Chicago 11.26.2017

On Sunday Mike and I traveled downtown for the day to explore the city. One of the best things about living in Chicagoland is you’re not far from Metra stations, we are very close to a commuter train station and then have another station in the neighboring town plus more! And what makes it even better is you can purchase a weekend pass and ride the Metra as many times as you like Saturday and Sunday.

I took my camera with me to continue my practice and used the aperture setting. The day was beautiful for taking photos outdoors- sunny, blue skies, and we even saw a bride and groom outside the planetarium. I wanted to see the Christmas tree so we went to Millennium Park where the outdoor skating rink (one of my bucket list items) and the bean are located.

After lunch at the Italian Village- great restaurant- and one of few open on Sunday, we walked to Adler Planetarium. I took photos indoors too because while I love outdoor photos I know I need to practice indoor too. The Adler Planetarium has Gemini space capsule from NASA which was super cool to see and I love stars and the solar system. We only paid for general admission which doesn’t give you access to the movies and that was fine with us.

Before heading back to Union Station I took some pictures outside of the planetarium adjusting the white balance. I’ve seen what a difference custom white balance makes using the Light Room software but for the pictures I took of the skyline I simply switched between, daylight, shade, and auto white balance and there was certainly a change between each one!

Here are some of my favorite photos and maybe some not so favorites so I can continue to learn and improve with my photography.

I love this picture of the bean but with some editing we would be able to see the blue sky that is visible in my other photos. That is where a custom white balance would be beneficial.
The back of Gemini space capsule at the Planetarium- the heat shield.
This photo turned out wonderful with the vibrant colors, I was impressed after taking it.

Below is a slideshow of the photos I mentioned where I adjusted the white balance. It was about 3 pm in the afternoon and the sun was to my left shining on the buildings – you can tell in photo #2.

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Weekend Fun

Weekend Fun: 4th of July in Chicago with Dave Matthews Band!

Hi there!

How was your holiday weekend? Did you see a parade, cookout, watch the fireworks? We only did one out of those three options but we had an awesome time in Chicago!

This was our first time taking a train ever and we really enjoyed it! It was nice to arrive downtown within an hour and a half and not have to sit through traffic. While we were in Chicago we simply walked to places or took a cab, it was so nice not to worry about a car or parking!
Train Ride to Chicago

The first thing we did in Chicago was visit Millennium Park to see the Cloud Gate or as many call it, the Bean! Ever since I heard about the Bean I’ve been dying to see it. I just think it’s so cool.
Cloud Gate aka The Bean

The Bean!

We did some shopping on Michigan Ave after that and ate lunch at Ditka’s restaurant. I couldn’t say no to it after we enjoyed it the first time we went in January. Friday night was the first night of a two night show for Dave Matthews Band and we got there early to check out the venue and buy a poster. Dave Matthews Band has posters created for every show but they only make a certain amount so it’s a one of a kind thing because they usually sell out. Friday’s poster was different than the ones we have because it’s black but we loved it.
DMB Poster

The show was great and we had awesome seats! We were really happy there was no opener and instead it was an acoustic set performed by Dave Matthews Band and then an electric set.
Dave Matthews Band

Saturday I managed to get up and run in the morning and then we went to Navy Pier. We wanted to try out the Divvy bike share program but after 3 attempts the kiosk wouldn’t take my card and we gave up. The idea is fabulous, you rent a bike for 24 hours at $7 and you have 30 minutes to bike to your destination and then you put the bike back in a divvy rack anywhere in the city. When you’re done you get another bike and ride on. Maybe in a year they will have a better system. An hour later we hailed a cab and made it to the pier and we stopped to eat lunch at Harry Caray’s.
Navy Pier
Harry Caray's

The second night for Dave Matthews Band we didn’t have the luxurious seats and had lawn tickets. I was worried that it would be an unpleasant experience, sometimes lawn can get a bit rowdy, but it wasn’t half bad! They did have a plastic floor over parts of the lawn where we thought it may have been really muddy. It was a little weird but hey, that’s ok.
Lawn for Dave Matthews Band

We had a great time in Chicago but it was nice to come home and sleep in our own bed! But for two nights of Dave Matthews Band I would do it all over again!! I can’t wait until next year when we’ll continue the tradition of seeing DMB with our good friend, it just wasn’t the same without her!