Wednesday, June 17, 2009

wanderlust - time travel...

I have been too busy to even daydream of wandering around the world this week. That is a very sad statement indeed. My 3.5 year old daughter's dance recital was this past Sunday, and I had (almost) front row seats to the event. The program said no flash photography, so I figured I would bring my telephoto lens with the f/2.8 and see if I could get any shots of my little kitty cat. But the announcer said before the show started that NO photography was allowed. Hmmm...never one to be deterred by the rules when it comes to photography, I pulled out my camera anyway, finding ways to hide it when an usher came around.

As an aside, this is not the first time I've broken the "no photo" rule. I've done it twice in Europe: (1) in the little church where Shakespeare is buried - Shakespeare is one of my favorite writers/playwrites, and there was NO WAY I was going to Stratford-upon-Avon without taking a pic of his grave (I know, a little weird...) and (2) in Florence at the Accademia, to get a pretty good shot of Michangelo's David. I even had a little Italian guard come up to me and put his hand over my lens, like I was paparazzi or something. I'm surprised he didn't consficate my film...

I read a post in the NYT photography blog Lens about how to capture dance in photography. (First line of the post - "Good luck") I didn't have a tripod or ability to really try some of the techniques they suggest in Lens, but I did get some shots I thought were fun and interesting:

waiting in the wings

This is one of my favorites - not because it is technically sound or even super interesting, but I can so remember being one of those dancers waiting in the wings for my time to enter the stage. All of the excitement and fun of being a dancer came rushing back to me. I LOVED the rehearsals, the costumes, the smell of the stages, the heat of the lights, the rush of adrenaline right before you started to dance, the applause. It was so exhilariting, and now my daughter would be the one to (hopefully) enjoy it!

I had a lot of fun trying to get some good shots of the dancers:





ballet shoes

These photos are not technically that great - there is a lot of grain or noise in the photos, even though I had the ISO bumped up to 1600 and the aperture open to f/2.8. Since these were "bootleg" photos I couldn't really whip out a tripod. But I have to admit, I love the energy and the vibrancy in these photos, regardless of the noise and the out of focus parts. I wish I had more opportunities to photograph dancers - in some way it allows me to relive my dancer days.

And I had to include one of my kitty cat:

kitty kat's party

she's the one in the middle about to "fall asleep" at the end of her dance. If I may for a moment...she did GREAT! All the little dancers really tried, which I was surprised at, to be honest. The stage is pretty big and the minute the curtain lifted to reveal the little ones there was a collective and VERY loud "AAAAAWWWWHHHH!" I could see my daughter's face for a few seconds, completely confused about what all the fuss was about? But then she fell in step.

Oh, to be a tiny ballerina again...


Becca June 18, 2009 at 7:43 AM  

I agree, you captured the energy and feel of the stage. I was an actor in a former life and love to look at pictures taken during a performance or back stage. It does bring back good times... I love the pointe shoes!

Becca June 18, 2009 at 7:55 AM  

Hey, I love your blog! I poked around and really liked your posts about using editing programs (histograms), as this is something I know nothing about. Also, after looking, I thought you might enjoy this photographers blog. She is amazing and takes amazing photos of children. I want to be her!