Powder Dance Shoot

dancer using hair to flick flour in the air

dance powder shoot

dance photography

Working with dancers is always a pleasure and a challenge. A pleasure because they are so able and a challenge because you want to be able to showcase them and their talent to their fullest. A photo shoot like this is often a collaboration of ideas, themes, lighting patterns and final image visualisation prior to taking the image. 

Here I have had the privilege of working with a dedicated and talented group of people to make these images possible. Following a chat at Diana Fairweather Purkis’ Dance Show at the Southlands Centre between myself, Tabraiz Yousaf ( Tabs Studios Middlesbrough) and Kelly Theasby ( Watsons Dance Academy, Hartlepool), we agreed to meet and create some ‘interesting photos’. 

I arrived at Watsons Dance Academy with a van full of gear, not really knowing how much space they have in their dance studio and what the off-street parking was like. I needn’t have worried, parking was right outside the front door and the studio space they have is truly incredible. From a photographer’s perspective I was in paradise, massive rooms, some with amazing natural light. 

I was greeted by Kelly ( Dance Teacher), Candice ( Dancer), Reece  (Dancer) and Tabs (Dance Teacher), we were are joined by Mandy

( dance Teacher) who also proved to be a great inspiration matched with a great eye for technical detail. 

After setting up backdrops, stands and lights we were ready to go. We started with some head shots and fashion shots for Reece, he is an absolute joy to work with and very focussed on what he wants to achieve. Reece took a break and we started shooting some amazing head shots with Candice, even though I hadn’t really taken the best light modifiers for female headshots, ideally I could have done with a large softbox/ umbrella , but in these situations you work with what you have. 

I needn’t have worried, Candice is beautiful and the results are stunning! Working with professional people is always a joy as they are as particular as you are to get the ‘right’ result. Following on from the headshot we moved onto some amazing dance poses executed by Candice and Reece together. I was forever moving the lights around to get the best result whilst Kelly, Tabs and Mandy were offering creative ideas and technical precision to the poses- this was team work doing its best to get the best possible results. 

Working with the flow, the time flew by and I suddenly realised I was hungry! We needed flour for the powder shoot so Tabs kindly set off to but food and flour! After recharging the batteries we were ready for the final onslaught-the powder shoot! 

This was certainly the most fun, the most challenging and potentially the most rewarding. There is a lot of cleaning up afterwards though! 

If you are a photographer and would like to try a powder shoot I recommend using either studio strobes with very short flash duration times ( check the T1 not the T5 rating) or use speedlites which are also very effective. Also make sure there is a fire extinguisher with you i you are using strobes ,as apparently the fine powder dust is combustible! 

I would like to say a huge thank you to Kelly and Mandy from Watson’s Dance Academy in Hartlepool, To Tabs from Tabs Dance Studios in Middlesbrough and to the very, very talented Reece and Candice, you are both amazing and an absolute joy to work with. 

If you would like a dance shoot/ powder shoot then call me, James on 07817 512 234 or email james@duophoto.co.uk or get in touch (James Thompson) on Facebook .