I’ve been commuting into the city more regularly over the last few months and I’ve become quite familiar with the scenery along the roads that lead into Chicago from the south.
Because I’ve been spending roughly 15 hours in the car every week, I’ve felt a need to use that time wisely if I am to remain a sane man. So I’ve done what any cameraman/photographer would do: I installed 3 cameras in my car so I can make images while I drive. On top of each tripod is a camera with a wireless remote. I can trigger each camera’s shutter interdependently on the steering wheel and I’ve been making images during the morning and the evening rush hours. I can keep both hands on the wheel, and make images at the same time.
But the more I’ve been making images each day the more I’ve become intrigued with all the streetlights, cell towers, surveillance cameras and various other vertical “antennae – like” elements there are along the roads I travel each day and that have become ubiquitous in most cities since 9/11.
While the increase in cell towers in Chicago and most every other major city around the world has been pretty amazing, it’s been the increased deployment of surveillance cameras over the last few years that’s gotten my attention. Although I’m kind of creeped out by all the cameras that are seemingly everywhere now, I like that catching bad guys is more efficient because of them. And I don’t like the jagged metal cell towers that seem to be everywhere now too, but at the same time I really like being able to make a cell phone call pretty much anywhere in the US and abroad. In a sense the vertical lines that are the cell towers, streetlights and surveillance cameras are a comfort to me but I’m really glad too that once outside the city, the vertical lines dwindle. Outside cities it may be tougher to communicate, but for the most part no one’s watching you and you can see the lay of the land better with out all the vertical visual clutter. That makes me happy.