Why yes, I do have more photos to share!

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 CenturyTheater01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 Clark&Deming01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 DiverseyBridge01B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; Lincoln Park
Camera: Zeca Bettax
Lens: Schneider-Kreuznach 105mm f/4.5 Radionar
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (120)

The subject of the first photo is the Century Theater on Clark Street just north of Diversey. My AIA Guide to Chicago does not contain any information about this building, but I did find the following website with some information about the theater’s history. As noted on the website, the original interior no longer exists, and the shopping center that now takes its place is also rather uninspiring; the one time I went inside, I was rather unimpressed by the design, and the fact that many of the shops were vacant.

I also don’t know anything about the building in the second photo; all I know is that it now houses, as you can see, a Starbucks. Yup…they’re everywhere. One interesting matter though, is that in the older neighborhoods of the city, this is a fairly common sight, not just for Starbucks, but also for a number of other chain restaurants / retailers that would otherwise stick to standardized designs for their various locations. I like the fact that in the older neighborhoods, places such as this tend to be a little less obtrusive, and a little more respectful of the existing buildings they inhabit.

The subject of the third photo is a lantern on the bridge over the entrance / exit for Diversey Harbor. The bridge and particularly this lantern (there are four total, one at each corner of the bridge) have a vaguely Art Deco appearance to them, which is why I wanted to photograph them.

Enjoy!

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See? I told you I’ve got more photos to post!

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 NearWestConcretePlant01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 TheRookery01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 WashingtonBlock01B

Photo Information:

Camera: Zeca Bettax
Lens: Schneider-Kreuznach 105mm f/4.5 Radionar
Film: Kodak TMax 100

Photo 1:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Near West Side

Hey look…a concrete factory! I have mentioned before how much I like industrial settings, right?

Photo 2:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Chicago Loop

This is the Rookery (designed by Burnham & Root and completed in 1888; it has also been renovated a number of times since its completion) at the southeast corner of LaSalle and Adams. As impressive as the outside is, the light court in the center of the building is the real attraction of the building; I’ll have to get in there one of these days with faster film to shoot it.

Photo 3:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Chicago Loop

This fine looking building is the Washington Block (designed by Frederick & Edward Baumann and completed in 1874) at the southwest corner of Wells & Washington. You can see part of the Loop elevated tracks in the upper left-hand corner of the photo. And yes, I did shoot this photo from the mdidle of the street…but don’t worry; I timed the traffic so that I could do this with relatively little risk of harm.

Enjoy!

Okay, so I’m really, really going to try to make some progress with that massive backlog of negatives I still have yet to scan from last year. There’s also the small matter of the rolls of film I need to process from earlier this year, too, but I’ll get to those…eventually. I hope. On that note, here are some of those photos.

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 BarbedWire01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 BudweiserSign01B

ZecaBettax CHI TMax100 LoadingDock01B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; Near West Side
Camera: Zeca Bettax
Lens: Schneider-Kreuznach 105mm f/4.5 Radionar
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (120)

Photo 1:
Hey look…barbed wire. Actually, it’s barbed and razor wire…fun, right?

Photo 2:
Hand-painted sign for G&Z Restaurant & Bar; those of y’all who’ve been reading these posts long enough will know of my fixation on hand-painted signage. Those of y’all who don’t? I like ’em. They’re examples of a dying art form, and those that remain are slowly fading into obscurity. It’s impressive and depressing at the same time.

Photo 3:
Yup, a loading dock…and a fire escape. I love old masonry structures, and I really loved the interplay of shadows and shapes in this photo.

More will follow, I promise. Enjoy!

Yes, I’m back in business with a computer, so now I can get back to playing around with my film scans and such. No, it isn’t a new computer, but it works, so I’m not complaining.

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 CTA-Elevated01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 DrakeHotelLantern01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 IllinoisNatlGuargBldg01B

Photo Information:

Camera: Leica IIIf
Lens: Leitz 50mm f/2 Summitar (Photos 1 & 2); 35mm f/3.5 Elmar (Photo 3)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

Photo 1:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Lakeview Neighborhood

Yup, another view of the underside of the CTA elevated tracks. I love these old tracks!

Photo 2:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Streeterville Neighborhood

This is one of the lanterns next to the main entrance to the Drake Hotel (completed in 1920 and designed by Marshall & Fox) in the Streeterville Neighborhood (a few blocks north of the John Hancock Building). Given the name of the hotel, the motif of the lanterns sure is appropriate, ain’t it?

Photo 3:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Edgewater Neighborhood

Now part of the Chicago Parks District as an indoor recreational facility, the building was originally built as an indoor ice skating rink (completed in 1916 and designed by Carpenter & Weldon; formerly the Winter Garden Ice Skating Rink, then the Broadway Armory); considering that the building was completed during the height of World War I, it is not known whether or not the building was ever used for its original intended purpose. Following the WWI, then Illinois National Guard modified the building into an armory and training facility, though it was also opened to the public as a recreational facility.

Enjoy.

More photos from my Leica…can’t say much today…having computer troubles, so I may be distracted for a little while resolving that. Fun stuff, I swear.

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 BrynMawrApts01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 ChicagoWindows01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 Clark&Division01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 Dearborn&Division01B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; Edgewater Neighborhood (Photos 1 & 2), Gold Coast Neighborhood (3 & 4)
Camera: Leica IIIf
Lens: Leitz 135mm f/4 Hektor (Photo 1); 50mm f/2 Summitar (Photos 2, 3, & 4)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

The first two photos are parts of building façades in the Edgewater Neighborhood, while the latter two are of corner buildings in the Gold Coast Neighborhood on Division Street (at Clark and Dearborn, respectively).

Enjoy.

Yes, I still have some more shots to share from my Canon…have I mentioned how many frames I have to work with when I shoot 135 film?

AE1P CHI TMax100 MerchandiseMart01B

AE1P CHI TMax100 MerchandiseMart02B

AE1P CHI TMax100 MerchandiseMart03B

AE1P CHI TMax100 RelianceBldg01B

AE1P CHI TMax100 SteubenClubBldg01B

Photo Information:

Camera: Canon AE-1 Program
Lens: Canon 50mm f/1.4 FD (Photo 1); 70-210mm f/4 FD (Photos 2, 3, & 5); 24mm f/2.8 FD (Photo 4)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

Photos 1, 2, & 3:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; River North

These three photos are shots of the inimitable Merchandise Mart (completed in 1930 and designed by Graham, Anderson, Probst, & White). I say “inimitable” because really…how many office / retail buildings do you know of that contain over 4 million square feet of rentable space – and do so with such style (in this case, Art Deco style)?

Photo 4:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Chicago Loop

This building is also one of my favorites, the Reliance Building (completed in 1895 and designed by Burham & Root); the building is one of the earliest expressions of what would become the norm with tall buildings, namely, possessing a steel load-bearing internal frame and having a façade dominated by glass, and not masonry. The façade also contains the first full expressions of the famous Chicago Window (i.e. a large, fixed center panel flanked by two smaller operable windows).

Photo 5:
Location: Chicago, Illinois; Chicago Loop

This is the Steuben Club Building (completed in 1929 and designed by Vitzthum & Burns), located on west Randolph Street and now known by the creative name, 188 W. Randolph Street. I especially appreciate the limestone details at the top of the tower; the building itself is currently undergoing renovation into condos or lofts (I forget which), hence the scaffolding around the sides of the building (visible on the left-hand side of the photo).

Enjoy.

I’m switching gears a bit here, since I have plenty of other photos to post – have I mentioned lately that I have a massive backlog of photo scans to work through?

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 Broadway&Granville01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 Broadway&Granville02B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 BroadwayBankBldg01B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 BroadwayBankBldg02B

LeicaIIIf CHI TMax100 BroadwayBankBldg03B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; Edgewater Neighborhood
Camera: Leica IIIf
Lens: Leitz 50mm f/2 Summitar (Photos 1 & 3); 135mm f/4.5 Hektor (Photos 2, 4, & 5)
Film: Kodak TMax 100

The subject of Photos 1 & 2 is Granville Pictures, a frame shop located (appropriately enough) at Broadway and Granville in the Edgewater Neighborhood (north of my home neighborhood of Uptown). I particularly liked the old signs hanging over the storefronts, as well as the clock on the corner of the building; the building detailing isn’t so bad, either. The subject of Photos 3, 4, & 5 is the Broadway Bank Building (completed in 1925 and designed by R. Bernard Kurzon; formerly Riviera-Burnstine Motor Sales), located on Broadway & Elmdale – also in the Edgewater Neighborhood. One can infer that most of the first floor space behind the storefronts was once an open floor space to accommodate the car displays for which the building was originally designed. Based on the older photo in the AIA Guide to Chicago, there was once a large sign bolted to the corner of the building; you can see the attachment points in Photo 5.

As you should be able to infer from the title of this post, I shot these photos with my Leica IIIf, an older screwmount camera (one of the last of the Barnack line of Leica designs). When I’m shooting 135 film, I do sometimes prefer using this camera (or my Contax IIa, which is roughly equivalent in terms of size and features) to my SLRs (like my FM-2 or AE-1 Program), due to the former being much more compact (and lighter) than the latter. For those of y’all who aren’t familiar with these cameras, the Leica is a rangefinder camera, which means that it lacks two features that add substantially to the weight and complexity of any SLR: 1) they lack the reflex mirror common to all SLRs; and 2) they also lack the large pentaprism viewfinder, which is a massive piece of mirrored glass. This does add some minor disadvantages to the rangefinder cameras, the most significant of which is that the viewfinder does not show what the lens itself is “seeing.” As such, it can be difficult to compose a shot, but this is generally only a problem the closer one gets to the subject of the composition (which includes telephoto shots). That being said, since I generally shoot from some distance away (most of my subjects, in case you haven’t yet noticed, are buildings and such), it usually isn’t much of a problem for me.

Enjoy.

Here are some more photos of the Kinzie Street Railroad Bridge…because I was just infatuated with this amazing mass of steel, wood, and concrete.

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge06B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge07B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge08B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge09B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge10B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; River North
Camera: Canon AE-1 Program
Lens: Canon 70-210mm f/4 FD (Photo 1); 50mm f/1.4 FD (Photos 2, 4, & 5); 135mm f/3.5 FD (Photo 3)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

While some of these shots may appear to be macro shots, they aren’t…I don’t own a macro lens for my AE-1 (though I do have one for my Nikon…but that’s neither here nor there, since Canon and Nikon don’t have compatible lens mounts). In these cases, I simply moved an appropriate distance away from the subject of the shot – the minimum focusing distance for the lens I was using. This is, of course, made easier by the fact that I can see the focusing limit of the lens in real-time through the viewfinder, as opposed to the scale focusing I use with some of my older cameras. Obviously, there are some limits to what can be accomplished in this manner, but hey…gotta work with what you’ve got, right?

Enjoy.

Oh yes, I still have a few more photos to share from my Nikon.

FM2 CHI TMax100 MadonnaDellaStrada01B

FM2 CHI TMax100 MadonnaDellaStrada02B

FM2 CHI TMax100 MadonnaDellaStrada03B

FM2 CHI TMax100 MadonnaDellaStrada04B

FM2 CHI TMax100 MadonnaDellaStrada05B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; Rogers Park Neighborhood
Camera: Nikon FM-2
Lens: Nikon Nikkor 28mm f/2.8 (Photos 1, 2, & 3); 80-200mm f/4 (Photos 4 & 5)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

All five of these photos are of the Madonna Della Strada Chapel (completed in 1939 and designed by Andrew N. Rebori) at the Lake Shore Campus of Loyola University Chicago, which is located in the Rogers Park Neighborhood. The Chapel is an excellent example of what happens when you give a church design commission to an Art Deco designer. Photo 1 shows the west façade (with the bell tower on the north façade), while Photo 2 shows the view from the base of the bell tower looking up. Photos 3, 4, & 5 show the east façade, which is (literally) steps from the shore of Lake Michigan; Photos 4 & 5 are close-up views of two of the four panels depicting the symbols of the four Evangelists. [1] I also appreciate the fact that the church features a number of Latin inscriptions [2][3][4] – having studied classical Latin in high school, I always like seeing it, and older Catholic churches provide excellent sources of such inscriptions.

Notes:

[1]: Saints Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, in case you’re not familiar with the term (hey, I was raised as a Roman Catholic, so I remember all sorts of sundry information about the faith, even if I’m not active these days).

[2]: The inscription visible in Photo 2, Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam, translates to, “To the Greater Glory of God;” this is the motto of the Society of Jesus (better known as the Jesuit order).

[3]: The lower inscription in Photo 3 is a complete Latin translation of the prayer, Hail Mary; the inscription surrounding the circular opening in the upper portion of the façade, Madonna Della Strada Univ. Loyolaea Chicagiensis, loosely translates to, “Our Lady of the Way, Loyola University Chicago.” The name, Madonna Della Strada, is a tribute to an image of the Virgin Mary that is enshrined in the mother church of the Jesuit order, Chiesa del Santissimo Nome di Gesu; for those of y’all who aren’t familiar with the Jesuits, their founder was St. Ignatius of Loyola – hence, the name of the University.

[4]: The two symbols shown in these two photos are that of Saint Mark the Evangelist (rendered as Marcus in Latin) and Saint John the Evangelist (rendered as Joannus in Latin – also sometimes spelled Johannus); the symbol of Saint Mark is a winged lion, while that of Saint John is an eagle (rather stylized as seen in Photo 5). Note also that “saint” is rendered as “sanct” from the Latin “sanctus,” meaning “holy.”

Hey look…a giant (non-functioning) railroad bridge!

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge01B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge02B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge03B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge04B

AE1P CHI TMax100 KinzieStreetBridge05B

Photo Information:

Location: Chicago, Illinois; River North
Camera: Canon AE-1 Program
Lens: Canon 24mm f/2.8 FD (Photo 1); 50mm f/1.4 FD (Photos 2 & 3); 70-210mm f/4 FD (Photos 4 & 5)
Film: Kodak TMax 100 (135)

All five of these photos are of the Kinzie Street Railroad Bridge, which connects the River North neighborhood to the near west side across the North Branch of the Chicago River. The bridge was completed in 1908 and built by the Strauss Bascule & Concrete Bridge Company for the Chicago & North Western Railway. As suggested by the name of the company that built it, the bridge is a single-leaf bascule bridge that relies on the massive concrete counterweight for its operation (you can see the counterweight clearly in Photo 1). While it is no longer operational, the bridge was designated as a Chicago Landmark in 2007 – which is good, because I love these old metal bridges…and really, anything that involves heavy steel structure and industrial-type stuff.

Enjoy.