While laying out this post tonight, I wasn’t that surprised to see that the last time I posted any work here was January 31st. As I mentioned in my previous post, my mom passed away at the end of May 2019 and I’ve been ever so slowly getting back to normal.
I had forgotten that the reconstruction of a broken heart can often take quite a lot longer than you think. But as my mom used to say, you pick yourself up and keep going anyway. Which is why I resonate so much with the quote below.
I will be publishing more new work in the coming months and I’ll also be relaunching my long neglected web site too. So stay tuned for details.
As always a special special thank you goes out to all the folks who have stuck with me from the start and to all the new followers too!
* As usual, clicking on each photo (except the header image) will take you to other images in the series on this site, or other related ephemera. For example, if you click on the last image on this page, you will be taken to an article by Chicago Sun Times about the over runs on the project.
I had been wanting to test out a loaner Laowa 17mm f4 lens on my Fuji GFX. The super wide angle lens has a 86mm front and is manual focus only. But with a field of view of 113 degrees, you don’t really need auto focus.
I’ve been photographing the huge and complex multi year-long Jane Byrne Reconstruction Project since the construction phase began in 2013. Initially I was attracted to the large scope of the project and the dystopian look of the huge site. But while making these images, I realized that there’s also a connection with my dad here, too.
While freezing my butt off photographing the other night, I realized that I feel really good when I visit construction sites. Anywhere in the world, I can walk onto a construction site and feel completely at home. I like the sounds and smells, and the fact that something is being built seems very familiar. That’s probably because when I was a kid we stopped at a lot of construction projects while traveling, because my dad was a civil engineer and a construction site super-fan.
Like a lot of creative people, I like to deconstruction/ destruction as well as construction. Luckily for me, the Jane Byrne Reconstruction Project (slated for completion in 2022) has a little of both.
The resolution of the files out of the Fuji GFX 50S still continues to impress me, even after a couple of years using the big camera. But when I combine that big Fuji GFX body with the 17mm Laowa f 4 lens, there’s a lot of detail as well as a great deal of edge to edge sharpness. There’s the usual smearing you get at the corners with a super wide angle lens, but it’s not too bad.