SF Weekly

San Francisco Weekly is only one of a number of free publications available in that city. Not sure what day it’s out though. Doh!

My photos went down reasonably well at Photography Ireland yesterday. There’s a good street photography forum there. It’s worth a visit if you’re looking for inspiration or critiques or simply want to talk to like-minded people!

4 Easy Photoshop Techniques to Make Your Pictures Pop! has a few techniques I’ve used myself in the past. I meant to blog about those techniques, but hey, they’ve done the hard work now, including screenshots and everything. Good post!

Golden Gate Bridge in Fog

Tourists on a ferry pass by the fog shrouded Golden Gate Bridge
in San Francisco Bay.

The day was beautiful out near Alcatraz but fog covered the upper reaches of the bridge and I thought would make a pleasing shot.

PS. I’m not finished with photos from 2006 by a long shot!

Enjoy diet Coke

A sign blazes it’s message above our heads in San Francisco. The Diet Coke logo could be seen from the end of the street so I had to snap it as we got closer!

Jesus Christ Loves You

A man stands alone amid the bustle of downtown San Francisco holding a sign proclaiming the message, “Jesus Christ Loves You”.

This photo brings to mind the preacher in Chicago I photographed while on holiday there. I wonder if the man in San Francisco has the same colourful history.

Happy Christmas to all, I hope you’re having a great day!

Take the GoCar around San Francisco

Matt Rudd took the GoCar around San Francisco and I remembered seeing one on my travels there last August!

Sixteen miles per hour and I’m absolutely terrified. You wouldn’t think a grown man could be terrified at such low speeds, but it’s because I’m being chased up one of those Steve McQueen hills by a tram. Unlike Steve McQueen, I’m not in a Ford Mustang. If I were, it wouldn’t be a problem, would it? But instead of the Mustang, I’m in a bright yellow buggy with a top speed of 40mph. That’s 40mph if you threw it off a cliff. Top speed up a San Franciscan hill seems to be 16mph. Sorry, 15mph. No… 13, 11, 9?

The Stars and Stripes on Alcatraz

The flag of the United States flies over Alcatraz Island on a windy August day.

This was originally a portrait shot but I squared it off to emphasize the vertical and horizontal leading lines. The hydrant is much more prominent in the foreground too. The red rusty texture beloved of all photographers sets off the clean lines of the red stripes in the flag.

I took a photo of an even older flag several months ago. It belongs to my uncle and has only 46 stars!

Up up and away

Yesterday the Elysian’s tower reached the 18th floor, 72m above sea level and one of the tallest buildings in the country. Apparently St Finbarre’s Cathedral is 75m to it’s central spire but there won’t be a 2400sq ft penthouse at the top of that!

While we Irish congratulate ourselves on building an 18 storey lift shaft, here’s one I made earlier in San Francisco. I tried counting the floors but lost count around 14!

Buildings in the sky

I live in a city where the tallest building is one that will be 17 floors high so when I travel to far off lands it’s always great to see tall skyscrapers looming over the streets.

This might bear a striking resemblance to a previous image but it is a different one and was one of my entries in the Patterns Around Us competition at my local camera club.

I have another 3 or 4 similar images but I’m not going to bore you to death by posting all of them unless I can come up with a nice montage effect or something. I’ll have to think about it.

First Draft: Ready to go!

John asked what did he original Ready to go! look like and I’ll oblige now. Showing what the original photo looks like is akin to showing what the first draft of a written essay or post reads like. Sometimes the image comes out perfectly in the camera but that’s rarely the case. At the very least light levels have to be balanced and if resizing for publication online then the resized image has to be sharpened.

Hover over the image below to see what the original shot looked like. Hopefully this will work for RSS readers but if it doesn’t, visit the blog and leave your mark here!

Notice how I rotated the image? I had to reconstruct the bumper on the right of the picture, as well as filling in the gaps at the other corners of the photo. Tree branches and leaves are easy enough, as is the relatively solid black texture of the tar on the road, but the bumper was difficult, and the shaded area of the building on the left presented me with a few extra minutes of clicking to get right.

Want to see more “First Draft” posts? I can’t promise to do many, but if you have a compelling reason why you’d like to see the original of a photo I’ll do my best to help!

PS. Bryan – you might recognise the CSS. I took it from the button of doom you did! Hope you don’t mind!

PPS. Treasa has posted a tutorial of how she worked on two photos with steps in Photoshop to get the desired effect. Nice!