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Ballet and Balloons

A forest photo-shoot with a beautiful dancer and black balloons

Ever since I saw this clearing near Duke campus I have been dying to photograph in it. The clearing has a giant fallen tree that looks a bit like a dinosaur skeleton. There is a small stream and the area is surrounded by woods. All and all, the space is perfectly magical for a shoot. I contacted a dancer I wanted to work with and she and I collaborated to create this photo-shoot. I got of a mystical vibe from the area, so I decided to bring along something whimsical and dramatic, so I picked up a bunch of black balloons. It is amazing how simple props and a single flash unit can transform an image.I wanted to create something interesting and beautiful that I hadn't seen before. The image should grab the viewer and say, something inexplicable and magical is happening to this woman. She is about to be pulled off the earth by these balloons, perhaps by an evil witch! I added a small speedlight to create more dramatic lighting, used black and white to highlight the lines in the image, and voila!

Many thanks to my wonderful dance partner, ShaLeigh. She was delightful to work with and I can't wait for our next collaboration. There are plenty of nooks around Durham that are begging to be photographed with a dancer. Check out a few more images below.


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