and others in a more artistic fashion? It really depends on the mood I want to convey. The golden light, the green grass, the meandering path to the ocean and the distant sunset hills put me in the romantic mood, I guess. I think the place has a magical Tolkien-esque feel. Why not amp up the magic with some HDR post processing?
In retrospect, I wish I framed this differently. At least, I should have experimented with different points of view. That is one of the disadvantages of using a tripod. There is a tendency to set it at a particular height and shoot it from there. I move around more when shooting hand-held but I get more bogged down with the three metal legs attached. I was also rushed — trying to maximize my time taking photos of the Golden Gate Bridge — my primary purpose. The moral of the story, look around, shift your point of view. It wouldn’t have taken too much longer to find a better framing and I would have been rewarded with a stronger image.
What don’t I like about the photo? I think there is entirely too much ocean. The balance of the elements are not quite right. I would like to see more stairs and greenery, less water. I do like how the silhouetted mountains came out. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think it’s a bad photo. I really like the color and mood, it’s just that the composition could have been stronger. Perhaps if I lowered my tripod to get more of the stairs. It would change the angle and reduce the ocean. Would this alternate framing would work better? Who knows but the point of this post is that I should have explored other possibilities.
Battery Crosby is a beautiful place and I hope to get back there. Maybe next time, I can create an even better photograph.
Click on the photograph to see a larger image and hover over the photo to see the exposure detail.