I know most Chicagoans can be on board with me when I say that when there’s a giant multi-colored neon sign out front of a bar or restaurant, you know that business is legit.
If it’s an old-school neon sign, you know that place has been in biz for 40+ years. And if it’s a newer neon sign, you know they recently shelled out some dough to make them stand out.
And I’m not talking about those 8”x12” red and blue “Open/Closed” neon signs, I’m talking about the 20-foot giants that can light up a sidewalk, so big and hard to maintain they usually have a letter gone dark.
Neon signs are something we take for granted as a city.
I’m realizing they’re few and far between, and rapidly disappearing as businesses close, remodel, or move. I recently stumbled across a blog that has quite a catalog of (and is also expanding) the neon signs that light up the Chicago area- Rediscovering the Neon Jungle.
There’s quite a few familiar signs on there, day and night shots, current and past, and a few that have disappeared forever.
I took a hike around my neighborhood (Edgewater) hoping to get some cool shots, but there really aren’t that many neon signs around me. I found 2 that were worth a cell-phone picture, but I’m going to have to expand my radius and break out my good camera and do it right one of these days.
If I ever have a business it’s going to at least have a neon sign like this solid one, hanging in the window.
Patio Beef would be a good photo subject. But like I said, I just had a phone camera. If I had my SLR and a tripod with me, it lights up well at night.
For other Chicago neon signs (past and present), check out this Flikr pool: https://www.flickr.com/groups/1896095@N21/pool/
What neon signs do you have in your neighborhood?