Journal

Seeing the Big Picture

I had a business with a reputation for working with all types of personal frames and enjoyed the challenge of each session.

I am still a custom portrait photographer choosing the best of what is available now

to offer a brand new direction in a curated selection of portraits and photo art that showcases your session to view and love.

I respect busy family time and schedules and keep decisions easy to make, see and enjoy.

Rest and have fun knowing that it will be completed and ready for enjoying on your walls!

My door is open to chat with you and envision a new family portrait that shows in the eyes.

Be seen. Schedule a chat at your home to make a really good photo of your family – and enjoy it every day afterwards.

Dorothy Perry is a Chicago natural light photographer of intelligent and spiritual portraits, personal branding for women entrepreneurs, and intimate family documentary.

Contact Dorothy here! 

Quirky Light

is my name

for a type of light

that looks beautiful

on you.

When it’s time to have your personal portrait created,

I would be honored to be your photographer.

Contact me through dorothyperryportrait@gmail.com or My Contact Page

for images of the best in you.


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago natural light photographer of intelligent and spiritual portraits, personal branding for women entrepreneurs, and intimate family documentary.

Contact Page to Studio. 

Driven

Custom made USB drives

can hold art,

transfer art,

and be art.

I am driven to choose tactile, natural feeling materials

for portraits and documentary that are uniquely personal.

When it’s your special occasion or gathering of loved ones,

I would be honored to be your photographer.

Contact me through dorothyperryportrait@gmail.com or My Contact Page

for images of the best in you.


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago natural light photographer of intimate headshots, brave personal branding for women entrepreneurs, and connected feeling family portraits.

Contact Page to Studio. 

A Moveable Feast

Welcome to the page containing my food photography portfolio and a couple of words about my history here.

In the early nineties in Chicago, I cut my teeth working whenever they called me for the black weekly newspaper The Chicago Defender, The Chicago Reader and New City.

I loved the interiors of cafes and restaurants, (lush and loungeable places!), and sometimes when I was lucky, I was able to photograph the people beginning the prep for the day’s menu.

The food magazine Saveur was an inspiration to me, as for what could be done in capturing the zest of the real things happening in making food.

I got assignments from a SF startup called TurnHere and another called Seamless, photographing the dishes of local restaurants that would be included in their online advertisement. Here, I photographed the dishes in their restaurant settings.

Yes, it tasted GREAT!

Moving into digital and past newspapers, I began to photograph for walks, special events, and expos, and photographed private events such as the Chicago WineFests in their various locations through the year.

Chicago Winefest event 2019.

Past clients have included Sweet Thang Bakery, Letizia’s Bakery and Spacca Napoli, not to mention the restaurants captured for the start up companies.

I’m a behind the scenes type of person, so I really enjoyed capturing the graceful rhythms of chefs within crowded rooms and the skill in creating the dishes for their customers.

I always pinch myself that I really do the thing I love every day. And I’d love to have the opportunity to work with you, too!

View my Food Portfolio here.

Fill out the Contact Page for our conversation about your project soon!

Thank you, Dorothy

The Power Of One

One of the most read posts I sent out on my WooWay mailing, called The Internet is Forever (Asterix) involved dealing with loss of my history with the Chicago Reader.

In this, I wrote about my discovery that examples of my early photography career with the Chicago Reader were no longer visible in their online archives…anywhere.

Due to size or intellectual property issues, they imported the articles, but did not include the photographs from earlier editions of the paper.

The email started with dealing with the reality of the situation – but at the end* celebrated the various soft and hard skills learned with the experience.

Fast forward nine months, and through the wonders of Instagram, I get a ‘ping’ from an artist group I photographed in 1992, updated in a Gossip Wolf column. (the article here.)

He Who Walks Three Ways

After I did a quiet appreciative happy dance, I decided to update the story. In addition to the pleasant surprise in being led to one of my photos, it was also a little reminder to me to give life’s irritations or obsessions up to the body’s wisdom, and let things happen as they will.

*Looking with the attitude that there is nothing to panic about or ‘fix’ is a mindset that allows for quiet personal wonder, delight, and awe, even within an ordinary day.

I found that by not fighting and resisting and replaying the memories accompanied by emotions that would suddenly float in and make themselves felt, they changed or would leave by themselves. No examining or selecting anything for further review, I stayed present with no judgement as to what came up, and it would just evaporate.

Practice presence in all different types of situations to have the grounded feeling of being inside your body. Feel the heat through your fingers, feel your toes against the floor, use your senses. Even if at times you conduct your day on autopilot, make time to connect with yourself through the day.

I invite you to subscribe to my ‘Woo Way’ newsletter for intuitive counterintuitive strategies to help sense the world around you at your best.

Please enjoy one of the great inspired books by Wallace Wattles, The Science of Being Great. I feel his books are like a message from a supportive grandfather who wants the best for you. It is a terrific read – & re-read – for the year ahead!


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you.

A Better Truth

Sometimes candids need to look a little less candid-y.

The photo is from a snow filled time in Chicago when my daughter had come from Seattle for a holiday visit. We went to The French Market, my favorite place in the city to have lunch at a place that had Freitkoten: a way of making french fries my son really liked.

It was a rare and precious meeting with my kids that I tried to record on my phone, but my photos had resulted in the ‘selfie stretch’, enlarging the head of the person on the outside. Not only was it enlarged, but tilted as well.

Turn arrow to the left to see changes. Thanks!

I looked at it every day on my fridge, but when I considered making it a little nicer… I looked at it like a project I was making for a client. What can help improve it and yet keep its’ natural feel?


Canvas or deckled edge print, the new image is lovely on mantelpiece or portrait table.

Perhaps you have photos that have a quirk or two that keep you from enjoying them fully. There is no harm at all in a non-invasive treatment to do what improves them for you.

The truth, made a little bit better (smile!)

I would love to hear if that is a current project for you as well. My video chat consultation is free: schedule a time to talk on my Contact Page.



Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you!

Running Start

In areas of my life, I sometimes think of a classic idea in cartoons:

the hero or main character runs off a cliff and continues to keep running in air – as long as they don’t look down.

The concept of following one’s own path has something of that same slightly unreal feeling at first. But instead of anticipating a fall, I believe my path will carry me over the chasm to the other side and keep on going.

I have a mind that wants to extrapolate and guess all the combination of possibilities beforehand. It serves me well, but sometimes I have to step out on faith, and follow the decision to reveal myself publicly as a photographer who uses intuition and psychic sensitivity freely in my work and in my life.

I work for myself, so when I feel tense or anxious, I “reboot” by reading something short, simple and inspirational.

For ten years a beautiful book of meditations called “The Language of Letting Go” has been my friend when I feel crowded by a workday of too many calls, tasks, or demands on my time.

There have been newer versions with new affirmations as she continues to write and evolve, but this edition from 1990 continues to be my personal favorite.

Today’s entry referred to consideration of the idea that what we are learning at work often reflects and resonates to the things we are working out in private life. My issues of clearer communication with my clients can echo my issues of effective communication with my family.

Issues of establishing policies and boundaries with my clients can reflect where I place my boundaries with my loved ones–or where to place them in new relationships.

Issues of money, sexuality, childhood, self-esteem, fear of failure (or fear of success) can still appear at the most inopportune times. But they have less power to keep me off-balance all day as in years past. And I can tell immediately when something doesn’t feel right with me…and why.

So I welcome my visitors from the past, and redefine them with physical modalities like EFT and my eye exercises. I have respect for the lessons they still have to teach.

More and more these days, I am seeing that where I want to be in my decisions, photography career, and life is over on the other side of that ‘leap of faith’.


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you.

Cartooned Culture

Anyone who knows me knows I love cartoons! Some make me laugh, and some make me go “ahhh,” with tears in my eyes.

This cartoon is “Les Triplettes de Belleville,” by Sylvain Chomet. I saw this with a friend years ago in a Chicago theatre, and it remains one of the very few movies that I have viewed more than once.

It is a poetic animated story with very few spoken words. Imagine a plot that brings together cycling, a small family, and three quirky sisters who are part musicians, part muses, and, when necessary, molls familiar with the darker sides of Belleville/Parisian nightlife.

There are some picturing of rougher things of life, so it is not a movie for children, but perhaps saved for when they can appreciate it: the story, characters, and lovingly drawn details create a world that stays with you long after the cartoon is over.

The emotion of amusement also creates access to consciousness, a powerful way to allow the ‘firing of the synapses’ that lead to fresh new ideas and thought patterns.

Do you have any favorites that have this evergreen quality? I’d love to see them!

Keep laughing – watch cartoons!!


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you.

On the Easel

Today on The Easel, I have a contemplative photograph with subtle and elemental symbols that show something different each time you look at it. This ballet of shape and pattern occurred during a moment teaching photography on a snowy day on the far side of Chicago:

a reason you always carry some form of camera, and take time to watch what is above you as well.

Bird on A Roof is 20″ x 30″, and made from fine watercolor paper with a deckle (torn) edge. Choose my neutral frame here, a different size, or an unframed version.

If you are interested in purchasing my art images for yourself or others, contact me for details. I love to see my photos in other people’s homes.


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you.

Set the Tone


A local young bride’s wedding photographs are now ready for her home.

I was extremely pleased to have two heirloom frames to work with: these images look amazing in antique settings!

Another pleasure was in working with a younger person’s style of communication and relating.

So lovely to meet another who values images that hold an vibrant personal energy for her home. I whole-heartedly agree.


Dorothy Perry is a Chicago portrait photographer specializing in custom family portraits, modern headshots, & personal branding for women and executives.

 Contact her for commissioned work here. Thank you.