There’s Pigeons Down in Market Square

Legend has it that Tom Petty wrote the third verse of Mary Jane’s Last Dance while looking down on Market Square from his hotel room.

There’s pigeons down on Market Square
She’s standin’ in her underwear
Lookin’ down from a hotel room
The nightfall will be comin’ soo
n”

Who knows if it is true but Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers did play in Pittsburgh frequently and there are usually pigeons in market square. In any case, it is a fun place to spend some time in.

Chtss Move
Lunch at The Oyster House
Sax Man
Windows on Market Square
The Bird Man of Market Square

The Old Oyster House Revisited

This time of year I like to revisit old images and sometimes edit them with newer tools. This is one of the first images I ever took with a cell phone. When I returned to Pittsburgh five years ago one of the first places I visited was Market Square which had changed dramatically in my 35 year absence. One thing that seemed unchanged was The Original Oyster House.

I took this image while sitting at the bar. It was in color but thought it should really be a monochrome image so I edited it with the NIK Silver Imaging tool.

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The Old Oyster House

Our Pittsburgh Garden– Stalking the Day Lily

A lot of people don’t like day lilies because they grow wild by the road side. I really like them though and over the years we have planted many different colors. The trick is thinning them out and controlling them.

This yellow one is the first we planted in this Pittsburgh garden. This year we will probably add the dark blue or purple variety for next year’s photo shoot. I like this shot. It is unconventional and gives you the felling that this day lily is being stalked,

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Stalking the Day Lily

Our Pittsburgh Garden–Bleeding Heart

The first year we returned to Pittsburgh we planted Bleeding Heart. It has always been a favorited of ours. In our mountain garden we had a ugh specimen. It reminds me of an upside down version of the wild flower Dutchmen’s Britches. This one has grown significantly in three years and is now the size of a small shrubbery.

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Bleeding Heart

Azalea Time in Pittsburgh

Spring came late to Pittsburgh this year. When you travel through Pittsburg the first sign of Spring are the blooming forsythia bushes. That happened weeks ago. You know when Spring is really here when you see the bright splashes of color from blooming azaleas.

As i walked my dog through Regent Square the least couple of weeks I noticed azaleas loaded with buds but not a single bloom. Then this weekend, boom Azaleas everywhere. Spring is officially here. Carry on.

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Our Azalea 2018

Windows on Market Square

A few weeks ago I published The Birdman of Pittsburgh which was taken in the 1970″s. The picture received a few comments and people asked me where that picture was taken in relationship to the current Market Square.

I am not sure but think I was probably standing in what is now part of PPG Place. I believe I was standing off 4th Avenue near Stanwix. The windows and reflections from PPG Place are truly amazing.

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Windows on Market Square

The Birdman of Pittsburgh-Revisited

I have been editing some old images with my new editing tools and in some cases improving the quality. I originally published this in 2012. It is one of a series of images I took of this gent who you would see around Market Square in Pittsburgh. I would take my photography classes form the Ivy School of Professional Art on field trips to Market Square.

Every day he was there feeding the pigeons and some other gents were sitting at a table playing chess. The square had changed a lot but the chess players are still there and so are the pigeons.

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The Bird Man of Market Square

Lunchtime Serenade

There are many good reasons for wishing Summer lasted all years. Comfortable weather, fresh produce at community markets and beautiful gardens are just a few of summer’s benefits. I also love the plethora of street musicians that pop up in parks, squares and sporting events. Some are great and some are not so good. This guy serenading the lunchtime crowd at Market Square was quite good though. I wonder where he goes in the winter?

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Lunchtime Serenade

Lunchtime Serenade

No Longer Seedy

A lot of cities in the rust belt have reinvented themselves. Maybe no city has done this better than Pittsburgh. Throughout these cities you see relics of a bygone era and signs of long gone establishmentsforgotten by most. The Beckert Seed and Bulb Company was a Pittsburgh business downtown and on the North Side in the early 1900’s and lasted all the way through the early 1950’s. You can still see their 1923 seed catalog online by clicking here.

I love to collect images of these old signs of the times and was surprised to see this sill intact in Market Square.

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Sign of the Times

Sign of the Times

Same As It Ever Was

When I taught Photography at the Ivy School of Professional Art I would frequently take students on photographic field trips to Pittsburgh’s Market Square. The variety of subjects included people feeding pigeons,street performers,old architecture,street performers and local characters. This cultural stew offered students a variety of subjects to test their skills on.

From this perspective nothing has changed. Sure the stores are more upscale now but the clientele is still the same. Kids chasing birds, saxophone serenades at lunch and giant fish sandwiches from The Original Oyster House. I swear these same two guys were playing chess when I left 35 years ago.

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The Chess Game

The Chess Game