Views of the Leelanau

After months of working at home, we spent a week physical distancing in Leelanau County.  I rose early each morning to shoot as the sun rose.

Sunrise in Glen Haven

One of my goals for the week was to practice panoramic photographs.  It involves taking several overlapping photographs and stitching them together using Photoshop.  I had some pretty dramatic sunrises looking across Sleeping Bear Bay toward Pyramid Point.

_MG_6280-Pano

_MG_6379-Pano

Glen Haven was once a bustling port.  One of the remaining buildings in the village the Glen Haven Canning Company, owned by D.H. Day.

_MG_6162-Edit

_MG_6166

Dew on the beach grass creates specular highlights in this photo.

_MG_6168

Even without dramatic clouds, the sunrise on Sleeping Bear Bay is breathtaking.

_MG_6118-Edit

Finding My Roots

Lately, I have been intrigued by the roots of trees. So another goal for our trip was to try to take some interesting photos of them.  I visited Bass Lake, where the shore is lined by cedar trees.

_MG_6635-HDR-Edit-Edit

_MG_6629

_MG_6645-HDR-2

_MG_6685-Edit

_MG_6659-Edit-2

I also visited the Teichner Preserve on Lime Lake where cedars again line the shore.

_MG_6420

_MG_6424-Edit-Edit

_MG_6428-Edit

These cedar roots are the last thing keeping these three trees from falling into the lake.

_MG_6482-Edit-2

I took this shot along the Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail in Glen Arbor.

_MG_6187

Port Oneida Rural Historic District

I return frequently to the Port Oneida Rural Historic District, where the farms were established in the late 1800s and early 1900s.  For a time, the National Park Service was letting the farms decay, with the intention of turning Sleeping Bear Dunes into a wilderness area.  That plan has changed, and with the help of Preserve Historic Sleeping Bear, a not-for-profit, the farms buildings are being restored and preserved.

This is a panoramic photo of the outbuildings of the Thoreson Farm.  The red building is the granary.

_MG_5853-Pano-Edit

I have taken so many photos of this granary, one of the few remaining buildings on the Peter and Jenny Burfiend Farm.

_MG_5710

Omena, Michigan

Omena, Michigan, is a tiny town on the Leelanau Peninsula, between Sutton’s Bay and Northport.  It has a few charming buildings, including the local post office . . .

_MG_6739

and the Omena Bay Country Store, which has unfortunately closed.

_MG_6813

The Omena Presbyterian Church was dedicated in 1858.  It holds services only in the summer, with visiting ministers.

_MG_6760-Edit

But, services were suspended this year because of the Covid-19 virus.

_MG_6776

Photographing the church, I noticed the cemetery behind it.  The cemetery was unlike any I have visited before.  Most of the graves were marked by blank, roughcut  headstones.

_MG_6791

A marker explained.

_MG_6779-Edit

Sunset over Lake Michigan and South Manitou Island

One of our traditions when vacationing in Glen Arbor is watching the sun set each evening.  The show was dramatic on our second evening,  as the sun set amidst a clearing storm._MG_5837-Edit-5 Noise reduction

Each subsequent evening offered a different show.

_MG_5667

_MG_5688

_MG_5750

_MG_6276

_MG_6208-Pano

_MG_6582

 

 

 

 

The Message

On the afternoon of Saturday, May 30, peaceful protesters met in Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids and marched in silence to protest the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis.  Their message of outrage was clear.  As night fell, a different crowd took to the streets and the evening turned violent as rioters smashed the windows of downtown businesses, burned police cars and caused other mayhem.

The following morning, volunteers from the community came downtown and cleaned up the mess leaving, behind boarded up businesses. Most of the business remain covered in plywood.  But, the plywood has become a canvas for artists to send a message to the community about racism, redemption, and Black Lives Matter.

Someday soon, the plywood will come down, replaced by glass. The artwork will be auctioned off.  While it is wonderful that the artwork will be preserved, it may lose some of its impact when it no longer appears together.  So today I walked around downtown today to capture these photos.  (Click on an image to see it larger.)

_MG_5056

_MG_5159

_MG_5160

_MG_5110

More shots from Seidman Park

I figure I spent close to two hours this weekend (2 separate visits) standing in the middle of a stream that feeds into Honey Creek. What a great way to start the day, listening to the burbling of the stream as it passes over the rocks on its way to the larger creek. On this morning’s visit I was rewarded with mayapple flowers, which are hidden beneath a canopy of leaves.  Mayapples grow in colonies from a single root system.  Their leaves obscure the beautiful flower that blossoms in late April or May.

“Our Magnificent Planet”

I submitted three photographs to Lenswork Magazine today for possible inclusion in a book they will publish this fall titled, “Our Magnificent Planet.” They will select 300 photographs from those submitted. Fingers crossed, they will select one of these. (Click on images to see them full size.)

Covid Close Ups

Michigan’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order is denying me the opportunity to travel north to photograph this year’s spring. So, I have begun practicing macro photography. On one of our infrequent visits to to the grocery store I bought some flowers and on a walk I found a couple of pine cones to stand in for Sleeping Bear Dunes, Lake Michigan and Point Oneida. Even in the smallest things, however, there is beauty. (Click on a photo to see a larger version.)

 

 

Venturing out while hunkering down

My wife and I are hunkered down, both working from home, doing our best to stay away from the Covid-19 virus.  Of course, it is important to get out of the house.  We have each been taking walks alone and together. Fortunately, the last few days have been dry and bright.  The last couple of mornings, I have gotten out early before the world gets going to shoot some photos.

Yesterday, I drove around the city of Grand Rapids looking for a composition.  I decided to shoot the Chester Street Engine House, home of Company 11.  I drive by the station each evening on my way home from work and have frequently and have admired often.

_MG_3699-2

Constructed in 1902, the Chester Street Engine House is the oldest active fire station in Grand Rapids.  The building is designed in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, popular in the late 1800s.  The Grand Rapids Historical Commission’s website, describes it as follows: “Design characteristics are: asymmetrical massing; a decorative wall texture created by the brickwork, variegated on the first floor and smooth on the second; the row of wide, round-arch (Romanesque) windows, as well as the double-hung windows with (not quite) transom windows above.  Although the dormer is quite typical, the wide, over-hanging eaves of the roof give it an almost Prairie style look.”

_MG_3704

_MG_3706

My morning wanderings also took me to Grand Rapids’s southwest side where I spotted several spiral fire escapes.  These are still fairly common on older Grand Rapids buildings. The spiral stairs made for an interesting bit of shadow play, reminding me of a Möbius strip.

_MG_3712-Edit

This morning, I drove through the country to Fallasburg Village, north of Lowell, which was founded on the banks of the Flat River in the 1830s  by John Wesley Fallass.  The Village, which today consists of a few preserved buildings and some private homes, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999. More information about Fallasburg can be found on the website of the Fallasburg Historical Society.

I focused my attention this morning on the Fallass Barn with its stone foundation, built in 1894.

_MG_3770-Edit-S

_MG_3755

_MG_3767-Edit

 

Lowell, Michigan, Revisited

I practiced social distancing Saturday by leaving the house before dawn and driving to Lowell, Michigan, just 17 miles from our house.  Lowell is a small, quintessentially Midwestern town.  I did a photo shoot there four years ago andstill very much enjoy the photos I took of the old buildings on the main street.  You can see those photos here.

The largest business in Lowell is King Milling, a company founded in 1890 and still a family owned business.  Every time I pass through Lowell, the silos and grain elevators seem to have multiplied.  There are so many potential photos there. Here are some I took on Saturday.