Tag Archives: san francisco

GitHub.com by Pfau Long Architecture

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A few weeks ago I spent a couple of days working with Pfau Long Architecture shooting their latest project, the GitHub.com headquarters in (where else) San Francisco’s SoMa district. This building is owned by Hudson Pacific Properties, which manages buildings throughout the West Coast.

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A project this size has a lot of players, and Pfau Long’s role was primarily on the outside of the building, including the facade, entries, structural work, and a truly spectacular roof deck. SoMa (South of Market) is a wonderful mix of old masonry warehouse and industrial structures alongside some of the most exciting new construction anywhere. The Millenium Tower is here, as well as the future Transbay Tower which will be the tallest building in San Francisco.

Click the link…

More photos and write-up after the jump!

Today

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Last October, actually, but screw it, it’s my blog. Finally got a decent film scanner and I’ve been busily scanning transparencies going back years. This was shot on my Sinar 4×5, using Fuji Provia. Maybe a 45-second exposure. Was great to finally see this picture! Color negatives are just not satisfying to look at…

San Francisco Swank by Muratore

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I found myself back in the SF Millenium Tower at the end of October, shooting a very nice residence by my friends at Muratore Corp. We shot the spaces “straight” and then did a round of lifestyle images. Lots of photos, write-up, and behind-the-scenes images, after the jump!

San Francisco Residential by Baran Studios

Baran_ark Matt Baran (Baran Studio Architects) has been killing it lately! Between some fantastic residential work in Oakland’s “Bordertown” neighborhood that recently won a Citation Award at the East Bay AIA Awards (with photos by yours truly) to the WordPress campus that got the attention of the industry, Matt is really on a roll.

Which brings us to this most recent project in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood. Matt re-designed the structure and added a pop-out bay window that has real chutzpah!

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San Francisco Residential by Andrew Morrall Architect

morrall_small03When superior architecture meets fine craftsmanship, you get the raw material for great photographs. So when architect Andrew Morrall asked me to shoot a new residential remodel that featured the cabinetry work of Hendrik Furhmeister, I knew from the first look that this would be a winner. More photos, more words, after the jump

SF Millenium Tower by Handel Architects

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I’ve shot the inside of this building many times, but I’ve never needed a good photo of the outside. Earlier this year, I decided I ought to make one, anyway. I spent a couple of Sunday afternoons wandering around the neighborhood, looking suspicious, scouting for locations to shoot from. Eventually I settled on the eighth floor of a building occupied by a global hedge fund management company.

They wouldn’t mind letting a random photographer run around their building, right? [#sarcasm]  As it turns out, it was actually fine. Getting access to a shooting location usually comes down to asking (the right people, in the right way), figuring out the process, and then following it to a “T”. I worked with the building management, and the tenant (the hedge fund people) and while it took a couple of weeks and some paperwork, eventually I got everything I had asked for: access for several hours, at two different times.

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As you can see from the construction, this angle won’t be available for much longer. The new Transbay Tower and transportation hub going into a 2-block piece of the SoMA district will soon occlude the gorgeous blue and white Millenium. At least from this viewpoint.

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First Prize!

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The photo above was just sent to me by my client Building Lab, along with a note explaining that they won First Prize (Residential, $100k – $250k) in last years “Remmie” awards, with a project I photographed! Congrats to the incredibly talented folks over at BL, especially Stephen Shoup, and Hide Kawato!

The Remmies are the annual NARI contest, but sadly, the San Francisco NARI chapter’s website is pretty sorry, so almost no one knows about the awards or who wins (the last time they updated the awards section was 2010). Note to sfbanari.org: The Internet can be a very powerful tool. You should check it out.

Snarkiness aside, NARI is a good organization and I’m especially pleased to have photographed the First Prize winning project for three consecutive years. I wonder which of my projects this year will be the winner?  😀

Here’s a photo from the Building Lab’s First Prize winning project:

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Highrise Residential — San Francisco’s North Beach

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One from the archives… About six months ago I spent two days with Muratore Corp, photographing one of their projects in San Francisco’s trendy North Beach neighborhood. This was one of the best projects I’ve ever shot with Muratore, and there have been a few good ones!!

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One of the great aspects of this remodel was the variety and quality of the materials. Rich wood cabinetry (Walnut and Maple), stainless steel, Carerra Marble, granite, and even Ostrich Skin all make appearances.

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One thing that made this a really interesting shoot was the fact that there were two strong elements in the place that were holdovers from the previous incarnation of the condo. In  1999, this place was “done” by Barry Brukoff, a Sausalito-based interior designer, and photographed for Architectural Digest by none other than Mary E. Nichols.

When the unit was sold around 2010, the coffee table and a set of large glass sculptural pieces (visible at the far left of the kitchen photo, above) were deemed too heavy to move, and so they stayed behind and were incorporated into the new owners’ plans. Cindy Bayon, of Muratore, did a radical renovation that included moving the fireplace, no small feat in a high-rise….

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Here are a few behind-the-scenes shots, including one of me, comparing my living room photo, with the view of Coit Tower, to Mary Nichols’.

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San Francisco Kitchen & Bath: Leslie Arnold, Part Two

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A few posts back, I chronicled a recent shoot with architect Leslie Arnold – a kitchen/bath remodel in San Francisco. Today, here’s another one, with a distinctly different flavor.

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Unlike the other project, which was a sort of Victorian-meets-country blend, this was Mission all the way. Arched doorways, stucco, smallish rooms….and Leslie introduced an Arts & Crafts flavor to the kitchen.

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For the lighting geeks: The shot above involved gelling all the under-cabinet lights minus green (or magenta) to bring the fluorescent tubes back to something close to daylight. We introduced some flash from the left side down near the fridge, and there’s also continuous light in the rear left corner as well as the foreground. A lot of careful positioning of cards and some white reflectors got everything under control.

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With the kitchen done, we moved into the bath, where Leslie had cast off all pretense of Mission style and gone 100% contemporary. This is the epitome of crisp! Green glass tile, white CeasarStone vanity top, and rich wood cabinets. The little scrubby was a last-minute addition to the styling that I just couldn’t resist.

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All in all this was a really satisfying project to shoot, thanks to Leslie’s great work and some excellent collaborative atmosphere.

San Francisco Kitchen & Bath: Leslie Arnold, Part Two

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A few posts back, I chronicled a recent shoot with architect Leslie Arnold – a kitchen/bath remodel in San Francisco. Today, here’s another one, with a distinctly different flavor.

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Unlike the other project, which was a sort of Victorian-meets-country blend, this was Mission all the way. Arched doorways, stucco, smallish rooms….and Leslie introduced an Arts & Crafts flavor to the kitchen.

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For the lighting geeks: The shot above involved gelling all the under-cabinet lights minus green (or magenta) to bring the fluorescent tubes back to something close to daylight. We introduced some flash from the left side down near the fridge, and there’s also continuous light in the rear left corner as well as the foreground. A lot of careful positioning of cards and some white reflectors got everything under control.

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With the kitchen done, we moved into the bath, where Leslie had cast off all pretense of Mission style and gone 100% contemporary. This is the epitome of crisp! Green glass tile, white CeasarStone vanity top, and rich wood cabinets. The little scrubby was a last-minute addition to the styling that I just couldn’t resist.

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All in all this was a really satisfying project to shoot, thanks to Leslie’s great work and some excellent collaborative atmosphere.

San Francisco Kitchen & Bath by Leslie Arnold

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I recently completed a couple of projects with architect Leslie Arnold; a pair of kitchen/bath remodels in San Francisco. Here’s the first one, and it was a real pleasure to shoot!

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Nor was it simple. The atrium-like eating area at the rear was flooded with sunlight, but the center island and “cooking” end of the space was significantly darker, and had to be lit in order for the photos to match what our eyes experienced. There’s a mixture of strobe and continuous light being applied across the entire image. Some of the strobe was via a head mounted on a light stand that was then “boomed” out the window of an adjoining room, by my assistant!

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In the bathroom, we again used a combination of flash (this time a small speedlight) and continuous light (for the cabinetry) to compress the dynamic range into something that matched what our eyes could see.

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We wrapped up the day with a few detail shots in other areas of the house where Leslie had done work, including the bedroom closets and storage.

Up next: a completely different kitchen/bath look, also by Leslie Arnold! Stay tuned….

San Francisco Kitchen & Bath by Leslie Arnold

LA_Blog_01

I recently completed a couple of projects with architect Leslie Arnold; a pair of kitchen/bath remodels in San Francisco. Here’s the first one, and it was a real pleasure to shoot!

LA_Blog_02

Nor was it simple. The atrium-like eating area at the rear was flooded with sunlight, but the center island and “cooking” end of the space was significantly darker, and had to be lit in order for the photos to match what our eyes experienced. There’s a mixture of strobe and continuous light being applied across the entire image. Some of the strobe was via a head mounted on a light stand that was then “boomed” out the window of an adjoining room, by my assistant!

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In the bathroom, we again used a combination of flash (this time a small speedlight) and continuous light (for the cabinetry) to compress the dynamic range into something that matched what our eyes could see.

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We wrapped up the day with a few detail shots in other areas of the house where Leslie had done work, including the bedroom closets and storage.

Up next: a completely different kitchen/bath look, also by Leslie Arnold! Stay tuned….

San Francisco Eclectic by Susan Diana Harris

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Susan Diana Harris is nothing if not bold. I’d use stronger language, but this is a family blog. She’s not interested in anything that doesn’t make a clear, loud statement, and she’s not afraid to take chances, either. And that combination can lead to some really cool interior spaces, like this San Francisco loft.

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This place is in what is possibly the coolest part of the city. The study (above, with blue chalkboard paint and the most awesome light fixture EVER) is classic SDH design. You can’t walk in there without going, “Whoa….”
That was my reaction, anyway…

But in the converted industrial space that comprises most of the loft, Susie took all the energy that she would ordinarily put into the wall treatments and focused it instead on the floors.

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This was not a complete remodel — she and her team had to work with existing floors (including the high gloss finish), existing kitchen, and much else. But this place has her stamp on it, for sure. You can see an installation photo HERE.

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We wrapped with a shot of the bedroom, done in what might be the most mellow tones Susie has ever assembled. But of course, a giant gorilla….

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SF Kitchen by Folio Design

folio03Catching up on Fall projects, and first up is a kitchen I shot for Folio Design back on October.

Designer Erin McGilvery, with whom I’ve worked before, really nailed it with this contemporary/country design. The first thing that caught my eye was the raised panels on the end of the island and the cabinet doors. This millwork was outstanding, and we knew we had to make sure the texture showed in the photos.

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Erin is always fun to work with – and we had a good time styling this room!

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Mid-Century Modern, Revised: Leslie Arnold Architect

I was really pleased to get to shoot this updated mid-century in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood (my favorite ‘hood in SF) a few weeks ago. Architect Leslie Arnold and General Contractor Steve Altman retained the classic lines and character of the space but created a light airy feeling that seems totally up-to-date.

We had planned to wrap the shoot around 5:00pm, but after seeing the private courtyard above I knew that it simply HAD to be a twilight photo. We spent the next couple of hours setting this up. There’s some added light pretty much everywhere, inside and outside, which kept me and Alan pretty busy. As the time drew near, we sketched out where we wanted our models (Leslie, and the homeowners, who are both in the design/architecture field themselves). Then came the patient waiting, then the frantic last-minute tweaking….until voila! The perfect moment.

Here’s a few more from this shoot. Enjoy!

Kitchen & Bath by Building Lab

A few weeks ago I worked with Stephen Shoup of Building Lab to shoot a kitchen and bath remodel in San Francisco. Stephen and his team created a totally downtown look in this place, and so I worked to create images that held that crisp, clean look – but with the rich warm tones that seem to be a hallmark of Building Lab projects.

Enjoy!

Kitchen & Bath by Building Lab

A few weeks ago I worked with Stephen Shoup of Building Lab to shoot a kitchen and bath remodel in San Francisco. Stephen and his team created a totally downtown look in this place, and so I worked to create images that held that crisp, clean look – but with the rich warm tones that seem to be a hallmark of Building Lab projects.

Enjoy!

San Francisco Nautical by Susan Diana Harris

A few weeks ago, I spent a long day with Susan Diana Harris, a San Francisco-based interior designer known for her bold use of color. Where anyone else might think ‘accent color’, Susie thinks ‘primary’. The colors become as important a factor in the space as the architecture itself. In this Noe Valley residence, she was involved in nearly every aspect of the house.

Needless to say, this was a fun and challenging project for me. Having shot my fair share of beige-on-beige interiors, I’m always glad to get some powerful material in front of my camera, and this place didn’t disappoint. Click here for more photos, and a full write-up!

Mulberry San Francisco

I’m used to doing maybe 10 photos in a day, tops, over an 8 or 9-hour shoot…..so when I got an assignment last month from Mulberry of London to shoot their new store in San Francisco’s Union Square I was a little shocked to learn that I would need to come up with 15 or 20 views, interior and exterior, in about 4 hours.

Yikes!

This is where having a background in real estate photography comes in really handy. I showed up at 5:30am, and met Donna Lesh, the Visual Merchandising Manager for Mulberry US. In fog so thick I had to wipe off the lens for each shot (yeah…summer in San Francisco), we did the exteriors, then moved inside. The store was slated for it’s Grand Opening at 10:00am, so we had no time to lose.

Donna had been pulling 20-hour days all week, and had been on-site since about 4:00am, so coffee became an integral part of the shoot.

I had identified the key areas of the store during a chaotic, mid-construction walkthrough with Donna earlier in the week. I started with wide establishing shots, and then drilled in tighter, working my way from the front of the store to the back, and then upstairs.

Donna was sharp as a tack, despite fatigue. I’d adjust a handbag, and she’d be right there: “We don’t display handbags at an angle,” she’d say, putting it back to within a millimeter of where it had been. I’d show her the laptop and point out the compositional issue I was trying to resolve, and she’d re-style an entire table for me. It was awesome.

It would have been tons of fun to have people in these shots, but that idea got nixed very early in the process (although I snuck one in anyway….not sure if anyone’s noticed it yet.)

By 9:45 I was getting phone calls from the marketing manager, in London. “We need 2 hero shots, STAT,” she said. We negotiated on that one for a couple minutes and agreed that I’d cut the shot list a little, and use the store Wifi to upload 2 photos from my laptop, by 11:00am local.

Literally as the doors opened and customers walked in, I slipped upstairs to the still-barren office area, sat on the floor, and prepped an exterior and interior shot, and uploaded them. I pushed the equipment cart out the delivery door and onto a now-sunny Grant Street at 11:00am, sharp — Mission Accomplished!

Jackie in the marketing office wasn’t fooling around — the images have seen some serious play, everywhere from SFGate to Dwell, Refinery29, and Haute Living. And a zillion more places. If the pictures on those sites look a little warm, well  — its why we try not to edit in a hurry, on a laptop!!

Aerial SF

It’s hard not to gloat a little over the prospect of being paid to do shoots like this. This is fun stuff, no two ways about it.

And I totally lucked out with the weather. Our first attempt last week was completely fogged out, so we hit all of our East Bay waypoints (shooting through some nasty haze) and postponed all of the San Francisco stuff for another day. That day was yesterday, and I nearly cancelled the flight because the weather in Hayward (where the flight originated) was so crappy, and deteriorating. But the Golden Gate was getting the light that photographers dream about!

“Don’t try this at home, kids,” said Rick Cascelli (the pilot), as we skimmed alarmingly close to the Marin Headlands for this shot.

Another dozen photos, after the jump!