Chicago Editorial Photographer

Burlington Room: Former Union Station Ladies Lounge

Chicago's Union Station has recently renovated a gem of a space, The Burlington Room, formerly a lounge for women travelers in the heyday of train travel. This space will replace the Great Hall as an event facility, and I have no doubt that it will be incredibly popular. The beautiful architectural work was done by Goettsch Partners, as well as some very incredible restoration work from EverGreene Architectural Arts. Definitely check out the full coverage on Curbed Chicago to see the images of the space before the renovation as well!

Baptiste & Bottle: Conrad Chicago Restaurant

Perched on the 20th floor of the Conrad Chicago, Baptiste & Bottle has a view of River North that is hard to be matched. I had the opportunity to photograph the space recently for Eater Chicago, and was really amazed at how well the design came together. We also got the chance to preview the menu over the weekend and were blown away by the food from Chef James Lintelmann. There may be a lot of tourist traps in the area, but this definitely doesn't feel like one of them. Excited to go back and get another serving of the 48-hour short ribs :-)

Hopcat Chicago: Lincoln Park Craft Beer Bar

As a native of Grand Rapids, I had to jump on the opportunity to photograph Hopcat's newest location in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood. The new Clark St. space is practically two full restaurant spaces joined together. On top of that, there will be over 130 beers on offer. I have a feeling that this will become a staple much like it is in my hometown. Be sure to check out the full coverage over at Eater Chicago.

JeffJack Apartments West Loop Grand Opening

You might just recognize interiors of JeffJack Apartments from my earlier tour in March for Curbed Chicago. CS Magazine was covering their Grand Opening party, which gave me a little bit of time to get back in to photograph the modern spaces in the building, and of course the great food and revelry.

A night like this is one of the main reasons I love event photography. Staying on my toes and being prepared for anything from architecture and interior photography to portraiture is so exciting and rewarding. Though, with food from Formento's & Salero and music from Style Matters, you really can't do too much wrong.

NicholasJamesPhoto-JeffJack-Event-Photography-4.JPG

Ramen Takeya: Fulton Market Ramen Shop

Chicago has graduated from plastic wrapped microwavable noodles to a more authentic and gourmet dish, sparking the beginning of the Ramen Renaissance. I was sent out by Eater Chicago to shoot the brand new Ramen Takeya in Fulton Market brought to us by the owners of Logan Sqaure's popular Wasabi. The decor was top notch and immediately transports you to a small steamy alley somewhere in Japan complete with neon lighting (Pac Man spotting!) and custom made chochin (paper lanterns). Plus, I was really excited to try out a new lighting technique - I really love the outcome and would love to know what you guys think! Check it out below...

House Calls: Salvaged Wood Haven in Bridgeport

One of the most striking things about touring this home was realizing that it was a bit like taking a portrait of its owners. The Bridgeport couple dreamed up every last detail of their ideal home and made it into a reality. There was no shortage of personality in each room, as the space serves as a canvas for their personal taste. The salvaged materials and simple but refined finishes matched the character of the neighborhood perfectly. Really glad to have gotten the opportunity to photograph this home!

Miss Ricky's: Downtown Chicago Diner in Virgin Hotel

The atmosphere at Miss Ricky's was humming and alive, well representing the idea behind the diner-esque restaurant located Downtown Chicago in the new Virgin Hotel. One menu item I'm pretty excited to try is the piece of chocolate cake with an edible steak knife stabbed right through the middle to stop the towering dessert from falling over.

House Call: FLATS Micro Apartment

FLATS Micro apartments appeal to individuals who thrive in small spaces just like Richard Smith does, the renter of the space I shot for Curbed Chicago. I have to say, I was impressed with how neat and tidy everything was and how I felt like I should go home and purge some of my old stuff. After chatting with him a bit, he told me how much he loves his apartment and the challenge of only keeping his most essential and prized possessions. Take a look below and decide if you could make the micro-move, too.

LondonHouse: Historic Chicago Hotel Restoration

A building that has sat empty for years is finally being transformed. What used to be the London Guarantee and Accident Company building and a world famous jazz club, is now being restored into LondonHouse Chicago Hotel. I already know it's going to be wildly popular, one look at the rooftop cupola got me hearing wedding bells... It was exciting to take an extensive tour with the architect of the project and to hear his plans and vision for the hotel. It is clear to see that they are taking great care to keep the original structures integrity. Stay tuned for an update in the coming months as the hotel nears its completion!

House Call: Uptown Chicago Condo

It's not often you get to walk into a strangers home and photograph their space. But now that Curbed Chicago has started a new series on the blog featuring their readers homes in Chicago, I have had the chance to meet some great new people and take a tour of their homes. Last week I traveled to Uptown and met Jarod, the homeowner of this great condo. He shared stories of his travels and how he came about collecting so many prints and pieces of art. And of course I have to give many thanks to my personal tour guide (the dog) who did a great job showcasing her favorite places to lounge.

uptown-chicago-interior-design-2
uptown-chicago-interior-design-3
uptown-chicago-interior-design-4
uptown-chicago-interior-design-6
uptown-chicago-interior-design-5
uptown-chicago-interior-design-7
uptown-chicago-interior-design-8
uptown-chicago-interior-design-9
uptown-chicago-interior-design-11
uptown-chicago-interior-design-12
uptown-chicago-interior-design-10
uptown-chicago-interior-design-13
uptown-chicago-interior-design-1

If you enojoyed this real-life home tour, take a look at the rest the shoots I have done for Curbed Chicago's House Calls over on their site!

Community Tavern: A Boutique Steakhouse Offering in Portage Park

From the creator of the gastropub The Portage comes Community Tavern, a 'New-American' boutique steakhouse with a menu inspired by French cuisine. Driving up to shoot this new restaurant, I found myself thinking how little I have explored Portage Park. I was pleasantly surprised to find a great stretch of shops along Milwaukee Ave. that made me look forward to getting the chance to spend more time in the area. Just down the street from the Portage Theater, Community Tavern has a luxurious vintage flare that accurately reflects the history of the neighborhood. Really looking forward to seeing the coming success of this restaurant!

The Virgin Hotel Chicago: British Hotel Style Comes To The New World

From cell phones to airlines, Virgin has taken the market by storm. Sir Richard Branson's next move starts right here in Chicago with the opening of the first Virgin Hotel. In the heart of The Loop, Virgin has transformed the ornate Dearborn Bank building into a mecca for today's business travelers. With lots of amenities, including a rooftop bar and a full restaurant, they promise a truly customizable experience for their guests. With Virgin Hotel Nashville and Virgin Hotel New York in the works, it will be really exciting to see how Chicago grows as the basis for this new brand.

The Betty: Fulton Market Vintage Cocktail Bar

Going out for cocktails in the West Loop is a chore. A chore, because of the countless fantastic bars and restaurants to choose from.  Fulton Market Street, already populated with some of Chicago's most popular bars and restaurants, has a new neighbor with a lot to show. The Betty (839 W. Fulton Market) is a vintage inspired cocktail bar by Footman Hospitality complete with a taxidermy peacock and an antique player piano. I had a great time shooting this space and all of the little details that make up the warm inviting atmosphere, curated and designed by Studio K. Looking forward to going in and trying the build-your-own gin and tonic!

fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-1
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-2
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-13
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-3
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-4
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-6
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-8
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-7
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-11
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-9
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-14
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-12
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-10
fulton-market-vintage-cocktail-bar-5

Check out The Betty's sister bar, Bangers & Lace - Evanston, which we had the pleasure of shooting a few weeks ago just before it's opening.

Bangers & Lace Evanston: Wicker Park Heads North

Where can you find delicate and ornate lace adorning the windows of a bar rated year-after-year as one of the Top 100 Beer Bars in America? Only in Wicker Park one might have said, but thanks to Bangers & Lace's northern expansion, this unique experience can now be had in Evanston as well. The new location may be significantly bigger, but Footman Hospitality has done a wonderful job filling it with elements that immerse you in a truly cozy and lodge-like atmosphere. I had the opportunity to spend some time photographing the new space just before the New Year, and even though I froze my butt off shooting the exterior, the icy-blue morning made for the most amazing light pouring in through the front facade. Thanks again to Darcy at The Door for giving me the tour!

Be sure to check out all the coverage at Eater Chicago.

BangersAndLaceEvanston-3
BangersAndLaceEvanston-1
BangersAndLaceEvanston-2
BangersAndLaceEvanston-4
2014.12.30_Bangers&LaceEvanston_11.jpg
BangersAndLaceEvanston-7
BangersAndLaceEvanston-8
BangersAndLaceEvanston-8
BangersAndLaceEvanston-10
BangersAndLaceEvanston-14
BangersAndLaceEvanston-13

Oak + Char: Wood-Fired Restaurant in River North

Oak + Char may be simply named, but that is where the simplicity stops. I had the opportunity to tour and photograph the space for Eater Chicago prior to its opening, and whether you're rating the restaurant on its design/atmosphere or by the culinary output and experience of its staff, its most definitely a place to experience. I appreciated the detailed work that went into the construction, and the great organizational apparatus behind the restaurant in MBL Hospitality and Grapevine PR. Be sure to check out the entire article at Eater Chicago!

oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_1
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_2
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_3
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_6
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_7
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_8
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_9
oak+char_rivernorth_chicago_restauraunt_10

The Kitchen Chicago: River North Restaurant With A Consciense

"Community Through Food". This is the mantra of The Kitchen, a Boulder-based restaurant group and charity focusing on community wellness through food. Just a few steps into The Kitchen's first midwest location in the historic Ried Murdoch building on the banks of the Chicago River, you can feel the mission-focused atmosphere. It certainly wouldn't be fair to reduce this feeling simply to strong branding, its much more a sense of purpose. Purpose in the creation of over 100 community learning gardens at schools across Chicago, and educational programs to encourage healthy eating and home cooking. I'm looking forward to trying some of the great dishes crafted by former Telegraph chef Johnny Anderes, especially their Monday night family-style community dinner benefitting The Kitchen Community. Be sure to check out all of Eater Chicago's coverage of The Kitchen Chicago here!

the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-1
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-2
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-3
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-4
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-5
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-6
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-7
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-8
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-9
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-10
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-11
the-kitchen-chicago-river-north-restaurant-12

Recognize that big blue glass beauty across the street? That's right, it's OneEleven, Related Midwest's luxury apartment development. Check out my tour of that building here!

Venice Beach: Street Photography

Quintessentially Los Angeles. Even years before my first visit, this is how I saw Venice Beach. An ocean boardwalk that's golden light is only matched by the color of the culture that fills it. Street performers dot the path from Marina del Ray to Santa Monica, and the sound of rolling skateboards dominates the soundscape. More striking than anything though, is the sense that everyone (despite how different we all are), has a place. Each part so disparate, but seamlessly woven into Venice's fabric.

After a whirlwind work trip with Los Angeles based Celebrity Wedding Photographer Kevin Weinstein doing shoots in Naples Florida and Los Angeles in a matter of two days, spending an entire afternoon wandering and making images on the boardwalk was the best kind of vacation.

street-photography-venice-beach-1
street-photography-venice-beach-2
street-photography-venice-beach-4
street-photography-venice-beach-5
street-photography-venice-beach-3
street-photography-venice-beach-6
street-photography-venice-beach-8
street-photography-venice-beach-9

Catalyst: West Loop Luxury Apartments

Catalyst; a person or thing that precipitates an event. While Marquette Companies' new development in the West Loop may not have precipitated the West Loop boom, it is most definitely entering the luxury apartment market at the right time. The 19-story tower designed by Brininstool + Lynch sports 223 units, and stands out in my mind for its clean furnishings and consistent design concept. I had a chance to take a tour last week and make some images for Curbed Chicago, be sure to check out their great coverage!

Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-1
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-2
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-3
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-4
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-5
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-6
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-8
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-9
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-10
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-10
Catalyst-West-Loop-Luxury-Apartments-12

Umami Burger Wicker Park: LA Burger Chain Enters The Midwest

In search of a straight-to-business high end burger joint in Wicker Park? The quest is over. Los Angeles based Umami Burger is now open to the public on Milwaukee Ave. The wildly popular chain has expanded from coast-to-coast and now has a foot in the Midwest market. First up on my list is the "Truffle Burger" with truffle a aioli, cheese, and glaze. Be sure to check out the full coverage on Eater Chicago!

chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-2
chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-3
chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-4
chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-8
2014.09.16_UmamiBurger_NicholasJamesPhoto_05.JPG
chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-1
chicago-food-photography-umami-burger-wicker-park-7

Yusho Hyde Park: Matthias Merges' Newest Chicago Restaurant Offering

Walk into Yusho Hyde Park on the slightly quieter end of rapidly developing 53rd Street, and you can immediately tell this bold and colorful little space is going to pack a serious punch. Chef Matthias Merges (Charlie Trotter's Executive Chef of 14 years) has taken the "yakatori-inspired" restaurant from Logan Square to Las Vegas, and his newest Yusho outpost is now open to the public. I've been finding myself making the trip down to Hyde Park much more often as of late (check out my previous coverage of Promontory), and I can't wait to try the "Japanese Loaded Fries w/Bacon & Kimchee Gravy!

Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-2
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-1
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-3
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-4
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-5
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-6
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-8
Yusho-Matthias-Merges-Chicago-Food-Photography-9