Lensbaby Blog Circle - Mechanic's Institute


I assume it was the staircase that ushered me in -  somewhere in the vastness of the internet I had read that the Mechanic’s Institute in San Francisco has a beautiful spiral staircase and when I strolled around in the Financial District I realized that the Intitute was close by and decided to see for myself.
After I had registered with a very gracious lady at the front desk, I was allowed to stay as long as I liked and move freely within the building as long  as I did not disturb anybody (and of course photographies are very welcome! Life as a photographer is way easier in the States than here in Germany!).
So I went for a bit of exploring. I hoped to find a rooftop or an interesting view of the skyline - but unfortunately no views for me that day - but instead I found the Chess Club.

This club is the oldest still operating chess club in the United States. Many world champions have visited the chess room, from Emanuel Lasker in 1902 to Boris Spassky in 2006.


But his morning in March I was almost the only visitor. There was only one other guest present, who cordially invited me to stay and make some pictures because unfortunately I had to decline his invitation for a game of chess (way too intimidating!). He also chatted a bit with me, told me that sometimes he has to wait quite a bit until some other player shows , that he visits almost every week and that in his opinion there should be something to drink ...

After a while another player came in and soon they were engulfed in their game.


After this enchanting encounter I took some more pictures of the staircase which was really lovely :-) .

As always I find myself lucky and happy when I have a lot of time and no itinerary while being out with my camera - I love to follow hunches and promptings like these.

The Lensbaby Blog Circle is a group of passionate Lensbaby photographers around the world, next up in this month’s circle is Birgit Fostervold . Please click here to visit her blog and follow the links around the circle.