A celebration today marks the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge. As I remarked in my book 100 Views of the Golden Gate, “the wonders of the Golden Gate are simple but profound. The more you look, and the more you wander, the more you see.”
This is a good credo for any photographer in any place, but particularly when the subject is the “topography of water, weather, and light that blesses San Francisco Bay.”
From 100 Views: “On the beach at Kirby Cove, with the tide coming in fast and hard, I noticed the starfish. With an extreme wide-angle lens it was possible to get the starfish and Golden Gate Bridge in one frame. To get enough depth-of-field, I used a long exposure with my tripod legs deep in the surf.”
I should add, since I’ve often been asked, that no starfish were harmed in the making of this photo, and that shortly after the exposure the whole area was under the tide and the starfish was well submerged.
You can read more about Kirby Cove and the making of this photo in the original story on my blog (from December 2006).
There are many ways to approach a subject as compelling as the Golden Gate Bridge, and I found myself enjoying monochromatic versions of the Bridge and landscape. This is the work that became a Classic California postcard book, as well as a 2013 Classic California wall calendar.
Check out Golden Gate in Black & White and On My Way to Visit Katie Rose, the story I wrote about making the Golden Gate Span image: “To get the views in this story, I followed a path to a stair up an old battery, and then climbed a ladder to the top. From there I had a straight shot at the bridge. Compared to some of the places I shoot at night, this didn’t feel at all precarious. All the same, I was glad to have my headlamp with me.
“This had been a hot day in the Bay area, so I almost didn’t carry my sweater with me. I’m glad I did, because fog rolled in through the Golden Gate, along with a chill wind off the ocean. The fog hit the bridge, and diffused the light, creating the pools of light of different color temperatures in the atmosphere aroung the bridge.”
Happy Birthday, Golden Gate Bridge!