For Thanksgiving break, we headed up to the Chicago area to visit with old friends from Alaska — friends who left the Great White Sub-Arctic the same time we did last summer. Apparently they couldn’t fathom living in a cultural metropolis like Valdosta, Georgia. They opted instead for Flossmoor, a few clicks south of Chicago. Low-key.
There wasn’t much time for photography on the trip. Most of our time was spent hanging with the family in Flossmoor, though we did make it to Chicago-proper for two quick stomps — a few hours at Shedd Aquarium on one day and a few hours shopping downtown on another. Add to that the unfortunate death of my Nikon-Nikkor AF-S 18-105mm lens shortly before the trip and… well… I was photographically challenged.
My only lens for the trip was a 60mm lens (on timeshare-loan from my father). I’ve been primarily using this lens for macro compositions, but it’s now my primary lens until I can get the 18-105mm replaced or supplemented more appropriately. The 60mm is a great lens, but it isn’t the best for landscapes and wide-sweeping views. There is no zoom-in/zoom-out option. It’s a fixed lens set at 60mm. So, if you want to zoom in, you need to walk forward. And if you want to zoom out? Walk backwards. Heh. This wouldn’t have necessarily been a problem in Chicago, but for the lack of time.
So yeah, I blew a great number of shots. Many on exposure levels, many on focusing issues. I’m simply conditioned to take fast compositions on the now-deceased 18-105 lens in situations like this — and long, deliberative shots on the 60mm with close subjects. Unfortunately I shot quickly on the 60mm and thus lost a ton of a otherwise-easy compositions. Sloppy.
Still, I did manage to squeak out a handful of interesting shots during these brief romps. It may not have been a very good trip for photography, but it was great to see our friends in Flossmoor — and that was the name of the game this past weekend. Playtime with Kid A, Kiki, Kate, and Tom.
Now that we’re back in Valdosta, we’re kicking into our final week of classes. After that we have Finals Week. And then? Then we’re off for the break. There’ll be work to do over the break, of course — but not the high-octane, kick-in-the-ass workload of End-Term time. (Let it be noted: Mumpower has a much, much heavier load than I — bless her heart!)
So, I’ll kick off this week with a sampling of Chicago (and Flossmoor) photos from Turkey Break. From there? No idea. We’ll play it by ear.
Hope you had a good Turkey Holiday! And I hope you survived Occupy-Shopping-Zombie-Fest.