Thursday, June 30, 2011

Restoring the Past Part Two

Above, step one, remove the damage in the sky and some of the microbial dots.... remove the stain in lower right corner. Below, step two, eliminate fixer discoloration and increase exposure in upper right and top. The "smoke" in the upper left corner, I've decided, is from a train... the same feature is on the Library of Congress copy of this picture. Started removing the horizontal lines. If this shot encompassed jus 7 blocks more to the south I could see the homes of my paternal grandmothers and grandfathers.... but, alas.....

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Restoring the Past

Friends Janice and Richard have hired moi to restore this 1907 photo of Kansas City... Richard found it at a garage sale. The original is in terrible shape with just about everything wrong with it that you can think of from water stains to microbes... the overall tone of the image has changed also. A silver halide image it was probably originally plain old black and white. Detail in it is incredible from people on the street to clothes hanging on backyard clotheslines.
I'll post updated pix over the next few days to show the restoration progress. this will take a while. Original size is 18 1/8 inches tall by 47 11/16s.

I took three separate, full frame, photos of it and them stitched them together in Photoshop... the working size image is 7 3/4 by 20 and I will upsize it when completed.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Penn Valley Hawk

Sometimes you just get lucky. I was just under the Scout statue waiting for the sun to set a little more... when I noticed a hawk in a nearby tree. Birds are notoriously hard to shoot but I always try. As he/she took off I fired a burst or two and got three good shots. Nikon D3, F11 at 250th, ASA 400....70-200mm lens ... they are beautiful in flight.

St. Johns Gone But Not Forgotten

Back in the 1880s St. John the Baptist Catholic Church was built roughly at Independence Boulevard and Paseo to serve the burgeoning population in Pendleton Heights. The Rectory was right next door to the west. St. John's was torn down in the 50s to make way for a car dealership and the parish was served from a new building east of this location at Garfield Avenue and Independence Boulevard. Above, a view of the rectory and the church... below just the church. Second shot down shows St. Johns' in relation to the Fountain Place Apartments.

Above, another shot of the rectory and, below, the interior of St. Johns showing the main altar..... very ornate.

Above, St. John's also had a school that I don't know the exact location of but was just west of Paseo.... the school was shared with Holy Rosary Church further west in Columbus Park.
Caption, "St. John's Church First May Crowning 1943." A big thank you to Father Michael Coleman, Archivist of the Diocese of St. Joseph Kansas City, and Virginia Collura who furnished these pictures. According to AnnaMarie Inzenga, long-time friend, the Church was right across the street from what used to be Scimecas and the Capri Motel.
Coming soon a new book from Pendleton Heights, "Then and Now".... showing early pictures of 82 sites in Pendleton and a picture of what is there now. Of course St. Johns' is included. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The City That Works (No Question Mark)

Since I was mean to the City when I thought they weren't gettin' it done, I must be effusive in praise when they do. Yesterday the house that burned at 4401 Norledge was boarded up and today both yards were mowed and the volunteer trees harvested. So KUDOS to all who agitated along with me (Julie Duvall) and to those at the city who responded. I would never have done this blog if the 311 system had resulted in the same response.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The City That Works?

Over a year and counting since reporting on these houses to the City commenced. The home on the left, 4403 Norledge, is vacant, owned by an out of town landlord and always looks like this. The "home" on the right, 4401 Norledge, burned over a year ago and nothing has happened since. Yes, they have been reported via 311 repeatedly.
The burned out house sits open to the elements, the evil doers and the creepy crawly things. Not even boarded up.
And what happens when this kind of blight is allowed to fester? See below. Multiple for sale signs. Who wants to live right across the street from this crap? Only problem for the folks trying to escape is potential buyers can also see this. Many great, energetic families in Indian Mound are just hanging on by their fingernails hoping things get better. The above pictures seem to say the answer is no.
Above, Norledge and Kensington the west side.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Accompanied the Math/Science Kauffman Scholars to Powell Gardens yesterday for a flower and dinosaur tour. Perfect weather... although I would prefer much earlier or much later for photos. The Gardens, as usual, are gorgeous.... and kids of all ages will like the Dinos... I just show a few here there are lots more.
Above, the main entrance, below, the farm area.

All photos taken with the Nikon D5000 and 18-200mm zoom lens... varying apertures, shutters and ASA....

Above, a small part of the Kauffman kids... there are 32 visiting the University of Central Missouri this week. Below, the Chapel.

Above and below... thank goodness for fences.

A good walk... but we took one of the trolley's back to the main building....

Monday, June 6, 2011

Princess Crazy And The Garden

This is Princess Crazy and therein lies a tale/tail. A feral feline from the wilds of Swope Park she was exported to Kauffman Gardens for remedial personality work. Called "Princess" by those acquainted with her in the Jungle Swope, her lack of affection and anger management skills earned her the name "Crazy" by the staff at Kauffman. All paws and claws at first she settled down a little after her spaying and now allows humans to approach if done with reverence and will even allow small people to pet her. However, the space she occupies is hers and.....note photo above.... she has the body posture to indicate same.
Kauffman is more about blooms than fur beasts although Crazy does her part by keeping the rodent population at bay and, in turn, is fed... probably a little more than desirable... but I think those who had contact with her early on prefer to keep her happy in any way possible.
I was photographing a family on Sunday and took time after the session to pix some blooms.

Above, she never seems to leave the garden and spends the winter days in the tropical building...

All shots taken with the Nikon D5000 and 18-200mm lens. Mostly F5.6 at ASA 200.

So if you go visit and you see her highness... you may call her "Princess" or "Crazy" both are accurate.