[starting top left to right]

Albany Park, Kimball Brown line stop 

Andersonville, Swedish watertower

Beverly, Givins Irish Castle

Boystown, Pillars on Halsted

Bridgeport,  (formerly) Comiskey Park

Bronzeville, Monument to the Great Northern Migration

Chinatown, Gate on Wentworth

Edgewater, The Pink Hotel

Englewood (former) Masonic Lodge

Humboldt Park, Paseo Boricua

Hyde Park, Gates of University of Chicago

Old Irving Park, Craftsman-style home

Jefferson Park, Copernicus Center

Kenwood, Powhatan Apartments

Lakeview, Kwagluth Totem Pole

Lincoln Park, Conservatory

Lincoln Square, Giddings (or Kempf) Plaza fountain

Little Village, 26th Street Arch

Logan Square, Illinois Centennial Monument

Loop, Elevated tracks

Michigan Avenue, Watertower

Marquette Park, Darius and Girenas Memorial

Midway airport tower

North Center, pillar

O'Hare airport tower

Old Town gates

Pilsen, Nuevo Leon

Portage Park, Theatre

Pullman, The clocktower building

River North, Marina Towers

Rogers Park, murals

Roscoe Village, Painted bridge

South Chicago, Historic bank building

South Loop, Field Museum

South Shore, Cultural Center

Streeterville, Ferris Wheel

Wrigleyville, Wrigley Field

Uptown, Theatre district (Aragon, Green Mill, Uptown Theatre)

Union Stockyards, Gate

UIC/Little Italy, Columbus statue

West Side/Greektown, Ancient Greek-style Pavilion

Wicker Park, Flatiron building

March 31, 2020 — Bench Bookkeeping

Portraits of the Home in Pen & Ink

Here's a selection of some of the pen and ink portraits I've done in recent years. Many of them are in Chicago/the Chicagoland area.

What I love is looking back on the homes and remembering some of the personal or specific building details requested: a cat in the window, a potted plant, a brick detail. For many, it would be the portrait a home that they were leaving behind, so the details that made the home *theirs* became especially important, but bittersweet.

I'll get around to updating this with other home/building portraits in my collection periodically.

chicago bungalow with awninglogan square home
two flat beverly tudorcottage oak park foursquare architecturespanish tile roof drawing
arts and crafts bungalowtwo flat and three flat six flat renderingtwo flat chicago drawingtudor apartmentscourtyard apartment buildinglincoln park greystonechicago cubs homelogan square home victorian home drawingdutch colonial home evanston
modern townhome drawingbucktown homechicago two flat drawing
bungalow drawingsix flat buildingitalianate two flatbungalow illustrationchicago two flat modern chicago bungalowandersonville greystone
evanston home drawingcraftsman bungalow chicago suburbs drawinglincoln park home rendering
six flat buildingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago three flatchicago building renderingchicago building renderingprairie homeamerican foursquarevictorian homechicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home renderingchicago home rendering
chicago back stairs drawingchicago two flat
chicago storefrontvictorian homechicago commercial building drawingchicago fire escape drawingchicago bungalow drawingchicago turret corner buildingchicago cottagechicago cottagechicago three flatchicago home drawingchicago cottagechicago two flat drawing

prairie chicago homechicago town homeworkers cottagechicago greystoneevanston colonial chicago townhomeschicago commercial buildingchicago workers cottagechicago alley illustrationchicago six flat in lakeview

Welcome to Crest Ridge Country Land Reserve

I thought it would be fun to do a self-referential "home styles" guide of the American suburbs--or at least, the worst of the American suburbs. I've always enjoyed the writing of Kate Wagner of McMansion Hell, who hilariously breaks down exactly why some of the suburban home designs (McMansions!) just don't sit well, on many levels. So, taking inspiration from her writing, I made this little grid of homes from a fictional development called "Crest Ridge Country Land Reserve," and here it is.

home styles of the american suburbs

February 06, 2020 — Phil Thompson

Some places you can find me this year

Here are the shows I did in 2019. If you stopped by, thank you. See you in 2020.

Renegade Craft Fair (Holiday!) - Dec 7-8 at Bridgeport Art Center

One of a Kind Holiday Show - Dec 5-8 at Merchandise Mart 

Renegade Craft Fair - Sep 7-8 on Division St (by Damen)

Ravenswood Artwalk - Sep 14-15 at Beyond Design 

Printers Row Lit Fest (Booth M-West) - June 8-9 on Printers Row

One of a Kind Spring Show (Booth 1081) - April 27-29 at Merchandise Mart

Renegade Craft Fair (Booth 114) - May 10-11 in Pilsen 

    October 03, 2019 — Bench Bookkeeping

    Downtown Architectural Styles of Chicago

    Because the neighborhood-focused "Home Styles of Chicago" needed a companion piece: This new print celebrate the variety of classic Chicago architectural styles that you can see in and around the loop. These buildings are representative of certain styles, some of which first flourished in Chicago itself. The first skyscrapers of the "Chicago School," the soaring and organic Sullivan-designed (or mimicked) buildings, the Mies-made modernist highrises.

    Click the image below to purchase!


    Shops that carry Cape Horn Illustration prints!

    Here's a selection of the great shops that carry our work! If you're looking for something specific, it's best to call ahead to see. They carry varying selections of our total product offering.


    • Sacred Art - 4619 N Lincoln Ave | (773) 728-2803
    • Neighborly - 1909 W Division St | (773) 840-2456
    • The Great Frame-Up - 8305 W Golf Rd (Niles, IL) |  (847) 966-8400
    • Transistor - 5224 N Clark St | (872) 208-5877
    • Galerie F - 2415 N Milwaukee Ave | (872) 817-7067
    • Artists Frame Service - 1867 N Clybourn | 433 N Wells St | (773) 248-2800
    • Foxtrot Market - 1722 W. Division St | Four other locations |  (773) 661-9232
    • Foursided - 2939 N Broadway St | (773) 248-1960
    • Smitten Boutique - 1047 W Madison St | (312) 226-7777

    New Orleans 

    • 1850 House Museum store - 523 Saint Ann St (Carrying the New Orleans Home Styles print) | (504) 524-9118
    August 01, 2019 — Bench Bookkeeping

    Historic Stadiums and Ballparks of Chicago

    The Historic Arenas of the Chicago Blackhawks

    The Chicago Blackhawks franchise dates back to 1926, at the time "Black Hawks." The team was named after the owner's World War I division, which was in turn named after Black Hawk, a warrior from the Sauk nation from the Great Lakes region. 

    The Blackhawks' original arena was the Chicago Coliseum, a venue with an exterior constructed of stone from a prison in Richmond, VA. The Coliseum itself (technically the third of three venues named "Coliseum" in Chicago) had a storied past. It's considered the home to the first Roller Derby, carried out in 1935, and hosted huge musical acts. It was shut down in 1971 after the place was damaged after a fracas over a show mishap, but it had already been on its last legs. A portion of that cool masonry exterior was kept standing until the 90's, when it too was demolished.

    chicago coliseumThe Blackhawks moved into Chicago Stadium in 1929 and were the starring team there for years. The place was called the Madhouse on Madison, known for amplifying the crowd's roars, and was famous for its large pipe organ and the jingles throughout the games. The Bulls joined them as co-tenants in 1967. The two teams now, of course, occupy the United Center just a stone's throw from the original Chicago Stadium, which was demolished in 1995.

    chicago stadium drawing
    united center drawing


    The Historic Stadiums of the Chicago Bears

    The Chicago Bears have their origins in Decatur, Illinois, where they were called the "Decatur Staleys." They moved to Chicago in 1921 and got the Bears name as a play on the "Cubs," with whom they shared a stadium: Wrigley Field.

    The Bears played at Wrigley for fifty years, but the baseball stadium couldn't fully accommodate the full field of play needed to play football (safely). It was too confined, the team facilities not large enough. Beyond that the seating capacity was too low to make the much shorter football season economically viable.

    drawing wrigley field chicago bears
    So the team moved to Soldier Field along the lakefront. That stadium also was not built to be a football stadium, but the team made do for thirty years. In 2003 (and after one season playing their home games at University of Illinois's stadium in Champaign), the team moved into its tailor-made, updated Soldier Field. It was a controversial upgrade: It made the field better equipped for a modern football team and crowd's needs, but it was criticized by the architectural elite and got the stadium's landmark status "revoked." But the world kept turning and people got used to it.original soldier field drawing
    soldier field drawing
    The Historic Ballparks of the Chicago White Sox

    Once the Souix City Cornhuskers, the "White Stockings" became so in their move to Chicago in 1900. They started playing at the South Side Park, which was actually the third of three "South Side Parks" in an area very close to where the current White Sox ballpark stands today, 35th and Wentworth.South Side Park drawing White Sox

    The team's early and most influential owner, Charles Comiskey, oversaw the construction of what was to become Comiskey Park. It used the then-novel concrete and steel construction in ballparks, an upgrade over the wooden grandstands that was used for ballpark design. Comiskey became belovedly tied to the White Sox and even more so for its quirky features like the exploding scoreboard and fun game night attractions. And Disco Demolition Night.

    The ballpark was demolished in 1991 and is now a parking lot serving what became the new home of the White Sox. For a short time, the new park was also known as Comiskey Park. The naming rights were sold twice--it was U.S. Cellular, now Guaranteed Rate--but old names die hard.

    Comiskey Park drawing
    Guaranteed Rate Field_drawing
    The Historic Ballparks of the Chicago Cubs

    The team that is now known as the Cubs was once the "White Stockings" and has roots in Chicago dating back to 1870. The team went through a variety of ballparks since then, all of which were wooden until the concrete-and-steel Wrigley Field, the venue they currently call home.

    The team's first ballpark was Union Base-Ball Grounds, located by the lake near what is now Millennium Park. Unfortunately it was a very short tenure. Within a year of opening, the Great Chicago Fire of October 1871 tore through the city and burned the ballpark to the ground.

    The team took up residency thereafter at 23rd Street Grounds (at 23rd and State Street), followed by Lakefront Park and West Side Park. For a brief period before and during the 1893 World Columbia Expo, the team played an alternating series of games at South Side Park II (a predecessor of South Side Park III and Comiskey).

    The team then moved to the West side, first at West Side Park, and then the second, much larger West Side Park or "West Side Grounds." Both were still wooden parks in the vicinity of what is now numerous UIC buildings around Wolcott and Polk. They were still known at the White Stockings at this point, then for a time the Colts, before being called the Cubs exclusively (circa 1907. Team names were a lot looser back then, more like nicknames). The Cubs' time at West Side Grounds was marked by many successful seasons, four pennants and two world championships. 

    Finally the team took up residency at what we know now as Wrigley but what was then known as Weeghman Park. That ballpark had been built in 1914 and was designed by the same architecture, Zachary Taylor Davis, who had designed Comiskey. Thus the two fields shared some of the same features and a bit of the look. At the time it opened, the park was home to the Chicago Whales of the now-defunct Federal League. The Cubs played their first game there in 1916; in 1921, William Wrigley took over and named the field for himself/his chewing gum company. 

    [Note: For most of these ballparks, the visual record is extremely thin. I depended in large part for the early ballparks on the research of Jack Bales, whose book Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago's First Professional Baseball Team is an invaluable resource to any Cubs enthusiasts. He found newspaper description of the ballparks when they first opened to the public.

    Note 2:  I called this "Ballparks of the North Side" as a counterpoint to the "Ballparks of the South Side," the Sox parks, despite the fact that some of the ballparks were not technically on the "North Side."]

    Union Base Ball Grounds drawing
    23rd Street Grounds
    Lakefront Park drawing
    West Side Grounds
    Wrigley Field drawing
    The Historic Arenas of the Chicago Bulls

    The Chicago Bulls franchise is considerably younger than the others listed here. Its number of world titles for its relatively short life might make it most efficiently successful. The team was the third pro basketball team in Chicago (after the Stags and the Zephyrs) and was named with a nod to the city's long history of stockyards and cattle processing.

    The team played one season at the International Amphitheatre, which had been home to the Chicago Zephyrs (which would ultimately move on to Washington, DC become the Bullets, then the Wizards). The Amphitheatre itself had existed since 1934 and was also tied to the livestock industry: It was built by the Stock Yard Company, next to the Union Stockyards, and specifically intended to house the International Livestock Exhibition.

    The Bulls moved into Chicago Stadium thereafter, joining the Blackhawks, who had been there since 1929. They won their second of three NBA titles in 1992 at the stadium itself. For a time the Chicago Stadium and United Center co-existing but the Chicago Stadium would be demolished during the first season that the Bulls inaugurated the United Center. The United Center was designed to echo the look of the much-loved Chicago Stadium and in the way it amplified the crowd noise. The team would go on to win two titles at home in that arena in 1996 and 1997. 

    International Ampitheatre drawing

    chicago stadium drawing

    united center drawing


    Want a keepsake of this side of Chicago history? I made a Stadium print series that captures these past and present venues. Here's where you can find those. Thanks for reading. 

    New! Chicago Stadiums Series!

    This is my latest series: the stadiums of Chicago. This project was right at the intersection of my love for architecture, history, and Chicago tradition. These hometown teams go back a long way, more than a hundred years in some cases, and there is a continuity in the human experience that comes through in their built environment. We see echoes of the Roman Coliseum arches in Comiskey Park, and echoes of Comiskey Park in Guaranteed Rate Field. The baseball diamonds carry through as a recurring motif, through the many years; the walls are built tough and tall around the shells; flags reinforce that these are fortresses where battles are fought.

    Here is the link to the full collection.

    April 15, 2019 — Phillip Thompson
    A Selection of some the Coolest Chicago Maps

    A Selection of some the Coolest Chicago Maps

    Here's a collection of some of my favorite maps of Chicago, from the historical to contemporary takes.

    I love the way the city formed. The city in its current form has a beautiful, orderly pattern of streets that radiates out from a core. I wanted to present some of the early maps of the city, where the first seeds of settlement happened, and present a chronology of illustrated maps. 

    Early cartographers showed the growth of the city from its origins at the Chicago River and its fork. Later cartographers and artists took liberties in showing the cityscape in different ways, highlighting certain elements like new transit lines, parks and boulevards, and modern aerial views.

    Hope you enjoy getting these bird's eye views of the city's history and growth.

    NOTE: If you want a closer view of these maps, right-click on the image and select "Open image in new tab." That will allow you to get an expandable view of the image and a better look at the details.

    Chicago Maps: Early Settlement. pre-1800-1833

    early chicago settlement map

    Imaginary view of Chicago in 1779. A. T. Andreas, History of Chicago from the Earliest Period to the Present Time, vol. 1 (Chicago: A. T. Andreas, 1884), frontispiece. Source


    early chicago birds eye settlement view

    Chicago in 1820. Chicago Lithographing Company, 1867. Chromolithograph on paper. Library of Congress. Source


    early chicago map

    Map of Chicago in 1812. Source


    early chicago map streets

     The original 1830 subdivision by the Illinois and Michigan Canal Commissioners.  Source.


    early chicago map 1830

    "Map of Chicago, Incorporated as a Town August 5, 1833." Walter Conley & O.E. Stelzer, 1933.  Source


    Chicago Maps: Growth and Industrialization until the Fire. 1857-1871

    vintage chicago map

    Chicago In Early Days. 1779-1857. Kurz & Allison, 1893. Source.


    chicago vintage map

    Lithograph by Christian Inger, based on a drawing by J.T. Palmatary. Published by Braunhold & Sonne. 1857. Source


    chicago early map

    Chicago, Chicago Lithographing Co., 1868.  Source.


    chicago birds eye map

    Currier & Ives.; published in Harper's Weekly (1 August 1874)  Source


    chicago fire map

    Richard’s Illustrated and Statistical Map of the Great Conflagration in Chicago. 1871.  Source.


    Chicago Maps: Post-Fire. 1874-1893

    chicago birds eye

    The City of Chicago / sketched & drawn on stone by Parsons & Atwater. Currier & Ives, publisher. 1874.  Source


    chicago map

    Guide map of new Chicago and suburbs. Author Stine & Clark,1889. Source.


    chicago view

    "Bird's eye view of Chicago, 1892." Roy, Peter. Source.


    chicago vintage map

    "1893 Grand View of Chicago." Treutlein, Th. Eagle Lithographing Co. Reynertson & Beckerman, 1893, c1892. Source.  


    chicago worlds fair view illustration

    "Bird's eye view of the World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1893." Rand McNally and Company. Source.


    chicago birds eye map

    Library of Congress illustration of the official birdseye view of the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Illinois in 1892. Source.


    Chicago Maps: Into the 20th Century. 1898-1916

    chicago birds eye vintage

    Bird's-eye-view of the business district of Chicago. Poole Brothers, c1898. Source.


    chicago rail map vintage

    Birds-eye view of the elevated railroads and the parks and boulevards of Chicago. Willis J. Champion, 1908. Source


    plan of chicago 1909

    "Chicago. View Looking West over the City, Showing the Proposed Civic Center, the Grand Axis, Grant Park, and the Harbor," (Jules Guerin). Plan of Chicago, published by Chicago architects Daniel H. Burnham, Jr. and Edward H. Bennett, 1909. Source.


    chicago vintage map

    Chicago, central business section. Reincke, Arno B. 1916. Source


    Chicago Maps: Post-Depression into mid-Century. 1930-1958

    chicago annexation map

    Map Showing the Territorial Growth of Chicago. Chicago Department of Public Works, Bureau of Maps and Plats, 1930. Source


    chicago aerial 1930s map

    An Illustrated Map of Chicago, Youthful City of the Big Shoulders, Restless, Ingenious, Wilful, Violent, Proud to be Alive! Charles Turzak, Boston, 1931. Source


    chicago gangland map

    A Map of Chicago's gangland from authentic sources: designed to inculcate the most important principles of piety and virtue in young persons, and graphically portray the evils and sin of large cities. Bruce-Roberts, Inc., 1931. Source.


    chicago birds eye map

    A Century of Progress, 1833-1933 : Chicago World's Fair Exposition. Reuben H. Donnelley Corp. 1933. Source


    chicago map

    Chicago. The Greatest Inland City in the World. Colortext Publications, Inc. 1938. Source


    chicago ethnic map

    Map illustrating the dominant ethnicities of different areas of Chicago in 1950. City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development. Source


    chicago vintage rapid transit map

    "Elevate Map of Chicago Rapid Transit Lines." ca. 1950. Source: unknown


    chicago aerial view

    Chicagoland Panorama. Homer Goodman. Published by: Chicago Association of Commerce and Industry. 1964. Source.


    Chicago Maps: Modern Interpretations

    chicago hyde park panorama map

    Map of Hyde Park and view north. Lauren Nassef. 2007 [circa?] Source


    chicago super mario map

     Robert Bacon. 2013. Source


    chicago map

    T.S. Shure Map of Chicago Magnetic Playboard and Puzzle [2010?]. Source.


    chicago map

    Map of Roscoe Village: A Neighborhood of Chicago. Joe Mills. [Contemporary] Source.


    chicago map

    Chicago Neighborhood Map. Ork Posters [Contemporary] Source


    Example of Craft Fair Booth Set-up