Public Art: More Sacramento Murals

Yes, back for more–murals. But this is the last of the art gracing the buildings in downtown Sacramento for this year.

First, I’ll show you my favorite mural of my last two outings.

Next are two murals that I thought were great. The first, for me, is a new take on “Rosie the Riveter” an icon from WWII and the other is a great design. I’m posting a version that shows how the artist wrapped it around the corner of the building.

Now we have two murals with children in mind.

I’ll finish this post with some murals I liked.

I’m sure Wide Open Walls will continue next year. Sacramento is so beautiful with its public art. Thanks to all the artists who contribute their talents year after year.

Grab a brush: Wide Open Walls

The annual Wide Open Walls Festival is adding more beauty to Sacramento’s buildings. To beat the heat, we left at 7:30 a.m. and headed to downtown. I had a list of about 30 murals and addresses. Diane was our navigator and I drove the one-way streets which sometimes turned into two-way streets. And when you’re not familiar with the streets, mistakes are easy to make. Need I say more.

I’m not going to show you all that I photographed, just some special art pieces. Let’s begin with this one. The artist did separate panels on the building’s walls. I loved the colors and surrealism.

Next is a mural and a close up of the woman’s face. We found on a SMUD (Sacramento Municipal Utility District) building. Tea anyone?

This next set is full of symmetrical and asymmetrical designs.

Here are some odds and ends that I thought were great.

I’ll end with art that isn’t a painted mural and I don’t think is part of Wide Open Walls. They are mosaic art images and in some places raised. They are beautiful.

We will return for more mural photography and I hope to have more fantastic pieces to show you.

Lens-Artists Challenge #209: Surreal

Yikes, Tracy you want us to post images that are surreal? Can I? Do I have any? Well, I don’t say “no” to a challenge, so here goes.

My first image was truly a mistake. I was trying to take away hay from this alpaca‘s face and ended up with…..

I think a three eyed alpaca is weird if not surreal. I put two more images into Photoshop and used various filters to get the effect I wanted. The first was a diffuse filter which gave me surprising results. For the second I used one of the distort filters which gave me predictable results.

This next picture has no fancy editing. I think this mural’s artist had a surreal bent to begin with.

To be honest, I don’t know what this next image was a picture of! It looked surreal to me in the beginning, but I brought it into NIK Silver Efex to see if I could exaggerate it a bit. Do you think it might have been a puddle and drops on concrete?

Finally, I had fun using Photoshop’s distort twirl filter on this one. I don’t think it’s as surreal as much a fun design.

Thank you Tracy for this great challenge. I had fun with it. When you respond, remember to use the Lens Artists tag and link to Tracy’s original post. And we all enjoyed reliving special summer vibes with Andre last week. Next week Sarah Wilkie, blogging at Travel with Me, will be our guest host. She will encourage us to post Three Favorite Images.

Until then, have fun and stay safe.

If you would like to participate weekly in our Lens-Artists Challenge, just click this link and join us: https://photobyjohnbo.wordpress.com/about-lens-artists/

Lens-Artist Challenge #185: Change

Every day, something changes–whether we want it to or not. In his challenge John asks us to think about change: “Maybe it’s the changes in your family over the years, the change of seasons in your favorite park, or even the change in the technology of your camera equipment. In short, what does “change” mean to you?”

I thought about it, and what came to my mind was how Sacramento has changed since I started photography. First are some of the things we lost.

The first blow to photographers was Daffodil Hill. This beautiful hillside of color and flowers closed last year because of too many visitors. It’s remote location caused the one road in and out to become jammed, and visitors were not staying on the designated paths. Daffodil Hill was owned by the McLaughlin family who planted and cared for their farm. This was their labor of love to be enjoyed by many.

Daffodil Hill

The next thing we lost was the annual Sacramento Music Festival. We worked on and enjoyed the festival for several years. I loved walking from venue to venue, listening to wonderful music. It discontinued because of money loss.

One change that was fought and won was Sacramento City Council’s decision to remove the flowers from the Sacramento Historic Cemetery. The decision was made because when the cemetery was first founded there were no flowers and they wanted to keep it true to its history! The public and the gardeners won. The team of gardeners is volunteer based, and thanks to them we continue to enjoy this amazing place.

Ever changing are the murals that brighten Sacramento each year through Wide Open Walls. We go downtown each year to see what new art adorns the city’s walls.

One of my favorites.

New to Sacramento, specifically Old Sacramento, is the Ferris Wheel along the waterfront. After fixing the wood walkways, the city wanted an attraction to bring families into the Old City.

Last, is a thing we want changed: the homeless. There have been many programs offered to help. Some have succeeded, some haven’t.

Asleep on a sidewalk/curb in Old Sacramento.

Among the venues we hope don’t change is Effie Yeaw Nature Center. This center along the American River is close to us and offers us the nearness to wildlife like deer, coyotes, wild turkeys, etc. I hope this center continues for years to come.

A buck at Effie Yeaw.

So, because change is inevitable, we need to embrace it and continue on. Isn’t it wonderful that we are able to capture things we enjoy on camera before they disappear!

Thank you John for giving us a reason to pause and reflect. Last week Amy helped us to remember our travels and what they have taught us; next week Sophia leads the challenge. Look for her post. Remember to link to her post and use the Lens-Artists tag in WordPress.

Lens Artist Challenge #170: Street Art; and Wide Open Walls, part 2

No, I’m not being lazy. Patti, through her Street Art, challenge has given me the opportunity to continue my series on Wide Open Walls and also post on her request.

As I wrote in Part 1, Wide Open Walls is a yearly activity in Sacramento sponsored by stores, companies, etc. Artists come from all over to exhibit their art on brick, stucco and other finishes all over Sacramento. This year we went out three times in search of the new murals and whatever else we could find. We go on Sundays so we don’t have to pay for parking.

I like this type of art for its bright colors, imagination and in many cases messages. I try to dodge cars and other objects. And I sometimes break the murals up in three pieces to get the entire piece in closer than what a wide angle could do. Here is what I captured on a recent outing.

Part three is coming right after I edit them! Stay tuned!! Thank you Patti for letting me do two in one!

Sacramento is getting more interesting: Wide Open Walls, part 1

I love it when it’s Wide Open Walls week. This is when Sacramento City invites artists to paint murals on sides, backs and sometimes fronts of buildings. Over the years we’ve seen beautiful art pieces decorate the city. It’s no exception this year. We went out three times to find the new murals. We found some of them, some of the old ones and structures, etc.

So, here’s part one of our adventure!

Lens Artists Challenge #165: Going Wide

Sofia had us looking up and down. Now, Patti has us looking all around. She is challenging us to go wide, opening up our vistas.

Being lazy and not liking to change lenses in the field, I shoot my wide angles with 18 mm + lens. I do have a 10 to 20 mm lens for my Nikon, but seldom used it. When I bought my Fujifilm, I didn’t purchase an ultra wide lens. For today’s challenge, I’m going back to 2018 for some different kind of wide angle shots. These were mostly shot with my Nikon D7100 and 18 – 200 mm lens.

Let’s start with a 9/11 Flag Tribute which is more than appropriate today. This is arranged in West Sacramento on a vacant lot each year. I’m going back today to experience this once again.

The Grand Canyon (South Rim) screams for a wide angle shot. But not all wide angle shots are taken outdoors. Here I have the beautiful canyon and also the amazing Desert View Watch Tower (Which would have been perfect for the looking up/down challenge!). All were taken at 18 mm.

Each year Sacramento hosts the Wide Open Walls festival where artists from all over the world are invited to paint murals on buildings. The Johnny Cash mural was shot at 27 mm, and the monkey was shot at 18 mm (both) in a vertical format.

I’ll close with landscapes of Downieville a small resort town north of Sacramento. When we arrived, the weather turned on us and looked like rain. We’d sure welcome it now! I do love clouds and sometimes feature them in the landscape image. These were taken at 17 mm so I must have used my 17-70 mm 2.8 lens.

Today, when I go visit the 911 Flag Tribute, I’ll be using my 18-55 mm lens and get more wide angle images! Thanks for this challenge Patti!

Lens-Artists 138: Natural Light

Awareness of natural light is essential in photography. Some photographers only go out when the light is optimum. I go out whenever I can and make the best of it! I’ve become good at reducing shadows and highlights in post. This week Amy wants us to show images taken at various times of the day.

Since I rarely get out for a sunrise, mid morning is the time you’ll find me out shooting. Here’s a picture of a painter doing a mural during Sacramento’s Wide Open Wall festival. The sun was in position to show his shadow on the ground and on the wall as he’s painting.

We’re getting slightly later in the morning. This blue heron is facing the sun which lights up his face and beak.

This building along the Sacramento River Walk is in bright sunlight and shadow.

The sunlight streaming through the foliage at Effie Yeaw Nature Center gives this tree expression and beauty. Moss grows where sunlight rarely hits.

And then there’s no sunlight. Folsom Prison looks especially formidable on a foggy day.

We are now approaching sunset time. This is when the light begins what will be a beautiful sunset.

And let’s not forget the darkness. We may not be capturing natural light, but manmade light can be fun and a challenge like this long exposure at Sunrise Mall’s small carnival.

Thank you Amy for this archival trip. It was fun.

On a hunting trip: Wide Open Walls

We weren’t hunting with guns; we were hunting with our cameras — for murals. Each year Sacramento hosts Wide Open Walls and invites artists to paint amazing images on the sides of buildings. These paintings are huge.

We never get to see them all, so we photograph what we can. Some are from years back, but they are new to us. I’ve shown you some before. This year we only saw a fraction of the new art. I guess we’ll have to go back.

I was shooting with my Fujifilm, so I didn’t have my ultra-wide 10 – 20 mm lens available. But I think the 18 to 55 mm did a good job. Sometimes I had to angle the image to get the entire mural in.

Here are some of these colorful masterpieces. Click on each image to see it in its entirety.

We heard there was a mural of Ruth Bader Ginsberg painted before her death. We hunted and found it in an alley behind a restaurant. Some great murals are in alleys, but I’m hoping they do another in a more prominent location.

While hunting for these murals, I found other things to photograph which I’ll show you in another post. Hopefully I’ll go hunting again for murals soon!

Painting the walls: Wide Open Walls 2019

These paintings are not new to Slow Shutter Speed. I try to photograph the new additions each year. This time I thought, since we were going on our adventure during the week, we would avoid the parking meters downtown and look for the murals on Del Paso Rd. in Sacramento. Wow, was I disappointed!

This is not the best area in Sacramento, but I didn’t think the murals would also not be the best. Also the map on the Wide Open Walls site was incorrect. The highlight of the morning was having to buy something to eat to use the bathroom at a fast food restaurant. We all managed to use the facilities on one small order of hot dog something or other!

I did find a couple of gems before we headed toward the California Automobile Museum and surrounding area.

Next we headed to a different part of town, but still away from the parking meters and downtown.

And, finally, the garage doors at the California Automobile Museum.

The next time we schedule to photograph the murals, we’ll go on a Sunday–parking is free!