One of the most unusual and interesting places I visited in Minneapolis was the Mill Ruins near Stone Arch Bridge. The old Gold Medal Flour Mill ruins weren’t torn down, but instead incorporated into the design of the new building. I love the way this city celebrates its roots while openly welcoming the future. There are a lot of historic buildings here as well as so many modern ones, with construction underway on even more. This is definitely a forward-looking city and a beautiful one.
Throughout all the traveling I’ve done, Philadelphia remains one of my favorite cities; probably number one overall. I assume that comes from all of the time I’ve spent with it. So many shows, meals, beers, walks, drives, bike rides, and jobs. It feels like home when nothing else does. As much as I do enjoy the city, there’s not a lot surrounding it that fulfills my appetite for adventure quite the way I want it to. It’s time to leave my favorite city in the rearview mirror and head into the sunset.
Every night in Austin, Texas thousands of bats come flying out from underneath a bridge near downtown. Spectators gather along the bridge and below to watch the amazing and unique sight that makes Austin just a little more weird. It wasn’t quite the Batman cave sequence I was hoping for, but they were really amazing and kept coming out for a long time.
My travels took me to Baltimore this weekend. It was threatening to rain, but it held out and became a beautiful, sunny weekend. Federal Hill has always been one of my favorite places to view the city. The park at the top of many steps is a great place to sit in the shade and take in the skyline and watch the people being active at the harbor. The skyline view is much nicer at night from this angle, but you can see a lot of the factories and old industry that is a huge part of Baltimore’s history, including the Domino Sugar sign which is a local icon.
Providence is a beautiful, small city with water everywhere, making the sunrise quite picturesque from wherever you see it. I was lucky enough to be working about 100 feet from this view at dawn so I was able to sneak off and watch the light arrive and start reflecting off of everything. A lone kayaker paddled down the river in the morning calm. Sadly I had to pull myself away to go back to work, but the views from all around the nearby park were fantastic. This is certainly a city I haven’t spent enough time in for how close it is to where I’ve lived most of my life.
Walking through Cambridge I simultaneously feel smarter and completely unintelligent. To be surrounded by such storied buildings of intellect can do that to a person. Hallowed halls aside, it’s a beautiful place with a great trail along the water in view of bridges and the modest Boston skyline. Strolling along here really helps me clear my head and brings back memories to wandering those streets aimlessly with friends years ago. I understand why it’s such a popular place to live.
Due to my being very sick over the past weekend and having to travel for work, I haven’t been able to post any new photos and I’ve been slow getting this one posted. I actually haven’t had any desire to take new photos with how I’ve felt, so I went back into the archives and pulled out this one from the roof of the Divine Lorraine in Philadelphia. This was one of the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen, partially because of the colors and clouds but also because I was sitting on top of this gorgeous old relic of a building in center city Philly looking west over the whole town along with a handful of other adventurers who found their way up there on a warm autumn night. Perfection.
There wasn’t much time spent in Houston, but we got to see a show at a great little venue and check out the park before we had to head east. Though it was a fleeting view, the view was very nice. We’ve been dodging the rain somehow among all the sever thunderstorm warnings, but the rain the has fallen has left behind a lot of puddles that kept us from playing disc golf. It did make some nice reflections of the city that I really had fun shooting.
My job allows me to do some traveling that’s not part of our road trip so I’m in Dallas currently. The jump from Pacific Time to Central has not gone unnoticed, but I did enjoy a nap at my hotel before venturing out to the city to get some amazing vegan food at Spiral Diner, a couple beer samples at Deep Ellum Brewing, and this shot over the freeway that I really love. It’s been a while since I’ve gotten any good city shots; especially any longer exposures. Considering I was handholding the camera and balancing on a rail with it, I’m extremely happy with how it turned out.
Omaha surprised me last year with how much they have going on. This year I had to stop again, so we went to Gene Leahy Mall for sunrise. I love the views of the skyline from along the water and the morning light was great. There are lots of trails to take around this area whether you are biking or running or just out for a walk. After shooting some photos we went down the big slides they have built into the park (it’s true!) and then went for a run through Heartland of America Park and over the awesome pedestrian bridge into Iowa.
We just got back from a couple of days in D.C. and we had a great time rushing around to do what we wanted to in the short time we were there. One of my favorite museums anywhere is the Hirshhorn Museum, which always has rotating exhibits of amazing contemporary art. This piece, Lawrence Weiner’s “Reduced, Cat. No. 102,” is just the word repeated on windows in a second-floor room of the museum. I love the idea of this and that it is so open to interpretation. As such, I will not spend any time philosophizing on my thoughts about it, but instead I’ll leave it up to anyone viewing to do it for themselves; it’s much more fun that way!
Looking at lower Manhattan from Brooklyn Bridge Park is kind of exciting. It’s inspiring in a way. To see all of the city bunched up on that island is humbling. The lights start coming on as the sun goes down and the wind off the water stings my hands as I shoot on a cold winter evening. I still don’t want to walk away from the scene. I take in the view for as long as I can since I don’t get the opportunity so often.
There is always so much going on in New York City at any given time that when I shoot a photo of the skyline I like to imagine all of the people that would be encapsulated there. Inside the building, on the boats, on the streets, and in the cars; it’s hard to fathom how many people are living their lives in the city while I stand still taking a photo. There is so much history, diversity, and depth here that I like the way everything I layered in this shot, giving a sense of the endless nature of this place.
New York has so many vantage points, be it a rooftop from Brooklyn, a waterfront, the subway, a random window, or an alley, that a visitor is offered endless perspectives. These are two of my favorite views from within a short period of time when I visited the Top of the Rock observation deck. I like the difference and the similarity; the emptiness of both, but the potential to hold so much. That’s New York.
Cleveland is a city I had no preconceived notions about, but I had a nice time there both times I visited. It’s a compact city with wide streets that are great for biking, which is my favorite way to get around and explore new places. The waterfront is beautiful, and Great Lakes Brewing is not far from downtown. After a day of biking, sampling beers, and watching the sunset over Lake Erie I found this great overlook across the river. While the skyline is small, it really is a pretty sight when the sun goes down.
Chicago is a great city for views. No matter where you stand there’s a great view of the skyline from across the lake or from just below (or above if you go up in the Hancock Tower or Sears Tower) or down the river that runs through the city. Basically, anywhere is a good view in my opinion. From the observatory is one of my favorite views, clearly. The sunset is great, but once the lights start coming on the skyline really shows its best side. Just after sunset is my favorite time to shoot cities, and Chicago is no exception. The path around the waterfront is great for views, but it’s perfect for a sunset run or bike ride too. There’s just something about this town.
From atop the Divine Lorraine hotel north of the city you are afforded a fantastic view of the skyline, and when the clouds reflect the sunset perfectly it is an amazing experience to sit there and watch the city light up. Unfortunately (or fortunately) there is renovation underway at the urban exploring goldmine that is the Divine Lorraine, so it can no longer be accessed easily. But getting to see this sunset from the roof once was good enough for me.
Just north of center city Philadelphia there is an abandoned hotel called the Divine Lorraine. While almost unassuming when you drive up Broad Street, avoiding pedestrians and careless Philly drivers, when you get a chance to stop and look at it you’ll wonder how you missed it in the first place. The building itself is magnificent, though the inside has been gutted and is covered in broken glass and graffiti from years of neglect and homeless inhabitation. From the roof, the views are incredible. At sunset the old sign looks over the new city like an elder over her village.
I love catching skylines from different angles at different times of day. They change so much depending on which direction you look from and what kind of light is in the sky. Blue hour is my favorite time because the light is usually great and the buildings are starting to light up, but there’s still plenty of light to see details. Boston has always been a challenging skyline for me to shoot because it’s so spread out. This is my favorite angle of the city with a lot of great elements shortened by the telephoto lens.
This weekend we visited New York for the day and wandered around Brooklyn while trying to stay warm. Brooklyn Bridge Park is a great place for views of lower Manhattan, even though half the park is under construction with condos. There is a nice walkway, soccer fields and basketball courts, and some nice sculptures.This one spot felt like there was so much going on that I spent a lot of time shooting as the sun went down. It seemed like each one of these posts was the perch for a different bird. They were everywhere. And the sunset behind the city was beautiful. Manhattan lit up its lights while Brooklyn bathed in the final glow of the day.
The weather has been moody since we arrived in Montreal last week. First it was bitterly cold, then it was warmer and snowing, then it was raining followed by a beautiful, warm day with all the white stuff washed away. We took advantage of this perfect autumn weather to climb to the top of Mont Royal just outside of downtown and, after our eyes adjusted to the almost total darkness, we followed the winding woods paths and stairs to this brilliant overlook. It was chillier up there to be sure, but the worst part was the gusting wind. It was hard to keep the tripod still for a photo, but I was happy with this one as well as some others we had fun with.
Being one of my favorite cities, Philadelphia has one of my favorite skylines. It’s just comforting to me. It looks different from every direction, and my favorite is probably the view from New Jersey (maybe I’m biased..) This particular image is from the footpath on the Ben Franklin Bridge. It’s a great path to run or bike during the day. They are pretty vigilant about kicking you off before dark though, so getting shots of the beautiful sunset behind the city can be tricky. This is one of my favorites I’ve ever taken there.