Saturday, March 31, 2018

Spring Is Here! Maybe.

It was awfully quiet at my office yesterday so I left at mid-afternoon. (Note to self: issue press release.) The  sun finally came out and the temperature was mild. I drove home, picked up Ellie and Emily and went back downtown. Citygarden had plastic Easter eggs stashed all over for the kids. Ellie was delighted to rearrange them and climb on the sculptures. She and Jim Dine's Pinocchio celebrated the season.

But it is supposed to be chilly and wet today. There is a chance of snow on Easter Sunday. Things will eventually warm up.   

Friday, March 30, 2018


I have a bad shoulder. The physical therapy place I'm going to is downtown, a couple of blocks from my office. We are trying to restore more function. The PT office faces the street and has floor to ceiling windows. While lying on my side on the table early this morning, I watched the workers start their day on restoration of an old office building, the one on the right. 

It has been empty for several years, bringing more downtown decay. I'm told it is being remodeled into a boutique hotel. That's great, but I hope it has enough business. I've read that the downtown hotel occupancy rate isn't that great. And there is a very similar project two blocks away.

Love the geometry of the parking garage in the mid-ground.         

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Gray Day On Art Hill

It's been a gray, damp week in The Lou. Even the king himself looks bland. But the flowers are starting to bud so there should be something to shoot this weekend.        

Wednesday, March 28, 2018


There was a physician at the March For Our Lives, pictured above. His sign and message were very simple. Yes, there is a spelling error but there are lots of good doctors in this country who are not native English speakers.This one may work at the emergency room of one our urban hospitals.  You can imagine what he has seen.   

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Able To Bend Steel In His Bare Hands

As it used to say in the lead-in to the old Superman TV show that I watched regularly when I was a kid:
Announcer: Faster than a speeding bullet! More powerful than a locomotive! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound!
Voices: Look, up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman!
Announcer: Yes, it's Superman, strange visitor from another planet, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men. Superman, who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel in his bare hands, and who, disguised as Clark Kent, mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper, fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice and the American way.
Yes, truth, justice and the American way. Would that my country shared the values expressed in the poster.

Monday, March 26, 2018


Assez. Suficiente. Genug. 足够 Tillräckligt. Достаточно. 十分な。Genoeg. מַסְפִּיק! Basta! No bloody more. They are young, impassioned and organized. They are the future. They will vote their opponents out of office.      

Sunday, March 25, 2018

March For Our Lives

The Crowe family joined more than 10,000 of our neighbors in the March For Our Lives yesterday. These are just two of the things I saw. More to come.        

Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Crowd Last Saturday - And Today?

Big downtown parades usually start in front of Union Station (lots of German-influenced architecture) and proceed east down Market Street, the main downtown east-west thoroughfare, towards the Arch. This was the scene last Saturday before the start of the St. Patrick's Day parade.

Today, the same space will hold our iteration of the national March For Our Lives. It was spurred by high school students from Parkland, Florida, after the massacre at their high school. The motivating idea it that our safety, our civil society, our very lives, are more important than the unbridled ownership of semi-automatic firearms. The main demonstration will be in Washington but local marches will take place in hundreds of cities across America. The activism and outrage of these students may bring a tipping point in the gun debate in our country.

The weather forecast for here looks miserable, cold and raining, but my wife, my daughter, my granddaughter and I will be there until we are soaked through.        

Friday, March 23, 2018

Not Done With The Green Stuff

A twelfth year begins...

The are still some decent pix from the St. Patrick's Day parade to use before I can shoot some new material. I'm not sure what this guy was about, or even what group he was with in the parade. The reference on the front of the cart is to an old TV secret agent series. I don't get it.      

I'm hoping to shoot the local iteration of March For Our Lives on Saturday morning but the weather looks bad. Thunderstorms in the forecast, but the weather here is changeable. We'll see.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

STL DP At 11 - What A Workout

Today is Saint Louis Daily Photo's eleventh anniversary. I have not posted every single day but I've come pretty close. It should reach 4,000 posts in less than three weeks. From one point of view, it's been as much work as this nut-job exercise class doing push-ups off a platform in Forest Park. 

Why do I keep doing it? Other excellent City Daily Photo Blogs have come and gone. Maybe I need a creative outlet, or an alternative activity since I'm really tired of working. Maybe it's because I have come to enjoy photography so much and welcome the push to keep at it. Maybe it is the CDP colleagues from Paris to Perth, Berlin to Birmingham, we've become friends with and, in many cases, met. They are all good reasons.

I regret that my comments on friends' blogs have dropped off. It is a combination of things. An unrelenting work load. (I've been trying like crazy to cut down to part time and it's just not happening - I own the law practice.) Family obligations - as some of you may have inferred, Ellie lives with us half time and she is always my first priority. And maybe just getting older. But, in any case, thank you for your visits, your comments, your Facebook notes, your friendship and chance to enjoy your wonderful images.        

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

But There Were Lots Of Happy People

Don't misinterpret yesterday's post. Those faces were just part of the human scene and there is no such thing as an uninteresting face. Most of the people attending the St. Pat's parades were in high spirits. The man in the first shot called out to me "this is the best picture you're gonna take today!" I really like the third one, with her Vermeer-ish face and skin.

TOMORROW: Saint Louis Daily Photo's 11th anniversary. Why, I wonder.       

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

When Irish Eyes Aren't Smiling

Is it just the chance of where my lens fell or a sign of the times? St. Patrick's Day parades in this country are associated with mirth (perhaps a bit lubricated). And indeed, most of the people up and down the two parade routes were entirely cheerful. But not everyone. This is hard to interpret.         

Monday, March 19, 2018

Boyz In Da Hood

Some guys hanging around downtown St. Louis for the St. Pat's parade: Shriners and Imperial Storm Troopers. Boys will be boys, but it might scare the kiddies. 

Personally, I would not care to wear a fez (especially one that says Arab Patrol across the bottom), but the Shriners do wonderful work for children's health care.      

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Green Day

No, not the band.

The Lou has two St. Patrick's Day parades, and it's a big deal here. The smaller, more traditional and often more inebriated one takes place in a neighborhood with the lilting Celtic name of Dogtown. (Really.) The other is way bigger and goes through the city center, always on the Saturday before the event. Except yesterday, since Saturday was the 17th.

So the former started at 10 AM and the latter at 1 PM. I ran from one to the other and they were both packed. Tons more of this to come.

I think the caption for the bottom picture is what goes in must come out.      

Friday, March 16, 2018

I'm Staying On This Side Of The Street

Since I was totally out of new material, I snuck out of work a little early to take advantage of the extra golden hour light provided by the change to daylight savings time. This is just west of downtown. It used to be an AT&T Long Lines building before the technology changed. I hope never to visit.         

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Almost That Time

As mentioned, it's time to go archives diving. Lots to shoot this weekend but it's only Thursday. It is, however, mid-March and baseball season is only a couple of weeks away. The advertising sign above sums up the local attitude well. Our family is going to the second game of the season on a Saturday afternoon. Much safer than a night game at this time of year.       

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

It's Still WInter

We had heavy, wet snow on Sunday. So, of course, rather than being out shooting it, I was at work, catching a few shots from my office window.. The scene includes Eads Bridge, the Mississippi, the north end of the Arch grounds and an apartment building. 

I am now Officially Out Of Material. Scrounge for new or scrounge for old.       

Monday, March 12, 2018

Madeleine Monday

Our little escape artist at the City Museum before the trouble started. She likes the ball pit and loves all the slides. After this first trip down she of course wanted another. We watched her climb the one flight of stairs. Instead of turning right to the top of the chute, she turned left and headed to the outdoor area, resulting in a twenty minute search. So these are all the usable pictures I got. Pretty much out of material and need to do some hunting.     

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Tough Day At The City Museum

Here and there I've had posts about  St. Louis' City Museum. There is nothing like it in the world and it's hard to describe. (The Wikipedia article gives it a good try.) Mrs. C and I took Ellie there yesterday. She gave us a hard time and I got little shooting done.

The child is four and a half. She has complete social confidence and little sense of fear. The building is a maze of tunnels and big climbing things, and on three occasions she ran off from us to explore on her own. Each time we had to get museum staff to help find her. Each time we gave her a stern lecture but to no avail. She needs to learn some limits.

The bottom two pictures are from a new area that has a large net suspended over giant Legos. Ellie spent twenty minutes bouncing around the net (that's her, just up and to the right of center, in the sweater with horizontal, brightly colored stripes). I walked under the edge to get some video but some kid kicked me in the head. Time to go home.                

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Why A Duck?

Well, you can find out here.

Some creative person got permission to erect this waterfowl in a pocket park on South Grand Boulevard. It is made of scrap cardboard, tape and varnish. What's it all about? A writer once said that a poem should not mean, but be. Same thing here. The artist intends to let it stand until it falls apart through weather or vandalism. (No sign of the latter, happily.) Another reminder of impermanence.

Friday, March 9, 2018

It's Not All Pretty

Not everything in the art museum during the flower show was cheery and colorful. I turned around from one arrangement and found Auguste Rodin's Despair. No crowd around this piece. Note the curled toes and characteristically large hand covering the head and face. The smooth, muscular body lies on rough rock. But, if you chose to, you could move on to the next group of blossoms and whistle a happy tune.  

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Shooting Through The Crowd

Every photographer knows that shooting at a crowded event is somewhere between difficult and an outright pain. You have to work the room, perhaps be a bit impolite at times (although lots of people walk through your shots even when you have the camera to your face) to get a clear image. The spacious room at the museum, above, was far from the most crowded but you get the idea.

Occasionally, though, the other visitors can create a pleasing result, as below.     

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Close Up

Most of the pictures I took at Art In Bloom show the whole floral arrangement, often in the context of the paintings on the wall. It's also interesting to zoom in and see the details. A different visual  rhythm becomes evident.     

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Why The Dancing?

As mentioned, the string quartet performing in the great hall of the art museum is what got Ellie dancing. It wasn't the best circumstances to enjoy the music, unless you found one of the few nearby seats or were four years old and wanted to immerse your body in it. Most people were coming and going and, I'm afraid, treated the musicians as another ornament. I thought they were very good.         

Monday, March 5, 2018

Madeleine Monday

Of course, my favorite moppet went along on the trip to the art museum. There was a string quartet playing in a corner of the great hall. She decided to perform an interpretive dance to some Vivaldi piece. I don't know which the crowd found more entertaining.

Later in the visit, she decided to strike poses in front of Degas' ballerina. This mood lasted into the evening. As we usually do on Saturday night, we listened to the St. Louis Symphony broadcast on the radio. All on her own, she danced through pretty much all of Schumann's first symphony. She slept late on Sunday morning.