September 30

Last days of a golden era

Last days of a golden era

It won’t be long now and you’ll not see this site again.  The building will be gone. The McLean County Courthouse at Washburn, one of the few Romanesque courthouses in the country has stood overlooking the Missouri River for a century.  Compared to other structures of this age, it’s in good shape — not perfect, but good.  However, it’s been overrun with bats who have caused an airborne toxicity for workers.

Voters decided that indeed, it’s time to govern the county from a more modern and healthy building.

My buddy Kat is a willing model and here leans against the retaining wall at the courthouse front entrance.  In the long tall shot above, she’s posted against the front entrance railing.   She’s wearing the right colors for the building shot in the golden hour — my favorite time of day.  Shadows are long, contrasts are great and color is warm.

I hope to capture and show more of this grand historic structure in the weeks to come before it’s only a mark in history.

Have you noticed how the emphasis in years past was on local government and so courthouses were an important center of activity as well as outstanding architecture?

In your county, does your courthouse represent an era gone by, or an edifice of modern technology?

March 20

Kat the woodworker

Allow me to introduce you to a multi-talented person.  Kat used to be a 2nd grade school teacher. She’s also been a computer geek.   She runs a home remodeling business most of the year, but in the winter, makes barn board decorations such as frames. And oh, she’s an artist, mostly with pencil, but also with air brush.  I’m pleased to have such a talented and artistic person as a my friend.  Her skills, knowledge and abilities are an asset.

Her winter activities of woodworking are under the label Vintage Prairie.  I think next winter she’s gonna give it a big push on-line and in public.  Her work is not slopped together, but as you would expect from an artist, a computer geek, it is precise and tight.  I shot her at work and some of her finished products for her website Vintage Prairie.  Then came spring and her home remodeling business took off again.  So, for now, the frames hang on the wall in the shop, waiting for her return.