Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017

Heavyweight performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Heavyweight performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773. From left to right: Mark Raterman, TJ Miller, Nick Vatterott, and Brady Novak.

Heavyweight performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Heavyweight.

Heavyweight performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Heavyweight.

Heavyweight performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Heavyweight.

Feminine Gentlemen performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Feminine Gentlemen featuring Liz McArthur (the bear) and Jill Valentine (the corpse).

Feminine Gentlemen performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Feminine Gentlemen.

Hot Raw Fire performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hot Raw Fire performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773.

At the beginning of January I was one of five photographers who were responsible for capturing the chaos and excitement of the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773. It was awesome!

I photographed my first Sketchfest in 2012, which is how I got interested in photographing the performing arts. This year marked my fifth year at the festival, and it was a great way to kick off the new year. It was tough to narrow down all the photographs I made at Sketchfest, but these are some of my favorites.

The Tim and Micah Project performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

The Tim & Micah Project featuring Tim Soszko (left) and Micah Philbrook (right).

The Tim and Micah Project performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

You can follow The Tim & Micah Project on Facebook.

The Defiant Thomas Brothers performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

The Defiant Thomas Brothers featuring Paul Thomas (left) and Seth Thomas (right).

The Defiant Thomas Brothers performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

You can learn more about The Defiant Thomas Brothers on their website.

The Cupid Players performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

The Cupid Players performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773.

Expecto performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Expecto performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773.

Stir Friday Night and Hunks performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Stir Friday Night (left) and Hunks (right).

Hunks performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hunks.

Hunks performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hunks.

Kalny Cerami performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Kalny Cerami featuring Trey Kalny (left) and Jeanette Cerami (right).

Hot Thespian Action performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hot Thespian Action performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773.

Hot Thespian Action performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hot Thespian Action.

Hot Thespian Action performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Hot Thespian Action.

2 Humans performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

2 Humans featuring Michael Mongiardi (left) and Natalie Metcalfe (right).

The Cool Table performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

The Cool Table.

Awkward Spaceship performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

Awkward Spaceship performing at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival at Stage773. You can watch some of their work by visiting their website.

There was a wedding at the 16th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival 2017 at Stage773 - Performance photography by Michael Courier

And there was even a Sketchfest wedding!

Women’s March on Chicago 2017

Women's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael Courier

The Women’s March on Chicago was nearly five times bigger than expected.

The Women’s March on Chicago took place on January 21st, one day after the inauguration of Donald J. Trump as the 45th President of the United States. People in Chicago took to the streets to raise awareness of women’s rights and civil liberties.

The crowd size was anticipated at 50,000 people, but estimates report more than 250,000 people being in attendance. Chicago was part of a larger global protest movement.

Women's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael CourierWomen's March on Chicago - Brining awareness to women's rights - Protest photography by Michael Courier

RMNP with Aspire Tours

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

A view of the mountains with help from Aspire Tours.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

A view from Moraine Park at the Rocky Mountain National Park.

Shannon and I celebrated our anniversary by taking an impromptu trip to Denver. While we were there, we booked a trip to the Rocky Mountain National Park through Aspire Tours.

During our few hours in the mountains, the weather was sunny and nice, to windy and snowy with minimal visibility. As we made our way through the park, it was relaxing to spot wildlife and take in the views.

The mountains were so beautiful that it was difficult to return to Chicago — and hard to put into words how much the experience meant to me. If you’ve never been to the Rocky Mountains before and would like an introduction, I would recommend the tour that we took. As for me, I’m now looking forward to planning my own trip back into the mountains to spend more time there appreciating the beauty that Mother Nature has to offer.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

A fallen tree covered in snow.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

The frozen view of Lily Lake at the Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

Another view from Lily Lake at the Rocky Mountain National Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

A different view from Moraine Park.

Rocky Mountain National Park with Aspire Tours - Nature photographs of the beautiful landscapes at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado - Photography by Michael Courier

A two-image panorama of a beautiful view at the Rocky Mountain National Park.