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Author Topic: Whats to shoot near Chicago in Summer?  (Read 9725 times)
Brentbat
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« on: December 28, 2007, 10:40:29 PM »
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I'm travelling to Chicago this Summer for a conference (from Australia).

I'd love to take up to a week off to do some photography.   My main interest is landscapes or old buildings / ghost towns etc..

Can anybody make any recommendation for places I should visit?

Thanks in advance
Brent
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larryg
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« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2007, 04:16:24 PM »
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There are some marshes  and parks near Western Spings,
 (marsh)
  Also within an hour to one and one half hour  there is Starved Rock State Park.
Several waterfalls and scenery

You also have city scapes of Chicago area and skyline  (Navy Pier area)

There is the Indiana Dunes State Park in Indiana  on Lake Michigan (also within one hour or better)

There is also the Morton Arboretum  in Lyle IL  (under an hour from Chicago downtown).

http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/Landmgt/PARKS/R2/VOLOBOG.HTM
Volo Bog  has also been a popular spot

http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/Landmgt/PARKS/R2/region2.htm
state parks in IL  by region
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Alexis Alvarez
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« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2007, 12:17:16 PM »
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For a "ghost" town, drive down to Gary, Indiana, for the day -- lots of old, abandoned buildings, easy to get into.

aa
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Ken Tanaka
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« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2007, 05:26:25 PM »
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Hello Brent,
Chicago is a terrific place for many types of photography.  But, alas, we have no "landscape" in the conventional definition.  Cityscapes, yes!  

Contrary to popular mythology Chicago really doesn't have an abundance of abandoned, blown-out neighborhoods.  We're a very vital city today.  

Also, contrary to Alexis' tip I -really- do not recommend taking an unescorted trip through neighboring Gary, Indiana at any time of day.  There are plenty of pathetic scenes of abject poverty over there, and some very compelling working steel mill scenes.  But it's just not a safe place.  Lots of idle men, lots of drugs, lots of anger.

Poke around in my personal galleries, as most of the images are Chicago-origined.  If you see scenes that you might like to visit feel free to send me a note to learn more about the location and logistics.

Enjoy your upcoming visit to my city!
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- Ken Tanaka -

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Brentbat
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« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2007, 07:56:02 PM »
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Hi folks

Thanks for the comments,  it will help to kick-start my research.

Brent
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Alexis Alvarez
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« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2008, 07:01:24 PM »
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Quote
Also, contrary to Alexis' tip I -really- do not recommend taking an unescorted trip through neighboring Gary, Indiana at any time of day.  There are plenty of pathetic scenes of abject poverty over there, and some very compelling working steel mill scenes.  But it's just not a safe place.  Lots of idle men, lots of drugs, lots of anger.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Perhaps things have gotten worse recently -- but I was in Gary a number of times in 2005-2006, on my own and with fellow photographers, and never had a problem.  (Then again, I grew up in a pretty notorious slum and know how to handle myself.)

(You might also want to check out the old Acme Coke plant, down by Torrence and 110??? -- sorry, can't remember exactly where, it's been a while!  For more info on Gary and Acme, check out  
[a href=\"http://www.futurespeak.net/bb]http://www.futurespeak.net/bb[/url] -- I think you'll have to register -- and http://www.chicagosteel.org/)

aa
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Brentbat
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« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2008, 04:51:52 AM »
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(You might also want to check out the old Acme Coke plant, down by Torrence and 110??? -- sorry, can't remember exactly where, it's been a while!  For more info on Gary and Acme, check out 
http://www.futurespeak.net/bb -- I think you'll have to register -- and http://www.chicagosteel.org/)

aa
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=164691\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Hey thanks Alexis,  I have registered at the first site and checked out the second site.  The steel structure looks pretty cool.  Can you go into the site or would you have to shoot from outside?

Brent
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Alexis Alvarez
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« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2008, 07:34:10 AM »
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Hey thanks Alexis,  I have registered at the first site and checked out the second site.  The steel structure looks pretty cool.  Can you go into the site or would you have to shoot from outside?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=164754\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You can shoot from outside; I "broke in" with a couple of friends in the summer of 2006.  If you decide to "enter" you should be careful, as the ground is not level, there are lots of holes and stuff that you can't see if there's snow.

aa
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The Hardcard
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« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2008, 09:35:30 AM »
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I would suggest a visit to my hometown, Joliet, Illinois, if you like old industrial buildings. There is a 19th/20th century steel mill that has been turned into a historic park. A lot of other old industrial sites and structures tied to the Illinois and Michigan canal.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2008, 09:35:55 AM by The Hardcard » Logged
Brentbat
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« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2008, 04:14:09 PM »
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Thanks very much for your input... I think I will definitely check out Joliet, IL.

Love the sound of the old industrial area.

Brent
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vjbelle
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« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2008, 03:40:39 PM »
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Others have posted some good recommendations, but try not to miss the Chicago Botanical Gardens.  I realize that gardens are not one of your desired areas but this is World Class with an infinite budget.  The Japanese area lends itself to some landscape possibilities and is monstrous compared to other gardens I have seen.  I used to live in Chicago and never miss the Gardens when I go back.  

Good luck visiting a fabulous city!

Victor
« Last Edit: January 05, 2008, 03:41:42 PM by vjbelle » Logged
Ken Tanaka
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« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2008, 09:27:05 AM »
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Perhaps things have gotten worse recently -- but I was in Gary a number of times in 2005-2006, on my own and with fellow photographers, and never had a problem.  (Then again, I grew up in a pretty notorious slum and know how to handle myself.)

(You might also want to check out the old Acme Coke plant, down by Torrence and 110??? -- sorry, can't remember exactly where, it's been a while!  For more info on Gary and Acme, check out 
http://www.futurespeak.net/bb -- I think you'll have to register -- and http://www.chicagosteel.org/)

aa
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

[a href=\"http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-gary-carjacking_webjan30,0,3029983.story]A night in the life of Gary, Indiana.[/url]  Yes, this stuff happens in Chicago, too. But Gary has a concentration of poverty that has turned it into a frontier town.
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Best Regards,
- Ken Tanaka -

www.KenTanaka.com
Brentbat
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« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2008, 03:38:50 PM »
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A night in the life of Gary, Indiana.  Yes, this stuff happens in Chicago, too. But Gary has a concentration of poverty that has turned it into a frontier town.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=170598\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Thanks Ken.... well, I think that just put me off any night-time shoots in Gary.  Awful story.


BP
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Heming
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« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2008, 05:41:02 PM »
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I'm not a local.  I just visited CHicago twice in the past.  My favorite spot in the summer is Buckingham Fountain at night with colorful lights and cityscape in the background.
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Ken Tanaka
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« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2008, 06:32:56 PM »
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Those visiting Chicago can find plenty of sites to entertain your lenses.

There is a group known as Preservation Chicago that has been vigorously trying to save some of the architecturally and/or historically significant sites in the city...to varying degrees of success.  Their site may give you some ideas.

Also, just yesterday morning I heard an interview on our local public radio station (WBEZ) with a photographer who makes it his hobby to photograph abandoned industrial sites.  In particular, he was photographing the abandoned Brach's Candy factory during the interview.  You can hear the entire interview on the WBEZ station site.  It may lead you to some ideas.

Have fun...but be safe.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2008, 06:33:32 PM by Ken Tanaka » Logged

Best Regards,
- Ken Tanaka -

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DarkPenguin
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« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2008, 06:52:48 PM »
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Thanks Ken.... well, I think that just put me off any night-time shoots in Gary.  Awful story.
BP
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=170743\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I dunno.  If you're looking to shoot something Gary is a pretty good place to go.
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