This week, Ann-Christine would like us to share what we have Found in the Neighborhood for the Len’s-Artists Photo Challenge. I make no apologies for dipping into the photo files for this one. We have been asked to stay at home as much as possible for the next 30 days because of the virus and, in trying to comply, I am not about to venture out for anything less than toilet paper and Marmite. These pictures may not be recent but I don’t think I’ve published them here before.
Here are a few lines for Becky’s Square Lines Challenge that I found in Green Bay, Wisconsin. These images were captured at the Green Bay Botanical Garden, The National Railroad Museum (note the line of geese taking a tour), Lambeau Field (home of the Green Bay Packers) and Heritage Hill State Park.
Or should that read ‘on and by the river?’ I’m not quite sure what constitutes being ‘on the river.’ Anyway, be that as it may and not withstanding, we spent the day in St. Charles, mostly on and by the river, the river being the Fox River as you can probably tell by the statue of the foxes overlooking the river from Main Street bridge.
There are some noteworthy and historic buildings on the banks of the river near Main Street. The St. Charles Municipal Building was designed in 1940 by architect R. Harold Zook, who is also known for designing the art deco-style Pickwick Theater in Park Ridge. On the opposite side of the river is Hotel Baker which was built in 1928 on the site of the old Haines Mill and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Along the river walk we came across some interesting sculptures, the first being ‘Reflections’ by Guy J. Bellaver. Bellaver also created ‘Ekwabet’ which means ‘watching over.’ The statue was dedicated by the city and named by members of four bands of Potawatomi at a ceremony in 1988. The statue replaced an earlier tribute to the Potawatomi, erected in 1915, that was destroyed by vandalism in the 1960’s. There was also a fascinating piece made, appropriately in the shape of a fox, entirely from recycled (no pun intended) bicycle parts by Francis J. Gagnepain IV.
Walking under the bridge, just south of Pottawatomie Park, we came in sight of the James and Joann Collins Pavilion and Tower. Always up for a challenge, my daughter and I climbed to the top where we got a slightly limited view of the river.
We left the river for a few hours to visit a giant Flea Market held at the Kane County Fair Grounds but returned later for a ride on one of the paddle boats. We took a leisurely cruise past the golf course and a couple of nature preserves towards Elgin. Any boat ride on the Fox River in this area is somewhat restricted as there is a dam both in St. Charles and Elgin.
You don’t see one of these on the river every day! I must admit we were all rather alarmed when we first noticed this car driving down the ramp and straight into the water but quickly realized it was one of those fancy amphibious vehicles. It went past us several times, drawing a rousing cheer from everyone on the boat, sometimes at a sedate Sunday-drive pace and sometimes with all the power and panache of a speedboat.
As we pulled back in at the boat dock, we got another view of the gingerbread tower and pavilion at Pottawatomie Park. And as we walked back to our car, I got a nice parting shot of a cormorant perching on a light pole high above Main Street Bridge. All in all, a lovely day on and by the river.
This week is a special one for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, celebrating its one-year anniversary, and we have been invited to choose our own subject. I’d like to do something completely different on this occasion and feature some pictures that my 10-year-old granddaughter took the other day at Navy Pier in downtown Chicago. She was using my SLR camera and did a fantastic job. The only contribution I made was to do a little cropping but the content and quality of the pictures are unaltered. I’m so happy that she is taking an active interest in photography and will do everything I can to encourage it.
Cee has left the topic open for her Black & White Photo Challenge this week so I thought I’d revisit my trip downtown recently to get a different perspective on some of the things that I saw there.
Looking up at one of the lions outside the Chicago Art Institute on Michigan Avenue.
Taking the long view outside the Lyric Opera House on Wacker Drive.
On a day crowded with walkers, runners and tourists down for the Air & Water Show, these artists on the River Walk managed to stay very calm and focused on their projects.
Looming overhead, the stainless steel headdress of the Jay Pritzker Pavilion designed by Frank Gehry, in Millennium Park.
A view within a view at Cloud Gate in Millennium Park.
Getting the bird on the River Walk. Some of you may remember this little guy from a previous post. He was very obliging and allowed me to take lots of shots from different angles.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to Open Topic.
Every day is not just any old day in downtown Chicago. That’s why I love visiting the city; to capture moments such as these. Thanks to Amy for providing the subject for this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. For more on this challenge go to Everyday Moments.
Whether you’re strolling down the River Walk or Michigan Avenue there’s always someone or something interesting to see. Stunning skylines or captivating canines, they’re all here to amaze and delight us.
From harbors to parks and everything in between, every moment spent downtown offers new opportunities for photography. Despite the daily bustle of the city there are still places to enjoy nature too.
Familiar faces and places are always a welcome sight and the sounds of the city are music to my ears. Life in the city is made up of every day moments such as these.
I usually do a bit of research before we visit somewhere new to us, but for some reason, probably because I thought we wouldn’t actually go there, San Antonio slipped under the radar. It was so unlike anything that I had pictured in my mind that I have to admit I was absolutely amazed when we arrived downtown. The River Walk, we had been told, was the place to go, so we began our adventure at Nueva Street and soon entered a whole other world of winding, watery wonder, one story beneath the streets of San Antonio.
The 2.5 mile-long route is accessed by a succession of steps and bridges many of which are quite decorative.
The River Walk is an astounding mixture of art and architecture with something to catch your eye at every turn such as this sculpture, outside The Briscoe Western Art Museum, entitled Camino de Galvez created by artist T. D. Kelsey .
We began our walk fairly early in the morning but by the time we reached Crockett Street and a brief detour to visit The Alamo, things were getting pretty busy and it wasn’t only people that were sharing the pathways but also quite a large population of birds, mostly pigeons but one or two other interesting characters as well, which is why I would think twice about visiting again. I braved them once but I don’t think I could willingly do it a second time which is a pity because I really loved the whole River Walk experience. I wish I wasn’t such a chicken when it comes to birds!
This post is in response to a new challenge, the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge which can be found at Wonder. Thanks to Patti for this opportunity to share these images and see other posts that reflect the theme Wonder.
This week, Cee has us looking for two of anything for her Black & White Photo Challenge. Going through the photo files it wasn’t too difficult to find pairs both in nature and everyday items.
Pairs of shoes at the Stephenson County Historical Museum in Freeport, Illinois.
Two horses waiting to pull a hay wagon at Willow Springs Garden in Wausau, Wisconsin.
Two ducks enjoying a sunny day at Historical Wheeler Farm in Salt Lake City, Utah.
A pair of warriors at the Chinese Lantern Festival in the Missouri Botanical Garden, St Louis.
Two of the elk in Elk Grove Village, Illinois.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Couples, Twins, Two of Anything
This week we’re getting in or out of focus, however the fancy takes us, for the Photo Challenge set by David at The Daily Post. I have a multitude of images that are unintentionally out of focus. I’ve even tried using them for competitions, claiming artistic license, although the judges just weren’t buying it. I do have a number of pictures that, all things considered, are quite sharp. And then there are those that, by some miracle, just seem to have the right balance. It’s sheer luck when this happens as I’m not one to fiddle around making adjustments to the camera when I’m out shooting. Even if I spent time reading the manual that comes with the camera, I’d probably never remember all the technicalities.
I like this shot of a swan at the Chicago Botanic Garden for a couple of reasons. The flowers in the foreground add some color to the picture but also, being slightly out of focus, give the impression that we are hiding behind them watching as the swan goes gliding by. A similar effect can be seen in this image of a moose taking it easy at Snowbird Resort near Salt Lake City in Utah, although who was hiding from whom I’m not sure.
I think the following images benefit from having the background out of focus, allowing us to concentrate more fully on the subject: flowers at the Green Bay Botanical Garden, a young man playing the part of a soldier at the Fort on Mackinac Island and a goldfinch enjoying some sunflower seeds in our garden.
For more on The Weekly Photo Challenge at The Daily Post go to Focus
Finding images of two different things in one shot, for Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge this week, was not as easy as you might think. Most of the time I focus on just one thing and if I take a broader view there are bound to be more than two items in the image. Then there’s the question of whether the picture will translate well into black & white. So with all this in mind, it took me quite a while, searching through the photo files, to come up with something that I thought would suit the topic.
You might associate a lighthouse with a ship but not necessarily a car, which is the sight that greeted us at a rest area in Michigan.
This magpie seemed intent on us finding Lady Finger Point Trail, on Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake in Utah, perching on the sign as though showing us the way.
A giant golf ball and club head, on display outside The Golf Center in Des Plaines, Illinois.
Part of an Underground Railroad display in the basement of the Taylor House in Freeport, Illinois, home of the Stephenson County Historical Society.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to https://ceenphotography.com/2016/09/22/cees-black-white-photo-challenge-two-different-things-or-the-number-two/