for all that San Francisco has to offer, it has always been a challenge to photograph. there is much unique to San Francisco that is not offered in other prominent cities, but to "see" has been a little harder. I have been familiar with San Francisco for many years, and lived in it only for a few. I always viewed it as very photogenic, yet, in how I see photography functioning at this point, I am at a loss on how to photograph San Francisco.
most unexpectedly, viewing the city through a sliver in the prism of New Topographics, which is neither about how photogenic the city is, nor is it about how I see and experience the city, seems to offer some hope.
the issue with this approach concerns its lack of intuition. meaning, it is an approach that I can "toy with", but it is not intuitive present on how to photograph it. this is very obvious when I look at the photographs, and then I am stumped on how to process them to represent the mood — which is what the intuition should be feeding at the moment of taking the photo.
it is also the case that it is too much of examples from Lewis Baltz and Paul Strand, in the way that I see them. Mr. Baltz is the sliver to New Topographics, but not in his vision of it, and the Mr. Strand is in bringing a visceral/intuitive and mono no aware** aspect to the photographs. yet, because they remain separate, it fails at its purpose: a cohesive view of San Francisco.
the Presidio and other corners
the Presidio grounds, while they are going corporate-gentrification, and other improvements, remains a photographic haven. it may be tempting to put the Golden Gate Bridge in some small detail, but like with the speech at the beginning of a flight: "the nearest exit may be behind you." that is, the appeal of the Presidio lies within itself, behind one's view of the bridge, and not as a foreground to the it.
these are all part of the mobile photography approach, with photos processed in Snapseed and CameraBag2.
** I am wondering: what would be the term for this in photography?