Chicago River Abstracts

Chicago River Abstracts

Chicago River Abstract

Another way to see the city

Creating these Chicago River Abstracts is one way of keeping my photography fresh.

Living about an hour outside of Chicago has informed my love of architecture. It’s difficult not to with all of the incredible new and historic architecture here.

Like anything, it can get to the point of “oh, that again” if you allow it to. I work at not letting that happen.

chicago river abstract

One way to keep the city and its architecture from becoming boring is to find new and unique ways of seeing it.

Since they constructed the Chicago River Walk, it is one of my favorite places to wander. You will find buildings that were there dating from the early 1920s to those being built today.

chicago river abstract

What I love about walking along the Chicago Riverwalk with my camera is the reflections you can find in the river. The buildings end up all distorted and abstract.

Sometimes you can recognize them, sometimes not.

chicago river abstract

I approach these reflections much like I approach the actual buildings. Looking for shapes, contrasts and colors that work together to create compositions, I use my 100–400mm lens to frame these images.

It is mesmerizing to watch the water and reflection undulating. Quite hypnotic and easy to get lost in.

Chicago River abstract

An ever-changing view

What a wonderful way to see that which I’ve seen so many times before. And it is constantly changing with the light and/or weather.

Add in ice during the winter and there is a whole other dimension to the building reflections. I’ll share a story about that one of these days.

The opportunity to make abstract images using the colors of a Chicago water taxi was something I couldn’t pass up. That yellow with the blue sky reflected in the water just leaped right out at me.

The same, yet different. I still consider it architectural photography. Abstract, yes but still buildings.

Chicago River Abstracts is a whole new way of looking at Chicago.


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