sanjay shah for chicago magazine

Sanjay Shah recently threw down $17million cash to purchase the previously-vacant 89th floor penthouse in Chicago’s Trump Tower. I was invited over to shoot a few portraits of Sanjay in the space for a Chicago Magazine piece, found here. The view was impeccable, even on a dreary overcast day, and Sanjay was friendly. At one point while hurriedly setting up the final shot, I glanced up and noticed Sanjay carrying some of our gear to us from the other side of the house. Whoops! But also, how cool is that? Thanks to Kevin Penczak (and Sanjay Shah!) for assisting and a big thanks to Bryan Erickson for the assignment.

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steve dahl for chicago magazine

As a lifelong Chicagoan, I’ve been hearing the name Steve Dahl as long as I can remember. Known to most primarily for his Disco Demolition stunt which symbolically brought an end to the disco era, Dahl has been a popular radio voice for decades and more recently from his basement in podcast form. Chicago Magazine assigned me to shoot him at his new digs at WLS 890 AM, which was an interesting experience. I even got an on-air shoutout, although it was more of a complaint that I was distracting them by taking pictures. You can find the profile in this month’s issue, on newsstands now.

Thanks to Steve for his cooperation, WLS management for letting us sprawl out in the green room, Joe Becerra for assisting and Jacqueline Cantu for assigning.

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at work with chicago magazine

Last fall I got a call from Megan Lovejoy at Chicago Magazine asking if I wanted to shoot an epic feature showcasing Chicagoans with unique jobs “at work” in their environment. From the top of the Hancock to under the sea at Shedd, I got to catch a glimpse into the lives of many, a privilege I consider to be one of the best parts of my job as a photographer. As an added bonus, one of the jobs sent me atop one of Chicago’s tallest buildings to photograph Felipe Berumen, a window washer who took me along on his ride one sleepy Sunday morning while the rest of the city was still in bed. That might’ve been the most fun I’ve ever had on any assignment. We also got to catch a behind-the-scenes look at White Sox operations, photographing Roger “The Sodfather” Bossard as he prepared the field and operations manager Jeff Szynal as he ran the show during the game the Royals ended up clinching a playoff berth (that image is actually a composite of two images–one pre-game and one during game). The Art Institute showed us how Allison Langley restores and maintains its priceless art pieces; Fermilab let us take a peek at their new 50-foot-wide electromagnet that technician Kelly Hardin is slowly piecing together; Melissa Alderton gave us a tour of her massive prop house, Propabilites, should we ever find a need for a rotary phone or basically anything else we could ever need. A huge thanks goes to Megan Lovejoy (best of luck in the new gig!), Tomi Obaro, Bryan Erickson and everyone else at Chicago, along with assistants Kevin Penczak, Joe Becerra and John Burdett.

If you missed it the first time, the At Work spread continues as a monthly feature at the end of the magazine. I’m hoping to keep it going, keep it interesting and perhaps add a video element. That said, if you know anyone in the Chicago area with an interesting job, feel free to tell me about it.

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Bernhard - Very nice!

introducing lost lake & thank you.

Last week I spent a few days shooting Chicago’s newest tiki bar and Chinese takeout spot, Lost Lake and Thank You., respectively.  The conjoined bar and restaurant was opened by my buddies over at Land and Sea Dept and features the fabulous drinks of tiki master Paul McGee and the tasty food of Chef Gabe Freeman. Luckily for me, it wasn’t all work. I managed to sample most of the menu and am glad to have such a fun new spot so close to home. If only everyone else wasn’t thinking the same thing…

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indonesia 2014

Late last year I was able to take a few weeks off and spent them in Indonesia. Indonesia has always been a place that has fascinated me, yet a place I knew very little about. While I only scratched the surface of what Indonesia has to offer, I left having gained a slightly better understanding of what this fascinating place has to offer and a taste for more. The diversity of the islands, friendly people and endless sights to see make Indonesia a place everyone should visit at some point. I look forward to a return visit.

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jony hauck - …simply stunning.