Tien: Speaking up this year, it has been a heck of a year, probably for the both of us. The start of this year, was the end of my time in Toronto and most of the Eastern scene as I migrated to the west coast, for the sushi, to Vancouver. This was also the year where I started fresh and really committed myself to training and shaping up all the dances I have done; In order of training magnitude: Blues, Salsa, Lindy, West Coast Swing, and Hip hop.
2011 is going to be a hell of a year maintaining this path. I’m just glad Randy has already been down this road, so he’ll understand this upcoming year of complaining, right? ;) The above photo is still my favorite photo I have shot this year; the Solo Jazz competitors all huddled in impromptu just before the music starts at LindyBout IV in Vancouver.
In keeping with our annual tradition photo recap of the past year after the year’s end, here are the photos we love, cherish, holds some sort of meaning, or stashed in our Lightroom closet of the past year.
Here is part one of our favorite photos of 2010 (we split it up in parts so we don’t kill your browser).
Randy: Attending BluesShout the past year in Austin, Texas was a very significant time period for me. Not only was it the first time I have ever been to Austin, but it was also the first time I have ever woken up next to animals in my life. I’ve always been a big city guy, my idea of “roughin’ it” is staying at the Holiday Inn instead of the Sheraton.
When I went to BluesShout for the first time in Chicago, I was not really sure whether blues dancing was really something I really wanted to get into. I was already involved in various dance styles and dance troupes in Toronto and there weren’t even any actual blues dances in my city. What I did know was that I wanted to go to the workshops and learn as much as I can. It certainly did sway my decision making process when Porter Airlines started offered trips to Chicago and had them at a ridiculous promotional rates (btw Porter is the best dance travel airline from Toronto). This time around, the feeling that I had while at BluesShout in Austin was a sense of belonging and purpose – that this dance and this event was for me.
Tien: How could I ever forget one of the memorable and fabulous dance of the year where my pants literally wanted to fly off my seat? Summer in Vancouver is one of the best times to go out dancing in the city. Capitalizing on the success and party atmosphere of the Olympics, there was dancing in the streets on Granville St. The sun shone all summer long and the Company B band tore it up in the finale (along with my pants). http://hamfats.ca/lindy-hop/dancing-your-pants-off.
Randy: I still believe that Kevin Sue’s small one room studio on Yonge & Bloor is one of the greatest things that could have happened for the lindy hop dance scene in Toronto. The first picture above is of Bees Knees Teachers Mandi, Jasper, and Shannon POSIN’ while teaching a free introductory class. It cracks me up every time I look at it. The second picture are some pictures attached to the wall outside of the studio taken during the Nuit Blanche swing debacle.
Tien: My first opportunity to shoot since returning to Vancouver in 2010, and without owning a camera myself (Thanks Kane!). Swedish instructors Daniel Heedman and Åsa Palm in Vancouver to teach for Rhythm City Mess Around, along with Seattle’s own Mike Faltesek & Casey Schneider.
Randy: I’m not a live music photographer – it’s too hard. You have great music playing and you can’t dance and bust-a-groove unless you wanted everyone in the bar/club staring at you or having your camera equipment stolen. I do like these photos though.
Randy: Taken at the first blues dance we held at the Yonge & Bloor studio this year, it is still my go to picture when I’m making fliers and pamphlets for blues dancing.
Randy: TUX – the Toronto University Exchange – is in my opinion the best lindy hop exchange we have in Toronto. How awesome is it when the best exchange is run by volunteer university students. For TUX3, I set up a photo-booth for the friday dance and had a blast letting dancers be themselves. This picture are two of my favorite asians in Toronto – Kevin and Greg.