Seeing Things, Saying Things

Musings About Writing, Photography and Teaching

Jumping, Sitting and Reflecting at Millennium Park in Chicago

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Some jump so they can see their reflection . . .


. . . while others jump to be photographed. Look above the head of the far right jumper and you’ll see a reflection of the woman in the foreground capturing the trio of jumpers on a smart phone.

As for the guys, well you find them recording themselves goofing off.

As for the guys, well you find them recording themselves goofing off.

Sitting and "holding up" the sculpture.

Sitting and “holding up” the sculpture.


Standing and “holding up” Cloudgate.

Millennium Park in Chicago is a great place to hang out if you like to photograph people.

If you stand around at the Cloudgate sculpture — which many like to call “the bean” due its shape — you’ll be treated to a daily ritual of people jumping by or near the statute.

Because Cloudgate produces a mirror image with its polished metal surface, it can be intriguing to watch how people interact with it. Everyone wants to see their image reflected in the sculpture’s shiny surface.

Some folks like to watch their reflection as they zoom skyward. Others will pose for a photograph made by a friend or stranger as they ham it up for the camera.

For some reason many of the jumpers are young women and you usually don’t have to wait long before one or a group of them will jump for joy in front of one of Chicago’s most popular tourist attractions.

But most of all, people like to sit, stand or lie on the concrete surface to photograph or admire their reflection.

Here is selection of interactions that I’ve made over the years while visiting Cloudgate. None of these were planned. You just have to have your camera ready and strike when a moment occurs.


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