Friday, December 31, 2010

Skywatch Friday: Walker's Concrete

Found on Peralta near Mandela Parkway a block from Monday's mermaid mural.  This uber-industrial  form is hard to ignore.  Looks like something out of Mad Max.  Can't tell if this plant is still in operation or not.  Visit Skywatch Friday for sky shots from around the world.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

comorants on display

Lake Merritt is a stop on the bird migration pathway.  Comorants love to sit on the lake perches facing the sun at the end of the day.  Yesterday I drove by and the entire lake was covered with all manner of birds.  Phenomenal.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

ABC Wednesday: X is for Xmas ornaments

X is the hardest letter in the ABC Wednesday alphabet.  So following the lead of others, I'm going with Xmas.  I love Santa ornaments but waited for the post holiday sales.  Hah!  By the time I got to the store they were already packed away for next season.  Let that be a lesson to me.  Please note the new URL for ABC Wednesday when you visit the meme.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

American Steel sculpture

Big Art Studios is located in the old American Steel factory on Mandela Parkway in West Oakland.  It is now home to many different artists.  You may remember a previously posted sculpture earlier in the year from the same studio.  Tash sent me her research results indicating it was made by Das Mann.  Many of his giant sculptures are now in a large yard behind the building.  Spotted this guy last week.  Must be 10-12 feet tall and an attention grabber among the several other giant sculptures on the yard.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Monday mural: mermaids and more

In West Oakland (on Poplar St., I think) is a huge metal recycling yard.  This year they had artists (Bode, Eya, Marley and Toad) paint murals on their block long security wall that faces the street.  Only when you walk to the other side of the street can you see the heavy equipment that moves the metal around.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Weekend Reflections: holiday reflections

Merry Christmas.  Sending best wishes to all of you. Enjoy the photos posted on Weekend Reflections.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

holiday decorations at the water

More scenes from Jack London Square.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

ABC Wednesday: W is for White Elephant Sale (WES)

It's that time of year again.  The annual WES sale to benefit the Oakland Museum is approaching.  Seventeen departments manned by 1000 volunteers in a 96,000 square foot warehouse.  We sell all manner of fabulous items (at fabulous prices) that have been donated by a generous public.  It's the biggest and best rummage sale in Northern California.  The last Sunday in January is the Preview Sale which charges a fee to shoppers to get the first peek at the offerings of the year.  The first weekend in March is THE big sale that is free to the public.  Checkout the website for all pertinent information about dates, donations and how to buy preview tickets.  If you're in the area, come by and see me in the Linen Department.  Questions?  Email me.  To see other W posts go to ABC Wednesday, a fun meme to visit and participate in.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

holiday fantasy

Window display on College Avenue.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday mural: our artistic heritage

The 580 freeway underpass on Grand Avenue has a complicated mural dedicated to a history of Oakland artists.  It is too large to photograph in total.  Here I've featured the portion with Jack London over a night scene of Oakland.  Sorry, the mime is unknown to me.  The mural was done in 1984 by Galvez and Sklar with others.  It's situated kitty corner from the previously featured Grand Lake Theater.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sunday Bridge Series: Glen Echo Creek resurfaces

Here's another pedestrian bridge over Glen Echo Creek on Richmond St.  This one has a pergola covered entrance that looks pretty old.  Several redwoods dot the woodland.  The creek stays above ground for about .3 of a mile in a small valley that opens to a vale before it goes under ground again.  Then out of no where are the support piers for the 580 freeway and we're back in urban civilization.  Taken a few days ago  before the current rain storms.  For more bridge views, visit «Louis'» meme, Sunday Bridges.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Weekend Reflections: shop lights

A shop on College Avenue in the Rockridge neighborhood.  For more reflections, check in with James' Weekend Reflections.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

for the birds

Just in case the birds can't find a place to nest?   Spotted in a small grove of redwoods where Glen Echo Creek surfaces on Richmond St.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

ABC Wednesday: V is for Vespa

There's a Vespa store on College Avenue in the Rockridge neighborhood.  Every time I drive by they seem to beckon.  They're making them in candy colors now. But I'm holding out for 1950s aqua.  For more "V" posts, check out this week's ABC Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Camron-Stanford House

This fine Italianate house is the only remaining private home of many that once dotted the shores of Lake Merritt. The lake is behind the house.  It was built in 1876 by Samuel Merritt and was subsequently owned by a number of other families.  In the early 20th century it became a museum, the first such public museum west of the Mississippi.  By the 1970s it was falling into disrepair and in danger of demolition until a citizens group rallied to save it.  It is now a museum of the victorian home.  It is also available to rent for weddings and other events.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Monday mural: your freedom is in books

Spotted in East Oakland in the San Antonio District.  This mural is on the side of an adult education school on International Blvd.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sunday Bridge Series: link to the estuary

Lake Merritt is a tidal basin fed by the tides in the estuary.  This water way is the link between the lake and the estuary.  It runs through the community college campus, under the Nimitz freeway, and on to the estuary.  Not exactly a picturesque connection, but a vital one.  Submitted to «Louis'» meme where you will find more bridge photos.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Weekend Reflections: yacht parade

Last Saturday was the 34th annual yacht parade.  This decorated boat at Jack London Square was getting ready to motor out to the Estuary to join about 35 others from various towns around the bay.  Enjoy reflections captured by cameras around the world by visiting James' meme Weekend Reflections.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Storybook style

Picardy Drive is near Mills College and is known for two things---its over the top holiday lights display every Christmas and its architecture. Most of the homes on this street are built in what is called Storybook Style, developed in the early 1920s.  Houses in this style typically have towers, pitched roofs, half timbers in stucco, rounded doorways, and stylized use of brick.  Storybook can be found in two or three small developments and many individual homes around town.  This picture was taken before today's rain storm arrived.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

ABC Wednesday: U is for urban scene

The view from Lake Merritt looking east to the hills.  For more "U" shots at ABC Wednesday, click here.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away...

Nothing says Christmas quite like a visit from the Empire stormtroopers.  The Children's Parade included a contingent from the 501st Legion and Darth Vader himself.  What's the 501st Legion, you ask?  Check out their website and all will be explained.  Who knew?

Monday, December 6, 2010

holiday events

Saturday was the 11th annual Children's Christmas Parade downtown.  The stars of the show, besides Santa himself, are the Tap Dancing Christmas Trees.  They tap the entire route of the parade from 11th to 20th Street.   Even though they must have been chilled to the bone, they looked like they were having fun.  The gray and cold of the day kind of vanished as they performed.  Hmm, I think I want to be a tapping tree when I grow up.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

more details from the Paramount Theater

Here's another detail from that deco palace, the Paramount Theater.  I like these shots in black and white.  Somehow, they seem to fit the era better.  The nymph on the ram is in silver foil.  The ceiling light is frosted glass that gives it that Lalique look.  For more black and white photos, visit The Weekend in Black and White.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Skywatch Friday: uh, do not enter?

Don't ask.  I have no idea what this is about except maybe as an exclamation point on a Keep Out warning.  Found on 28th Street in West Oakland.  Submitted to Skywatch Friday where you'll find many other sky shots.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

unique living

The old warehouse district next to Jack London Square has been going through gentrification with old factories converting to loft/condos.  New condo buildings also fill the area.  The trend started with Jerry Brown, our former governor, former mayor, and now governor-elect.  Years before he ran for mayor, he converted a warehouse near here into a work-live loft and office for his Presidential campaigns.  He deserves credit for changing the face of Oakland's downtown housing.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Theme Day & ABC Wednesday: time

Time usually marches on but sometimes it stands still.  This relic milk depot is on Foothill Blvd. near 55th Avenue.  Click here to view thumbnails for all participants in this month's CDP Theme Day.   At ABC Wednesday T is for time.  You can visit ABC Wednesday to view other T posts.