Monday, January 24, 2011

Lights, Camera, Action!

So, this past Sunday I was invited to the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Performing Arts to participate in a dance photoshoot. It was called a "meet up" because there were multiple photographers who came to get some dance shots for their photography portfolios. I had a great time since I love getting my picture taken in general, but the shoot was also very, very exhausting. My mom and I left the house at 7:45 a.m. to travel an hour to the dance studio since we were supposed to meet there at 9. Being an overachiever, I already had my hair and makeup done not realizing there was going to be a makeup artist. Oops! First, I took some modern shots in an old recital costume, then I changed into a leotard, skirt, and pointe shoes for a more ballet look.

One of my outfits for the photoshoot; I'd say it's simple yet classic.

For these first two outfits, the photographers weren't going for anything in particular, we just did pose after pose after pose. And I'm not kidding either! By the time we had our lunch break, I was fatigued from jumping so many times in a row. Although it was tiring, we got some really amazing pictures. I can't wait to see them all! (Whenever I get the pictures on a disc I will be sure to post a link so you can see all of them). The photographers showed me some of them on their cameras and I can't believe how great they turned out. These photographers were so talented because even though they were not familiar with dance at all, they knew what angles and lighting created the best pictures. I was very impressed by the artistic ability of everyone and we all worked well together.

My last outfit was a beautiful gold and white tutu. We were originally going to try a gothic ballerina look, but I was running low on time and the makeup artist was already working on someone else, so we just went with the classic ballerina. I did some poses in the hallway with cool lighting effects, pictures of tying my pointe shoes, and some with a ballet barre. Another dancer at the shoot had a black tutu and black wings, sort of like a Black Swan theme, so at some point we decided to do some White Swan vs. Black Swan pictures. These happened to be some of my favorite of the whole entire day. We got to have some fun when one of the photographers had us jump up in the air facing each other with mean looks on our faces and fists held out. It was like an old action movie where we were fighting while floating in mid-air.

Tips for photoshoots:
1. Always be prepared. In this case, I was overly prepared when I didn't need to be, but you never know who is going to be there and how long you're going to stay. Bring extra makeup to reapply and bring some good snacks and a bottle of water in case you become tired like I did. Stretching and warming up is a MUST when you are doing a dance shoot. Doing that many poses, especially action shots, will put strain on your body and you can injure yourself if you don't warm up correctly.

2. Think of creative poses beforehand. This kind of goes along with 'always be prepared', but I think it helps to have poses in mind so you know what look you're going for and you know what they look like before you get in front of the camera. It's nice to practice in front of a mirror because a pose could look cool in your head, but when you see it, it doesn't have the right effect. I know from experience that photos of improvisation can turn out wonderfully, but I also like to have ideas in mind first.

3. Last but not least, have fun with it! Photoshoots are meant to be fun and they are a chance to show off your technique and artistic expression. I love coming up with many different ways to position my body and seeing what works and what doesn't. You learn something new every time.

Here is the website for the photographer who organized this photoshoot:


Lisa said...

Can't wait to see all the finished pics!

Kelsey said...

Me too! I think I'll post a link to an online album when I get them so everyone can view all the pictures.