Participant Showcase: Chris Christensen

Golden Gate Bridge Copyright 2011 Chris Christensen


I live in San Jose, California. I am a Director of Engineering for by day. By night, I am also the host of the Amateur Traveler. The Amateur Traveler is an online travel show that focuses primarily on travel destinations and what are the best places to travel to. It includes both a weekly audio podcast, a video podcast, and a blog.  The blog features my photography which is often the only souvenir I usually bring back from my travels and one of the reasons I travel.

Chris Christensen, the Amateur Traveler, Bio Pic

Chris Christensen


AmateurTraveler and


Via Facebook: AmateurTraveler

Via Twitter @chris2x


Chris did well here by capturing a classic view of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.  The main elements in the frame, namely the bridge with its two towers and the viewing telescope on the right side, make for a nice composition and my eye wants to travel in a triangle between these three parts of the image.

Unfortunately we didn’t have very interesting light that day with the clouds socked in from all around, but this is often the weather conditions one will encounter in San Francisco and so the mood is right on.  If I recall it was drizzling just a bit, and so there appear to be some water spots on Chris’s lens here, but those are easily removed in post-processing.

By the way, Chris and I co-hosted a photo tour of Egypt last year with twelve participants and had an incredible experience.  Additionally, he was kind enough to have interviewed me on the AmateurTraveler three times so far, once on Travel Photography, once on Travel to Montenegro, and finally on Travel to Chihuahua…have a listen by following these links.


I joined Ralph on a walking tour of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. The challenge for me is that I have walked the Golden Gate Bridge before and even recently. So I was interested to see what new photos or ideas I could get spurred on by Ralph and by the other photographers. I found myself looking at the bridge with new eyes and captured some of my new favorite photos of the area.


  1. ivan cooper says:

    My take on the photo. Chris has hundreds of photos on his travel gallery. Plus he works for and you have both had many Travel classes to Egypt and other locations. Quite a history and plenty of experience behind the lens. My point the photo should have been edited to show an example of yours and his best photography. Just plain laziness and the word Amateur doesn’t even fit. Amateur photographers would know better. No excuses on the this one Ralph.

    • RalphVelasco says:

      Thanks for the comment, Ivan, however the Showcase is about the participant and the photograph they decide to submit, not mine.

  2. What a great show case on Chris. I follow him on Amateur Traveler and it was cool to see him featured here. As a Bay Area resident I loved the photo of the Golden Gate Bridge. Maybe it doesn’t have perfect lighting or accurate aperture or whatever you are looking for in a “professional” photo. But as a resident it perfectly captures the smoggy crisp view that you would have of the bridge on a blistery day. Thanks for the post and photo.

    • RalphVelasco says:

      Great, glad you enjoyed Chris’ feature on the blog. The idea of an image should capture the essence of the place, and I think you’re right, Chris’ does just that. Thanks for the comment and keep an eye out for my San Francisco classes and Golden Gate Bridge photo walking tours in the future. If you join my mailing list I can keep you posted. Cheers, RV


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Ralph Velasco is a professional photographer and instructor who has traveled extensively and taken photographs in over 40 countries. Ralph Velasco Cultural Tours offers unique cultural touring opportunities that combine compelling locations with breathtaking views, relevant local history, scheduled activities and time to explore on your own. His events are available in dazzling international locations around the globe and his services include public speaking, corporate cultural tours and events, corporate photo walks, photo walking tours, photography eBooks, photography classes and group training seminars. His photo walking tours provide the opportunity for hands-on photography experience with a professional instructor to develop the skills necessary to capture a variety of photo subjects, settings and lighting. Ralph gives private photography lessons and his photography boot camp includes a seminar and training on camera basics, elements of composition, and a personal review of your own photography. United States and international locations; Corona del Mar & Orange County CA.

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