West Bottoms, Kansas City

West Bottoms, Kansas City

This past Saturday I met up with Nick Marzinski, you know that cool guy that let us use his brackets for this months concert?  He happened to be in the Kansas City area so we decided to make plans to photograph the West Bottoms of Kansas City.

This place is intense to say the least!  It is an HDR photographers dream world!  Epicly grungy from street to street, perfect for tone mapping and exploiting some serious dynamic range.  Apparently this was a hopping place in Kansas City history but has since fallen by the wayside leaving it distraught and dilapidated.  The elements are starting to ware the environment in beautiful ways.


Just as the sun was setting we stumbled upon a Piano shop.  Left outside were some beautiful pianos, I don’t know which part this is from, but it is not everyday you get to shoot a piano that has been beaten by the environment.

The plaque reads, “This firm deserves the Greatest Commendation for Superlative Merit and Variety of Exhibits, and also for having attained the Highest Standard of Excellence in all branches of their manufacture. THE ONLY MANUFACTURERS THUS HONORED.” A shame it ended up here…

Nick reminded me to turn around and take a look at the sun setting behind us.  These trees were perfectly set in the middle of all of this industrial mayhem.

I had a great time shooting with Nick and am quite thankful for the people I have met along the way with the HDR blog.  I have met some great photographers like Keith Moyer, who I have shot with often (and am overdue for another get together).  And Paul Ciura, the engineer and creator of the EverydayHDR Forum.

If you are every in the KC area and want to go shooting, send me an email, I’d love to meet up with you!

Blake Rudis
Creator of f.64 Academy
Most people think I am passionate about Photography, but in reality I am not.


Wait, before you freak out, you are on a photo site, I am addicted to post processing. To be more specific, I am addicted to workflow efficiency and cracking the codes to complex systems. That's what I do here, crack the code to photo post processing and present it in a concise way, for you :)
Blake Rudis on EmailBlake Rudis on FacebookBlake Rudis on LinkedinBlake Rudis on TwitterBlake Rudis on Youtube


  1. Good stuff Blake! Yeah, we need to get together and shoot again soon!

    • Thanks Keith, yep, we are over due. When you get some free time let me know, we can come up with a location!

  2. Had a great time. Those piano parts we saw are called soundboards. They amplify the vibrations from the strings.

    • Nice, thanks for the input on the pianos. Incredible stuff.

  3. Sedalia isn’t too far from where your at and I drive to the Ford plant at Claycomo everyday maybe someday? These shots are awesome

    • Very cool, we should definitely go shooting sometime Mark! Thanks for the warm feedback!

  4. I love your photography!! I was wondering if I could get your permission to use that top picture on my website? I actually filmed a scene for my short film in that exact spot. Please let me know. Thank you!!

    • Hello Allyx! Thanks for the comments. You sure can use it, I sincerely appreciate you asking for permission first. If you could link back somehow that would be great! What is the site?


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest