He’s a Barrington High School graduate, he’s an ardent conservationist, he’s a filmmaker and he’s a local photographer with studios in Barrington and at his other home in Santa Monica, California. His name is Robert McGinley and he draws inspiration from the family home where he grew up in Barrington Hills, the 400+ acre “Horizon Farms” property at Old Sutton and Algonquin Roads.
Robert McGinley’s love of photography began with a class he took during his years at Barrington High School. He says it was a hobby until about 10 years ago, when he started running operations at Horizon Farms, with 220 client horses, 35 miles of fence line, 11 barns and beautiful Barrington landscapes at every turn.
In fact, one of the reasons he’s currently in town was to attend his class reunion this past homecoming weekend. He’s also the featured artist at the Barrington Area Library tonight where a collection his photographs is currently on display and for sale. His exhibit is called “Topography, Light and Magic” and it features 13 images from Horizon Farms which, until recently, was one of the largest breeding and foaling thoroughbred operations in Illinois.
“There’s really no place like Barrington, from a landscape photography point of view. You have rolling hills, you have wetlands, you have woodlands, you have prairie and you have weather…my work really relies on weather and changes in weather to get the kinds of light patterns that I’m looking for in my photography.”
Robert McGinley is also involved with initiatives to protect land in Barrington from over-development. He’s a leader in local land conservation, starting with his family’s farm, which, thanks to the Barrington Area Conservation Trust, holds the largest land conservation easement in the state of Illinois. Robert’s family doesn’t own the farm anymore, but that’s to the land easement, Robert says “…90-percent of the farm and the landscape and the wetlands and the pasture and the woodlands are going to be in the same condition in perpetuity as they are today.”
You’ll have a chance to meet Robert McGinley if you go to his artist’s reception scheduled at the library tonight. The event will take place in the library’s gallery. It starts at 7PM and will run until 8:45, and they ask that you call the library at 847-382-1300 or register online by clicking HERE. The library’s address is 505 N. Northwest Highway in Barrington and the McGinley exhibit will be on display through October 23rd. You can also learn more about Robert and preview the exhibit on his website at RobertMcGinleyPhotography.com. He plans to donate a portion of the sales of his photographs to the Barrington Area Conservation Trust. To learn more about the group and it’s initiatives, visit their website at BACTrust.org.