How to Nail Your Next Dance Photoshoot
Is there anything better than a killer dance photoshoot? OF COURSE NOT! Whether you're taking headshots, model shots, or simply images that'll slay on Instagram, dance photography makes the world a prettier place.
To make sure your next dance photoshoot is as 🔥 as you are, we asked photographer Kenneth Edwards for his dos and don'ts. Follow his advice and your dance photography future will be as bright as your "golden hour" lighting.
On what to look for when choosing a photographer:
"Be picky about who you shoot with. Be wary of working with photographers who don't have experience shooting dance. Because I work with dancers all the time, I know how to look out for you and your technique. If you choose to shoot with a photographer who doesn't usually shoot dance—and who won't listen to you regarding what looks best—you may be misrepresented. Talk to the photographer about choosing your photos after."
Juliet Doherty (courtesy Edwards)
On creating the most photo-worthy poses:
"In the beginning, I encourage dancers to move around like they're alone in the studio," Edwards says. "Imagine that no one is watching and just move rather than strike poses. This will allow your photographer to catch natural movement. Then at the end of your shoot, ask your photographer if you can play with your greatest hits. Show them your best arabesque, your highest developpe a la seconde, or your most stunning jumps. Ask to shoot what you know you do well so you can come out of it feeling like you got what you needed from the experience and have a variety of great images."
Daphne Fernberger (courtesy Edwards)
On how to vibe with your photographer:
"Don't direct the photoshoot yourself," Edwards says. "You should treat it as a collaboration. Don't walk into it barking orders or telling them to reproduce a photo you saw on Instagram. It's better to work with an open mind and create something together."
Mikaela Kelly (courtesy Kenneth Edwards)
On what to wear to a photoshoot:
"Don't wear clothes you can't move properly in, even if they achieve the aesthetic you're looking for," Edwards says. "Think about how your clothes will look in a photo as you pick them out. Make sure whatever you wear shows your lines. If you're looking to get a shot with a lot of movement, consider wearing a flowing skirt to enhance the look of the photograph. Also, don't wear brand-new pointe shoes. They will absolutely get ruined, and those things are expensive!"
Natalie Varnum (courtesy Edwards)
On dance photoshoot safety:
"Be honest with your photographer about any pain or concerns you have as you're shooting," Edwards says. "Carefully choose the surfaces you're willing to jump on. Don't hurt yourself for a photo, and don't put yourself in situations you're going to regret. You don't have to do dangerous things to get great photos."
Ryan Lee (courtesy Edwards)
What's better than a good dance joke? They're corny, they're punny, and they're exactly what you need to get you through long Nutcracker days. These 10 jokes are guaranteed to put a smile on your face—no matter how much your feet are hurting.
Some might say Charlize Glass' fame kicked off with a single three-letter word. In 2014, Beyoncé shared a video of the then–12-year-old dancer performing to "Yoncé" on Instagram, along with a simple caption: "WOW!"
But by that point, the hip-hop mini had already performed at the MTV Video Music Awards and on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," and won first runner-up with her crew, 8 Flavahz, on "America's Best Dance Crew." And her Queen Bey Insta shout-out wasn't even the pinnacle of her tween career: She earned a spot on The PULSE On Tour as an Elite Protégé for the 2014–2015 season, and performed with Missy Elliott at the Super Bowl XLIX Halftime Show in 2015.
These days, the 16-year-old spends her time touring the country as Brian Friedman's assistant at Radix Dance Convention and blowing up YouTube and Instagram with her class-video cameos. And while the Char Char we fell in love with was a hip-hop cutie pie, the more mature artist we see today is sure to rock the dance world for years to come.
You're obsessed with class videos. We're obsessed with class videos. The passion, energy, and talent showcased in these clips, which give us an insider-y peek at the commercial dance world's hottest classes, are totally irresistible.
But at what point does the phenomenon go from being a good thing to a bad thing for dancers and the dance world? Is the focus on filming distracting from the work dancers are supposed to be doing in class? Are overproduced videos presenting a dangerously misleading picture of the dance world? Is the pressure to be a class video star becoming too much for dancers to handle? These are some of the questions A-list dancer and choreographer Ian Eastwood—no stranger to the class video himself—has been asking on Twitter. And they've sparked a lively, important debate.
Getting corrections from our dance instructors is how we grow, and as students, it's important that we do our best to apply every correction right away. But sometimes—whether it's because we're in physical pain, or have a lot on our minds, or are just not paying attention—those corrections don't sink in. And from a teacher's standpoint, giving the same corrections time and time again gets old very fast. Here are 10 important corrections dance teachers are tired of giving. Take them to heart!
"So you Think You Can Dance" Season 14 finalists Lex Ishimoto and Taylor Sieve shocked fans at home (at least the ones who hadn't thoroughly scoured their respective Instagrams) during Episode 14, when choreographer Mia Michaels asked if either of them had ever experienced "the kind of love that takes your breath away." They confessed that, yup, they had—with each other. The two met at The Dance Awards in the summer of 2016, where they were each named Senior Best Dancer, and went on to tour with the convention as assistants. Before long—and long before their "SYTYCD" journey—they became a couple.
Take a look at Dance Spirit's exclusive interview where they dish on everything from their favorite dates to the dance moves that give them all the feels.
There's a surprising twist to Regina Willoughby's last season with Columbia City Ballet: It's also her 18-year-old daughter Melina's first season with the company. Regina, 40, will retire from the stage in March, just as her daughter starts her own career as a trainee. But for this one season, they're sharing the stage together.
Yes, we all know dancers are strong. But sometimes it takes a truly epic workout video to remind us JUST HOW INSANELY STRONG they actually are.
Behold, National Ballet of Canada principal Svetlana Lunkina's oh-so-casual pre-class exercise:
Dance Spirit is beyond excited to announce the first round of 2017 Future Star winners! Every year, DS partners with competitions to recognize dancers with exceptional presence and ability. The second round of winners will be featured in our January issue, so stay tuned!