Category Archives: chicago

As seen on Flickr Explore


I certainly didn’t expect an image taken when I walked around downtown at lunchtime to make such a splash, but it has.

Black and white images of a partly cloudy sky make it much more dramatic. And experimenting with the Sony NEX-6 was also part of it. The mirrorless wonder that it is has the same sharpness as my Canon 60D. Still takes some getting used to.

Thanks to everyone for their support on Flickr.

Dear Maria “Toni” Berrios

I am a big local government fan and when it comes to Chicago we certainly have our share of mudslinging. This time it was for the office of Illinois State Rep in the upcoming election.

The Maria “Toni” Berrios campaign sent us no less than three dozen fliers, a combination of mudslinging and self promotion. To make matters worse, the campaign sent it twice. Why they don’t de-dupe their list is beyond me. Why they feel the need to bombard you with that much mail is also beyond me.

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If you imagine each piece is around $1 to produce and mail, that’s $36 just to persuade me. That seems like a lot. Especially because it hasn’t worked.

So, in my very special and passive-aggressive way, I have decided to send all of these postcards back to Toni so she can recycle them. If this is her approach to winning reelection I certainly don’t want to support it.

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I have to say that I am appalled someone would send that much mail. And it’s not just the Berrios campaign. Others have sent many. But not that many.

Der Flugtag 2013

I have been wanting to go the Red Bull Flugtag since 2012, but when I got to the beach it had already been cancelled. So, instead I went around town in search of the next best thing. This year I was determined.

After I got there I realized everyone would be trying to get up close to the action, and instead of fighting I fell back on my love of people photography. Even with 2-1/2 hour delay, it was a great afternoon to spend on the waterfront.

The Brolar Bears

One of the Brolar Bears.

The tooth fairy

The Tooth Fairy.

This was a happy accident: reaching through the top of the sign to the guy on the phone.

This kid’s got the right idea: a beautiful view of EVERYTHING.

Connie off the ramp!

This is how I prefer to remember the Connie: gracefully traveling through the air. Instead, it crash landed. It’s too painful to watch.

There are more on Flickr. I certainly hope to be there again next year. And get there early!


In all the years I have been in Chicago I haven’t actually been to the Chicago Botanic Garden. At least not to look at the beautiful plants and flowers, but to ride there at the end of the North Branch Trail. After doing a tour of the greenhouses in the area, we decided to spend an entire day outside.

Bokeh'd water fountain

A beautiful bokeh effect off one of the shimmering ponds with direct sunlight overhead. I am used to larger bokehs, but this one is nice because they’re like champagne.

The fountains of the esplanade

There were a few fountains, and so I thought I would start to play with shooting water jets at high speed. The results don’t look anything like water.

Boy waiting for parents

This little boy was sitting in the pagoda waiting for his family to return. He was quiet and peaceful.

Walking between the trees

One of the walkways is lined with beautifully manicured trees, leading you into a blue sky.

Purple flowers

I rarely see purple or blue flowers in the wild, so I was very delighted to see so many here. These were all grouped together. That hint of purple in there also made it so pretty.

Yellow flower

The Gardens also offer opportunity for more timid plants. In the shade, this little yellow flower looked almost surprised to see us.

Hidden leaves

And this green plant almost seemed to wake up when we came up to it.

Cannot wait to get back out there. In the six or so hours we were out there I discovered the need for a macro lens. So one of these times I will head out there with a rental and see how that’s different.

Chicago Loop Bridges 2013 photowalk

If you have a boat in the city of Chicago, there’s two months of the year you’re very interested in: the month where they go out to the Lake, and the month when they come back from the lake.

This year I decided to check out the second weekend of boat launch, thanks to an event coordinated on the Chicago Area Photowalk Group on Facebook. The same couple who “sponsored” the walk also run the website Chicago Loop Bridges. We met at Jackson and Wacher on a rainy Saturday morning in June to see what the fuss is all about.

Bridges up  for the five

There were only five boats heading out of the marinas, but they were very excited all the same to travel with their boats to the open water.

Lake Street Bridge up

The Lake Street bridge, one of the trickier ones, was at full tilt. It’s tricky because, unlike the other bridges, this one runs the CTA Green and Pink lines over top. So they have to shut off the third rail first.

Staging between bridges

Patience is very important. Four of the five were almost in perfect formation waiting for the Washington Street bridge (at South Wacker) to go up, but there were some difficulties getting it to open.

Clark & LaSalle Bridges up

A beautiful ballet of bridges. Here we’re looking at the Clark Street (closest) and LaSalle Street bridges.


An impressive structure in its own right, the extreme angle of the drawbridges blends in nicely with the other tall structures off the river.

Michigan Ave bridge up

The Michigan Avenue Bridge, also known as the DuSable Bridge, was only half up. This bridge is a double-decker to car traffic. Going under is an excellent way to get from the Mile to Michigan and Wacker without getting wet. 😉

That’s the last bridge because I called it quits and headed home. I did have a great time chasing after the boats as they sped from bridge to bridge. Maybe next year I’ll get it earlier in the season and see a bunch more boats. Until then, there are some other photos that were taken that didn’t make the cut. Enjoy!

Memorial weekend

This weekend I found myself in the thick of humanity. With so many people in town visiting, I was only so happy to wander around with my partner and her parents taking it all in. We spend a lot of time on south end of Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park. And in the few hundred snaps, there emerged the theme of family.

Father and son walking Father and son checking out snaps Baby attention Peekaboo rock Happy baby with mom

Hope everyone enjoyed their holiday weekend as much as I did.

A bar with to-go liquor

A bar with to-go liquor by dharder9475

A bar with to-go liquor

, a photo by dharder9475

on Flickr.

A bar with to-go liquor called Rite Liquors in Wicker Park is the right idea for a long night to forget.

Snomageddonopocolypse 2011 [Update 2]

So much to share with everyone!

Flickr Photos and Video:

My Vimeo Channel includes four videos right now:

[vimeo][/vimeo] [vimeo][/vimeo] [vimeo][/vimeo] [vimeo][/vimeo] [vimeo][/vimeo]

Uncondoned sign alterations

I don’t think anyone should deface signs, but if you didn’t see these subtle alterations to the “Falling Ice” signs outside the Harold Washington Library, here’s your chance.


When you spend an hour unburying your car from the Snowmageddon, you want to make sure your spot is there. So you do dibs on your space. It’s an unspoken law in Chicago and it’s a subject of some controversy. Here are some I found today. I will call them dibs props.