Tag Archives: chicago

027/365: Under the El

027/365: Under the El

It’s freezing cold outside and after being indoors the entire afternoon, I decided to venture out and do some carshooting.

001/365: Happy new year, Lake Michigan



One of the ideas I have for 2015 is to start with a 365 project. For every day I will take a photo, usually from life. Which means a dedication to not only taking a photo but to challenge myself. I have looked up some resources to help me get started, but I also have an idea for myself.

001/365: Happy new year, Lake Michigan

My first photo of the new year celebrates just a little more than 12-1/2 years in Chicago. So I drove up to Montrose Harbor and snapped this northern, far-away shot of the skyline. It reminds me of how vast the city truly is and how much there is to see and experience. And how much it’s given back to me all these years. I am truly grateful to be here and I try not to take it for granted.

My first visit to the lake on a frigid evening gives a beautiful and crystal clear view of the skyline, under an overcast sky. A wandering plane comes into view blinking through the sky on the right.

Best of Chicagoist Around Town


Color me shocked when I found out one of my photos made Chicagoist’s best of around town list for June with this photo I took early last year.

I was on my way to the Chicago Auto Show when I looked up on the way to the King Drive bus to McCormick Place. The day was already so gray anyway so it wanted to be black and white.

It’s a great privilege especially to be in wonderful company like Angie McMonigal and Duane Rapp — local artists whom I admire and from whom I have learned a lot.

Why we didn’t have internet

Comcast’s brilliance knows few limits. Case in point this is the junction box in our alley. There used to be a pole here, but it rotted and needed to be moved. So the rats nest of Comcast and AT&T coexist precariously.

Oddly that is not the reason for the lack of service. It was guessed that another Comcast technician came to service someone else’s home and literally cut our line at 9:26a Tuesday. Never bothered to reconnect it. Never bothered to alert us.

Unbelievable. Never mind trying to get service, but my skillful partner made her anger known and out came Comcast on a Sunday to fix it. Adding insult to injury we noticed the Comcast van in our alley twice since then doing the exact same thing.

Idiots. As a company they should be utterly embarrassed to cash my checks every month. And in Chicago you have no other choice. Thank you SEC. I would love to complain but the government is shut down.

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!

Fireworks on Foster Beach

This isn’t the first time I am shooting fireworks, but it is the first time I looked up how exactly to do it. It’s a little tricky, so much so that I went and invested in a remote trigger (opting for the cabled version versus the wireless).

To avoid the big crowd we decided to go to the Chicago Saddle and Cycling Club’s display by parking on Foster Beach. Unlike most who were staring at the water, we did a 180 and stared at the treeline and buildings, waiting for the sun to come down for the festivities. Some folks decided to start early.


Folks on the ground also took part in their own pre-firework celebrations.

Up close

But we waited for the big display, too, which went on at the same time.

Red, white and blue

The key was listening to the “pffffffft!” noises they make as they’re lit and making small adjustments to get it done. Now I know more for next year and will be prepared.

Zombie March 2013

I never thought I would want to follow a bunch of zombies around. I get the impression they’ll just turn around and actually eat me at some point. Or puncture my soul with some dagger.

But when the opportunity arose to see them up close and in the flesh (so to speak), I jumped on it and headed to the holy refuge of Mr and Mrs Tourist: Millennium Park of all places for the 2013 Chicago Zombie March.

This is an involved process. The march technically started at 3p, but already at 1p people were gathered at the Great Lawn for makeup, which I learned isn’t limited to the face region.

Putting on the final touches

Then you move on to working your way through different themes:


The curly haired zombie Hockey masked

Blood thirstyGigglersChewed up bowler

Gas masked zombieShirtless

And don’t forget to get the kiddies involved. They might want to vamp, too!

Little girl zombieLittle girl zombie chasing

Then you’re ready to march!


Marching forward


And, if you have time, you terrorize the locals. How would they cope with the invasion?

Another quince attack

Attacking the quince princess


And that gets us through to the actual march. I didn’t stay for that bit, instead moving away to look at more precious things I understood:

Fascinating bubble

UPDATE: Some of these photos made it to the Chicagoist website. Very cool!

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.

2011 Chicago Auto Show

2011 Chicago Auto Show

It’s that time again! It’s been a yearly tradition to go with my big bro and this was no exception. If I remember correctly, last year GM still had an enormous booth, Hyundai was second largest. This year, things are a little different and everyone has been rearranged. The things I noticed right off the bat:

  • Fiat finally incorporated into Chrysler Group but very separated. This was welcoming for the 500 who had its very own space, but there was nothing amazing about the booth. In my opinion, the Fiat brand is going to be very important for Chrysler Group.
  • German much smaller presence. Literally all the major German brands’ booths were cut in half, to the point that the Mercedes-Benz booth was downright cramped.
  • You could tell we’re in a recession (with some exceptions)
  • I didn’t notice a lot of concept cars and I was especailly hoping to see Mazda’s new KODO design concept
  • And finally, no top shelf brands. No Alfa. No Fisker. No Aston Martin. No Lambo or Lotus, all there last year.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are more specifics and photos after the jump. Continue reading 2011 Chicago Auto Show