My buddy and I revisited this popular location in San Francisco, California after a hiatus of several years to photograph this view of Bay Bridge, in San Francisco. Conditions were perfect for photography on that cool November evening. There had been recent car break-ins around San Francisco, and as we parked my car, a passerby warned us to be careful out there. Luckily the evening passed without any incident, and we had an enjoyable evening photographing.
The original incandescent lights on the bridge which I remembered from my previous visit had been replaced by LED lights now and provide a much cooler tone. As the sun set and the illumination on the bridge came on, the sky took on very pleasant purple/pink hues. An incandescent street light behind me illuminated the partially submerged concrete blocks which served as the foreground for this shot. As we set up our tripods, we were joined by several other photographers that evening leading to a few pleasant conversations around photography! I took several shots that evening, including a few where the entire bridge was illuminated with holiday lighting. However this shot remains my favorite as the soft, even lighting highlights the illumination on the bridge and the foreground.
By using an aperture of f/16, I was able to convert the lights into tiny little starbursts. This shot was a single image made using a 6-stop GND filter stacked with a 4-stop ND filter to increase the exposure time and even out any ripples in the water. The final image needed only light post processing in Lightroom and finishing out with Nik Viveza.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor