30 May 2016

[pdx] Downtown Portland From Marquam Bridge, 2016

In September, 2004, I snapped a picture of City Center Portland from the top deck of the Marquam Bridge, our city's link for I-5 over the Willamette River, south and east from the tall towers of downtown.

It's a wonderful view, but you can only get it, legally as far as I know, in a car travelling at freeway speed. What shoulder there is is perilously small.

The photo went a few places. Back in the day, Radical Russ Belville, who had a weekend show on KPOJ (A moment of silence, please and thank you) used it on his website. A local record-store themed bar opened with the photo on its posters.  Even Jefferson Smith's mayoral campaign of 2012 used it. It was my first real experience with something almost kinda sorta going viral.

There is an interesting commonality to all these uses, but I'll get to that in another post. Note to self.

Anyway, very recently it occurred to me that it's been almost 12 years since that photo was snapped. 12 YEARS, MY FRIENDS. That's three presidential administrations, people, and if you had a kid when that photo was taken, he or she'd be in middle school now. So it occurred to me that it might need an updating.

We tried it this last Sunday. This will serve a first-pass attempt, sadly, the light (as the viewer will note) is not quite bright enough, and certainly not at the level of the 2004 photo. Here it is:

I'll put it on the table right now, I did some photoshop primping in order to bring out the buildings that didn't get the benefit of the light they'd otherwise have had.

But this is Portland, 2016. Changing yet timeless, at once small and big, now the 26th largest city in the United States, and with a battle for its city air going on in more ways than one. Still my hometown.

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