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The Poetry of Movement: Expressing the Passion and Grace of Ballet Through Fine Art Photography


Male dancer holding ballerina in air with flowing dress

In the realm of fine art photography, there are few subjects as captivating as ballet dancers. The delicate movements, the impeccable technique, and the sheer poetry of their performances have inspired artists for centuries. In this article, I'll delve into the world of fine art photography featuring ballet dance couple Madeleine and Edward, exploring their gracefulness, fluidity, and the seamless collaboration that unfolded throughout our studio photo session in Boulder, Colorado.


Let's take a moment to appreciate the rich history of ballet. Originating in the Renaissance courts of Italy and later flourishing in France, ballet evolved from the elegant courtly dances of the 15th and 16th centuries. Over time, it developed into a highly technical and expressive form of dance, characterized by intricate footwork, graceful movements, and elaborate storytelling. Ballet has since become a worldwide phenomenon, with legendary performers attracting audiences on stages around the world.


Male dancer holding ballerina against a fine art painted background
Background: "Landscape with a Thunderstorm Brewing", Willem Roelofs, 1850. Courtesy Rijksmuseum.

Ballet is not only about technical prowess - it is a language of its own, conveying emotions, stories, and the human experience through movement and artful choreography of the body. Whether it's portraying love, anguish, or joy, the dancers' expressions and body language speak volumes. Through the lens of the camera, we have the unique opportunity to freeze these moments of grace and elegance. Madeleine and Edward become a living canvas, their bodies moving in unison, each step and gesture conveying a profound narrative. In these images, we witness the poetry of movement, allowing us to immerse ourselves in the beauty and emotion of ballet.


Male dancer holding ballerina

Behind every ballet performance lies the seamless collaboration between dancers. In the studio, the connection between Madeleine and Edward was even more apparent as they moved in perfect harmony. Trust, communication, and an unspoken understanding are key to achieving such fluidity and synchronization. I had the privilege of witnessing and capturing their connection firsthand and loved how beautifully they worked together.



To honor the spirit of ballet and bring forth the aesthetics of the old masters, lighting becomes a crucial element. The play of light and shadow enhance the sculptural quality of the dancers' bodies. Soft lighting accentuate their graceful forms while subtle shadows and post production techniques in Photoshop add depth and three-dimensionality to the images.


Ballerina twirling

The allure of ballet lies not only in its present form but also in its rich history and legacy. By infusing fine art photography with a style reminiscent of the old masters, we bridge the gap between past and present. The images transport us to a bygone era, where classical artistry and grace were revered. Through combining traditional and contemporary elements, we create a timeless visual narrative that pays homage to the legacy of ballet while showcasing its relevance in the modern world.




Gear Used During The Session

Camera & Lens

Lights

Modifiers

Westcott & Glow EZ Lock

Backdrop

Savage Gray Seamless Paper

As always, thank you to Theresa Elmore for hair and makeup!



Meet The Dancers


Ballet couple holding hands
Edward Oyarce-Solomon and Madeleine Kuebler

Madeleine Kuebler joined Ballet Tucson in 2021. She began her training with the Academy of Colorado Ballet in Denver, Colorado and the HARID Conservatory in Boca Raton, Florida. She has danced in several ballets including Don Quixote, Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Concerto Barocco and Serenade.


Q: When did you start dancing?


" I started ballet lessons at the age of 3 and I think that’s when I decided I wanted to be a ballerina. By the time I reached middle and high school I knew I wanted to dance professionally and at 17 joined my first professional company."


Q: What do you love most about ballet?


"I love the beauty of it. Everything about what you’re doing is meticulously thought out, and worked on until every detail is just how you want it to be. There’s an aspect of perfectionism that can be very difficult to navigate in ballet, but I prefer-and aim- to look at it as a never ending journey of learning about yourself and what you can do; spending time finding beauty and art in the little things, seeing our work as a craft rather than a job. It makes what we do so fulfilling, especially when you get out onstage and really get to enjoy the fruits of your hard work."


Edward Oyarce-Solomon began his dance training in a variety of styles. He continued his training in Peru by invitation of the US Embassy where he performed for the Instituto Cultural Norteamicano. Edward graduated summa cum laude from the University of Southern California Glorya Kaufman School of Dance and joined Ballet Tucson in 2021.


Q: When did you start dancing?


"I started dance at 9, and ballet at around 11, but I’ve been dancing as long as I can remember. I earned my BFA in dance performance and now, after graduating, I am living my dream of being a professional dancer."


Q: What do you love most about ballet?


"I have a deep love for a variety of dance styles, but my relationship with ballet has recently grown into a profound love of the logic and consideration behind the technique. I enjoy the freedom of performing through emotion, however ballet allows for a clarity and understanding of one’s body in a way that aids in how we can express ourselves. My ultimate goal any time I dance is to emotionally connect, be that connecting with the music, your dance partner, or with the audience, and the clarity of intention that ballet allows is beautiful."


Man and woman holding a 16x20 print of themselves dancing ballet
Photo Credit: Amandine Kuebler


 

Are you inspired by the grace and fluidity of ballet? Experience the magic of fine art portraiture by booking a private photography session with me in our Boulder, Colorado studio. Whether you're a dancer or simply appreciate the art form, my goal is to showcase your unique expression through my lens.


For those seeking to deepen their photography skills, I offer personalized one-on-one fine art photography workshops. Learn the lighting techniques and editing methods to create images inspired by the Old Masters. I love sharing my passion of photography, so whether you're a novice or an experienced photographer, these workshops will elevate your craft and ignite your creativity. Visit my website or contact me directly for more information.


Until next time!








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