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        April 19th, GM World

After the sad events of the last few days we're all trying to move on. So here are a couple of shots from inside the RenCen...

After seeing some work from Cobby17 over on Flickr I decided to head over to GM World in the Renaissance Center to try some shots of the cars on turntables. The first visit was on a weekday and it was busy with people looking around and a filmcrew was set up to shoot one of the turntables. So altogether a wasted journey. Sunday I went back and tried again. This time it was very quiet and the only other person in the place was the guy in charge who was cool with me dropping the camera onto the turntable to get some effects. Security at the RenCen can be a little OTT and back in January last year I was shown the door for using a camera inside. But on Sunday they were very cool, just hanging around giving the 'you do whatever you're doing' attitude.

So the idea here was to reverse some other shots I have (1, 2) with the cars blurring on the turntbales and this time set the camera down on the turntable and let the background spin into a blur. Approach - manual focus on the nearest point of interest based on approx where the camera would be set down. Using the new wide-angle Sigma 10-30 lens, go fully wide angle and stop down to f29 for max exposure length. Set ISO down to 200 for the same reason and check suggested exposure (3s) push this up to 6s (RAW) to get a glittery feel. Set timer to delay 2 seconds for sharpness. Now the hard part. No tripods allowed so place the camera on the revolving platform use the lens hood as a prop at the front to get the angle using best judgement for what the frame will capture as the camera moves swiftly away from you. Hit the shutter and race around to the other side of the turntable to grab the camera before it disappears around back.

The whole thing would have looked pretty funny to anyone watching. But the results are kind of cool.

GM World, General Motors, detroit
GM World, spinning out the moment

GM World, General Motors, detroit
GM World, full of color

        April 18th, VT, God Rest.

Working for a future they tragically wouldn't see.
A reminder that there are no guarantees.


59 million Americans own at least one handgun
26% of adults in the US have a diagnosable mental illness

        April 3rd, ol' Slumpy

A quick walk through Detroit's history shows a few names that stand above the rest: Cass, Alger, Woodward, Stratton, Livingstone etc. Amongst the architects are perhaps a handful without whom Detroit would simply be a completely different city. I'm thinking here of the likes of Kahn, Rowland and Kamper. Old Slumpy was designed by Albert Kahn for businessman William Livingstone of the Belle Isle lighthouse fame.

One of many wonderful Brush Park mansions it looks today to have passed the point of no return. Whilst a few buildings such as the Ransom Gyllis have been saved from remarkable states of decay, faceless and slumpy seem now to be lost. The William Livingstone home was moved (another Detroit obsession) a block east due to the development of the Red Cross Facility. Since this time it has become iconic for the decay around the near-downtown area. Always appearing on the point of collapse I noticed over the weekend that areas of the frontage were slipping and yesterday as I passed that most of the front facade had fallen away. Maybe someone is looking to repair it, but I doubt it. Seems only a matter of time before it goes the way of Parducci's studio and the bulldozers move in.

So long farewell, auf wiedersen, adieu
Ol' slumpy has a bad day!

Rowland v. Chase
Wirt Rowland v. Kahn Associates

        March 17th, Happy St Paddy's Everyone

It's been a tough month for the camera. After I got some bad sensor crud around back of it I had a small spill and the camera was flooded with blue detergent liquid ... more here. But hopefully everything is now fixed and back working again. Today I was Downtown early to see what was going on for St Patrick's. Even knowing that things got started early to fill the whole day i was nonetheless kind of taken back by the length of the queue outside the old shillelagh at 8am in the morning! Around the rest of town things were just gearing up in Corktown and I wasn't averse to joining in for a glass of the black stuff (avoiding the green beer like the plague).

My Goodness My Guinness
Add some brown Ale for a Black & Tan

Old Shillelagh St Patrick's Day Detroit
Outside the old Shillelagh 8am 17th March

Corktown Detroit

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