By Daniel Meyer, JinKyung Lee, Carol Berthold[Printer Friendly] | [Contact us about this collection]
Extent: 1.15 cubic feet
Arrangement: Organized into two series. Series 1: music photographs, photographs of jazz performances taken at Nature's Table and photographs of local rock bands and performances. Series 2: non-music photographs, portraits, commercial photography, travel photographs, photographs of University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, family photographs, and community photographs from a News-Gazette series.
Date Acquired: 03/15/2019
Consists of photographs and digital files taken by Laurie Solomon. Most pictures were taken during his time as the night manager at the Nature's Table restaurant. Photographs also include work from his portrait studio and work done as a commercial photographer, as well as vacation photographs, and photographs of family and friends. The digital files are videos and pictures (.jpeg, .tiff).
Laurie Solomon was born in 1942 in Wilmington, Delaware. Solomon graduated from the University of Delaware in 1964 with two undergraduate degrees in political science and sociology. After matriculating into the master's degree program in political science at the University of Illinois, he obtained ABD status on a PhD in political science in 1968. Although he never completed his dissertation, he was formally awarded his master's degree in 1976. Solomon took a variety of jobs in the early 1970s unrelated to his degree areas. It was through this exploration into other career options that he became fascinated with photographic technology and the chemical process of developing photographs. Solomon acted as a freelance photographer until 1984 when he opened his first studio. Although he was never formally trained as a photographer and never worked for a professional studio other than his own, Solomon cites Ed Dessen of Illini Studios, William Morrow of Gliessman Studios, and both Jerry Thompson and Lou McClellan of Thompson-McClellan Studios as influences to his success.
Around 1982, Solomon also became the night manager for Nature's Table. It was here that he began to use his skills as a photographer to capture some of the musical performances that were occurring at the Restaurant. Solomon has maintained an active interest in filming Jazz and Rock musicians throughout his career as a photographer and has shot photographs of such musicians and ensembles as: Shirley Blankenship, The John Campbell Trio, Ron Dewar, the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble, the Heartland Jazz Orchestra, Jeff Hegelson, Donnie Heitler, Dorothy Martirano, The New Orleans Jazz Machine, Morgan Powell, Peter "Madcat" Ruth, Ray Sasaki, Guido Sinclair, and Surreal Deal. In addition to his interest in filming musical performances, Solomon has also created photographic artworks, landscapes, and portraits. In the 1990s, he began receiving commercial, municipal, and private photography commissions from around the Champaign metropolitan area. As a result of local film distributors closing in the early 2000s, Solomon adopted methods of shooting digital photographs but has continued to shoot photographs in traditional ways as well.
Acquisition Source: Laurie Solomon
Acquisition Method: Gift