Spring in Chicago is so unpredictable! Today it is snowing. I took this photo of the Bahai Temple last week, a day before it was solidly in the 80s! It was a nice day, regardless.
The Baha’i have an interesting take on religion. They use input from many faiths. You might even be able to view some of this on the ediface of the temple you see here. There are only seven of these in the world and this is the only one in North America. So if you are in Chicago, take a drive north to Wilmette via Sheridan Road. You can’t miss it!
One other note, I’ve been really sporatic lately because I did move! My internet connection is going to be restored this weekend. I will hopefully be up to full speed starting tomorrow night! In the last two weeks, I’ve added a lot to my photographic tech and this is the last step to make it all work. Here are all the ‘new’ items. A new lens (50mm f1.8), a new computer (i7 w/solid state and nvidia graphics), a new IPS monitor, a new home, and new desk. Now that I put it all down… wow, it’s a big change!
Anyway, I finally installed Photoshop and Lightroom on my new machine. I’m definitely pleased with it’s performance. But I’m working on speeding it up even more!
That said, I now have a better screen too. And after I combine that with what I’ve learned about photography so far, I put together this vertorama of Washington Street in Chicago. I took these photos in January but I was just so unsure of the processing I needed for it ever since I took the photos!
But a new machine with much shorter wait times for processing and a much better screen cure a lot of ills in digital creativity!
I’ll also combine this with the fact that winter is solidly in the rear view mirror! And I am now able to view it with a little more fondness.
Last Saturday, I decided I wanted to get some experience at regular residential interior photography. When you live in Chicago, where else do you go but the legendary, Frank Lloyd Write? Well, I can’t show you those pictures of the inside because the foundation for Frank Lloyd Write basically locks you down from distributing them online or anywhere in any public forum except in your own home and in closed social networks. BUT, they can’t keep you from taking photos of the exterior! So I’ve included one of his home and studio in this post.
I also visited the Robbie house in the Woodlawn area of Chicago. Personally, I like his home and studio better because it actually felt more like a home. The Robbie house has some very interesting features to it, but photographically, it feels more like a commercial building to me than a home. He didn’t believe in having lots of ornate furnishings and knick knacks. I can say that I did enjoy his habit of making common areas like hallways ‘compressive’ and the rooms the release. I also enjoyed his habit of slowly bringing you from the outside with transition zones for both the patios and decks. You can only wonder what he would have done with today’s engineering capabilities.
But, when I went to see the Robbie house, I parked next to the Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago. So I might be a sucker for the vast spaces of these churches. I also find them photographically challenging. Stained glass can be very difficult to contain it’s essence. The scope of the display is so hard to translate into a single exposure. So I keep trying. I hope you get to feel a little bit of what I felt from this place.
Technical stuff: When I took this photo, I did a five exposure brackets that were three frames wide, and five frames tall. However, the top frame was almost completely cropped away. It’s hard to get everything to line up right. I did the HDR processing first and I was careful to make sure all the settings were universal throughout the HDR processing. Once that was done, I stitched everything together and did my final adjustments. Do the math, 5 exposures per bracket x 5 high x 3 wide = 75 exposures! I had to reduce the resolution just a little so my computer could handle the data. (Time for an upgrade?)