How I make Chicago “My kind of town”
Chicago, my kind of town!
Every time I visit the Windy City I remember that Frank Sinatra song. This city just has a way of making me feel new and energized anytime I visit. Be it in winter or in the heart of summer; in spring or the amazing colors and weather or autumn; it makes no difference: the feeling is the same!
As a photographer, I find it interesting how I can always find something desirable to shoot. Something new, something old, something beautiful or something grunge. And no matter what, it can always be captivating. The architecture and the aura of the streets, the people, the atmosphere.
If you are wanting to catch a vibrant ambient with a colorful personality and a lot of character, then I would suggest Michigan Avenue, anywhere across from the Millennium Park should be a perfect location. Wait for that evening sun and have a happy shooting.
One of the things I look for as a photographer is being able to find something challenging in what seems to be mundane, common or uninteresting. I have been able to find that in every corner, every single time I visit. It’s different in other places, other cities, other towns. Maybe it’s because in certain places I don’t try hard enough; or maybe it is because in Chicago you simply do not have to try, it is just there.
Don’t get me wrong, there are other cities that are very cosmopolitan and eclectic in this country and all over the world, but having the third largest city in the USA (and top 30 metropolitan area in the world) at just a two hour drive away is priceless.
Heading north on Canal street, right after stepping out of the Union Station provides a great variety of architecture, personality and loads of options for street photography. You will undoubtedly run into “The Flamingo” a structure that will provide you with a myriad of ways of shooting, while still not deferring you from capturing the busy ambience that will be surrounding you.
It’s not only the name: Chicago! It is more than that. It’s the concrete jungle, the architecture, the people, the view. It is the ability to go from one end of the city to another on board of a river taxi or how you can go from the always busy and enigmatic Michigan Avenue, to the beautiful sand and interesting waters coming off from Lake Michigan in North Avenue Beach.
If you would like to capture a beautiful sky view city scape, I recommend the skydeck at the top of the Willis Tower (formerly known as the Sears Tower) or even the skydeck at the John Hancock Observatory. You will not regret it. I suggest to take a tripod and visit in the late afternoon hours, so you can photograph the city with all its lights and splendor.
And let us not forget one of the most famous and biggest structures of its kind in the world: Cloud Gate — also known as “The Bean” — at Millennium Park, the same park where you can also catch a concert in summer from well renowned Chicago Orchestra, completely free.
So anytime you are in need of a photography thrill or if you happen to know you will be visiting Chicago, please remember to take your camera and walk the streets. There is always something interesting to shoot every time you visit.