Tag Archives: san diego bay

Sailing San Diego Bay

Last weeks post of the Oregon Coastline invoked a sense of serenity and in keeping with that theme, this week I am posting two captures of sailboats on San Diego Bay. These scenes are clearly different than last weeks, but invoke the same sense of serenity to me. I can just feel the peacefulness as the boats slip through the water with a gentle ocean breeze caressing my face.

This first capture was taken from Seaport Village just south of downtown looking across the bay to Coronado Island.

The second capture is reversed if you will. This capture was taken from Coronado Island looking back at downtown San Diego.

Thoughts?

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Lighting Changes – Sailboats on San Diego Bay

I wanted to share some captures I took of sailboats on San Diego Bay last October. What the pictures show is a change in look of the same subject matter in the same location by the lighting in the sky.

These pictures were all taken from an area near downtown looking across the bay at Coronado Island. There is always some type of craft movement in the bay be it small sailboats, larger yachts, military air carriers or cruise ships. This particular day I was focused on sailboats and the sky. I noticed the cloud structures were changing as the day went from morning to afternoon. There was a remnant of a tropical storm coming from the Baja of Mexico just south of San Diego.

San Diego Bay Sailboat

In this first capture, the sun is out and the fluffy clouds from that system make a great backdrop.

San Diego Bay Sailboats 2

This shot was taken within about an hour of the first one. The sun is still out, but notice the change in the clouds. There is a high level of gray coming in on top of the fluffy clouds.

San Diego Bay Sailboats 3

I added this shot for a couple of reasons. The first reason was I love the look of this restaurant sitting on peers jutting out into the bay and the second reason is because at this point it was lunch time. I want to point out that this shot was taken very shortly after the last shot and notice the change in color of the bay. The sun was beginning to go under the approaching high level clouds…see the difference .

In the time I took for lunch and came back to capturing some sailboats, the last capture is what I took.

San Diego Bay Sailboats 4

Same area as the first shots, but see the difference in the color of the bay? It goes from a deep blue to more of a gray color. Even in the sails, the brilliant white of the sails is subdued. I thought this would be a great example of how important lighting is to the final outcome of a picture when shooting outdoors. There are subject matters that look better in indirect lighting and some landscapes look better with horizontal lighting (sunrise or sunset timeframes).

Thoughts?

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Sailboats on San Diego Bay – Excerpts from a Photo Shoot

I wanted to continue the theme of “cropping” pictures from last weeks “Photo Excerpts” blog. The backdrop this week is sailboats on San Diego Bay. I thought these shots would display great examples of how to take a “blah” photo and by cropping it, turn it into a “wow” photo. I added one more element to this week’s example; the finished photographs are done in black and white. There is a method to my madness in that I am using real examples of a project I just completed for a client.

A client of mine from Southern California has a series of black and white prints I did for them last year. They are getting ready to add a new series of prints to another wall and know that I have done a lot of photography around San Diego. This client asked if I had any black and white shots of sailboats on San Diego Bay in the same size ratio that was purchase in their other series. As I always do, I started digging through the archives and found the original shots I have attached. In looking at these shots, it’s clear why I had not done anything with them, they are pretty boring. The good news is that I knew I had done that series in RAW format, which gives me a very high resolution, so I knew I could play with cropping them to focus on the sailboats.

Sailboat 1

Sailboat 1

This first shot is the original photograph. You have two sailboats in the right of the frame with the Coronado Bridge in the background, which connects the mainland with Coronado Island. Again, I am working with a specific size ratio in these particular cropping’s, so they are all consistent with the original series purchased.

Sailboat 2

Sailboat 2

The second shot is the cropped version and in black and white. What a huge difference. This shot tells a story with the sailboats as the focal point. The sky has been cropped to less prominence and most of the background noise in the left side of the frame has been eliminated. As a side note: If I wasn’t working to a specific size ratio for this project, I would have instinctively cropped this shot into a square to keep the sailboats more prominent. But that said, by cropping it this way it is works better in the series the client was interested in.

Sailboat 3

Sailboat 3

The third shot is more sailboats with the Coronado Bridge in the background. The cropping involved reducing the sky and water to bring the sailboats into the center frame, resulting in the fourth shot.

Sailboat 4

Sailboat 4

Sailboat 5

Sailboat 5

In the fifth picture, we have a group of three sailboats lost in the left side of the frame.

Sailboat 6

Sailboat 6

The final shot shows them commanding the picture by eliminating the same sky and excess water, but in this one there was too much unneeded noise in the right side of the frame.

The series as a whole comes out balanced and consistent. Each shot has been taken from a “blah” shot to a photograph of sailboats dominating the scene and creating a visual story. Thoughts?

 

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San Diego Skyline – Featured Art Print

San Diego Skyline

San Diego Skyline

The art print I wanted to feature today is from my Cityscapes Collection titled “San Diego Skyline”.  The print is of the San Diego skyline from across San Diego Bay. Using the same style I displayed in last weeks feature, a fauvism oil technique, creates this abstract and brightly colored rendition of the downtown San Diego skyline.

San Diego is a very beautiful city, not only due to the natural topography it occupies, but the city itself. I know I am biased, having lived there for 24 years, but it does occupy a beautiful stretch of coastline from the beaches lining the north county, down through Mission Bay (SeaWorld) and San Diego Bay. I love to go across to Coronado Island and look back towards the downtown skyline. With San Diego Bay as the anchor, you see the buildings making up the skyline, the convention center, hotels and condos dotting the sky. This particular art print is from the ferry landing on Coronado Island looking back across the bay. I love using this style with this subject matter as it adds an element of fun and vibrancy to a setting that features a lot of straight lines and linear features. Adding the dock for the ferry landing in the foreground with people adds an element of interest to the scene and creates more depth to the overall print.

I usually look at this style of art and think modern and contemporary. Yet, this style is traditional and old. Not being an interior designer, I’m clearly not the expert, but I do know what I like and how it looks. I have come to realize that the manner in which an art print is matted and framed can make a world of difference in the final presentation. Will this art print be a focal point for your wall and room or will this be a compliment to the overall look. Determining this factor will also help you decide on a print and the manner in which you matte and frame it. Thoughts?

I invite you to come into the gallery to view the collection in Cityscapes.

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San Diego Sailing – Featured Art Print

From my Black and White Gallery 1, I want to feature “San Diego Sailing”. This particular print was done in a project I did for a San Diego company. They wanted the art work in their office suite to be San Diego landmarks in black and white prints. It was a specific request to compliment the decor element of the office and celebrate the San Diego story. The attached is one of the resulting prints. Nothing could be more San Diego than a sail boat on San Diego bay using the skyline as a back drop. When you start looking at the detail of the shot, you notice it also includes the USS Midway which is a permanent museum ship docked in port. Having this shot as a black and white allows the eye  to capture  the shapes and subject matter quickly without the use of color. Seems a little contra to not use color to depict a city as beautiful as San Diego, but it allows the elements to tell the story on their own. I have also attached the original shot as a point of reference in the final art print.

Notice the original shot…..it was a hazy day, which disappears in the black and white, plus the two elements of the sail boat and the skyline take different positions. In the color photograph, the sailboat is the focal point with the buildings a background and the blueness of the bay becoming another visual element. Again, if I was to use the color version, I would clean up the haze and crop the same, but the final product would be selling sunshine and outdoor sailing. In the black and white version all of these elements are equal, but the foreground and background are complimentary and there isn’t any competition visually from the blue of the bay. It all depends on what you want your final art print to say.

San Diego Sailing Color

San Diego Sailing Color

 

Thoughts?

I invite you to come into the gallery to view the new additions to the collection in the Black and White Gallery 1.

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Point Loma Lighthouse – Featured Art Print

One of the art prints I wanted to feature from my Black and White Gallery 1 is the Point Loma Lighthouse (this particular shot is one of my favorites…it’s framed and hanging in my office). The Point Loma Lighthouse is situated up on tall bluff overlooking the entrance to San Diego Bay. Located in what is now Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California this facility was built in 1855 and was used until it was deactivated in 1891 (it has been replaced with a modern version on the Pacific Ocean side of Point Loma).

I like this structure as a black and white version due to the lines and contrasting colors. It allows the various shades of grey to stand out and tell a story. With certain subjects, using black and white creates age or historic feel. It simplifies the look and allows the eye to focus on the subject without having strong colors dominate the picture. In this particular print, I have also created a white matte framing the central shot. For a comparison sake, I included the original shot. From the original shot, I straightened the image (I swear I must stand crooked), cropped it down and then converted to back and white.

In the original notice the weathered copper of the top and the deep blue sky against the white stucco. Nothing wrong with that, but I was after the shape and feel of history.  Thoughts?

Point Loma Lighthouse Color

Point Loma Lighthouse Color

 

I invite you to come into the gallery to view the new additions to the collection in the Black and White Gallery 1.

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

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“On the Bay” The Art Print of the Week

“On the Bay” is from my Cityscapes Gallery. It’s one of the new art prints I added to this gallery last week.  The subject is the San Diego skyline as seen from across the bay on Coronado Island. I did this particular print in an abstract oil style similar to fauvism. I decided to use more of a vibrant abstract look to create an art print that spoke with bold colors and used shapes to suggest a look. It is important to note that this look is created using only digital brush strokes, digital drawing and digital manipulation of color hues resulting in the style I wanted.  If you are curious to see what I started with, in my B&W Gallery 1, I actually have the original photograph this is based on.  Enjoy!

Source: Cityscapes Gallery

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