Portrait – Elly from Toronto

Elly is an up and coming dance instructor in Toronto, but originally from Korea! I would describe Elly as someone who you would think as shy when you first meet them but super bubbly and outgoing after she gets to know you. It was a real treat to work with her for half an hour this week. Usually when I shoot portraits for clients, it would take fifteen or so minutes to get the jitters of having a camera pointed at them out of the way but with Elly, she came flying right out of the gate and ready to rock. Makes my job so much easier when the subject is comfortable with posing so I can focus on other fun stuff like lighting, depth of field, and white balance.

The original intent for this shoot was for Elly to get a professional (read: somewhat serious) looking profile picture that she can attach on webpages and print-outs for classes she hosts instead of random Facebook pictures. Portrait shots are a great way to convey personality but the trick always is trying to balance “personality” with “function” – the real reason for people to have a portrait picture in the first place is so potential clients recognize who you are. With Elly, this was a piece of cake (and I do like cake). She was great at being slightly directed on what to pose while at the same time interjecting minor changes in her facial features or stance to make it uniquely her. I’m pretty happy with the results :-)

Photography Notes: I used a 85mm prime lens at f2.8. Natural light was coming from a window from Elly’s right.

Do Things, Tell People

Do things, tell people. I saw this posted all around the walls of Shopify (www.shopify.com) Headquarters in Ottawa the other day. What a great little mantra to keep in your head. You do something that you like doing and just let people know about it.

Some people might think it’s neat and cool while others will simply smile politely and nod. Slowly and surely however, your name starts getting thrown around for that thing that you do and opportunities for paying gigs start opening up (*fingers crossed, knock on wood*).

We live in such unique time period that’s perfect for vagabonding – traveling is cheap if you know what to look for and internet access is never hard to come by. With a hobby that allows us to meet so many people in such a short period of time, we should all be telling people about the neat things we are doing. Without being an ass about it of course ;-).

BluesShout 2012 Roundup

This is my BluesShout roundup post! Wahoo! The first half of the post really is just all the vids that I shot while there. Everyone loves watching dance videos right? I’m sure most of you blues fanatics have already seen my BluesShout videos on Facebook but here they all are just in case. I would really appreciate if you guys/gals are able to post the names of the performers and competitors (and what order) so I can appropriately tag them.

The second half of this post are some notes and musings about my blues dance process for the past year in regards to “training” in blues dancing. A lot of people I know in the dance community are real naturals for getting things in a dance context. Sadly, I’m not one of those naturals. My way of offsetting my cumbersome self is to take lots and lots of notes (even though most of it usually is incompressible). Fun times.


Links: Strictly Slow – https://vimeo.com/44703513 || Strictly Fast – https://vimeo.com/44837774 || Performance 1 – https://vimeo.com/45007643 || Performance 2 – https://vimeo.com/45021947 || Performance 3 – https://vimeo.com/45023260 || Open Jack and Jill – https://vimeo.com/45034699 || Pro/Am (Lead) – https://vimeo.com/45208230 || Pro/Am (Follow) – https://vimeo.com/45205350

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