Grant Me Beauty in the Breakdown

Grant Me Beauty in the Breakdown

Grant Legan's love of life carries through the phone line. Upbeat. Unruffled. His appreciation for art and curiosity for places to-be-discovered is infectious. A contagion of joy.


Being both a photographer and avid traveler, Legan keeps a site of his visual trinkets – – a catchy, colorful mishmash of hands and scarves and diners and piers. Individually the shots are nice. But what makes them great is their conjunction. In fact, Legan's philosophy on life and photography seems to be shaped around the idea of a "collaborative happenstance" – finding something beautiful within the broken-down pieces. He loves the idea of bringing together the minds and works of different artists to create something fantastic in the midst of such chaos.


The rubble-laden church he found in Gary, Indiana, is proof of that. Together with a dancer friend, some powder and lights, he became a magician with the camera. "I've always been really inspired by art and dance and movement. Even if you're not a dancer, music can make you feel a certain way and move in a certain way," he said. "So, I took her to a place that was really rundown, to show that there's beauty in the breakdown."
Dancing among the rubble seems a fitting metaphor for such an eternal optimist.


A Geneva Illinois native, Legan was always the art kid in high school – drawing and sketching in class, not paying attention. But photography was a different story. That captured his full concentration. With the help of his friend Dan Kelleghan, he started his own wedding company – Eye to Eye Photography – before branching off to focus on e-commerce, fashion-based editorial and portraiture in Chicago. Lately he has an even bigger plan in the works.


Legan is working to build a publication that acts as an outlet for the creative talent in the city. A hub where designers and writers and illustrators can present their work together and brand themselves. "There's a creative community that Chicago has, but hasn't brought together. And there's just something about collaborating and meeting other artists that inspires your own work and helps you grow as a person. It's super uplifting and intriguing to meet other people who are doing creative things and thriving on it," he said. "Plus, the whole tangible aspect is such an experience. There's a difference between publishing something in a magazine versus a blog. People don't even have print photos in their house anymore. They just tag them on Facebook – there one minute and gone the next minute. It's nice to have something long-lasting."


Visit Legan's site to view more of his work:


Cameras/Lenses used by Legan:
Nikon D700
8514 lens

Sea Lady
Mickey Sunset
Girl Laughing
SF Boats

Filed under: Dance Photography

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