How we got those cute dogs to pose for our Road Trips Issue (hint: it involved broccoli) | Art Feature | Chicago Reader

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How we got those cute dogs to pose for our Road Trips Issue (hint: it involved broccoli)

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2018 Road Trips Cover - Amrita and Winnie hit the road for summer - RYAN SEGEDI
  • Ryan Segedi
  • 2018 Road Trips Cover - Amrita and Winnie hit the road for summer

It doesn’t take much to get Chicagoans motivated to hit the road in the summer.

But how do you get dogs excited?

Turns out, a few pieces of broccoli, a handful of peppers, and couple of ice cubes did the trick on a hot day in May when we shot the Road Trips Issue cover  featuring pups Winnie and Harry. 

Cover model Amrita Goel has trained her driving pal, shepherd mix Winnie, to shake, give five, give ten, and generally be camera-ready—believe it or not—through the motivation of raw veggies. Carrots are a particular favorite too.

Winnie waits for a broccoli reward - JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay
  • Winnie waits for a broccoli reward

Our car, a 1977 Mercedes 450SL, was provided by Michelle deLeon, a woodworker and leathersmith whose fond memories of a cool, childhood neighbor—who drove the identical car—prompted her to buy her own when she grew up. DeLeon’s dog came along for the ride, and his sweet beagle-boxer nature landed him a spot in the shoot as well.

Segedi checks the light and sets up his shot - JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay
  • Segedi checks the light and sets up his shot

Photographer Ryan Segedi set up a high-tech portable studio on the north side in LaBagh Woods to create the lush, vibrant setting we needed to spark people’s urge to get the hell outta town.

RYAN SEGEDI
  • Ryan Segedi

Our staff writers and contributors provided souvenirs of their trips to fill our trunk. Director of photography Jamie Ramsay raided her parents’ cars for old AAA maps of midwestern states and packed deLeon's trunk.  Creative Director Vince Cerasani dangled veggies to get the dogs' attention for the shots, and we all sweated heartily in an unexpected heatwave that day.

Here’s a look at how it unfolded:

JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay

Winnie waits for the lights to get set. - JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay
  • Winnie waits for the lights to get set.

Harry takes a break. - JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay
  • Harry takes a break.

JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay

Dogs take their positions for the shot. - JAMIE RAMSAY
  • Jamie Ramsay
  • Dogs take their positions for the shot.

Scenes from LaBagh Woods, including the oxbow slough. - VINCE CERASANI
  • Vince Cerasani
  • Scenes from LaBagh Woods, including the oxbow slough.

The north branch of the Chicago River flows though LaBagh Woods. - VINCE CERASANI
  • Vince Cerasani
  • The north branch of the Chicago River flows though LaBagh Woods.

One of the photos that appeared in print. - RYAN SEGEDI
  • Ryan Segedi
  • One of the photos that appeared in print.

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