My Favorite 15 Cityscapes of 2015

Over the course of the past year it seems as if I have spent more time in cities than out photographing the landscapes. In fact I decided not to even do a “best of” post for my landscapes this year as I was not happy with what I was able to capture. It seems like my travels have taken me into cities this year where I made some very interesting photos. One thing that is really missing is my own town. There are many interesting things in Lafayette/West Lafayette to photograph. When it is right in front of you it is easy to put off going out to make the shot. This year I need to go out and make the shot a little more often locally. As it is though I made some photos that I am very happy to share with you from the past year. Here are my fifteen favorite cityscapes from the past year.

15. I like this photo for all of the reasons that I originally state in the original blog post. It is a little slice of my hometown. The building this is in front of was one that I used to spend quite a bit of time inside. I once thought that I would be the mayor of LaPorte. Now I think that I can make it as a sports photographer. I think it is easier to become a mayor.

14. This is the outside of Music Hall in Cincinnati, Ohio. This was an amazing building that we were inside for two nights of great music last year. I cannot wait to see who they have playing this year for the Music Now Festival. More photos from the two concerts can be found on my concert countdown from a couple of days ago.

13. Here is another shot of my hometown of LaPorte, Indiana. You would be hard pressed to find two more iconic symbols of the city than the courthouse and the indian sculpture. They used to be separated, but now they have been placed together.

12. I absolutely loved Michael Jordan as a kid. I once thought that I could grow up to be like him (the song wasn’t far off). Of course now I am attempting something even more daunting, and that is to become a sports photographer. This was part of an exhibit showing some of the iconic work of Walter Iooss Jr. in front of the Field Museum. I thought that this photo showed Jordan and the city that he helped to six world championships. 

11. This is my one plug for the Canon G16 in this countdown. If you read my blog about the top concert photos you will see that it pretty much is a running ad for the Canon G16. I don’t get paid by Canon, and I bought the camera for myself. It is a great little camera that is easy to carry around, and still gives you a great RAW file to work with. Here I used it while boating to make an interesting photo of Pewaukee, Wisconsin. The little town combined with the paddle boarders was a great reminder of a cool trip up north this past summer.

10. I don’t think that any structure on the campus of Purdue is any more iconic to the college then the clock tower. Here I like how it plays along nicely with the title to the school song. This is a relatively new installation on campus that was fun to play with one fall day.

9. It is a photo like the one above that makes me title the post my favorite photos of the year. It is far from technically being in my top 15 of the year, but I just have good memories of the town and the day. The little town of Paxton, Illinois really goes all out for Christmas, and I was happy to capture a portion of that. I like this photo of a little town in the middle of nowhere.

8. When I walked into the lobby of the Palmer House Hilton I let out an expletive. I don’t normally walk around in public swearing, but the beauty of the hotel was amazing to me. I woke up early one morning to make some photos of this great Chicago landmark. The photo that I liked the best was this view of the lobby from a small balcony on the second floor. I thought that the balcony drew you into the photo so I purposely placed it in the photo. This was a fun trip for many reasons, but the hotel was not too bad either.

7. Each year I try and think of a good way to make an interesting image of fireworks. In 2014 I made some great firework images, but when they are just by themselves in the sky they kind of fall flat. When I heard that the fireworks were going to be on the campus of Purdue this past summer I decided to try something. With a little scouting and the help of Google Earth I was able to find a location that would give me the fireworks and the Purdue Engineering Fountain. Only two bursts were high enough to photograph so I was lucky that the fountain and the firework colors worked together here.

6. While on a photowalk of Chicago with Trey Ratcliff this past summer I finally made it to the Buckingham Fountain for a photo. When I was just beginning this journey as a photographer I always thought that it would make a great photo. The light was just never right when I was there. We arrived at about the perfect time to make a great blue hour image of the fountain and the skyline of Chicago. This was one of my favorite photos of the photowalk.


5. On a separate trip to Chicago I was out early on the same morning that I made the Palmer House interior photo to try and capture Chicago as the sun came up. I thought that the pastel colors played nicely with the bus that came streaking by. A little patience in waiting on the bus paid off for me here.

4. As it turns out Chicago scenes will make up the final six photos on this countdown. This photo was made inside of the Intercontinental Hotel on the Magnificent Mile. This great walkway leads you right to some fine wines I am sure. I loved the colors so I set up the tripod to make something interesting. I also love how the lines of the photo lead you to the wine.

3. On the same trip as the photo above I made this photo of part of the Chicago skyline at sunset. The night was a beautiful one so I excused myself from dinner at Navy Pier to make a couple of photos. I made a couple that I liked, but this was by far my favorite photo of the night. The light was just right, and the moon just adds to the photo.

2. While on the Trey Ratcliff photowalk I wanted to step out of my comfort zone a little. I normally shoot sports where I want everything crisp. Here I set up my tripod, and purposely blurred the photo walkers as they walked around me. This photo has really grown on my as the year has gone on. When I made it I don’t think that it would have even been in the top fifteen. As it is though it moved all the way up to number two. I think it was the conversion to black and white that changed my mind about the photo, and made me grow to like it.

  1. Speaking of a black and white photo, this scene was just made for black and white. This is the historic pool of the Intercontinental Hotel in Chicago. Of course the day that we were there to see it they also had a public tour that meant that we wouldn’t have the place all to ourselves. A little patience gave me a clean area to work with to make this photo. I love the way that the window light is the primary light for the scene. This was a beautiful pool that will end up being featured on this blog quite a bit before the end of 2016.

As we conclude this year I want to thank everyone who takes the time to read this blog. This has been a great year for me, and a lot of that comes from the opportunities that my readers have given me. I am very lucky to be able to do what I love for a living. I think that I was able to deliver much better content this year than in any previous year. The blog has grown a lot in the year as well. I just want to thank you all for reading, and to wish you a Happy New Year. I look forward to spending another year with you.

Dave

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About Pinola Photo

I am a sports and lifestyle photographer based in West Lafayette, IN home of Purdue University. I cover sports for Big Ten teams as well as other colleges. You can follow me on twitter @pinolaphoto. You can also view my website at www.davewegielphoto.net

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