This week, Patti has chosen Street Art as the subject for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge so I decided to revisit my trip to downtown Chicago for the Air & Water Show last summer. There is always so much to see in the city and you can bet you will come across some street art in one form or another. Thirty-three of these brightly-painted police dogs, placed mostly along the Magnificent Mile, helped to raise money for the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation.
This week, Patti has chosen History as the subject for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. Coming from a country so rich in history, I deeply regret not taking up photography while I was still living in England. From the majesty of London’s past with its towers, bridges and cathedrals to the Roman ruins of Verulamium in St. Albans and the mysteries of Stonehenge in Wiltshire, I saw all these historic places yet have nothing to show for it, at least no pictures for which I can take credit. A few years after arriving in Chicago my husband bought me my first SLR camera and ever since then I’ve tried to document all the places of interest that we’ve seen, if for no other reason than to look back at the images in the years to come, perhaps with the grandkids and hopefully their families, and say, “This is part of your country’s history.”
An important part of Chicago’s history was the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. It destroyed so much of what had gone before but led to one of the greatest revival stories in American history. The sculpture shown above is part of the southern bridgehouse of Du Sable Bridge or the Michigan Avenue Bridge as it is more commonly known. Entitled ‘Regeneration’ and created by Henry Hering, it shows workers rebuilding Chicago after the Great Fire. Below is the iconic Chicago Water Tower, the only public building to survive the fire.
On a recent trip to Texas we visited another of America’s famous historic sites, The Alamo in San Antonio. I don’t pretend to understand the rights, wrongs or reasons for many of the wars that have been fought, down through the ages but, as in all battles, men died at the Alamo fighting for a cause that they believed in.
South Dakota has its share of historic sites, even prehistoric ones, including the Mammoth Site in Hot Springs and the Indian Village archaeological site in Mitchell. Something a little more recent, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, designed by sculptor Gutzon Borglum, depicts four U.S. Presidents, Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln representing the birth, growth, development and preservation of the United States.
Speaking of Abraham Lincoln, one of the first places I photographed when I got my Minolta film camera was the Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois. Later images captured with a Canon EOS Rebel show the old State Capitol Building and Lincoln’s law offices, both in Springfield.
Continuing with Becky’s Spiky Squares themed photo challenge, here are a few sculptures and plants that were just a bit on the pointy side at the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
It’s all about colors just recently. This week, Nancy Merrill has chosen Contrasting Colors as her topic for the Photo A Week Challenge and, using the color wheel in her post, orange and blue would appear to be quite a good combination for this subject. images include a stained glass window by Marc Chagall at the Chicago Art Institute, a table top in a coffee shop in Evanston, restaurant umbrellas in Texas, and a table setting at The Flower & Garden Show in Rosemont as well as scenes from the Chicago Botanic Garden, the 63rd Annual Chicago Powwow in Elk Grove Village and Goebbert’s Pumpkin Farm in South Barrington.
For more on Nancy’s Photo A Week Challenge go to Contrasting Colors.
This week, Cee has chosen Colorful Monotones as the subject for her Fun Foto Challenge. I don’t know if the ceilings in the Minnesota State Capitol Building are strictly monotone but the golden glow seems to give them that overall appearance.
For more on Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, go to Colorful Monotones (one single color).
The subject for Nancy Merrill’s Photo A Week Challenge is Lit From Within and, although I hadn’t intended to participate this week, the opportunity to capture some appropriate pictures presented itself quite by chance and so here is my take on the challenge. For the past three weeks I’ve been spending much of the time at the hospital visiting my 93-year-old mother-in-law. Sadly she has reached the stage where nothing more can be done for her and has been moved to more comfortable surroundings in hospice there. The only bright spot in these rather gloomy days has been the sight of the Christmas Village that has been set up in the lobby of the hospital. Apparently, the man who owns all these lovely ornaments brings them in every Christmas for everyone to enjoy. Thank you, whoever you are! You have helped to lighten our load.
For more on Nancy’s Photo A Week Challenge go to Lit from Within.
In my experience, most statues of people seem to portray them in a standing position, as if showing a person worthy of a statue in a sitting posture would be to give the impression that they were somehow guilty of slacking. However, in my travels I have come across one or two inanimate posteriors that have been allowed to sink to a supporting chair or plinth. The first three images are of an art installation call ‘Borders’ in Grant Park in downtown Chicago back in 2013.
It would seem that Abraham Lincoln wasn’t above sitting down occasionally for a quiet think or to read a good book, as seen here in Chicago’s Grant Park, Freeport in Illinois and Louisville, Kentucky.
Children can sometimes be seen sitting down but mostly only in statues. In real life you’re lucky if you can get them to keep still for more than two minutes! These shots were taken at the Green Bay Botanical Garden, Wisconsin and Spring Valley Nature Center in Schaumburg, Illinois.
While some artist’s models are lucky enough to score a comfortable chair whilst sitting for a sculptor, others find themselves perched on a cold, hard slab or a nubby rock as shown here at the Frederik Meijer Sculpture Garden in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
And the more classical element only rate a less-than-comfy tree stump to prop up their rear ends, as these pictures, taken at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, show.
If anyone asks me to sit for a statue, I’ll be sure to specify that I want, at the very least, to be parked on a bench, seat or preferably a well-cushioned armchair. Images captured in Elk Grove, Illinois, Sioux Falls in South Dakota and Green Bay Botanic Garden, Wisconsin.
For more on the Pull Up A Seat Photo Challenge go to Photo Challenge of places we sit…or might sit…or art about sitting.