Behind the scenes of the Thieving Duck

Long time readers will remember the thieving duck photo that I made in 2005. Scratch that, many people who use email, Facebook, Twitter or other social media website will be familiar with this photo. A recent post on Reddit showed me just how tired some people are of it as a meme! I would dearly love to know who it was that copied the photo into a joke email because I would thank them.

At first I was upset that my photo had been taken and used without my permission. It took me a long time to figure out that it doesn’t matter. I had fun taking the photo and it’s a reminder of a great holiday. I smiled looking at the photos this morning while I picked out these shots for this post. I wonder if the model, or the people pictured here have seen the meme?

I had no idea who financed this shoot although the Snopes article on it suggests Western Union did, nor did I talk to anyone there but I saw a chance to get an interesting photo and I took it.

Here’s a gallery of behind the scenes shots. Enjoy!


Aperture ƒ/6.3
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 55mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/80s

Look up at Marina City

Look up at Marina City

Marina City, the round shaped buildings in Chicago that sit on the river make an imposing sight when viewed up close. Good thing there’s valet parking, you certainly wouldn’t want to be scared of heights driving around inside them!

Aperture ƒ/6.3
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/125s

Shoe Shopper Heaven

Shoe Shopper Heaven

I’m reliably informed that many women enjoy the occasional trip to shoe shops and other establishments were garments and other finery may be purchased. Thankfully my wife isn’t one of them and hates shopping almost as much as I do. Nevertheless we found ourselves inside this shoe shop in Chicago so I decided to make the most of the moment and snap a few photos.

Aperture ƒ/5.6
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 21mm
ISO 1600
Shutter speed 1/100s

Chicago Spaces

Chicago Spaces

Despite being a major city, or perhaps because of it, Chicago has plenty of open spaces and broad streets. I love this shot for it’s wide open space bordered by tall buildings.

If the photo looks slightly odd, that’s because I used the perspective tool, but never dragged it the other way..

Aperture ƒ/16
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 1600
Shutter speed 1/800s

Panaflex

Panaflex

When I originally took this photo in Chicago (on La Salle, near the CBOT) it was a snapshot of a film crew. I took a few more shots of the crew but I was intrigued by the camera. Panaflex, what’s the specs on that then? Turns out it’s a product of Panavision, you know, that name that’s in practically every American film’s credits? Interesting history too although how they consider that big lump small enough to be handheld is beyond me!

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 55mm
ISO 800
Shutter speed 1/125s

The basement of Trump Tower

The basement of Trump Tower

In 2001 Donald Trump announced he’d build the tallest building in the world in Chicago, “Trump International Hotel and Tower”. After the attacks on the WTC in September that year the plans were changed however, but it’s still an awfully high building. Check out the Wikipedia page for further details.

This is the building site of the “Trump Tower” as it’s known locally. I shot this in 2005, and they’ve made quite a bit of progress since then as you can imagine, but this is a piece of history, and a patch of bare ground that won’t see daylight again for many many years.

Aperture ƒ/7.1
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/125s

Sears Tower

Sears Tower is one of the famous landmarks of Chicago I photographed while in the city. Remarkably, despite the months I spent in the city, I never actually went to the top of the building. I almost did once, but turned back for some reason. Could have been the long line to get past security. Dunno.

Anyway, this is only the second shot of the building I’ve posted. The first, taken near one of the flagpoles pictured here was unusual and was fairly well received. This is a more traditional architecture shot, though I do like the flags waving in the wind!

Oh, my Canon 20D is still broken. On advice from Ryan, I’ll give Canon in the UK a ring, and I’m also on the look out for a Canon 40D. ac-foto in Germany sell the body only for €795 which seems to be the best price I’ve found so far. Prices in Ireland are around the €1,200 mark. Ouch. Where would you buy a DSLR? (that’ll ship to Ireland!)

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s

Chicago on the river

Chicago on the river

Many cites live and depend on rivers and none more so than Chicago which went as far as to reverse the flow of the Chicago River! Wikipedia has more of course.

The observant visitor will notice the twin towers of Marina City in the photo above, and possibly recognise the distinctive bridge from the latest Batman movies.

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s