It’s considered as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World and its beautiful and graceful lines stretches between San Francisco and Marin County to the north – in perfect harmony with it’s setting. Taken together, the bridge and the Golden Gate framing, the San Francisco skyline is one of the most awe-inspiring sights on earth and certainly one of the most photographed. One can only envy early travelers arriving in San Francisco by ship and what emotion they must have felt.
The Golden Gate Bridge opened in 1937 and instantly became iconic as one of the most recognizable structures on earth. An engineering marvel (it was the longest bridge in the world when it opened) it is also considered to be the most beautiful bridge in the world as it seamlessly blends function, form, and setting so successfully that it is hard to imagine if it still could be further improved. I crossed that bridge nearly every day of my life for almost a decade and it never failed to bring joy to my heart and brighten my day. I’ve spent hours (in traffic) analyzing the towers and pondering the designers’ intent: the proportions of the four openings, delicate and horizontal at the top, sturdy and vertical at the bottom, with subtle graduations in between. The corners are softened by folded and riveted metal Art Deco cornices. Just like the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the bridge holds no secrets – you can see exactly how it was built, you see the rivets and bolts and metal flanges and can imagine the work of the men who put it together. Even the color seems just right. International Orange was originally just the primer paint but the color worked so well that it was quickly chosen as the permanent hue. It stands out against the blue of the bay and the sky, harmonizes with the russet and green of the Marin Headlands and the green and gray of San Francisco, and is absolutely stunning against the gray of the fog rolling in through the Golden Gate.
I once had a photography instructor who was so sick of seeing typical tourist-like photos of the Golden Gate Bridge that he would refuse to critique them for class projects unless they were photographed in a way he had never seen before. Now is that a challenge for us Lomographers or what?
Now, I do appreciate my old instructor’s opinion, after all, the Golden Gate Bridge is among the most photographed subjects in the world and do we really need another photograph of it? Well…yes. As a matter of fact, as Lomographers I think it is our job to come up with images of it in different ways and, really, how can you not want to take a picture of this bridge?!