Des Moines Ballroom Classic – 2012

I served as the official photographer for the Des Moines Ballroom Classic! Combining two things I absolutely love – photography and ballroom dancing – was ridiculously fun. The dancers I photographed made my job (making them look awesome) a piece of cake given their expressions, energy, and countless hours of rehearsal and preparation for the competition. My 70-200 allowed me to get nice full body shots but also focus closer and capture the dancers’ expressions. Typically when shooting ballroom, photographers use one on camera flash – which freezes the dancers’ motion well and provides for a decent exposure. I wanted to capture more than this though.
Creating art with these dancers was my goal – portraying them as better than life dancers radiating energy and light. I had two remotely triggered strobes set up on either end of the dance floor. One large softbox on one and the other with no diffuser. This allowed me to use the soft light at one end of the floor then move to the other end to take advantage of the harsher direct light – while the dancers were still backlit with the soft light. I figured out where my sweet spots on the floor were and focused my attention to whoever was dancing there. This gave the dancers dimension and accentuate their energy. I’m anxious to get back on the dance floor soon… with or without my camera! Thanks to everyone who ordered photos… they are certainly all still available. (And sorry for the flash, flash, flash all day long! It was worth it in the end!)

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