The present-day Wisconsin State Capitol building is a beautiful example of Beaux-Arts architecture. Inspired by the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, this building was begun in 1906 and completed in 1917. It underwent an expensive – but necessary – restoration at the turn of the 21st century. It’s a wonderful structure, inside and out. I’ve been angling to shoot a panorama in the Wisconsin Capitol Rotunda since I first began shooting 360s in 2005.
Like everything notable (or touristy) in one’s town, the Capitol is not a frequent destination. It’s always there, in the middle of town any time I want to go shoot it. Naturally, I never got around to it.
Actually, I did, once. In December of 2007, I went to the rotunda, kids in tow, to shoot a pano. I’d completely forgotten that at that time of year, there’s a 40-foot Christmas Tree right on the spot where I want to put my tripod. Oh well, the Capitol’s always there, so I can go any time and shoot it sans tree.
There’s nothing like a deadline to get me going. We are moving out of the state in a week, and I carved out some time to visit the Capitol and set up my tripod again. I went early in the morning, and it was a great experience. This is such a beautiful building. If you live in Madison, or if you ever visit this fair city on an isthmus, come and see for yourself. You can take a tour or just walk around on your own. It’s amazing. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, you can walk out on the observation deck around the outside of the dome – six stories up – and enjoy the view of Madison’s lakes from the center of everything.
I got a parking ticket while I was photographing the Capitol. It’s the first time in 22 years of Madison residency that I got a ticket in downtown Madison. It’s probably the last time I’ll ever park there. What a way to go out!
No famous people are immortalized in this shot.
Warning/Guarantee/Disclaimer: This is a big, multi-resolution panorama. It may take a while to load. For amazing detail, try viewing it full-screen.
Bonus: A hand-held pano of Madison taken from the Capitol’s observation deck. I was enjoying this view when my car got ticketed. (Click the image for a larger view.)