February 2012 Archives

More Greenery

20110622Saint Paul Campus018.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110622Saint Paul Campus016.jpg

(Click to enlarge)


On a day that promises our first significant storm of a long winter, some pictures of greenery from last summer might raise the spirits.

20110622Saint Paul Campus014.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110622Saint Paul Campus015.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Trees and Greenery

Trees and greenery in the grove in front of Stakman Hall on the Saint Paul campus of the University of Minnesota.

20110622Saint Paul Campus012.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110622Saint Paul Campus013.jpg

(Click to enlarge)


With more space than the Minneapolis campus, the Saint Paul campus of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities has some attractive landscaping. I took these pictures last summer; it's nice to see them in the midst of a long (though not very severe) winter.

20110617UM Buildings128.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering Building

20110620StPaul UM Bldgs038.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Stakman Hall (Plant Pathology Department)


One can get a good idea of what's going on in a building from some of the informal postings on office doors and bulletin boards.

20110620StPaul UM Bldgs010.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110620StPaul UM Bldgs012.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110620StPaul UM Bldgs024.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Campus Portrait: Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering

A quiet, old-fashioned, sort of sleepy place on a summer afternoon in Saint Paul

20110617UM Buildings115.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110617UM Buildings116.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110617UM Buildings117.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Behind the Scenes: Engineering and Fisheries Laboratory

Shop area in the Engineering and Fisheries Laboratory on the Saint Paul campus of the University of Minnesota. There's an old-fashioned, rough and ready feel to this place, as in many parts of the Saint Paul campus.

20110617UM Buildings099.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20110617UM Buildings100.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Places of Learning and Discovery: Saint Paul Campus

For the next week or two I'll mainly be posting photos from my series "Places of Learning and Discovery" focusing on the Saint Paul Campus of the University of Minnesota. This campus (officially just part of the Twin Cities Campus, but often known as the "Farm Campus") has an unusual mix of activities. For example, here are two photos from the Animal Science/Veterinary Medicine complex.

20110616UM Buildings096.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Plaques honoring dogs in the K-9 service of the St. Paul and Minneapolis Police Departments

20110616UM Buildings095.jpg

(Click to enlarge) A modern biological science lab whose equipment wouldn't be out of place anywhere on campus. The molecular and cell biology research, of course, is intended to serve the health of animals and humans.

Stormwater Filtration for TCF Stadium

Dan, a University of Minnesota plumber, checking the stormwater filtration system for TCF Stadium.


(Click to enlarge)


(Click to enlarge)

Filtration Behind the Scenes

I went underground a few days ago, as part of my "Behind the Scenes" project, to photograph plumbers testing and replacing the stormwater filters serving the University of Minnesota's TCF Stadium. Wet and gritty, but also high tech and important for the environment.


(Click to enlarge)


(Click to enlarge)

Color Abstract

This is a photo in a chemical waste shipping room at the University of Minnesota. I took it for my "Behind the Scenes" project. But I also took it as a composition in dynamic color arrangement: blues, yellows, browns, blacks, whites, grays, creams, reds, ... If the barrels and shelves were just splashes of color, would it work as an abstract painting?

20120127Hazardous Waste057.jpg

Hazardous Waste - Tanks and Testing

Continuing my "Behind the Scenes" at the University of Minnesota series:

20120127Hazardous Waste030.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Large collection tanks for different kinds of liquid waste

20120127Hazardous Waste043.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Testing samples from the large tanks

Hazardous Waste - Chemical Waste Disposal

Pouring waste chemicals into appropriate tanks at the Fay Thompson Integrated Waste Management Facility at the University of Minnesota.

20120127Hazardous Waste025.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120127Hazardous Waste020.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Hazardous Waste - Chemicals

Chemicals awaiting proper disposal in the Fay Thompson Integrated Waste Management Facility: a very detailed, careful process.

20120127Hazardous Waste022.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120127Hazardous Waste019.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Hazardous Waste - Signs and Labels

The University of Minnesota has a state of the art integrated waste disposal facility, named after Fay Thompson, the former director of the environmental protection department at the UM. I was given a guided tour of the facility as part of my "Behind the Scenes" project. I'll be posting photos from the facility for the next few days.

20120127Hazardous Waste001.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Entry to the hazardous waste rooms of the facility.

20120127Hazardous Waste034.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Labels ready to be used.

Art on Wheels

An amazing exhibit at the San Diego Museum of Art: Vochol: Huichol Art on Wheels. From the web site:

"The Huichol are a deeply spiritual people, and much of their traditional artistic output is an extension of their faith. This particular work combines the traditions of the Huichol with an icon of popular culture, the Volkswagen Beetle. Within many Huichol works, as is the case with Vochol, there can be references to animals such as deer (the most revered of all animals), peyote (used as a part of a sacred ritual), and various abstract designs.

"Vochol's bright colors and intricate details meld popular culture and historic tradition in a singular work of art. The name derives from "vocho," a popular term for the Volkswagen Beetle in Mexico, and "Huichol," the common name of the Wirrárika indigenous group. This 1990 Beetle was covered in 2,277,000 beads applied by eight artisans from two Huichol families, who finished their work in late 2010. This installation at The San Diego Museum of Art officially marks the beginning of the international tour of Vochol."

Click images to enlarge them, to see the amazing beadwork in greater detail.






Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Yesterday we rented a car and drove east to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (with a stop in Julian for apple pie). It's quite a switch from the urban seascape of San Diego, to the rural mountains and forests around Julian, then down to the harsh desert of Anza-Borrego.

Anza Borrego-5.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Our initial impression was of harsh, rocky sterility, matched in our experience only by the Sinai in Israel.

Anza Borrego-1.jpg

(Click to enlarge) These backlit cholla cactus show that there is some life in the desert.

Anza Borrego-2.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Anza Borrego-4.jpg

(Click to enlarge) And the chuparosa were out in profusion.

Anza Borrego-3.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Near the oasis at the head of Palm Canyon, papyrus and cattails thrived in a pool of water. So, as always the case, the desert is not dead, and adaptations to the harsh environment are remarkable.

San Diego - PETCO Park

Wandering around San Diego near the Gaslamp Quarter and the Convention Center, I came upon PETCO Park, the home of the San Diego Padres baseball team. They were having an open house for the fans, so I wandered in. Here are some of the scenes.

Petco Park-1.jpg

Petco Park-2.jpg

Petco Park-3.jpg

Petco Park-4.jpg

Petco Park-5.jpg

Petco Park-6.jpg

San Diego Maritime Museum

Yesterday I spent several hours at the Maritime Museum of San Diego, which has an interesting collection of ships from the 19th and 20th century. I was attracted photographically by the profusion of crossing lines and masts on the sailing ships, and the dials, wheels, and other mechnisms on the submarines.

Maritime Museum-2.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Star of India: built in 1863, the second oldest ship still sailing regularly and the oldest iron-hulled merchant ship still floating.

Maritime Museum-3.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Star of India

Maritime Museum-7.jpg

(Click to enlarge) HMS Surprise, 1970 replica of a Royal Navy frigate used in the movie "Master and Commander"

Maritime Museum-8.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Furled sail, HMS Surprise

Maritime Museum-4.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Dolphin - US submarine that holds the depth diving record: more than 3,000 feet

Maritime Museum-5.jpg

(Click to enlarge) B-39, Soviet Foxtrot class submarine.

Maritime Museum-6.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Bunks and heads went anywhere there was room on the B-39.

San Diego - Dramatic Tone Experiments

Yesterday I decided to take a lot of photos with the "Dramatic Tone" art filter on my Olympus E-PL2 camera, in the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego. Southern California is a good place to use this effect, since, as I discovered, it works best with strong contrasts of color and of light and dark. Here are the most successful attempts. I like the effect for this kind of subject matter.

Click photos to enlarge them - they look better bigger.

Dramatic Tone-1.jpg

Dramatic Tone-2.jpg

Dramatic Tone-3.jpg

Dramatic Tone-4.jpg

Dramatic Tone-5.jpg

Dramatic Tone-6.jpg

Dramatic Tone-7.jpg

Dramatic Tone-8.jpg

Dramatic Tone-9.jpg

Dramatic Tone-10.jpg

San Diego Zoo - Portraits

I spent much of yesterday at the San Diego Zoo, where I relearned something I already knew: zoo photography is hard. Bars and wires, busy backgrounds, shy and dozing animals, and light either too glaring or too shadowy present real challenges even when the animals are still - which they rarely are. Nevertheless, I got some portrait shots that are not too bad.

San Diego Zoo animals-2.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Silverback gorilla

San Diego Zoo animals-1.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Pheasant(?)

San Diego Zoo animals-8.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Flamingo

San Diego Zoo animals-5.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Duck

San Diego Zoo animals-3.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Monkey

San Diego Zoo animals-4.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Small African antelope (dik-dik?)

San Diego Zoo animals-6.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Slightly larger African antelope (springbok?) in silhouette

San Diego Zoo animals-7.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Meerkat keeping an eye on the sky

San Diego Zoo animals-9.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Bactrian (two-humped) camel

San Diego - USS Midway

Yesterday we spent a few hours on the USS Midway, a famous aricraft carrier that has been turned into a museum in San Diego Bay. It's a very interesting and impressive ship, and the tour - largely self-guided with audio headsets, but with lots of explanation available from old-timers who served on the Midway or similar ships - takes you into all the major operating areas. Good use is made of life-size mannequins to dramatize activities, and in this selection of photos I've concentrated on those. (Lots of photos of pipes and dials will come eventually.)

20120207San Diego-33.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Giant sculptural rendition of the famous Alfred Eisenstaedt photo of a sailor celebrating the end of WWII in Times Square.

20120207San Diego-90.jpg

(Click to enlarge) A training room below decks. The ship was extraordinarily complicated, and training was a continuous activity.

20120207San Diego-87.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Serious misbehavior meant time in the brig.

20120207San Diego-250.jpg

(Click to enlarge) Life-size cardboard cutout of a Marine guarding the Admiral's quarters.

San Diego

We're in San Diego for the week. Last night we walked along the waterfront on our way back from a restaurant, and came upon this war memorial.


It's a gray morning, with promise of light rain throughout the day. But there were a few interesting views from our hotel room on the 23rd floor.



Steam Tunnels

Connected to the Steam Plant are miles of steam tunnels, delivering heat to hundreds of University of Minnesota buildings on the Minneapolis campus. Here are a couple of sections. The pink color indicates that the insulation contains no asbestos.

20120126Steam Plant070.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant074.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Steam Plant

Pipes, pipes --- zillions of pipes!

20120126Steam Plant045.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant061.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Steam Plant

The scale and profusion of the steam pipes hint at the magnitude of what's needed to supply the University of Minnesota with heat and energy.

20120126Steam Plant030.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant026.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Steam Plant

Highly utilitarian, but also highly colored and sculptural, mechanisms at the University of Minnesota Steam Plant.

20120126Steam Plant036.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant021.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Steam Plant

20120126Steam Plant017.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant023.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

Steam Plant

As part of my "Behind the Scenes" project, I photographed in the University of Minnesota's Steam Plant near the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. An amazing place for photography if you like geometric complexity!

20120126Steam Plant005.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

20120126Steam Plant014.jpg

(Click to enlarge)

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from February 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

January 2012 is the previous archive.

March 2012 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.