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The Jeweler's Building

Posted by
Steven (Chicagoland, United States) on 23 February 2012 in Architecture and Portfolio.

What's Old Is New Again #4.....Seen above is a re-post of a shot that I captured back in 2009. Looking back at some of the photos that I processed in HDR (high dynamic range), I could see how "overprovessed" they were; to a point that it is embarrassing to have posted. So I present to you this image more "tastefully" processed.

Located at 35 E. Wacker Drive, this building was created for the city’s diamond merchants and had an unusual security procedure. To reduce the chances that its tenants would be mugged walking between their cars and their offices, the building featured a central auto elevator. People would drive into this elevator and it would take them to the floor where their office was. Jewelers loaded down with precious stones and metals wouldn’t have to be exposed to a potentially hostile exterior environment. Though innovative, it was an arrangement that didn’t last very long. By the Second World War the auto elevators were abandoned and decked over to make more office space.

The four turrets at the corners of the building were not for mere decoration, but were part of the building's original fire suppression system. Each turret holds a cast iron tank that would have been used in case of fire. They have since been decommissioned and the space at the base of each turret is now used as conference rooms.

The building's terra cotta-clad, classical design marks it as one of the most prominent high-rise statements of the so-called City Beautiful Movement. It is also the most notable work of the partnership of Joachim Giaver and Frederick Dinkelberg, who had spent most of their architectural careers with the firm of D.H. Burnham & Company. This was designated a Chicago landmark on February 9, 1994. You can see the Chicago River Walk in the foreground with the Vietnam Memorial front and center.

Photo taken September 13, 2009.

SONY DSLR-A300 1/160 second F/6.3 ISO 100 18 mm

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Spotlight Images

Michael Rawluk from Williams Lake, BC, Canada

Chicago must the centre of classic architecture. Very cool.

23 Feb 2012 5:59am

Nazzareno from Rome, Italy

Great composition with so much interesting details

23 Feb 2012 7:39am

Nigel from Avening, United Kingdom

Superb frame.

23 Feb 2012 8:36am

Curly from South Shields, United Kingdom

I was daft enough to love it to bits back then, but this really is a massive massive change, and much much better!

23 Feb 2012 9:17am

tataray from france, France

Ohhh grandiose, les reflets superbes.)

23 Feb 2012 10:14am

fereshteh from Iran

Wonderful composition.
Blue & blue

23 Feb 2012 11:04am

klausZ from Kufstein, Austria

this buildings work so impressive 'cause your treatment! superb, love the details!

23 Feb 2012 12:21pm

Stephen from Canberra, Australia

Great revisit - love the blue of the window reflections and water.

23 Feb 2012 1:06pm

Phil David Morris, 2012 from Saskatoon, New York, Canada

Amazing how I thought while studying the building before I read your words, of
a " magnificent jewel of a building " and the setting of this faceted jewel is plain
flawless, the glowing light plays across this scene so beautifully and an inner city
picturesque quality emerges !~

23 Feb 2012 2:00pm

Jason Politte from Conway, AR, United States

This is just superb - absolutely perfect processing, Steven!

23 Feb 2012 2:10pm

Barbara Kile from Ft. Worth, United States

Nice - and the window reflections are great too!

23 Feb 2012 3:13pm

Farnaz.m from tehran, Iran

very nice :)

23 Feb 2012 4:21pm

Francisco Romero from Carbajal de la Legua, Spain

Fantastic series on Chicago splendid architecture. I am having a great time. I lived in this city for two years a long time ago.

23 Feb 2012 4:24pm

@Francisco Romero: If you were ever in the Chicago Cultural Center, you'll love tomorrow's photo. :-)

RBL from Oxford, United States

Marvelous cityscape, beautiful architecture and colors...great series!

23 Feb 2012 4:53pm

Mariana M. from Waterloo, Canada

wonderful details . super frame

23 Feb 2012 4:57pm

Alun from cheshire, United Kingdom

Really love this shot

23 Feb 2012 6:06pm

Rick from Toronto, Canada

Loving this revamped series, Steven. This is a gem of a building, so stately and ornate.

23 Feb 2012 6:31pm

Mhelene from Paris, France

A superb framing and very beautiful tones !

23 Feb 2012 6:56pm

Dokmateo from Madrid, Spain

Well documented! Nice shot and framing! Thumbs up!

23 Feb 2012 7:53pm

Ralph Jones from Detroit, United States

Love the high contrast and the reflections.

23 Feb 2012 8:50pm

Denny Jump Photo from Easton, PA, United States

Absolutely beautiful, Steven! Love those light reflections too..You have somehow managed to make something that was perfect before, even more lovely! Fantastic!

23 Feb 2012 9:46pm

Elaine Hancock from Rockville, United States

Gorgeous image. The architecture is beautiful and what an interesting concept about the auto elevator!

23 Feb 2012 9:46pm

B. Thomas from Arlington, Texas, United States

I'm not a big fan of HDR - especially the really fake looking shots with dark gloomy clouds. This is how I think HDR should be - to enhance a shot and yet keep it natural looking. This is a beautiful cityscape.

24 Feb 2012 1:29am

Sam from Chennai, India

Wonderful composition. Beautiful architecture. Gorgeous and lovely processing. :)

24 Feb 2012 4:59pm

Steve Rice from Olympia, United States

With that light reflecting off the water, this building gleams like a jewel. The processing looks great. Less is more with HDR unless you are going for a particular look. That's how I see it anyway.

25 Feb 2012 11:24am