Michael Pogue’s first muse was the written and spoken word. At the Guild Complex, he performed his poetry for a few years before attending Columbia College in Theater. He has worked on stages and recently started appearing onscreen. He currently works in the Education dept at Court Theatre as a teaching artist going on ten years. He loves to listen to Blues and Jazz music and plays around town jamming with some of the most reputable local musicians on his guitar and harmonica.
Karen I. Hirsch is an international award-winning visual artist based in Chicago. Her work has been published internationally in magazines, newspapers and books including Communication Arts and Graphis photo annuals. She has received grants from the City of Chicago, the Illinois Arts Council and the Fulbright Foundation. Hirsch studied with renowned photographers Ernst Haas, Jay Maisel and Arnold Newman. In 2007, the Chinese government invited her with nine other American photographers to document the city of Rizhao. Karen is active in the photo community. She is a member of the American Photographic Artists, served on the Board of Directors of the American Society of Media Photographers- Chicago/Midwest and is currently co-president of Fort Dearborn-Chicago Photo Forum, an historic photographic organization. Hirsch’s prints have been showcased at the Hyde Park Art Center, the Bridgeport Art Center and the Martha Schneider Gallery in Chicago, as well as galleries in New York, Los Angeles and Palm Beach, Florida. The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs invited Hirsch to produce a 25 year retrospective of her photography of Chicago which was displayed at the Richard J. Daley Civic Center. Hirsch has photographed U.S. presidents, entertainment and sports icons as well as top authors and business executives. In recent years, Hirsch has concentrated on creating abstracts, collages and graphic art in addition to her editorial photography. Hirsch has been interviewed on WMAQ-TV (NBC Chicago), WTTW (PBS) and Start TV, a new national network affiliated with CBS, regarding her art and career. Her artwork is found in corporate and private collections.