Updated: Apr 1, 2020
When I'm not taking photos of dancers, I'm usually teaching them. I absolutely love it when my two favorite worlds have a chance to collide and I'm so fortunate to have the opportunity to photograph the kiddos that I instruct. I've been teaching and photographing Premiere Dance Center students for years so it's been pretty amazing having the opportunity to watch them grow as dancers and people.
Each year, PDC hosts a photoshoot so that each team member has a portrait of themselves and their teammates. We always do a traditional black and white headshot of each team member in their team jacket but this year we added a little something extra. We wanted each person to have the opportunity to express their individuality while still showing cohesiveness as a team. The only instruction they were given for their outfits was to make sure that it was all black. They were also free to pose themselves and were encouraged to reach for authentic expressions so each photo was truly unique.
For the photoshoot setup, I started with a simple white seamless backdrop. I positioned the models several feet away to avoid light spill for a nice, grey background. For my light source, I used an Einstein strobe from Paul C Buff and a 60" umbrella with a diffuser on it. I kept the models close to the light at about a 45° angle to keep things nice and soft with a hint of drama. I shot this set on my Canon 5dmkiii using my 70-200mm F2.8 lens.
I adore this set because each team member's personality shines through to show that a great team is made up of great individuals. I teach most of these kids several times a week so it's been really strange not seeing them (thanks, COVID-19) but I thought it was a perfect opportunity to showcase these wonderful humans. To my PDC family, I miss you dearly and can't wait to get back in the studio with you all!