Aspects of Alterity :: First experience photographing dance.

I really enjoy photographing theatre and through it I’ve met a lot of fantastic people. Some of them also work in dance. Hugh Conacher, a lighting designer based here in Winnipeg, emailed me with an opportunity to shoot Aspects of Alterity, a new show presented by Gearshifting Performance Works.

Cue the butterflies.

I’m leery of photographing dance. I’m not sure why, but sometimes that’s just the way it is. So, with camera in hand I headed to the Gas Station Theatre for a new experience.

Aspects of Alterity by Gearshifting Performance Works (© Dylan Hewlett 2012)

Arriving early as usual, I had more time to think about what I was going to do – not really a good thing for the nerves. I set up the camera to my liking and waited for the show to start.

Did I mention that I was going to be the second shooter? Yep, one of Winnipeg’s most prolific theatre and dance photographers was going to be there too. So not only was it my first time shooting dance but I was going to have to do it beside a well established dance photographer whom I’d never met before.

Ramp up those butterflies to 11.

Aspects of Alterity by Gearshifting Performance Works (© Dylan Hewlett 2012)

Time for the show to start, and lo and behold, the other photographer didn’t make it. I was going to be shooting this on my own. Yippi!–kind of. I would really like to meet this other photographer and pick his brain about his work.

Next time.

Aspects of Alterity by Gearshifting Performance Works (© Dylan Hewlett 2012)

Once the show started, it was amazing. It was a combination of shooting sports-like action with theatre lighting. There was no time to look at the back of the camera to double check exposure, only enough time to glance at the meter in the viewfinder and adjust the settings from there.

Aspects of Alterity by Gearshifting Performance Works (© Dylan Hewlett 2012)

The dancers moved beautifully through the music using the entire stage in their travels. It was fantastic! The 45 minutes of the show flew by and before I knew it, it was over.

Aspects of Alterity by Gearshifting Performance Works (© Dylan Hewlett 2012)

I can’t wait to do this again. I’m definitely hooked on photographing dance.

Cheers,
Dylan

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