November 26, 2014

paying it forward

Had a fantastic time yesterday as a volunteer photographer for the Red Cross Disaster Relief Telethon.  What made it to fun, wasn't that I was using my area of expertise to help my community, it wasn't that we got to meet 80's rocker legend Dee Snider, Governor Quinn (who made a point to shake my 11 year old sons hand) a bunch of radio and TV personalities, it was that I sent one email to the fantastic Harrington Photography Department faculty and students looking for people to join me and I was met with an overwhelming response.  Some shot all afternoon, some popped over for an hour or so after work when they could.  Learning outcomes...mission it whatever you want, but I'm proud to be surrounded by a group of faculty and students who really care about our city, each other and doing the right thing.  

I was joined by faculty member Ron Gould, graduate Alfonso Monroy, and a ton of student including Daniel Stewart, the ever energetic Nancy Veloo, Marlee Power, Kate Kaplan and Cortez Dorris.

November 8, 2014

dip and dunk!!!!

Huge thanks to my friend Jeff Phillips for stoking the film fire. I've been running a ton of film lately, but last night I ran the first black and white film that I've processed since 1999! Go ahead and cue Prince...I've been shooting nothing but 3200 so far, I gotta say it's certainly walking me down memory lane! I'm looking forward to souping some high speed Noblex film!

November 1, 2014

Open House Chicago, 2014

The best clients call you every year and ask you to shoot 'cool pictures' at their event.  Huge thanks to Justin and the crew at the Chicago Architecture Foundation for having me shoot Open House Chicago for the third year! I'm already looking forward to next year!

June 4, 2014

Scenes from a Graduation

Congratulations Sam, we're so proud of you!

May 28, 2014


Spent yesterday with photo teacher Samantha Wascher's Photography and Advanced Photography classes at Aurora Central Catholic High. Went through two gallons of whole milk and five packages of Double Stuff Oreos. Very fun day with a fantastic group of students who once they understood the concept, made some great shots. 

April 3, 2014

Breaking New Boundaries...

Piles of scrap car, truck and minivan parts at Adelman's heading to the metal recycler
With all the recent media surrounding Adelman's Truck Parts being a major (and international) chop shop, I wanted to share some images from a field trip last fall.  

To address the need for our commercial photography students to fully understand the social value and inherent non-financial value that their images possess, I wrote two classes, a 200 and 400 level 'Social Practices in Photography'. The idea is to get students out of the studio and into the community to add value and attention to an existing cause with the tools they already have. To lead this effort, the amazingly talented photographer and educator Jeff Cristman has been teaching (and preaching) both of these classes with some fantastic results.  

 The view of the Calumet region from atop the US Bank building
I have been attending the shoots, outings and field trips whenever possible for over a year now and am really looking forward to this summer when we will experiment with an eight-hour version of the class. Last fall I attended several of many trips to Chicago's Calumet area that included a rooftop vist to the Bank One building for an aerial view of industrial region,   

Nike Launch site C-44 at Wolf Lake

a stop at the former Wolf Lake Nike Missile launch site and you guessed it....(drum roll please) a trip to the now famous Adelman's Truck Parts, complete with a guided tour around the yard and a trip through the storage and shipping facility.
Jeff Crisman photographs Adelman's warehouse

Photography student Kate Kaplin interviews
 a yard worker with her iPhone 

The employee who gave us the tour was was very professional, helpful and answered numerous questions.  It was a cold evening and we were in the yard well after closing time and he could not have been more accommodating.    

So what are these brave new boundaries...?  Below is a snip from an email that Jeff sent right after the story broke: 'So how many photo programs can you enroll in where you get to go on a field trip to a chop shop?'
Adjacent to the dock, pallets of complete engines and parts await transportation

January 13, 2014

Inviting Everyone to Play Along

I sent this out to my colleges at work last week and got a quick 45-50 participant and they are still coming in.  

Depending on where you are and your stair/ elevator situation play along, even if you only forgo the elevator once a day thats better then not at all.  

Feel free to share as it will only help...

The 2014 HCD Stair Challenge
 Before you engage in an adolescent staring contest with a co-worker put down your juicy beef combo and read this.

The negative effects of this years holidays were exponentially compounded by an additional (and completely unplanned) extra three days on the couch.  Now I like frozen pizza, ice cream and Gilligan's Island re-runs as much as the next guy, but I stepped on the scale this morning and the digital readout simply said STEP OFF!  What the..?#!@#??  I was crushed!!!  So after flinging it into the backyard I realized it just might have a point.  Here is what I propose, it’s easy and will only help all who choose participate. 

The 2014 Harrington Challenge-
Take a vow that for the entire semester you will use the stairs for ALL inter-floor transportation.  That’s right, taking control of our collective health starts with just one little step (actually there are 22 and one landing between each floor) Here is the catch and the carrot…  The reason you need to take the vow is if you slip and take the elevator, you need to put a dollar into a kitty (location to be determined soon) and at the end of the semester, we will take out all the money and buy something completely ridiculous like a couple dozen Portillos Chocolate Cake Shakes for all the participants or something else equally as horrible and delicious at the same time!

So if your in, just stair stare at this email, hold up your right hand and tell the elevators they can join the scale in the snowy back yard, even if its just for a semester.  You might want to do a quick (and yes annoying) 'reply all' so we can all encourage each other to make sure it sticks.  

Here's to a healthier 2014!!