There are so many things to photograph - what do you choose? Although we humans have been making and recording images for more than 40,000 years, we have been using cameras for less than 200. Yet today, everyday, 300 million photos are uploaded to Facebook, and 380 billion photos were taken in 2012.
So what’s my point? James puts it best in Chapter 4:14, ”Your life is like the morning fog–it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.” We intrinsically understand this fact and desire to stop the inevitable march of time. We want to “record” a moment in time for posterity.
Consider this: You are able to capture an image before your eyes, forever eternal based on your choosing. Wow!
I can think of few things as fleeting and beautiful as the dance and youth – when combined there is pure magic. This week-end I had the privilege to photograph the Curtain Call Dance company’s recital, “Celebrate.” Along with my granddaughter Kylie, I have grown to know some of the other performers over the years and herein share some of my favorite images. I have watched and enjoyed seeing them metamorphosis from little girls to budding women, from trying to just remember their steps to beginning to understand and master the art and beauty of the dance.
Photographically dance is difficult. Flash is not permitted, the light is dim and rapidly changing, you’re normally distant from your subject – which of course is constantly moving and often there are a number of dancers surrounding – i.e. in front of – the one you want to photograph. After a number of years experimenting here is my advice – use a fast telephoto – these were taken with a 200mm f2.8 lens wide open - to isolate your subject and fill your frame. Increase your iso to 1600 or so, thus permitting a shutter speed of 1/320 sec. This allows you to freeze motion without degrading the image too much. Remember you are exposing for the face/skin which is lit, don’t worry about the background; it may even go to black – as below. Goal – stopping the motion at peak for tack-sharp photos that tell a story.
And if the photo Gods are benevolent you just might catch the beauty, joy and moment of youth – frozen by your camera – forever.
I love her expression, the position (the result of many hours of training), the beautiful costume, the wonderful reflection, but most of all I like the shoe sole – that tells the story! I shall treasure this photo forever -hopefully some day her daughter will treasure it also. Those are the images I strive to capture.