Posts Tagged ‘Ballet’

Yesterday I attended a pointe class at ‘The Studio, A Dance Center for Adults’ in Brookline, MA. A friend of mine takes classes there, and she was able to arrange for me to come into a class with my camera to get some reference for a possible future body of work.

I did my best to stay out of the dancers’ way, and as a result I spend a lot of time crawling around on the floor or in a doorway. But I was never kicked, so I guess I succeeded.

With the help of rapid burst, I took just under 1000 pictures of yesterday’s dancers. I don’t know exactly what I am going to do with them just yet, but when I figure it out I will be sure to let you know!

Here are some stand-out shots from the session. Now, what makes a good photograph is not necessarily what makes good photo reference for a painting. So you can expect to see totally different images in whatever I make from these.

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Last painting done for my senior thesis! This one is of two modern dancers whom I photographed at the University of Hartford Hartt School. They were a joy to photograph, and provided my camera with all sorts of elegant  and gravity defying shots. I chose to paint this particular pose because it felt most personal out of all of the moments I captured on film that day.

This painting was done in watercolor on cold press paper, and finished off with colored pencil.

I got so much great reference that day, I am sure I will use these two again in another piece in the future. Maybe I will do a whole series of dancers!

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Hey! You know what’s cool and exciting? I am helping to design the costumes for CONNetic Dance’s upcoming production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream! CONNetic Dance is a ballet company based in Hartford, CT and their show this June is a steampunk rendition of the Shakespearean classic. The set designer for the show located my work over the internet, and the director asked for my assistance in designing costumes for the dancers! I have an extensive background in costume design and in steampunk, as you all know, so this task couldn’t be more up my alley.

Because of my upcoming senior exhibition I won’t be able to physically construct all of the costumes myself, but I am able to provide suggestions for practical adaptations of steampunk style dress in sketch form, as well as provide a wealth of knowledge on victorian era dress and the steampunk movement. The challenge in designing these costumes is that they need to be conducive to dance! Steampunk is traditionally done in heavy suiting materials and is composed of structured garments like jackets and corsets. Nothing restrictive can be used here or the dancers won’t be able to do their thing. That’s why I am keeping all of my bodices soft, providing stage-ready alternatives to heavy fabrics, and taking lots of inspiration from the saloon and circus wear of the era.

In this post are my first three costume designs: Helena, Hermia, and Lysander. Three of the four “lovers.” They come from the orderly and lawful city of Athens, and so I wanted to make their costumes to appear structured and civilized. This is steampunk however, and CONNectic Dance likes their performances to have a little spice, so I did add a few dramatic details in the color and trimmings to punk-up the victorian mechanics.

For more on CONNetic dance, you can check out their website here: http://www.conneticdance.com/

and their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/CONNetic-Dance/38283164384

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