A visual tour of Grace Cathedral

A visual tour of Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral in San Francisco is just incredible.  Today's photo essay is a collection of 10 photos and 1 painting that summarize my visit there...and a little story about luck, perseverance, and why you should always tell the truth.  Be sure to add this place to your list if you are planning a trip to San Fran!

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The grandeur and beauty of Grace Cathedral

I have spent the week thus far in San Francisco, which is obviously a wonderful town for photography.  My purpose here was work of course and I had only a small window to get out and shoot.  So, this shot is from my last trip here, back in May, and is one of my favorites from that trip.  Grace Cathedral sits atop Nob Hill and is a well-known church for a lot of reasons, probably not the least of which is that it is simply beautiful.  The interior is cavernous and I was happy to be able to get in there and get some shots.  This is the center aisle.  I know this is likely the same shot that everyone would do in this situation, which makes it somewhat cliched, buy hey it's still a gorgeous place and I wanted to have my version of this shot, so here it is!  Hope you like it!  And by the way, be sure and visit this place sometime - you will be glad you did.  I still have many shots to share from my last trip, and now have some new ones to share from this week's visit, so you will be seeing a bit more of San Fran in my photostream - hope you don't mind!

Behind the altar at Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral is a beautiful church situated atop Nob Hill in San Francisco, and on my second attempt I was able to get inside.  My first attempt had been at about 10am on a Sunday morning, and though I could technically get inside, there was a service occurring and it was packed with folks.  I obviously didn’t think that one through before going, did I?  I like empty churches, at least for photography.  So on that Sunday I took a few shots outside, and then continued my random meanderings around San Fran.  A couple of days later, after I had finished work for the day, and as darkness was approaching, I decided to make the exhausting trek back up the seemingly non-stop hill to try and get inside the church for some photo time.  This time, no service - but oddly there were about 50 people doing yoga in the front part of the cathedral (just inside the door).  Lucky for me they were wrapping it up and packing it up, and that left the interior to me and my camera and a couple of tourists (yeah, I guess I was a tourist too but I was doing serious camera work!).  The main challenge I had was that it was getting dark outside, and the interior is a bit dark anyways, so it was tough to get enough light.  However, I did pull off 5 exposures at f/5 for this shot (-3 to +1) and was able to work a little HDR magic.  I would prefer a bit more light, and with the aperture at f/5 I think I sacrificed some details, but hey I was just happy to experience the beauty and grandeur of this wonderful cathedral.  It’s definitely worth a visit if you are in San Fran!