Notes on Kite Aerial Photography: Photo Gallery

Oil Storage Tanks
Pt. Richmond, California

tankstair1.GIF (34154 bytes)A ground level shot of a relatively new tank and a plan view KAP image of an older tank (19K jpg left, Canon 100-300-mm, 34K jpg right, Canon 50-mm, November 1997).

For months I waited for a southeasterly wind so I could fly the camera from the yacht club's parking lot over an adjacent field of disused oil tanks. The tanks hearken back to a more industrial period at Brickyard Cove, a time when commercial shipping delivered oil of various types for subsequent distribution. The oil tanks are now in various stages of disrepair and appear to be waiting someone willing to invest in a site cleanup.

The shot to the right provides a bit of a puzzle. In the view we are looking down at the top of a large storage tank. You can see concentric rings where steel plates are joined to form the tank's conical top. Across the conical top, which we see as a circle, there is a straight line (running from the upper right toward the lower left.) This line in three dimensions is a parabola. My theory is that it represents a joint made during the relocation of the tank. I am guess it was dismantled by cutting it into large sections (thus the straight line), moved, and then reassembled.

A trio of tanks photographed in plan and oblique views (39K jpg each, Canon 24-mm, November 1997).

The whole tank complex is crisscrossed with distribution pipes and catwalks. These three tanks are linked by a bridging walkway. I also took some shots with the 15-mm fisheye lens (below). In the left image you can see across the tank farm out to the remains of an old railroad ferry pier. The San Francisco and Marin peninsulas were isolated from the railroads by the broad expanse of San Francisco Bay. At this site they loaded railroad cars onto ferries so they could complete the last 10 miles to San Francisco by water instead of taking a 100 mile detour by rail. I'm waiting for a strong (and rare) easterly breeze so I can photograph the pier's ruins.

Fisheye views of the tank farm (28K jpg left and 43K jpg right, Canon 15-mm, November 1997).

I also took some shots with the Canon's 50-mm lens. As mentioned in the previous page I've vowed to spend more time exploring this neglected lens. I can report that my previous reliance on the 24-mm and 15-mm lenses makes the "normal" focal length feel like a telephoto.

Obliques of the tanks (34K jpg left and 32K jpg right, Canon 50-mm, November 1997).

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