In Memory of Ryan Patrick Dylan Conrad

My friends and I lost a dear person this week. Ryan Patrick Dylan Conrad was a Husband, Father, Friend, Yogi, Physical Therapist, Adventurer, Outdoor Explorer, Music Lover, Compassionate, Caring, Thoughtful person. It is with great sadness that I share my last photo shoot of Ryan with his son Harper and wife Brooke. Ryan was diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer and spent the last year fighting for his life, meditating and teaching me how to live in the present moment. 

Ryan died peacefully in his home surrounded with love. He is survived by his wife Brooke, his son Harper Reed, his parents Dianna Johnson Conrad and Karl Conrad, his grandmother Margaret Henry Johnson and his two dogs, the old hound Seymour and the blind, diabetic rescue dog, Keller. 

In lieu of flowers, the the family requests memorial contributions to causes that are meaningful to Ryan. Please visit the Ryan Conrad Memorial page if you have a desire to leave a contribution in his name.

A Life Celebration for Ryan Conrad will be held at 4:00pm on Sunday, March 12th at Sunray Cove. 98 Sunray Cove, Candler NC 28715 Please visit facebook.com/saveryansasana/ for more information. Direct questions to saveryansasana@gmail.com

FWOD Bike Club

It was fun getting to hang out with and take photos of some of the girls of F.W.O.D. (For Women Only, Duh) with their trusty steeds and glittery backdrop. This group of beautiful generous women work towards building a bicycle community that promotes a harassment and sexism free environment on the bike lanes of Chicago. The group gets together for weekly rides and sharing meals, laughs and a Beyonce Lemonade Screening. Street Harassment is real on the bike lanes, I remember countless times I was yelled at by people driving fast by me in the cars while I was riding my bike. Grab your wheels and find F.W.O.D. and join the weekly rides. 

Tedeschi Family Portraits

Last summer I was invited out to Glenview for fun family photographs of the Tedeschi's in their back yard. It was so fun chasing little Brody around the yard and watching him play with Kip and Zoey the two rambunctious terriers. Martha and Mike are relocating to the east coast wanted wanted to get some family portraits before the move. I love the one of Brody and his mom Kayla. Brody has such a perfect cherub face. 

Studio Visit with Ron Nelson

One of my favorite activities is road trippin' across the American Landscape. Last Spring I hit the road and traveled to Arizona and surrounded myself with the Cacti of Tucson Arizona. It's always a bonus when I find a hard working talented artist willing to share their studio practice with me. Ron Nelson is a prolific artist who works primarily in neon signage and recycled materials. He takes used newspaper and wood and pulps down the material to pour into molds to create a surface in which he then paints the southwest landscape. His color palette is influenced by the colors in the west that play among the horizon while the sun is rising or setting. 

A Morning with the Bernacchi Family

I stopped by my friend Nicole's house for a family photo shoot with Rocco and Graziella in Logan Square. Rocco was a little grumpy with the early morning call time, but he warmed up with his toy camera and showed off his Chicago Cubs baseball bat. Nicole read a book to the kids and I captured some special moments of the baby with her mother. 

Iris Bernblum at Chicago Artist Coalition

I took installation photos of Iris Bernblum’s installation Today is a New Day that was on view at the Chicago Artist Coalition in April. Iris is a multi media artist who explores ideas surrounding “tension and release, power and play, fantasy and escape using a range of media, including writing, video, photography, and sculpture”. The concepts of Power-Play, Tension-Release are presented in a three ring circus where Berblum is the Ringmaster. This exhibition was a solo show for the Bolt Residency program

The Country Doctors

The Country Doctors came to my studio for a classy photo shoot of the group of six musicians. They get together once a month to play covers of some on my favorite old country songs. The band uses authentic country instruments like the pedal steel guitar and you can see them live this Friday night Aug 26th at Carey's Lounge at 9pm. 

Lauren Ball at Free Range Gallery

In April I photographed Lauren Ball's exhibition Old Dynamite at Free Range Gallery.  Lauren Ball uses still life language as inspiration and a jumping off point to explore color and create a unique palette. Lauren likes to play between the abstract and the literal when applying color and form to her canvas.  She creates still lives and uses the color in the objects to create her custom palette, which takes the shape of abstraction forms. She uses Photoshop to alter her source material and thus reflects her memory of them. The paintings and forms become color silhouettes and this adds to and creates an air of mystery and monumentality.

Big Sur Family Vacation

I was driving down the West coast earlier this year and found some old friends camping out at Limekiln State Park in Big Sur. I decided to stop for the night and join the camping party. We spent the night catching up under the Big Sequoia Trees beside the camp fire eating home made cookies. We hiked up to the old Limekilns and beside a flowing river up to the top of a mountain to find a water fall. We got in our swim suits and played in the sand by the Pacific Ocean. We shared secrets and stories and sang songs and giggled in the clover patches and fell asleep beside the babbling brook. 

DIANA GUERRERO-MACIÁ at South Bend Museum of Art

Diana Guerrero-Macia  most recent work was on display in June 2016 at the South Bend Museum of Art.  The show titled Slow Blossoming (Minding the Gap) was an installation of textile and fabric panels hand sewn by the artist and fabric on the ground with brightly colored 3d ladders and cubes that can be moved around at the viewer's discretion. The installation is meant to be moved around pushed and pulled and truly activated when the viewer physically engages with the work and the space. 

The artists's words about this installation:

Here the sculptures echo the decimal-based forms of Cuisenaire Rods, a modern tool to teach children basic math and fittingly, a reference to the iconic American quilt patterns of Log Cabin & Basic Patch. The rational objects support and contrast to the psychedelic textiles. Embedded in the hand-stitched textiles are Signs – pointing to, in no particular order – Numerical Statistics of current Gender Pay-Gap discrepancies, Sentient Creatures, All-Seeing Eyes, Symbols of Dissent & Assent, Embedded Woodland Animals, The Hunt, Amusements, Alchemic Star Charts, and Signifiers of the Self.

 

Alexis and Kelly's Portland Oregon Wedding

I traveled to Portland to photograph Alexis and Kelly's wedding on beautiful spring day in March. The intimate gathering of close friends and family took place inside the couples home. The Bride's love crossword puzzles and guests worked together to solve the game while enjoying the pizza party and craft beer. I took the Brides on location  to Cathedral Park under St John's Bridge before the ceremony was lead by a close friend with the help of Alexis' son. 

Fiona and Bobby in Half Moon Bay, CA

While driving down the California Coast in March, I stopped at my friend Shenandoah's house in Half Moon Bay. I spent the afternoon taking pictures of Fiona and Bobby at the Montara Reef viewpoint. It was a perfect day to capture the siblings playing on the rocks by the surf. 

Logan Gallery: Unsuspending Disbelief

I got the opportunity to photograph the exhibition titled Unsuspending Disbelief at the Logan Gallery at the University of Chicago. The artists included in this show are: Shumon Ahmed, Matthew Connors, Gauri Gill, Paul Graham, An-My Le, Yamini Nayay, Thasnai Sethaseree, Tejal Shah, Mickalene Thomas and Lidwein van de Ven.  Challenging the photograph's identity and the relationship between what it means and what it represents this show reconsiders the gaze of the camera. Curated by Laura Letinsky

Mamby on the Beach 2016

I spent last Sunday at Mamby on the Beach on Oakwood Beach in Chicago. There were so many fun things to do at the festival: Photo Opts with Manny the Frenchie, get your hair braided by Red 7 Salon or get a Henna Tattoo, even play volleyball or take a break for a yoga session. One of my favorite events to attend at the festival was the Silent Disco. With so many talented musical acts it was hard to see them all but I caught Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, Chromeo and Santigold. People watching and spotting fashion trends are some of the best parts of music festivals, there were a lot of Patriotic inspired Fashion this Fourth of July Holiday weekend. 

©Clare Britt Photo

Nancy and Frank West Loop Location

Nancy and Frank were smart when they decided to do their Wedding On Location Photographs a week before the party. They got dressed up and got a portrait with their dog Jasper since he could not attend the wedding. Nancy is wearing a one of a kind wedding gown designed by Anastasia Chatzka. We explored the Hubbard Street Murals then used my rooftop for a city backdrop. Bouquet designed by Pollen Floral and Boutineer designed by Stephanie Tarrant. Pictures from the Wedding Day coming soon...  

©Clare Britt Photo

Midnight Kitchen Projects

Last December I got to photograph Midnight Kitchen Projects Event hosted by Gray's Department Store, a Show & Shop of the Leagues of Women Designers. The intimate standing room gathering was beautifully lit in the Department of Curiosities located in Logan Square. Chef Giuseppe Catanzariti designed a six course tasting menu that included Saffron Ceasar, a Soup Cube, Wild Mushrooms with talleggio ravioli and truffle butter, beef tenderloin and beef demi-glace, and a tortilla crusted tuna served on an ice cube. The food was designed and delivered as artwork for the guests to enjoy. Sonia Yoon is the Creative Director behind this creative blend of visual and culinary artistry. ©Clare Britt Photo