Thursday, March 31, 2011

90/365: Photo Stalking

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Photo Stalking On Empty Streets
One calendar quarter down, three to go on this year-long project.

I took on a challenge in limiting the subject of this blog to downtown St. Louis. This is not the city center of Chicago or Atlanta. I prowl the less-than-bustling streets on weekends in my faithful Honda, looking for something that gets my eye. This view, looking east on Locust from 18th Street on a Sunday, is dead empty. Apocalypse now?


The Thursday Arch Series is up today on St. Louis Daily Photo.

Arch 2011-03-19 3

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

89/365: Upload

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AT&T Building And Crane

This is an AT&T data processing center close to my office. They have had Chestnut Street closed for a few weeks, filled up with a big crane. (Most of it is below the bottom edge of the picture.) I haven't been able to figure out whet they are doing.

The outer roof of a cafe in Citygarden is in the upper right, just for some extra geometry.



Today St. Louis Daily Photo is talking about climate change, sort of.

Climatron In Snow 3-26-11

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

88/365: Spring Snow

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Downtown snow 3-26-11

The snow had just begun to fall Saturday afternoon when I shot this picture downtown. You know how sometimes a song gets into your head and won't leave? (Mine has been occupied by random bits of Die Walk├╝re, which I've been listening to in the car while commuting. Hojotoho!) But looking at these pictures keeps bringing me back to Yukio Mishima's exquisite novel, Spring Snow. Worth checking him out if you don't know him, as well as the bio-pic Mishima: A Life In Four Chapters, with score by Philip Glass.


The scene today on St. Louis Daily Photo today also has Japanese overtones.

2011-03-27 Missouri Botanical Garden 14

Monday, March 28, 2011

87/365: The Effect Of Sugar On Art

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Eros Bendato - Spring Snow

Sure, our old pal Eros shows up on my blogs a lot but I kinda like this one. It was shot during Saturday's snowstorm. The face has powerful features but it is less potent for having powdered sugar sprinkled all over it. It doesn't have a sweet cream filling but that would sure be nice.


The American Society For Prevention Of Cruelty To Flowers has its say today on St. Louis Daily Photo.

2011-03-27 MoBot 4


Sunday, March 27, 2011

86/365: A White Whacking

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Kindly Geppetto - Spring Snow

We're a week into spring but this was what was going down in Citygarden yesterday afternoon. Does a white cloak make Geppetto's violence toward Pinocchio less obscene?


The same thing was going on the the Botanical Garden yesterday, as seen on St. Louis Daily Photo today.

Missouri Botannical Garden 2011-03-26 4

Saturday, March 26, 2011

85/365: Goodwill

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MERS Goodwill
MERS Goodwill is the major not-for-profit rehabilitation agency in our area. It started out in 1940 as Jewish Employment and Rehabilitation Services. The name was later changed to Metropolitan Employment and Rehabilitation Services (MERS) to reflect their service to the entire community. It eventually merged with Goodwill Industries, a similar organization. This is their old main building at 18th and Locust.

These people do some serious good. They work with those who have physical or mental impairments of their ability to work, testing and evaluating them, providing training and education, leading to job placement services. They put people to work who would otherwise be dependent on family or the state. Two thumbs up.


St. Louis Daily Photo is overexposed today.

Blown-Out Eros

Friday, March 25, 2011

84/365: Lifeline Factory

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Lifeline Factory

This building is a half block east and across the street from the one featured on St. Louis Daily Photo today. Like many of the buildings on this strip, it's an old light industrial building converted to loft apartments. Sometimes the original use of the building is obvious, like the Bee Hat Factory Lofts but what does this mean?

I immediately think of the TV show
Who Wants To Be A Millionaire or the movie Slumdog Millionaire but the possibilities are so broad. If you are afraid of our most likely natural disasters, earthquake or tornado, this might be a comforting place to live. The nearest nuclear power plant is 100 miles away (although upwind) so St. Louisans don't need a lifeline for that.


So here's that other building I was talking about on St. Louis Daily Photo today.

Urban Oasis

Thursday, March 24, 2011

83/365: Wascally Wabbit

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Fat Rabbit, Citygarden

I can't look at a picture of a rabbit without thinking of Bugs Bunny tormenting poor Elmer Fudd. (The clip in the link has Elmer studying photography.) Bugs was frenetic. Not So with Tom Claassen's Two Rabbits in Citygarden (the companion is just outside of the frame). It looks so simple, but I think this is a complex work. At first, the rodent seems stolid and sedentary. When I consider it more, it makes me think of a sumo wrestler about to explode with force. The stance could be that of a guardian, big and strong enough to crush you. But then again, it's just a bunny. It's this kind of stuff than makes contemporary art interesting.


Thursday Arch Series today on St. Louis Daily Photo.

Arch 2011-03-19 1

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

82/365: Batter's Eye

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Haring/Holliday

Same picture of Cardinals' outfielder Matt Holliday as yesterday, different point of view. This is looking through the eye/headhole/whatever of Kieth Haring's Untitled (Ringed Figure) in Citygarden. May Holliday's focus be sharp and concentration be strong when he faces Tim Linsecum and Roy Halladay this year.


St. Louis Daily Photo defies gravity today.

Walking The Serra 3

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

81/365: Justice For Baseball Players

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Matt Holliday Goes To Court

A banner with Cardinals' slugger Matt Holliday hangs over Market Street downtown. The name on the bottom is the cable channel that carries most of the team's games. You will find such banners on lamp posts all over American cities. They are paid advertising. Heaven knows the City of St. Louis needs the money.

Having the Civil Courts Building in the background gets me wondering if Holliday needs justice. He is a pretty good player. His pay is $17 million a year. He is the highest paid player in team history but Albert Pujols, whose contract is up at the end of this season, thinks it is a trivial sum (as recently discussed on this blog here). What about justice for fans? Mere mortals can't afford to go to games anymore.


Today is St. Louis Daily Photo's fourth anniversary. Join the celebration!

St Louis Daily Photo 4th Anniversary Picture

Monday, March 21, 2011

80/365: Washington and Jefferson

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Washington and Jefferson

No history lesson, just an intersection of two main streets near the northwest corner of downtown. Technically, this is on the wrong side of Jefferson to fit my official definition of downtown but what the hell, I am the lord of this little blog-world. The upper floors are loft apartments. The ground level is (long) vacant commercial space. That's life in 21st Century St. Louis - we hold these truths to be self-evident.


It's spring, and St. Louis Daily Photo is in love today.

Springtime In Citygarden

Sunday, March 20, 2011

79/365: Visitors From Kansas City

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Visitors From Kansas City

I was wandering around under the Arch yesterday morning, looking for material. There was a large tree, stripped by the river, washed up on the top of the levee (the river is a lot higher than the last time I was by) that was fascinating to kids. The members of this family were taking one another's pictures with cell phone cams. When they saw me walk by, loaded with gear, they asked if I would take a picture of all of them (this happens a lot). Sure, of course, and can I take a picture of you guys with my camera?

It's spring break time for many American schools and these folks came over from Kansas City to see the sights. Hope they have a good time.


St. Louis Daily Photo is not thinking about lawnmowers.

Under The Arch


Saturday, March 19, 2011

78/365: High-Definition Color

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St Pat's Parade 25

It seems that at every major public event, the city fire department brings out this enormous flag, suspended from the ends of the tall cranes on its biggest trucks. Regardless of the symbolism, it makes a terrific display against a blue sky. I'm not making a political statement here. I just really like the graphics.

St. Louis City Hall is at the bottom. It has plenty of architectural interest. I really need to explore it with my camera.


St. Louis Daily Photo is running from the sheriff today.

St. Pat's Parade 26

Friday, March 18, 2011

77/365: Erin Go Whoopee

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St. Pat's Parade 24

Near the end of the St. Patrick's Day parade route, a couple of blocks from my office. I don't ride these things. Sure, power, freedom, wind in your hair (in the few states that do not require a helmet, notably Illinois and California) but, well, it's just bloody crazy.

Question: what's another term for motorcycle rider?

Answer: organ donor.

I guess I'll never understand. But then my life insurance premiums are cheaper.


St. Louis Daily Photo evades arrest today.

St. Pat's Parade 23

Thursday, March 17, 2011

76/365: A Wee Dram For St. Patrick's Day

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St. Pat's Parade 11

An advertising sign along the St. Pat's parade route. Celebrate right with a 40% alcohol beverage. Actually, I prefer Bushmill's 18 year old but that's from Northern Ireland. It probably wouldn't go down so well in the Republic. Most Americans wouldn't know the difference.

Today's post on St. Louis Daily Photo tries to pull something green into the Arch.

2011 St Pat's Parade 18

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

75/365: Muscle

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Working Families Rally 10

Another pic from the Working Families Rally. Not that there's anything wrong with these but I do need to get out and shoot some fresh stuff this weekend. It's supposed to be very pleasant. Spring is coming earlier than it used to. We have forsythia and daffodils out in the middle of March.

Anyway, the operating engineers are the people who run heavy construction equipment, bulldozers, cranes, that kind of stuff. Some of them look like they actually make their living on the professional wrestling circuit. I decline to arm wrestle.

Today St. Louis Daily Photo considers an assortment of people who are just plain strange.

St Patrick's Parade Composite

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

74/365: E Pluribus Unun

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Working Families Rally 2

That's what it says on the American dollar bill: one from many. There were all kinds of people at the Working Families Rally, even a suit. (Where'd he come from? Spy?) One of this country's founders, Benjamin Franklin, said that we must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. That's a good explanation of the need for unions. Many of the signs said Good Jobs Now but the workers can only do so much about that. I've been to China and seen why.


Today's St. Louis Daily Photo explores the religious roots of St. Patrick's Day.

St. Pat's Parade 12


Monday, March 14, 2011

73/365: Solidarity Forever

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Working Families Rally 8 BW

It's an issue of basic fairness to me: management has power. The bigger it is the more is has. An individual worker is a speck of dust. Powerful employers can and do exploit employees. (I won't start in on the history of that.) Therefore, many workers need to organize for their collective good: unions. Q.E.D.

Not that powerful unions can't abuse their strength. My near-namesake, Bob Crow, leader of the London transport workers union, has stuck it to the public of that city time and again. Contract work rules can stymie efficiency and keep deadwood personnel on the job. Balance is needed. Thesis, antithesis, synthesis.

For now, though, solidarity forever.


Working Families Rally 9 BW


St. Louis Daily Photo issues a Celtic accusation today.

2011 St Pat's Parade 2

Sunday, March 13, 2011

72/365: Stop The War On Workers

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Working Families Rally 6

Patriotism is not the exclusive province of the Tea Party. I look at these faces and then think back to those I saw when I covered the Tea Party rally here last summer. What I don't get is the plutocrats' end-game. If they grab the bulk of the money for themselves, draining it away from everybody else, then people won't have money to buy stuff, the consumer economy collapses and the plutocrats go broke. Such irony. R. Crumb explained it well.

Working Families Rally 7


St. Louis Daily Photo celebrates the start of spring public drinking season today.

2011 St. Patrick's Parade 1

Saturday, March 12, 2011

71/365: Greed Overpowering People

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Working Families Rally 4

Both of my blogs have a rare foray into politics today. This is a scene from the working families rally held in Kiener Plaza yesterday afternoon. I'm with these ladies but I wish they could find a way around the GOP acronym. It stands for Grand Old Party. Their definition of grand must be different from mine.

Coverage of the rally will continue for a few days on this blog. St. Louis Daily Photo will switch to the St. Patrick's parade and related events tomorrow but it has this image from the rally today:

Working Families Rally 3

Friday, March 11, 2011

70/365: An Old Favorite Subject

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Old Courthouse 2011-02-13

I'm complaining about having nothing to post, or people who complain they have nothing to post (I'm not sure which), on St. Louis Daily Photo today. I had nothing to post for DT STL 365 today so I had to go hustle this shot of the Old Courthouse. I may go on complaining anyway. It can be cathartic.

St. Louis Daily Photo was so hard up for material today I drove through a car wash with my camera.

Car Wash 1

Thursday, March 10, 2011

69/365: 1st Month Rent

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1st Month Rent

A lot of my clients would like to find this, but preferably not under a viaduct and behind barbed wire.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

68/365: An Arch Photo

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Arch 2011-02-20

This was taken from about 16th and Chouteau. The monument is almost hemmed in by office buildings, a hotel, the light towers of Busch Stadium and high voltage lines. Still, it easily manages to rise above it all.

We're talking about the highbrow Disneyland today on St. Louis Daily Photo.

Disney Hall 1

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

67/365: On The Run

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2011 Idiotarod 28

Well, here I am sitting in a conference room in Los Angeles, listening to both my colleagues and the planes zooming in and out of LAX just down the street. I'm going to grow roots into this chair. Maybe I should have gone running with teams from the Idiotarod.

2011 Idiotarod 29

Monday, March 7, 2011

66/365: Black Swans

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2011 Idiotarod 21

Yeah, yeah, more Idiotarod pictures but I have to keep squeezing this until I get home. Next Saturday is the St. Patrick's day parade, a photographer's feast. This is the Black Swan entry in the contest. I don't get all the referenceds- I didn't see the movie. (I see hardly any movies.) Still, those smiles look malevolent to me.

Scenes from the Getty Center in LA on St. Louis Daily Photo today.

At The Getty 1