Category Archives: Documentary Photography

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Bar At The Blue Nocturne

Fine art photography available at “Prints For Sale” above. … the bar was readied and last minute checked. Then came the wait for doors to open. This image was created during the wait. My capture isn’t a still life, it is a low light moment in time challenge. I had to quickly estimate the best possible exposure in order to collect enough raw pixels for processing so I could achieve what my mind saw. This image doesn’t have to be “perfect”, whatever that means. It just has to look “right” to me and it does.

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Alvarez Hardware At Night

Street photography. Alvarez Hardware in Chicago has been a family owned business for over 30 years. Friendly service, low prices, same day window repairs, screens, double, windows, insulated windows. All keys available. Name brand door […]

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Looptopia

Street photography. …”Looptopia” sounded like a good idea, but didn’t work out for more than two years. Happily, it did offer me an opportunity to capture and then experiment with this spontaneous scene in a crowded plaza very late one night. For sale at “Prints For Sale” above.

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Calumet Fish Inc.

Architecture street photography. For sale in “Prints For Sale” above. This fast food fried and smoked fish shack is in a sparse urban landscape on Chicago’s south side at one end of a bridge over busy industrial water traffic. No seating. Cash only…if there is a heaven, a place like this is waiting on a bridge like this, always open with a welcome mat at the front door.

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Archi Wall On Mich Ave

Architecture. Here is a sample of the variety of architecture styles along Michigan Avenue in Chicago. Available in “Prints For Sale” above.

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Entrance To 1221

Architecture – Entrance to a modernized apartment building in an older Chicago neighborhood. Lighting is from street lamps outside and lobby bulbs inside. Available in “Prints For Sale” above.

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Stopped By A Riot Of Color And Food

I was driving down the street minding my own business when this explosion of color caught my eye. Jammed on the brakes. Pulledover. Took in the scene. Standing there staring I became wrapped in the scent of delicious Mexican food. It was definitely time for lunch. Yes it was. This print and others are for sale at https://harveysphotoart.com.

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Armand’s Pizzeria

Armand’s Pizzeria
Gourmet pizza, by the jumbo slice if preferred plus ribs, salads, pasta, soup and sandwiches. Since 1956. Just north of Irving Park on Western Avenue in Chicago. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. This print and more is for sale at https://harveysphotoart.com.

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My Interview with Chicago Jazz Magazine

I shared my background as well as some useful information about issues photographers face as we capture musicians in this Chicago Jazz Magazine interview. Take a look.

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Entrance To The Blue Nocturne

Entrance to the intimate, stylish Blue Nocturne performance venue on the lower level of Chicago’s Chopin Theatre is through this tiny room.

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Thomas & Rockwell

FOR SALE IN MY SHOP – Discovered on a Sunday morning bike ride. The scene felt like a painting to me so I photographed it, then processed it to look like a painting.

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Greem Mill Cocktail Lounge Chicago

It’s unusual to see this normally crowded legendary jazz club empty. Covid time made it so. Here’s hoping it reopens very soon.

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Welcome to Summer

This sculpture is in the middle of an expressway in Chicago, not easily viewed when speeding by. She’s quite a beauty, open, warm, inviting, welcoming the way I think Summer should be. Her name is Magdalene. She was created by Dessa Kirk and my research found the following info…

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Music & Musicians – Chicago #3

SLIDESHOW – Chicago was asked to stay at home during Spring 2020. All clubs were closed. Here is a slideshow as an exercise in remembering and celebrating the talents of some wonderful jazz and blues musicians.

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Music & Musicians – Chicago #2

SLIDESHOW – Chicago was asked to stay at home during Spring 2020. All clubs were closed. Here is a slideshow as an exercise in remembering and celebrating the talents of some wonderful jazz and blues musicians.

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Music & Musicians – Chicago #1

SLIDESHOW – The city was asked to stay at home during Spring 2020. All clubs were closed. I decided to reach back to earlier dates as an exercise in remembering and enjoying some wonderful jazz and blues musicians. Here is the first of a series of slideshows to celebrate their talents. Photos include Guy King, Juan Daniel Pastor, Patricia Barber, Dana Hall, Hunter Jay Diamond, Quentin Coaxum, Paul Wertico, and Isaiah Collier.

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I Love Ya Tomorrow

I thought of this image during the Covid-19 2020 stay-at-home Spring and words from the musical Annie popped into my brain; “Tomorrow, Tomorrow, I Love Ya, Tomorrow”. The song finishes “It’s only a day away”. I replaced that line with the word “Whenever” because right now I/we don’t know when life like the image above will return. 

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New Book Available Now

CLICK ON THE PHOTO ABOVE … for a slideshow of performers and details about my book celebrating SPACE, the music hall in Evanston, IL during its first 10 years.

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2525 North South East West Any Street in the City

2525 North South East West Any Street in the City. This image is interesting to me by itself as a piece of architecture. It was captured during the 2020 Covid-19 stay at home order. It symbolizes doors closed and secured, people safe inside, stay away.

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CGQ Plays Captain Marvel

SLIDESHOW – Chris Greene Quintet performed Stan Getz ‘s CAPTAIN MARVEL at the Jazz Record Art Collective. The visual artist was Abena Motaboli. Chris Greene on reeds, Damian Espinosa piano/keyboards, Marc Piane bass, Steve Corley drums. Chris Edwards percussionist

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Documenting Chi-Town Jazz Festival #11

SLIDESHOW – Here are some photo highlights from the 11th Annual Chi-Town Jazz Festival Supporting Hunger Relief.

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Music and Songs by Milton Suggs

SLIDESHOW – Vocalist Milton Suggs returned home to Chicago for an evening of swing, soul, and his original music at Chris Anderson’s Fulton Street Collective.

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Train Yard With Stairs

The interplay of light, shadows and lines at night attracted me to this scene in a Chicago Metra maintenance yard. This is a very noisy/grainy image which makes it look very graphic. I think that’s beautiful. It’s an “…in the eye of the beholder” kind of thing.

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Time Out To Visit GPC

SLIDESHOW – I decided to take a break from winter weather, news, and work. The nearby Garfield Park Conservatory offered welcome relief. 

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Nightlife At The Jazz Showcase

Late night bar scene at Joe and Wayne Segal’s Jazz Showcase in Chicago where Tim Warfield brought his Jazzy Christmas crew to perform during the holiday. Sold out and rightly so.

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Friendly Light On A Bitter Cold Night

A scene in the urban landscape processed to look like a painting. This diner’s sign in the window offering, “Coffee, Booze, Dessert,” known to some as the three basic food groups, caught my eye. A late night hang for body and/or soul.

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Documenting Creation of an Artwork

SLIDESHOW – Sculptor John Preus constructs and installs his project , Adaptation, in Keller Center for Harris Policy Lab at the University of Chicago. All photos by Harvey Tillis Photography.

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Documenting Jazz Gospel Inspired Handel

SLIDESHOW – 1/18/20 – The 15th annual concert of Handel’s classic Messiah was reimagined as a spirited jazz-gospel makeover at Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre…and also kicked off the “Year of Chicago Music”.

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Checking The Tunes

A couple reviews the variety of music on the juke box between live jazz performances at Chicago’s Green Mill.

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Chicago Athletic Association Building

The Chicago Athletic Association building on Michigan Avenue across from Millennium Park

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Brandee Younger, Jazz Harpist

Listening to Brandee Younger now on WBGO brought back memories of her from 8/29/18 when Dana Hall’s band performed MCoy Tyner’s “Extensions” at Chris Anderson’s Jazz Record Art Collective, JRAC, in Chicago.

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Street Fair in the Spring

Here is a city street fair with whirling rides seen through the leaves and branches of a tree in early Spring.

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Life Is Great, Be Cool To Each Other

The news is so extreme, divisive and tense that I had to pull this memory out from a pleasant bicycle ride through the city. “Life Is Great Be Cool To Each Other” is a graffiti artist’s mural in a quiet Pilsen neighborhood.

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Logan Blvd Western Ave Underpass

Street traffic in the rain at night.

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A Quiet Night In The City

A quiet night In the city on Christmas night.

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Patricia Barber at the Green Mill

12/23/19 – The Patricia Barber Trio performed at Chicago’s Green Mill during their regular Monday night residency. Songs from her highly praised latest album, “Higher”, were featured. Barber on piano, Larry Kohut on bass, and Jon Deitemyer on drums.

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Kelly Sill At The Green Mill

To quote National Jazz Critic Neil Tesser, Sill’s “… oceanic tone carries on a Chicago  bass tradition that starts with Milt Hinton and runs  through such artists as Wilbur Ware and Rufus  Reid”… Here he accompanied Mike Jones on piano and Eric Montzka on drums at a recent Green Mill gig.

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The Masters

Kirk Brown on piano and Yosef Ben Israel quietly, brilliantly solo during a set with the Ari Brown Quintet at The Promontory in Chicago.

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Smiley Plays The Blues

Smiley Tillmon played the blues with his band recently at SPACE in Evanston, IL as part of their Blue Monday series.

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Just Chairs

Chairs stacked in the corner of a music club. Soon they would be spread around the room for guests arriving that evening.

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Maggie Burrell!

Maggie Burrell, performing at the Fulton Street Collective, was the perfect singer for this great band, The Chicago Yestet.

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Caroline Davis & Rob Clearfield at the Green Mill

Caroline Davis & Rob Clearfield performed their new album, “Persona” at a CD release party at Chicago’s Green Mill.

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Stu Mindeman at the Jazz Record Art Collective

Stu Mindeman played with the Artie Black Quintet as they performed Eddie Harris’ “THE IN SOUND” at Chris Anderson’s Jazz Record Art Collective, JRAC, in Chicago. 

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Victor Goines at the Hyde Park Jazz Society

Victor Goines performed at The Promontory in Chicago for the Hyde Park Jazz Society’s Sunday night series. 

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Haunted On Lake Street

I was walking in the rain to my car along a dark street. An “L” train roared overhead as this building came into view. The corner restaurant had been closed for months. No signs of life around. Yet a few lights, especially in the tower burned bright. What could be happening there? I quickened my pace. Oooooo…

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Bridal Shop At Dusk On 26th Street, Chicago

Bridal Shop At Dusk On 26thStreet in Little Village, La Villita, a Mexican neighborhood in Chicago.

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1558 N Damen, Chicago

1558 N Damen in Chicago is one of the busiest elevated “L” train stations in the city after rush hour. Commuters walk or bicycle here, then train to and from their next destination. 

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Rocking Chair on the Porch of a Hyde Park Chicago Home

Rocking Chair on the Porch of a Hyde Park Chicago Home.

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Slideshow – 2019 Chicago Jazz Festival – Thursday

A slideshow with some of the great musicians at the 41st Annual Chicago Jazz Festival on Thursday, 8/29/19.

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Isaiah Collier at MCA for JIC

Isaiah Collier at the MCA for JIC During Jazz Festival Week

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