Dance Study: Rachel Watson

| 10 images

Dancer: Rachel Watson
Assisted By: Chanté S. Rowe

So, I hinted a little bit in the “SoHo, Where The Young Things Are” photo set that a photo session might happen with Miss Rachel Watson, and thankfully, it did. 🙂 Although she mentioned that she could do ballet, I decided that it was time to switch it up a li’l bit and do something outside of my comfort zone (or at least a dance form I had not photographed yet); so I chose tap and jazz/modern. Because of the amount of photos I took of Rachel on the day of our session (completely filling up a 16GB memory card), I’ve decided to post the images from the first look in this blog entry and save the images from the other look for another entry. Btw, if I keep filling up that card on any future sessions, a new hard drive will be needed…in the form of a TB or two, or three…

Though I’ve never photographed tap dance before, I’ve had the opportunity to see a lot of it when I was younger thanks to a family member who’s exposed me to dance and broadway (and off-broadway) performances. These opportunities helped me to be more confident whilst I was shooting Rachel doing tap, a confidence that I didn’t have when I initially photographed ballet. I always found tap interesting, especially after watching Savion Glover perform. It was like he didn’t need to tap to music, his shoes were the music, making different beats and melodies based upon how fast or slow he would dance. It’s a great dance form to capture, whether it’s by still camera or video camera. To be honest, I didn’t think I’d be able to photograph tap dance, or dance in general, but as I write this I am blessed to think that this is happening!

Ok, I digress, lol. To make this session easier on myself, I avoid introducing a theme for the tap dancing half of the session (as you will see in a future entry, I did introduce a theme, more like a restriction, so I can study it and see what ideas come from it). Also for this session I had the dancer focus more on doing actually dancing while capturing said movement. Yupp…less posing and more capturing the moment. The fact that Rachel was bringing back to memory the basics of tap was good for me, she was going almost at half speed and that allowed me more time to capture her movements. I’m hoping that when we do this again she’ll be more at full speed; this way I’ll be able to learn how to capture the movements.

The session was both fun and a learning experience. When I do this again soon, hopefully there will be some improvements made between my sessions with her. Oh, and if you didn’t know, homeboy is on Pinterest as well, http://www.pinterest.com/jreidphoto.

[JRP ’13]

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