March 2000 - Chicago

This area is mostly for my friends & family. Photos were taken with a Kodak DC20 or a Kodak DC120 Zoom, scaled & in some cases color corrected.

The first thing I have to say about Chicago is that this river here in the picture flows backwards. It boggles the mind. The river used to flow into the lake, but they decided they wanted to change that, so now it flows backwards a ways. Where does it go? I don't know!

"Chicago: We wear our pants on our heads, write with erasers, the snow spells its name in us, and- Oh! Did we mention? Our river flows upstream. And... Well, yeah, I guess that's about it."

One of the first things I did in Chicago was visit the Hancock building. You can go to the top. We went early and beat the rush. The view is amazing. Chicago architecture is big. Everything big. Everything has a million windows all over it, too, maybe to make it look bigger.
The Hancock's footprint is a whole city block.
Although Chicago can no longer boast the world's tallest building, it can still boast the world's highest occupied floor (other buildings just use uninhabited towers to boost their height - the cheaters) and also has this big fat building which is second only to the Pentagon in square footage.

Big I tell you!

Not just big, but wacky too.
That black building there on the right is called something like the Graphite Building. It's all tricked out in Art Deco style, which I just love. Should've got more pictures of it.

Didn't I say wacky? Wanna have the Jetsons for neighbors?
Decided to try something new in Chicago, which was to make panoramic shots like this one and the river picture above. Spent a long time trying to get this one to look right, but ultimately I think it has this unsettling aspect to it.
Bent funny, I guess.
The lower sections there are parking!

Detail of one of the towers pictured above. Jetson parking. I love these buildings!
Update: My friend Marcy in Chicago has info on these towers - they're called the Marina Towers.
Here's an excerpt from her note:

"I got to stay in one of those apartments for awhile once when my Dad went back to work for the Sun Times. The apartments are wedge shaped. So you feel like the Jetsons, but you live in a pie. The best part is that you have such a great view of the people in the other tower. One guy spent a lot of time on his balcony totally nude. We slept on the balcony too (it was hot) but left our clothes on."

Thanks Marcy!

While we're on the subject of parking, I have to admit that I went out of my way to take a picture of a parking garage with the idea of getting a parking garage. Then I got home and found I had taken a bunch of photos of parking garages without thinking about it. (I guess it's a good thing too, 'cause my premeditated parking garage shot turned out to be a turkey.)
Ah. Parking garages.
I call this photo "Oasis."
By the way, this was taken from the top of the Hancock with zoom.

This one is called "Oasis Two." I'm not going to comment further.

Also had a chance to visit the Chicago Art Institute. They have a great collection, and a great space. My friend Marcy works there and I got to visit her for a while. This is a picture of me in front of a painting of Mao.
I had to argue with one of the guards there to let Jeff take a picture of me in front of this painting, because they don't allow camera flashes or video cameras in the museum and my digital camera looks like a video camera.
This is what Mao would look like if he were on the cover of Rolling Stone, and this is what I look like right after bullying a museum guard.

Trains under the land bridge which connects the Art Institute school to the museum.

This is an attempt at a "no subject matter" photo taken off the fire escape behind Susy & Jeff's apartment building. I want to thank Susy, Jeff, Jim, Kathy, and Nancy for being such wonderful hosts during my stay there. Thanks!

One of the frames of the river panorama turned out to be a great picture in and of itself. This is a good example of how window-crazy the architects of Chicago are.

This picture should be called "Jeff humoring Dave." You can see my reflection there in the outside doors, and in the leftmost door, there's Jeff too.

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All photos copyright, 2000 Dave Benz

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