Friday, October 31, 2008

The day of the Zeppelin

April had mentioned that the Zeppelin was going to fly over the Golden Gate Bridge for the first time since 1947. Well this just sparked my imagination into overdrive. How awesome would it be to take pictures of an airship flying over the Golden Gate Bridge? I thought of shooting the scene in B&W with a little sepia to add age to the picture.

We knew what day and approximately what time the airship was going to fly over. I knew where I wanted to take this monumental picture due to the sun's angle and the view I wanted to capture the shot. That morning I dragged a very tired and way the over worked April out to the spot loaded down with lounge chairs, bottled water, sun hats and all the photo equipment I thought we needed.

As we sat and enjoyed the view, beautiful weather and small talk, I was reminded once again what a great city I had grown up in and how lucky I am to still live so close to this picturesque city. As promised and right on time we saw the Zeppelin turning the corner at Lands End to head right towards the Golden Gate.

First a DC-3 flew over head with a few Bi-planes, then a SFFD fire boat was shooting off a full spray of water beneath the Golden Gate and finally the Zeppelin flew over the Golden Gate. This all sounded great but there were a few problems with the actual scene. First, the Zeppelin looked and was built just like a typical modern blimp. I expected a more old fashion look or something that resembled an airship form the early 1900's. Second, the Zeppelin crossed the Golden Gate at a very high attitude which did not fair well with the shot composition I had in mind. I was hoping the Zeppelin would fly over the bridge much lower then it actually had.

Oh well, we can't have it the way we want it all the time. Just hanging out with April and enjoying the views of the Bridge and Marin headlands was more than worth the effort.

Here is the fire boat showing its full spray:

The Zeppelin flying solo:

The Zeppelin flying with a DC-3:

The Zeppelin flying over the Golden Gate:

Here is a representation of how I envisioned the shot that should of been:

One cool thing we did see was this wave. It appeared in the middle of what seemed to be nowhere. There was no shore or rocks that the wave was going towards. It only appeared a few of times before fizzling out not to be seen again. I would love to know if this is a common wave during a certain time of the legendary torrential currents that go in and out of the gate. I do not think the sail boat you see in the picture expected it since the wave was taller than the boat.

Well, there it is. I did not get the shot I wanted but I did enjoy my day out with a good friend in one of the most peaceful and beautiful places I know and love.

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