One of the most incredible interior spaces in Chicago is rarely seen, unless you are a commuter or Amtrak loyalist. And even then, most people rushing to or from their train have little time to stop and admire the breathtaking architecture surrounding them. Union Station was completed in 1925 by the architectural firm of Graham, Anderson and Probst, though Daniel Burnham drew up the original plans; he died before his plan could be realized. The 110’ high, block-long Great Hall is a vast space defined by it’s barrel-vaulted ceiling and rows of Corinthian columns (not related to the Corinthian leather in your dad’s Chrysler). As many as 100,000 passed through Union Station back in its heydey in the 1940s, though today it’s a small fraction of that number. Next time you are in the west Loop, grab a sandwich and have lunch sitting on the benches in the Great Hall and just admire how grand architecture can inspire the soul–or at least make for an enjoyable lunch.
The following post was was from 2012 when Charlie Trotter closed his world famous and legendary restaurant on Armitage, and chose to move on to greener and more fulfilling pastures. Earlier this week, we received the shocking news of his untimely passing. During his career, Charlie reinvented what it means to create cutting edge meals, and his food ideas have become standard fare for chefs around the world. Sure he ruffled some feathers along the way, and was known for his abrasive leadership style, but most of all, Charlie will be remembered for the amazing food he prepared, the chefs he trained, and the pleasure he shared with thousands of diners throughout the years. We will miss you Chef.
It’s been a beautiful run, but after 25 years, Charlie Trotter is calling it quits. Just like that leftover lasagna–even if it’s still good for a late-night snack–at some point you just have to say goodbye. Trotter is leaving when he’s at the top of his game. Since 1987, his Lincoln Park restaurant has been a Mecca to foodies and culinary aficionados from around the world. Not only did he introduce a new philosophy to gourmet cooking, he trained hundreds of fine chefs who have gone on to great acclaim (Grant Achatz for one). A PBS TV star and author of 14 cookbooks, Trotter was a virtual food empire, and has received a pantry full of awards and accolades. When Chicago magazine name him the “second-meanest person” in the city, he was upset because he never likes to be Number Two. I had the privilege of photographing him several times in the past 20 years, and he has always been a gentleman, generous with his time, and respectful of my craft. Here are some photos from my visits to Charlie Trotter’s restaurant.
Recently had a two-day shoot for the American Dietetic Association to illustrate various aspects of food safety. Models, make-up, food stylist, nice locations–it all added up to a fun and stress-free photo shoot. I also learned some important lessons about proper food preparation and storage: don’t store eggs in the egg compartment in the fridge; don‘t turn fried chicken with your fingers; and don’t eat pork sushi.
As a photographer, the variety of my work is usually dependent on the needs and whims of my clients. This past month is a prime example of the wide range of assignments I get on a regular basis. I recently had the privilege of photographing the following celebrities: “Jersey Shore” superstar Snooki; Igor Shuvalov, Deputy Prime Minister of Russia; and MacGoogle and MacDuff, my two famous Airedale terriers. I don’t know what the next month will bring, but I will keep you posted.
During this seemingly endless recession, few cities have been hit as hard as Elkhart, Indiana. With a local economy dependent on the whims of the RV industry, the recent downturn saw unemployment hit a whopping 20 percent. Thankfully, things have improved over the past year, but people are still suffering. In September, I was sent to Elkhart with a writer from the Paris-based newsmagazine Le Nouvel Observateur to document how people are coping with the devastating effects of the recession. What we found were two very different Elkharts. The first was the upbeat, optimistic, rose-colored version of life portrayed by the business leaders, politicians and Chamber of Commerce spokespersons. The second Elkhart was a sad and painful depiction expressed by local residents in a food pantry, unemployment office, and on the quiet streets of this once-prosperous town. The “real” Elkhart apparently resides in the eye of the beholder.
When people think of Chicago they think big city, historic architecture, traffic jams, and hot dogs. But there is another side of the city that the locals know well, but outsiders may not be aware of. I am speaking of the parks, gardens, forest preserves and other remnants of nature that still survive in the city. When Chicago was incorporated in 1837, the founding fathers (mothers?) chose the motto “Urbs in Horto” (City in a Garden) and there must have been a reason. Granted, there were probably a lot more gardens and nature back then, but the natural aspects of the city can still be found. A few statistics: 552 parks comprising 7300 acres, 33 sand beaches, 16 lagoons, 10 bird and wildlife sanctuaries, and 20 million visitors to Lincoln Park alone. In these photos I show a small portion of the natural wonders that can be found by any urban explorer (and check out that City Seal with motto).
- North 680 Apartments
- The Homestead Hotel in Evanston
- The “Grand Tour” Rolls Through Chicago
- Video Display at Northwestern Univ.
- Chicago’s Victorian Heritage
- Unofficial Cubs Museum
- Cover photo shoot for Orthodontic Products
- New architecture photography
- Tackling the Group Photo
- Lakeshore Recycling Opens New Facility
- Writing at the speed of sound
- There’s more to Christmas than eggnog
- Chicago’s Big Dig
- Ballyea Jewelry Designs
- Trump Int’l Tower interior design
- Nia Restaurant
- Spiaggia food and wine pairings for Wine & Spirits magazine
- The Joys of Industrial Photography
- Wicker Park Collage
- Physical Therapy Clinic
- Revival Social Club
- Fulton Street Market
- Transwestern Commercial Real Estate
- Luxury Vacation Rental in Chicago
- Cameron’s Steakhouse, a cut above
- ShamROCK Chicago Going Green
- Plumbing Installation in Plainfield and Chicago
- Chicago’s Athena Greek Restaurant
- National Shakespeare Competition
- Jim Beam Drinks
- Optima Chicago Center
- Lisa Kendall Jewelry Designs
- Chicago Urban Farms
- Dancers Promote Non-Violence
- Chicago Auto Show
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