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Author Topic: Vancouver Harbor at Night  (Read 3557 times)
nma
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« on: April 24, 2013, 02:08:20 PM »
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I am looking for suggestions for locations for night photography of Vancouver BC, harbor.

I will be in the city for business the second week in June. I would like to make some pictures of the skyline, perhaps at dusk or later,
The location should be accessible from downtown by a short taxi ride and be relatively safe from personal crime.

I found this appealing photo on the web. Does anyone know from where it was taken?

http://www.danheller.com/images/Canada/Vancouver/Nite/canon-house-n-cityscape-2-big.jpg

Thanks for your help.
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fredjeang2
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« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2013, 02:46:25 PM »
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Mmmm....this looks like "Seawall", "9 o clock gun", no? (close to Stanley Park)

The "interesting" thing with Vancouver is that you need to be connected with the weather forecast. Is one of the rainiest city in the world, (London is a sweet joke) only beated by some places in northen India during the monson.

Be preapared for showers, low and dpressing darker skies than Vador costume, mist that regularly blocks the views, freezing temperatures because of the humidity, and wind. Lots of people get depressed because of that.
« Last Edit: April 24, 2013, 02:54:27 PM by fredjeang2 » Logged
Peter McLennan
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« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2013, 03:07:08 PM »
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The "Nine O:Clock Gun" location is very good.  It's a little inaccessible because the road to it is one-way.  You'd have to be dropped off there and arrange for a cab to return to pick you up.  Expensive. Alternatively, walk from the entrance to Stanley Park on Georgia Street - a twenty minute walk. No taxi issues then.

Also consider the south shore of False Creek and Kitsilano Point near the planetarium.
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nma
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« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2013, 08:25:58 PM »
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Mmmm....this looks like "Seawall", "9 o clock gun", no? (close to Stanley Park)

The "interesting" thing with Vancouver is that you need to be connected with the weather forecast. Is one of the rainiest city in the world, (London is a sweet joke) only beated by some places in northen India during the monson.

Be preapared for showers, low and dpressing darker skies than Vador costume, mist that regularly blocks the views, freezing temperatures because of the humidity, and wind. Lots of people get depressed because of that.

Hello Fred,
Your response was very helpful. I am now sure that you nailed the 9 O'clock gun location. Your advice about the weather is most welcome; I had forgotten but now I will try to prepare.
I see that Brockton Point Lighthouse is very nearby. Do you think there is any way to make a picture there with the lighthouse in small in the foreground and with the city lights prominent  (actually they would be the subject of the photo) in the background?

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nma
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« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2013, 08:37:14 PM »
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The "Nine O:Clock Gun" location is very good.  It's a little inaccessible because the road to it is one-way.  You'd have to be dropped off there and arrange for a cab to return to pick you up.  Expensive. Alternatively, walk from the entrance to Stanley Park on Georgia Street - a twenty minute walk. No taxi issues then.

Also consider the south shore of False Creek and Kitsilano Point near the planetarium.

Hello peter,

Thank you so much for this information. I think it is just what i need.  Can you expand a bit on your idea for Kitsilano Point. Is it near Vanier Park?  I am also VERY interested in your suggestion of False Creek.
Are you thinking about shooting from David Lam Park? Am I correct to assume that the distance between foreground and city lights will be much smaller for False Creek? Trying to understand choice of lens.
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marvpelkey
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« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2013, 09:58:26 PM »
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nma,

A couple of good suggestions so far. To, hopefully, add some further points...

The seawall is a walkway that encircles Stanley Park, along which the 9 o'clock gun sits. Although the gun is across the bay from the city, depending on the location of your accommodations, walking to the gun can take quite awhile. As an example, from Georgia and Granville area (right downtown), it is probably close to an hour, so a taxi or bus part of the way may be an option. The last time (couple months ago) I was there, the gun was not lit. Not sure if it is lit all year round or only at a certain time of night. A couple hundred feet from the gun is the statue of Harry Jerome, which can make a nice foreground silhouette (search for one of my images from a couple months ago - shot with a 100mm lens). From the seawall, you can use anything from a wide angle up to about a 150mm, depending how much of the city you want to capture.

 Farther along the seawall (another 5 minute walk from the gun) is Brockton Point Lighthouse, however, it is blocked from the city by a stand of trees and, even if the trees were absent, to get it in the foreground of a city shot, you would have to be out in the water. Having said that, you can include it in the foreground of a shot across the water to North Vancouver, or I also think it can be included in a shot of Lions Gate Bridge. Keep in mind, it is not necessarily a classic lighthouse. It is quite small and the light (if it has a light at all) does not rotate.

False Creek is also an excellent location to get a city skyline and from there you can get the city as well as the sports stadium (lots of changing and colourful lighting) with Grouse Mountain in the background. If you have a wide enough lens you could also include the Science Centre (big round lit up ball). Once again, depending on how much you wish to include, you could use a wide angle up to about 150mm.

The above two locations will ensure an image that includes a lot of the city's business and residential high-rises. From the other side (near the planetarium) you are mostly faced with residential high-rises, with the Burrard Bridge off to your right (Granville Island and marinas are just past this bridge. I've never found real good photos of the city from that side, unless you venture further west to Spanish Banks (a few miles away, almost to UBC).

As to safety, it's a big city with big city problems but in all the times (dozens and dozens) of times I have been out, both late night and early morning, I have never met with problems. Of course, there are places you should not venture by yourself and with camera equipment.

As you didn't mention how many nights you will have for shooting, if I had only a single night, I would probably concentrate on the city from the Stanley Park seawall. It's the location for iconic city skyline. If more than one night, I would then consider False Creek.

There are a bunch of other locations of photographic interest, so if you wish more detailed stuff and some sample shots (with exact locations and how to get there), pm me your e-mail and I will provide more and answer any questions you may have.

Cheers,

Marv
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Peter McLennan
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« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2013, 10:54:07 PM »
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Hello peter,

Thank you so much for this information. I think it is just what i need.  Can you expand a bit on your idea for Kitsilano Point. Is it near Vanier Park?  I am also VERY interested in your suggestion of False Creek.
Are you thinking about shooting from David Lam Park? Am I correct to assume that the distance between foreground and city lights will be much smaller for False Creek? Trying to understand choice of lens.

Yes, Vanier Park.  The Planetarium is there.  Good views of the West End over water are available and the light angle provides nice sun reflections on the building windows at sunset.

David Lam Park is on the north shore of False Creek.  I prefer the south shore, looking north.  Yes, the buildings are much closer at this location - anything from a 28 to a 200 would be fun to shoot at that location.  There's so much light that you can shoot long after sunset.  Typically an hour or so after sunset and you'll still have light in the sky.

Consider a run across Burrard Inlet using the Seabus.  Cheapest boat ride you'll ever have and get a great sense of Vancouver and Burrard Inlet.  Stay on the North Van shore for a half hour, then catch the Seabus back.  Other small walk-on ferries service various locations on False Creek - Granville Island, Science World, the foot of Hornby Street and Sunset Beach.  Great boat rides cheap.
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