One Year Ago...

It began one year ago today.... My first few posts were not much... The format needed work.... But, not being the best at self promotion, I have managed to cobble together more than 1000 images in more than 250 posts, and you my dear readers provide me with well over a hundred visitors a day. Thanks!
I thought about the past year, and how to represent it, so I went back through and found a few of my favorite images along with links to the related posts from this past year.

In February, I brought you Ice:

In March it was all about a Green River:

In April I took a closer look at 540 W Madison:

May found me looking at Breasts:

June gave me access to views from atop Marina City:

In July there were Things that Involve Water:

In August I posted various Sharp Night Shots:

In September I took a liking to the Corner Shot:

October granted me access to night shots of Daley Center:

On a Sunny November day I stumbled across the Pittsfield Escape:

December was all about the Final Rush:

And finally, January was all about warmth and a Foggy Hancock:

Other highlights of the year included being mentioned last May in an article by Chicago Tribune Architecture Critic, Blair Kamin about temporary views. As well as several mentions and/or photo credits on such sites as Chicagoist and Gapers Block.

My major project of the year was my Unknown Loop Streets Series. Over the course of several months, I posted on 15 different streets mapped on Google, located within the Loop, but unknown to most passersby.

The new year brings new challenges, new opportunities, and with the new camera, I hope better images. My priority is to learn how to take better images, and how to use my camera to my advantage. I also plan to introduce a completely updated and better site over the next few months.
Thanks again... To you my reader... For keeping me motivated to get my butt out there and shoot images of my neighborhood.

EDIT - 1/31/06: I fixed all of the images above so that they will open larger in a new window. I meant to do it yesterday, but didn't get a chance.


Night Shots from "Top of the MC"...

Thursday evening was so crystal clear, I had to take advantage of the situation and go up to the rooftop of Marina City for night shots. It was however, was so windy and cold, not much came out, so I posted shots taken from Michaels balcony.
Well, last night was a bit warmer, a bit less windy, and even more crystal clear. I didn't have much better luck than on Thursday, but between the two evenings, I came up with this group.

First: The Hancock under 12x zoom. A bit noisy, and slightly out of focus, but on a better night, I will get a better image.

IBM next door. The "orange" floor is the conference floor for ____? (Answer to come soon.)

The view looking north and a bit west.

I tried this image on both nights, of about ten shots, this was the best one.

Looking west from West Tower. Riverbend in all it's bluish "blueness" is a nice addition to the skyline.


Pie Slice in the Sky (Part III)

Today was a wonderfully sunny and clear and I wanted to get out there and take some pics. Unfortunately, I had to wait till evening. Michael led me up to the roof deck at Marina City and, with tripod in hand, and a goal to capture new shots of the city, I did manage to take a few dozen or so. Unfortunately, when I got home and downloaded them, the wind blowing on my camera was just too strong for many of the images to be presentable.

I did however spend some time on Michael's balcony tonight and took several shots. So picking up on a series from this past June (Part I) and (Part II), I bring you more from the pie slice in the sky.

More 16:9 goodness, I really like the wide, almost "pano" feel of this aspect ratio setting.

Looking south across the balcony next door.

Looking up at West Tower.

Back to regular old 4:3, looking down at House of Blues.

Down on the ground looking up, you can see the new ring of lights they have installed at the top of the "cap" on the roof.


Washington Wells...

More trial shots with the new camera, nothing spectacular, but I have to learn somehow.

Looking north down the platform.

West down Madison Street from Wells

Looking south from the platform


After downloading the images, it took me a while to figure out what those two vertical white lines are (upper right). I then remembered icicles falling from the building next to me as I descend the stairs.


Kennedy Blur...

While walking to the grocery store yesterday after work, I did my usual walk over the Kennedy. Here it is from the Madison Street overpass in 16:9 ( "Widescreen").

I don't have a lot sympathy for those that drive to work when there is an alternative like the train, so watching the slow moving traffic has it's rewards.

It may look like traffic is moving, but be assured it is slow, just like my shutter speed was slow to create the image. Shot with about a three second time lapse.

Southbound headlights. You can make out lane changes, speeders, etc...


Random Mondays...01.23.06...

This week I bring an assortment of images taken with the new camera... One of the fun features of the new camera is that I can shoot in 16:9 aspect ratio, which gives a "widescreen" effect.

First up, a shot from Saturday morning as I walking out my front door to catch the train. Funny, I have walked out my door thousands of times, and never noticed this view.

Another uneventful ride on the Red Line.

Waiting in line for a final meal at the Berhgoff.

Entrance to Quincy Station on Wells. Here is an example of how the 16:9 can be used vertically.

A rare moment of sunshine on the mezzanine of the Monroe Red Line Station. (Shot in traditional 4:3.)


"L"... Snow... Belmont... New Camera...

This morning I was up at Belmont waiting for a train back to the Loop when decided to miss a train to get these shots. This is my first post in which first shots take with my new camera are featured. The jury is still out on the camera... But there are things about it that I love, and I am hoping the learning curve isn't too steep before it's too late to return it. I have taken about 350 shots so far, and will bring more to you this week.

Here we are looking South from the pedestrian over-pass (which if they include one at the newly constructed station, it will surely not be open air like this one, and we now how well the CTA cleans glass).

Same train, different perspective.

Same view again... Note the "Customers" (that's CTA talk) waiting on the platform at Wellington.

Looking North, Red Line heading to Howard.

Again only wider... The black high-rise in the background is up in Edgewater, and was my former home before I moved to the Loop.

Unrelated, but... OK, this one was completely by accident, I was futzing with the camera near "Wiggly Field" when I pressed the shutter. The camera focused on the water droplets on the window as opposed to the trees. I actually like it, and may work at cropping it down to frame it better.


Leo Burnett in B&W...

Another small collection of images converted to black and white for your pleasure....

Today, I bring you the Leo Burnett Building at 35 W Wacker.

Completed in 1989, it is PoMo without being absurdly PoMo.

This building was not one of my favorites when I moved here in 1999, but I have grown to appreciate it's textural surface.

This image is more focused on the concrete surface of 55 W Wacker (left), but you get a good idea of how the texture of the recessed windows plays with shadow.

(The new camera is not performing as I had anticipated, I either need to learn more about how to use it, or it may be defective. I have shot about 120 images so far, but I am not yet satisfied with the results. It may be going back to Amazon, and I may be searching for a different one. Either way, I will keep you posted.)


Van Buren in B&W...

Van Buren is a great street to experience hints of Chicago's past. There are intersections where little has changed since the end of the 19th Century. Digging through my stash, I came up with these shots taken under the "L" and after converting them to black and white, they just had this old time Chicago feel about them...

Looking west from Plymouth.

Looking back towards State, even the library takes on an old feel. Only the cars and street lighting are a giveaway.

The Fisher Building (1896, D.H. Burnham), converted to apartments a few years ago, has been beautifully restored.

Entrance to the Fisher Building.

Old Colony on Van Buren between Dearborn and Plymouth. Completed in 1894, designed by Holabird & Roche. The corner oriels are really special. Here is an image taken before the "L" train was completed in 1897.

(btw, still working on getting images with the new camera.)