Desert Genies

Desert Genies
Ballerinas in the desert sand

Friday, May 24, 2013

Boise ballerina, Katie. Freestyle Ballerina.

This is Katie by in an alley in old Boise by a green door. This is a really nice sport for photos, lots of natural light and color.
Katie is always a joy to shoot, so photogenic. She is like hitting the Easy button photographically.
Taken with the Nikon D3 and the 70-200.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Jessica is a professional ballerina with one of the main ballet companies in Boise. I received permission to shoot in this old building built in the 1870's. It is a really cool place with lots of window light and track lights in the ceiling. It was the first time I had been there so it was a lot of fun figuring out the best spots and Jessica was a great sport. These are taken with the Nikon D3 and the 85 1.4 with mostly window light.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

From my shoot a few weeks ago with Katie. As you can see Katie is a beautiful dancer.
This is an alley in downtown Boise and the building in the background was built in 1870. Love these old brick walls, they make excellent backgrounds for outdoor portraits.

Natural light with the Nikon D3 and the 70-200 lens.

We had a fairly nice day for a change, as it has been very windy and cold this spring in Boise.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Photo shoot with Ann in downtown Boise. Very cold spring day, rain showers and very windy. We moved around downtown and eventually came upon this old stone wall with some iron work on it. The bricks and iron work looked good with Ann's dark hair and outfit so we did quite a few shots here, until she was just to cold. 
There was a lot of pedestrian traffic going by here so several stopped to watch...seems pretty ballerinas are not a common sight on the streets of downtown Boise.
This was our last location of the day and it was a very productive shoot for images....will post more from the day later.
D3 and the 70-200, natural light.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

This is a photo of Nell on a bridge over the Boise river. This is a nice outdoor ballerina portrait...but the rest of the story is that it is 38 degrees outside.
We did a lot of running back to the car heater this day, but Nell was a trooper. Once she was warm we would head right back out.
We were rewarded with a surprising number of keepers especially considering the conditions.

Natural light with the Nikon D3 and the 85 1.4 lens.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

I normally don't shoot in full sun but this day it just worked out that way. This is Caitlin, she is a principal dancer at one of the ballet companies in Boise. We were doing a walkabout downtown when we came across this large mural of a woman in chains.

Well this seemed a perfect photo op for my Freestyle gallery. The dichotomy between the bondage of the lady in the mural and the freedom of the dancer makes for an interesting image.

We took 6 or 7 shots here. Caitlin was having fun with this one.

This is from a shoot Katie and I did together last week. Katie is a very dynamic and creative dancer. We have been out shooting 5 times now and every time we go out we get some good stuff.

In this shot I have my back up against a building using a 35mm lens due to not much room to work with.
I asked her not to do anything to crazy cause I didn't have a lot of frame to work with.

She threw this jump and I was so happy I did not clip her toes. We did two takes of this and this was the first shot.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Katie on the bridge.

This is an old bridge over the Boise river built in the 1800's I believe. I asked Katie to stand in the middle and do whatever she wanted. We shot a few jumps and poses and then she turned around and hit this shot. I know it was a good one when I took it and I walked over and showed it to her.
The light from a perfect cloudy day and Katies athleticism are what made this possible.
One of my favorites.

Monday, April 1, 2013


We were shooting next to the outside wall of an old prison in Boise, we call it the Old Pen. The evening sun shines down this small area between the wall and another building creating a bit of a light tunnel.
Taylor did two takes of this jump, I think this was the first one.

Katie and I have shot together a few times. She is a ballet instructor at the local university and very active in the local dance scene. She doesn't have the typical ballet dancers build because she also does a lot of aerial silks which requires a lot of strength.
This day we were shooting next to a 5' concrete wall that I have walked by 20 times and never saw it as a photo op. This day Katie went over to the wall sat down and hit this pose. One of my favorites from our shoot together this day.
This is natural light.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Welcome to my "Freestyle Ballerina", ballet art project.

I started this project three years ago....I just didn't know it at the time.

I recently decided to make shooting ballerinas my main focus. Shooting ballerinas out in the wild pushes all my creative buttons, beauty, action, drama and collaboration all rolled into one amazing subject.

Up to now I have photographed a few of the local professional and apprentice level ballerinas here in Boise. There are still a few local ballerinas I would love to shoot and that is a work in progress.

Over the next few months I will be adding a lot of content to this blog so if you like dance and ballerinas in particular please make this a regular stop in your internet travels.

The premise for the project is that I choose an environment outside of the dance studio and place the dancer into the setting/frame and set her free to creatively use the space. Sometimes I help them out but for the most part they do not need much help.
 It is interesting to watch how they kind of settle into the space and start trying things, they usually start with big moves and finish with smaller shapes/poses as they become more comfortable in the space.
Most of the time it is the last couple shots in a space that are the gems.

Along the way we entertain a lot of passersby and have a lot of laughs. We take a lot of pictures and keep the energy flowing by moving around a lot.

Almost all of the work will be done outside in natural light and with the Nikon D3 and the 70-200 F2.8 lens.

Here is a link to the main photo gallery for those that want to jump the gun and see the entire project as it is right now....a work in progress.
I will be adding a lot of content and culling, probably most of the shots that are in the main gallery now but to get a feel for where I am going, here is the existing gallery:

Here is the facebook page:

Here is the work in progress main gallery:!i=1868944867&k=njbSRSq

And a couple example shots: