Beaty also put some effort into identifying someone to sell the paintings on to. Then, after a couple of years of effort and a chance encounter, he found somebody to take the artworks off his hands. And although the paintings had been found in a thrift store, they would earn Beaty an impressive amount of money.
Beaty, you see, has developed quite an eye for antiques and historical keepsakes over the years. The Chicago-based photographer collects interesting items of old Americana as a sideline, in fact. Indeed, a visit to his apartment in the north of the city reveals an abode lined floor to ceiling with such memorabilia.
As well as thrift stores, Beaty also scours dustbins, alleyways and even derelict areas for interesting artifacts. And in his scavenging, he has developed a pursuit that he regards as urban archaeology. Perhaps due to his skills as a photographer, he has developed an ability to see beauty where others see only trash.