Cloud Gate


Photo Spot Summary

Country: United States

Category: Cityscape

State: Illinois

City: Chicago

GPS Latitude: 41.883385

GPS Longitude: -87.621788


Walk, cab, drive or train/subway in – it’s just off Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago. Locals call it “the Bean.”GPS Latitude: 41.882657200 GPS Longitude: -87.623303900

Photo Spot Details

Enjoy a stunning spot – a 110-ton elliptical sculpture by British artist Anish Kapoor that is free and open to all in that most American of cities, Chicago. The location has everything from world-class architecture on three sides (arguably four sides) to people of all kinds, gathered around a great sculpture called Cloud Gate but known to locals as “The Bean.”

Here’s the great thing – you don’t have to track for miles and the site offers a host of angles, portraits, studies in people, nature, architecture, cityscapes, art and design. Friends and significant others are happy to pose here – or can journey off to Michigan Avenue for shopping or to museums, Lake Michigan or hundreds of other places within walking distance.

Photography Tips

1. Recommendations for gear and preparation and angles? No! Discover! That’s what makes it so much fun. You can do anything here including video. All hours (I’d personally avoid midnight to 500 am, except in summer as the light comes as early as 415 am in summer.)
2. Winter: Bring winter gear or risk numbness of fingers and toes.

NIKON D7000 + 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 18mm, ISO 800, 1/800, f/14.0

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I think the best time to head to the bean is when there are clouds in the sky. I like taking pics with the Chicago skyline reflected with dramatic clouds. It just looks really cool. For a real surreal effect put a 10 stop neutral density filter on and use a tripod. The people will blend in and out with their motion and the clouds move.

Scott Edwards

nwcs – great idea! Thanks for that.