Grey Days At The Pier


Can you hear the gulls in the background?  They are a pack of 3, I was tempted to make a video of them earlier as they were perched atop a building wailing in corus like a siren in The Streets of San Francisco! I seriously wondered if this trio somehow was doing just that, mimicking a siren!





What fun it is to walk the Piers, even on a gloomy damp day with my DF! I stopped to capture a few memories of my walk through these words and rest a bit with a cupcake and a cappuccino.


I have to laugh because the frosting was so tall on the salted Carmel cupcake, it got on my nose and I felt like a child.

Equipment wise I have a few regrets this trip, wishes I had opted for the Tamron 24-70 IS over the Nikon 24-300 VR. Next trips that’s the plan! These will all be B&W renditions mostly, while the DF has superb color, today’ weather will not yield good light for color work, so in my minds eye and past experience these will all be B&W with contrasty processing.


I tried it all Ray’s way today, Ray is an accomplished street photographer I follow on the web and he shoots a lot of Auto ISO on his DF. This 12-24 I have opted to mainly shoot today is a little slow for street work, however, I should have a decent FOV shooting between F/4.5 and F/6.3 mostly. That’s the real beauty of the DF, there’s no real worry about ISO’s, especially in daylight in my humble opinion.


The D810 is gone now, I shipped it off to a gentleman in SF in a blockbuster trade I made for some CCD cameras for Astronomy along with it went my 50mm F/1.4 D and 85 F/1.8 D. The D810 and lenses were a distraction truth be told.

The D810 ultimately failed to capture my heart like the DF has and heart is so important when your having fun and capturing memories.  The D810 like my previous D700 were/are awesome cameras, I just failed to connect with them as I have the DF and a few limited other cameras from my past.


Travel kit for the next go around where I can take a camera and just a few lenses? It will be the Tameron F/2.8 24-70 IS and a Samyang 12mm F/2.8 Manual. I think those will work for travel to cities. If it’s to a national park or the like then I would add the Tameron F/2.8 Tameron 70-200 IS. Maybe I would seek the Art 35 in the bag as well, but honestly, I think I will be trading that lens away along with a few others. Too many lenses are a distraction in my humble opinion.


Well, it’s time to walk the Pier some more, I have been so lucky to have Pier 39 mostly to myself, a trade off I guess for the overcast skies and morning walk!


Part Two I am probably cruising at around 30K feet right now on a work trip. Work is such that it had be traveling again this week and I thought I would take a minute to finish a few thoughts on the SF trip.

You’ll learn through my blog entries I like to write while I am traveling. I probably look like a mad scientist of sorts right now, the cabin is very dark here on the plane and my iPad is probably casting a lone glow like a beacon for the others on the flight, all the while while I am finger typing on them glass at about 30WPM. Back to SF though for a bit. Every once in a while as a photographer you can find yourself in the zone. This unfortunately mostly happens when I am left to roam somewhere cool alone and take my time to really take in the sights and then selectively frame and record them as I please.


Walking along the piers was just one of those experiences this trip and I haven’t even had time since I returned to download the pictures yet.

In fact, I am still not finished with the Hawaii pictures yet either. Over the Xmas break I will catch up on both, even though I have a few new projects spinning up. So while I was in the zone and taking pictures of ships on a less popular pier, it dawned on me that our love of photography can both grow on others and fall short. I know now my wife takes more pictures while we travel now, I think she appreciates the value of the memories of good times that revising photos and videos can evoke. That’s the beauty of this wonderful past time. And in the same token when I think about it all, I had to frown a little as well about how often photography forums spoil budding photographers passions at times with the snarky your photos look like crap remarks.


The notion that people are recording memories and sharing them often seems lost to those who get overly wrapped up in the technical aspects of the long lived pastime. And this all brings me full circle to my thoughts as I walked down that pier snapping pictures, seeing the framing of them, moving the dials on my DF to adjust my depth of field and making perfect little pictures in my minds eye, many of which will roll off into the trash can on either the Mac or PC. Who will view these pictures and who will even care?


Who will even notice or care about the Zone I believed I was in when I took them, and how many will deem them as worthless junk?

It occurred to me as it had in the past that while I tend to share my self proclaimed masterpieces with others, it’s not what drives me. I take them for myself, a little bit for my wife ( she need not suffer them more than needed – even though she would always look if I ask) and beyond that, they are here for you to like or hate as you may.


To that end in my next entry, I’ll take you into the zone with me, my minds eye and share the thoughts on the how and why of them.

Why? Because it may help you as well as me to understand how you may decide to capture your own pictures. It can explain my rationale of why some are framed the way they are and why the DOF was chosen in the end.

And so with that said, I’ll wrap this entry up. It won’t be posted for a while, I want to share a few pictures of the trip with you and that won’t happen until I finish processing them perhaps next week.

Knowing that these words will make it to close out 2014 I will wish you a great 2015 ahead!






This entry was posted in Talking Photography.