Last Wednesday I had an opportunity to spend most of a day on the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal with three men who make their living pushing cargo up and down the man-made waterway created 110 years ago. Bill Russell at Illinois Marine Towing, a small barge company in Lemont, Illinois, granted me access to one of the fleet boats as it repositioned barges and other tug boats around the shipyard and up and down a stretch of the canal. Capt. Dan Egan, Antonio Lopez, and Steve Gray were all very open to the idea, and basically allowed me great access to the work that they do, although there are some safety precautions that certainly limit how much of their job I could photograph from close range. But I didn’t want to be the victim of a snapped line or fall into the water, either! Be sure to see the rest of the images after the jump. And there will be more to come!
I’m really diggin’ the top portrait. It really feels salty-sea-doggish to me 🙂
Thanks August! Elizabeth had a very similar reaction to it. I wish Antonio’s eyes were a little sharper, but it’s hard to tell in the small, blog version of the image.
I second August- the light in the first portrait is beautiful, and I love the orange burst of color in the life belt! (Is that a life belt? It looks like something safety-related…)
Thanks, Ivy! And yes, it’s a Seahorse Work Vest so it’s different from a more traditional life vest in that the foam pads can be beat up but still provide buoyancy. I wore one, too, and they’re a lot bulkier than a normal life vest, which can be kind of annoying when you’ve got two cameras swinging around!
And I Third August… I love the light, the clean background, and the expression!
Thanks, John. Me, too. 🙂