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Converging Elements - Rodeo Beach, Marin Headlands, California | by Jim Patterson Photography
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Converging Elements - Rodeo Beach, Marin Headlands, California

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Cliff Notes Version in 1st Comment


I recently helped teach a workshop in the San Francisco area.


The day started at 4am, as I got up early to catch sunrise in the city with fellow shooter Steve Landeros (aka maxxsmart).


Down at Kirby Cove, we also ran into photographer Lukas (aka Lukas W). Despite a lackluster sunrise, we all had a pleasant morning catching the early light rise over the bay.


After shooting, I proceeded to grab a sandwich, chips, and a soda at 9:30am. Hey, when breakfast is at 4:15am, lunch sounds just about right mid-morning. I then headed over to Fort Point to watch the storm waves and see if the rain would stop falling long enough to take some photos.


Around 10:30am, my phone beeps while talking with my girlfriend. Voice mail. Hmm, I never heard the phone ring. A message marked as 'urgent' got my curiosity up.


It was Brian. In Berkeley. The passenger van for the class was not going to happen unless I drove across the bay to secure the vehicle with a real credit person. For a detailed account, check Brian's tale of woe at Enterprise.


As I left Fort Point, the rain stopped, and a huge rainbow formed over the Golden Gate Bridge. Just my luck.


Heading back into the city, I knew time was tight, and I really didn't want to be late for my first official workshop. As I drove along the Embarcadero, the traffic slowed to a halt. Protesters lined the streets and were thoughtful enough to block traffic as they crossed from one side of the road to the other. I quickly got on the phone to Brian and advised him to avoid this mess I was currently experiencing.


Despite the delays, we both made it to our final destination, albeit a few minutes behind schedule. The rain let up and we were off and running.


The sunset portion of the workshop is generally held at Rodeo Beach in the Marin Headlands. The storm surf was so high, our normal staging grounds were pretty much under water. A few of us went ahead of the group down the beach as far as we could go to scope out our options. Here, Javier (aka JaveFoto), got slammed by a huge wave, pretty much a head to toe soaking. Thanks for taking one for the team, Jave!


We also encountered local photographer extraordinaire Patrick Smith (aka PatrickSmithPhotography). Patrick had with him a super new, high tech tripod. I don't even know if you could call it a tripod, but it was pretty slick, and if nothing else, environmentally friendly. Ask him for details. ;)


The students I had been transporting and I shot for about 15 minutes before heading back and joining up with the rest of the group. We discussed the finer points of filters, composition, and reading the camera's histogram as the light show unfolded.


Afterward, we headed to the Golden Gate Bridge to finish the evening with some night photography. I hope everyone who participated learned something to improve their photography and had fun in the process. Thanks for a great time out.


Nikon D300

Tokina 11-16mm @ 16mm

0.2sec @ f16, ISO 100

Lee .9 Hard and .75 Soft GND Filters

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Taken on January 23, 2010