THE CHILDREN OF MORRILL ELEMENTARY

Last year I was fortunate enough to spend a couple of days a week mentoring young students on the Southside of Chicago. Teaching photography along the way. The experience was profound and the issues that plague our city run very deep. However through that all the light in these kids shine bright, and they really just need a chance, a fair one.

CHICAGO CUBS FANS AFTER WINNING THE WORLD SERIES

WHAT DOES
THE CUBS WINNING
THE WORLD SERIES
MEAN TO YOU?

MARIO GONZALEZ   52 IT MEANS I AM PART OF HISTORY.

MARIO GONZALEZ   52

IT MEANS I AM PART OF HISTORY.

 
PATTI RAMIREZ    38 IT MEANS SO MUCH BECAUSE I BELIEVE THAT THEY DESERVED IT MORE THAN ANYTHING!

PATTI RAMIREZ    38

IT MEANS SO MUCH BECAUSE I BELIEVE THAT THEY DESERVED IT MORE THAN ANYTHING!

 
KURT MATTHESIUS     47 IT MEANS EVERYTHING!!!

KURT MATTHESIUS     47

IT MEANS EVERYTHING!!!

 
MELTON RIVERA    40 I WENT TO HEAVEN.

MELTON RIVERA    40

I WENT TO HEAVEN.

 
ERUEN STUDINSKI    96 I WANTED TO LIVE TO SEE THE CUBS WIN THE WORLD SERIES. I HAVE.

ERUEN STUDINSKI    96

I WANTED TO LIVE TO SEE THE CUBS WIN THE WORLD SERIES. I HAVE.

 
ALBERT W. VOGT III   36 IT MEANS THE WORLD! TO THINK OF MY GRANDMA WHO WAS HERE AT WRIGLEY IN 1945.

ALBERT W. VOGT III   36

IT MEANS THE WORLD! TO THINK OF MY GRANDMA WHO WAS HERE AT WRIGLEY IN 1945.

 
CHUCK GALLAGHER  65 HAS NOT SUNK IN! OUT F'N STANDING!

CHUCK GALLAGHER  65

HAS NOT SUNK IN! OUT F'N STANDING!

 
KAREN CHERESO  73 TOTAL HAPPINESS.

KAREN CHERESO  73

TOTAL HAPPINESS.

 
CARL J   35 IT MEANS THE WORLD TO NOT ONLY ME, BUT MY DAD WHO WOULD'VE LOVED THIS DAY! BUT HE HAS TO NOW CELEBRATE FROM HEAVEN.

CARL J   35

IT MEANS THE WORLD TO NOT ONLY ME, BUT MY DAD WHO WOULD'VE LOVED THIS DAY!

BUT HE HAS TO NOW CELEBRATE FROM HEAVEN.

 
SCOTT THOMPSON    27 AFTER YEARS OF DEDICATION AND LOSING, IT HAS BEEN ALL WORTH IT!!!

SCOTT THOMPSON    27

AFTER YEARS OF DEDICATION AND LOSING, IT HAS BEEN ALL WORTH IT!!!

 
PAMELA MOREAU   60 I WENT TO MY FIRST CUBS GAME AT FOUR YEARS OLD WITH MY DAD. HE IS GONE BUT WE DID IT! NEXT TO MY GRANDSON BEING BORN THIS IS THE BEST THAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED FOR ME!

PAMELA MOREAU   60

I WENT TO MY FIRST CUBS GAME AT FOUR YEARS OLD WITH MY DAD. HE IS GONE BUT WE DID IT! NEXT TO MY GRANDSON BEING BORN THIS IS THE BEST THAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED FOR ME!

 
JAXON  4 I AM HAPPY FOR MY GRANDMA.

JAXON  4

I AM HAPPY FOR MY GRANDMA.

 
GINO ULLIAN     THIS IS MY DAD GINO. HE WAS THE WORLDS GREATEST CUBS FAN. HE SAID HE WOULD NOT DIE UNTIL THE CUBS WON THE WORLD SERIES. HE DIED THREE YEARS AGO SO I HAD TO BRING HIM HERE TO WRIGLEY TODAY.

GINO ULLIAN    

THIS IS MY DAD GINO. HE WAS THE WORLDS GREATEST CUBS FAN. HE SAID HE WOULD NOT DIE UNTIL THE CUBS WON THE WORLD SERIES. HE DIED THREE YEARS AGO SO I HAD TO BRING HIM HERE TO WRIGLEY TODAY.

 
JOANNA M. PEDRAZA    28 IT IS AMAZING! SO HAPPY THAT I LIVED TO BE PART OF HISTORY AND CAN SHARE THIS WITH MY GRANDFATHER. I AM A FAN BECAUSE OF HIM.

JOANNA M. PEDRAZA    28

IT IS AMAZING! SO HAPPY THAT I LIVED TO BE PART OF HISTORY AND CAN SHARE THIS WITH MY GRANDFATHER. I AM A FAN BECAUSE OF HIM.

 
ROBERT MOSS 76 NOW MY WIFE FINALLY GETS TO SEE WHAT HER FAMILY NEVER DID. A WORLD SERIES.

ROBERT MOSS 76

NOW MY WIFE FINALLY GETS TO SEE WHAT HER FAMILY NEVER DID. A WORLD SERIES.

 
STEVE KILANDER  43 I GREW UP WATCHING THE CUBS WITH MY GRANDFATHER IN INDIANAPOLIS. MY GRANDFATHER WOULD HAVE BEEN OVER 100 THIS YEAR. THIS MEANS HAPPINESS.

STEVE KILANDER  43

I GREW UP WATCHING THE CUBS WITH MY GRANDFATHER IN INDIANAPOLIS. MY GRANDFATHER WOULD HAVE BEEN OVER 100 THIS YEAR. THIS MEANS HAPPINESS.

 
CADEN KILANDER  4 :-)

CADEN KILANDER  4

:-)

 
ART MORENO   33 THIS IS EVERYTHING! UNBELIEVABLE! GO CUBS GO!

ART MORENO   33

THIS IS EVERYTHING! UNBELIEVABLE! GO CUBS GO!

 
SAMUEL SANDERS   59 CANT EXPLAIN IT! I AM SPEECHLESS! 

SAMUEL SANDERS   59

CANT EXPLAIN IT! I AM SPEECHLESS! 

 
 
DOUGLAS MOSS   45 IT CANNOT BE DESCRIBED IN WORDS. IT MEANS HISTORY, MEMORIES, LOVE, PEACE, FRUSTRATIONS, AND NOW A CHAMPIONSHIP. I CRIED AND CRIED FOR THE FANS, AND FOR THE TEAM. I LOVE THE CUBS. THEY DID IT!!!

DOUGLAS MOSS   45

IT CANNOT BE DESCRIBED IN WORDS. IT MEANS HISTORY, MEMORIES, LOVE, PEACE, FRUSTRATIONS, AND NOW A CHAMPIONSHIP. I CRIED AND CRIED FOR THE FANS,
AND FOR THE TEAM. I LOVE THE CUBS. THEY DID IT!!!

 
 
LINDA SHERMAN   53 I WAS BORN IN WRIGLEYVILLE! LIVED HERE ALL MY LIFE! FINALLY A WIN IN MY HOOD!!

LINDA SHERMAN   53

I WAS BORN IN WRIGLEYVILLE! LIVED HERE ALL MY LIFE! FINALLY A WIN IN MY HOOD!!

 
SAMUEL ROSADO   55 A GREAT EXPERIENCE IN A GREAT TOWN. GO CUBS!

SAMUEL ROSADO   55

A GREAT EXPERIENCE IN A GREAT TOWN. GO CUBS!

 
BENJAMIN GORDON    30 EVERYTHING, THE CUBS ARE MY MAIN CONNECTION WITH MY FATHER.

BENJAMIN GORDON    30

EVERYTHING, THE CUBS ARE MY MAIN CONNECTION WITH MY FATHER.

 
GREGGORY WOODWARD  72 MAKES SANTA HAPPY.

GREGGORY WOODWARD  72

MAKES SANTA HAPPY.

Mellencamp in Chicago with Leica Q

Although I consider myself a Street/ Documentary photographer, I love to cover music events.
I received a call from my friend Marc Hauser about helping out one of his pals with a shoot covering John Mellencamp at the Chicago Theatre.

 Upon arriving at the Chicago Theatre I got the backstage pass and had my Q on me.

Signage backstage.

Signage backstage.

Carlene Carter performs at the Chicago Theatre.

Carlene Carter performs at the Chicago Theatre.

The night of the show and my senses are on overload. I hear the sounds of guitars being tuned, the nerves of the band before they perform. I love it. LIFE is happening, people are awake, and the show will begin shortly. I was thankful to have my Q, and we headed out and started coverage. I carried a Nikon with a large 300mm lens on a monopod since I was assisting. I shot these images with one hand the few moments I could.

Mike Wanchic tunes his guitar backstage.

Mike Wanchic tunes his guitar backstage.

Carlene Carter performs at the Chicago Theatre.

Carlene Carter performs at the Chicago Theatre.

John Mellencamp has the crowd at his show in Chicago.

John Mellencamp has the crowd at his show in Chicago.

Although the Q is fixed at 28mm, I decided to use that to my advantage and got with what the lens was offering. Given my limitations I used the wide angles strengths and made it work. 

John Mellencamp and Carlene Carter perform together.

John Mellencamp and Carlene Carter perform together.

John Mellencamp giving a raw and beautiful performance in Chicago. 

John Mellencamp giving a raw and beautiful performance in Chicago. 

Leica Q capturing Lil Dicky

After I was able to get a Q last year I was wondering how it would hold up as a tool for coverage. I was covering a Lil Dicky concert in at the Concord Theatre in Chicago, so I opted for the Q as I thought it just lended itself to this show. Upon arriving and shooting a few frames, I knew it was going to be a good night. The High ISO capabilities coupled with the 1.7 Summilux and blazing fast auto-focus allowed me to shoot in a way with freedom that my (camera at the time) M8 would never allow. That is not a knock on the M8, its one of my favorite Leica Cameras ever, and its limits are actually one of the reasons it lends itself to certain special imagery. However for the coverage of the show, the freedom the Q allowed was amazing. Especially when your working with a high-profile client that is looking for results.

The following are some of the frames shot one night backstage.

Lil Dicky Backstage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky Backstage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky Backstage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky Backstage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky on stage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky on stage. Leica Q.                                                                   Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky Backstage after the show. Leica Q.                                                     Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Lil Dicky Backstage after the show. Leica Q.                                                     Copyright of Nicholas Pinto 2016

Welcome

(ORIGINALLY CREATED JULY 2013)

Welcome to my blog. This is my first venture into the world of blogging. Being a private person, it is somewhat strange to just share your inner thoughts with the world, however as a photographer this is a choice I already made. To share my beliefs, my ideas, and yes myself.

For my first post I would like to talk about winning the little battles. The battles I am talking about are the everyday choices we make. Choices like eating healthy or inhaling a Big Mac, to be a better person or not, or simply to feed our passions instead of starving dreams. 
The little battles we must win.

As a father and a husband its a daily struggle for me to keep my passions burning while filling the role of the head of the household. Usually something suffers in some way. Given that I love my wife and son more than anything, even more than the thrill I get from taking pictures, usually my photography takes the hit. But Why? Is it because I am making excuses?

There are lessons I have learned in this juggling act of art and life, ways of balancing the responsibility and also staying on the path of your dreams. The main rule is like the old Nike motto, JUST DO IT! 

First of all, the idea that you have to choose one or the other is complete bullshit. Is it challenging? YES. Can you multitask and do both? FUCK YES. For example I am working a full-time job and have been carrying my M8 with me everyday to work. Sometimes I take it out of the bag, other times it just stays protected inside its case, never seeing the light of day. Most of the time I have not been shooting because I have been feeling like the act of working full-time is betraying my passion for photography, keeping me away from following my bliss, which deflates me and keeps my camera in its bag. It's a big lie, don't believe you can't do what you need to. 
The truth is the camera does not come out of the bag mostly because I don't take it out, and in turn the days it doesn't get out are days life seems to be harder for me. Why is that? Is it because the images that I see everyday never get embedded into reality or is it something else? I think the real reason those days are harder, is the idea that I am accepting the fact that I don't have the time, or that something else is more important than stopping the car, taking the camera out and shooting.
The truth is there is nothing stopping me, except me. Its like the Mos Def song, I against I.
Myself, the most worthy opponent. 

JUST DO IT

Next time you find yourself in a battle, or at a crossroad, I want you to win. You need to win.
When you see that old woman struggling with her groceries, give a hand like you know you should. When you want that chocolate cake, eat something healthier for you instead, you will feel better. When your passion is calling, pick up the phone.

I would like this first post to be about a battle I recently won. 
When I was able to pull the car over, grab my camera and take some images of a handball game.
It was Friday, I was tired after a long week, I wanted to get home. Then I saw these old men passionately playing this game of handball as I was stopped at a red-light on the South-side of Chicago. I knew the sun was in a good place because after so many years of shooting you see light and you just know when its right. I also knew I had my camera with me. I needed to get out of the car and take some pictures. So... what was stopping me? Nothing at all.
I busted a U-Turn, grabbed the Leica and started shooting this Handball game. 
Is the result the greatest photo I have taken? No. However, its a photo I am damn proud of, because I won the battle. I kept my passion alive for another day, and I JUST DID IT.

So can you.

Nicholas Pinto