That Glance

Glance - San Francisco - 2016//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Today I joined a group of friends to visit the current exhibition of Paul Graham’s work at Pier 24 in San Francisco. Pier 24 is a beautiful gallery for the display of photography – with large neutral spaces in many different rooms – and controlled reservation-based entry to minimize any feeling of crowding the in the space. It’s a joy.

Graham’s work was organized into three bodies of work: American Night (1998–2002), a shimmer of possibility (2004–06), and The Present (2009–11). In his video, Graham talked about how each body of work was based on one aspect of the camera. American Night was based upon aperture – overexposing the images to create the soft white images. A shimmer was based upon time – snapping multiple images in a sequence to tell the story of something in a series of images. The Present was based upon the use of selective focus – or very shallow depth of field – to shift the viewer’s attention to a different point of interest in each image.

After watching Graham’s video explanation of each – and walking the exhibitions, I came away really liking his American Night collection best of all. These images at first look like nothing – you glance and them and want to move on. But when you stop and spend time with each image, your eye begins to see details that you originally overlooked. As you move closer to the image, the effect is enhanced – you start seeing more. A lovely treatment – and something I want to play with in the future.

Meanwhile, as we departed Pier 24, I came across this man walking toward me in the shadows under the pier’s overhang. I grabbed a quick shot and then he sat down. I continued walked toward him – and asked him – with a quick motion of my hand with my camera asking if it was OK to take his picture. He said yes – and then I captured him in this pose glancing off to his left. One of those great moments when it all comes together in street photography!

The Magic of Photography at San Francisco’s Pier 24

Pier 24 - San Francisco - 2014

My friend Doug Kaye and I recently visited Pier 24 to see the current exhibition: “A Sense of Place”. We’d been wanting to go for several months but it’s a hard place to get into. They limit attendance and require an advance (but free) reservation. Only 20 people go in at one of three times each day. Once you’re inside, you really appreciate the lack of any crowds – so the reservation process definitely helps create a much higher quality experience. We got lucky one day and found a couple of slots open.

The space inside is just perfect for photography. The provide you with a booklet that provides the details for each photo – no little signs on the walls next to the photos.

My favorite photographers from the current exhibition are: Todd Hido, Stephen Shore, Jeff Wall, Andreas Gursky, Lee Friedlander, Eric William Carroll, Paul Graham and Rinko Kawauichi. Beautiful work from each of them! Doug and I spent the most time exploring a Vancouver nightclub shot by Jeff Wall – In Front of a Nightclub – a fascinating work! From a distance, the image seems flat but when you get up closer – within say 5 feet or so – it begins to really show some depth. Very fun!

Here’s another image shot inside Pier 24 – these are street shots of New York City by Paul Graham. I like how some of the images are mounted low. Graham’s using the “stage” technique – seeing first an interesting background and waiting for it to fill with subjects of interest.

Pier 24 - San Francisco - 2014

The Willie L. Brown, Jr. Bridge

The Willie L. Brown, Jr. Bridge - San Francisco - 2014

On Friday, Doug Kaye and I were on our way to an appointment to visit Pier 24. If you’ve not been to Pier 24, you HAVE to go. A beautiful experience.

I shot this with my iPhone 5s as we walked along the Embarcadero. Pier 24 is jutting into the image from the right. The pigeon caught my eye!

Converted to monochrome in Lightroom 5 using VSCO Film.