Chicago Magazine, August 2015: Chicago Human Rhythm Project

August 21, 2015 in Photography

It was an absolute pleasure working with artistic director & founder of Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Lane Alexander, and three of his INCREDIBLY talented dancers (Néstor Corona, Zada Cheeks, and Maggie Doyle) for our recent shoot for Chicago Magazine!!!  It was a special treat for us to spend the afternoon with them in the studio; check out a few of our pics below and see them perform live at the Chicago Dancing Festival August 25-29th!!


Assistant & Master Flower Creator: Jacqueline Ayala
Intern: Tom Michas & Rachel Nurmi
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla

5th Annual Slow & Low: Chicago Community Lowrider Festival

August 11, 2015 in Fun, Photography, Video

From the moment I heard about the 5th Annual Slow & Low: Chicago Community Lowrider Festival, I was literally counting the days until I could visit this little piece of “Lisa Heaven”!!!!!!!  I’m in LOVE with the artistry, attention to detail(!!!), but most of all the engineering-I saw an El Camino FLY on Sunday (check out the video at the end of this post!)!!!  Seriously, how is this even possible?!?!?!?!?!  So many cool vintage & custom cars-my heart was exploding with joy!!!:) With 2 of my favorite ladies on my arms I got to take SOOOOO many photos!!!!  Check out some of my favorites, below.  :) :) :)

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The 606!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

June 5, 2015 in Photography

THE 606 OPENS THIS SATURDAY, JUNE 6, 2015!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

I’ve literally been counting the days until Chicago’s first elevated park opens on the old Bloomingdale train line-I am SO excited!!!!!!  

This is definitely one of those “pinch myself because I must be dreaming” jobs-my heart is exploding with love for this incredible campaign!!!!!!!  Amazing project, awesome talent, the coolest clients, and THE BEST crew!!!!!!!!!  

I didn’t think it was possible, but summer in Chicago just got even better!!!  Keep your eyes peeled around town for our awesome pics-they are literally going to be everywhere!!!!  And of course, keep an eye out for me when you go visit The 606!!!!!!  





Chicago Magazine, March 2015: Angelica Ross

March 11, 2015 in Photography

There aren’t a lot of people excited about being photographed at 7:00AM, but Angelica Ross (who is usually already working at that time!) greeted me with the most dazzling smile and the warmest hug-I immediately knew we would be friends!:)  Thank you to Chicago Magazine for asking me to photograph the incredibly lovely and talented, Angelica Ross, CEO & founder of TransTech Social! TTS specializes in graphic design, web development, and multimedia production; the company trains, employs, and empowers people in the transgender community.  A special thanks to Aubry & Leslie for working in the back office (in the perfectly photogenic positions!!), as well as Ashley Aspiranti for being so helpful at our location, NextSpace in River North, where TTS currently calls home!:)


Assistant: Brian Gladkowski
Hair & Makeup Artist: Lia Stokes
Location: NextSpace in River North
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla

Our Lives Magazine, January 2015: Brian Firkus, the creator of Trixie Mattel

February 26, 2015 in Photography

YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:)  Trixie is going to be on TV!!!!!!!!!!!!!:)  This Monday, March 2nd on Logo TV you can watch Trixie compete on RuPaul’s Drag Race (Season 7)!!!!!!:)

Patrick Farabaugh, of Our Lives Magazine, literally made my day when he sent the email asking if I was interested in photographing the fabulous, Trixie Mattel!!!  Brian Firkus is the creator of Trixie and a photographer’s dream: model, hair & makeup artist, and costume designer all in one!  We talked about incorporating Brian’s hair & makeup talents into our concept which made me think about the Barbie Stylin’ Head I always wanted as a kid-my parents never bought me one because they knew I would have immediately chopped the hair off and cried!  The Doll Collector image was inspired by my Great Aunt Alda who used to display her collection of dolls in her bedroom, just out of my reach from me and my scissors!:)


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Assistants: Brian Gladkowski, Angela Mata Moriarity
Stylist: Sasha Hodges
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla

Love for Trixie Mattel!!!♥♥♥♥♥

February 13, 2015 in Photography

I LOVE Trixie Mattel!!!

The moment I saw the first pic of Trixie, it was truly love at first sight!  Special thanks to our matchmaker, Patrick Farabaugh from Our Lives Magazine who set us up on our first date (keep an eye out for a TBT post soon!)!  During our first phone conversation my love just grew stronger; we talked about the color pink, Barbies, the 60’s, Jayne Mansfield, Miss Yvonne, dressing up, and having fun!  Talk about making my heart beat faster!!!:)

For Valentine’s Day, there was nothing I wanted more than to shower my lovely muse with handmade gifts of love which now I can share with you!  A VERY special thank you to my Valentine’s Day collaborators, most notably our amazing box artist, Emily Franklin, and the man of too many talents to list, Brian Gladkowski!

Starting on March 2nd, you can watch (and cheer on!!!) Trixie competing on RuPaul’s Drag Race (Season 7)-be sure to watch!!!!!!!!!:)




Man who does it all!: Brian Gladkowski
Handmade Box Artist: Emily Franklin
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla
Special thanks to: Sarah Crump, Jacqueline Ayala, Grace Allen, Angela Mata, Gonzalo Guzman & Bob Paulson

Chicago Magazine, November 2014: Suey Park

January 8, 2015 in Photography

One of the things I love most about my job is the opportunity to meet awesome and inspiring people!  I was super excited when Chicago Mag asked me to photograph internet activist, Suey Park!  After some extensive google stalking, we knew Ms. Park was going to be intelligent, informed and passionate.  At the shoot we learned on top of all of that, she is also funny, playful, and sweet!:)   Suey Park rocks!!!:)  Follow her on twitter @suey_park!

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Assistant: Brian Gladkowski
Intern: Angela Mata
Hair & Makeup: Karen Brody
Bird Maker: Sarah Crump
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla

Halloween #3: The Raven-ess

November 6, 2014 in Photography

Last year we didn’t get to celebrate Halloween quite as much as I would like, but this year I think we are doing a pretty solid job!  It helps to have super cool friends who create AWESOME costumes and a crew who likes playing with trees and lights as much as I do!!!:)  Maybe Al Jourgensen said it best: (Everyday Is) Halloween!:)



Raven: Misha Shebesta
Costume: Misha Shebesta
Assistant: Brian Gladkowski
Intern: Angela Mata
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla
Catering: Bob Paulson

HALLOWEEN!!!!: Kokorokoko Style :)

October 31, 2014 in Photography

Here at the studio, we kicked off our Halloween celebration with one of my favorite Chicago stores, Kokorokoko, where you can find the COOLEST 80’s & 90’s vintage wear*!!:) Celebrate with Koko tonight at The Hideout’s Halloween 80’s party!

*Crow and Wusthof knife not included;)


Wardrobe: Kokorokoko
Stylist: Sasha Hodges
Models: Jo Cøntrol & Daniella DeLuna
Makeup: Jo Cøntrol & Daniella DeLuna
Assistant: Brian Gladkowski
Intern: Angela Mata
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla

Baphomet: Devil dude

October 31, 2014 in Behind the Scenes, Photography

My friend, Chris Martiniano, asked if I would be interested in photographing his Halloween costume; I OF COURSE said YES!!!:)  I may have nightmares later, but I think it was worth it!:)

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Baphomet: Chris Martiniano
Stylist: Sasha Hodges
Assistants: Brian Gladkowski & Grace Allen
Retouching: Sami (with a ♥ over the i) Hylla
Special thanks ♥ ♥ ♥ to our fellow scavenger Nicolette Meyer & to Bob Paulson for craft service!!