For Dancers: Emotional Content

We are only a couple months away from the next audition season. If you follow me, you know I’m always trying to find new ways for your images to stand out from the pack. Here’s what has come to the light in the last two years. It now seems like you often can’t even get into the auditions if you don’t pass through a pre-screening with your photos and videos. This year, I have a new edge that I’d like to share with you.

Emotional content.  

We’ve always talked about fine tuning your technique and then adding “face” or quality.  The dancers that can take it farther and really create a mood or character in their movements really bring down the house. The shots that you can’t stop looking at, that make you think about what is on the other side of that image are what I’m talking about.

It seemed as if for every dancer I shot for our Move The Vote campaign, putting on that red box of lipstick and talking about their stories, what moved them to participate in the project, what had happened to them in the last two years, had this substantive effect. Each dancer was primed and ready to bare all even before they stepped in front of my lens, and that made their images super powerful and real, and we got there very quickly.

I’m starting to run that trick with our audition photos. First we build the dancer’s shot from the bottom up for line and technique, and then I prime them for emotional content. Sometimes it’s hard to get both at the same time when we are being super technical, but when it does happen, MAGIC! Images that you can’t stop looking at are our goal and adding that extra level of performance really has you stand out.

Try it next time you are shooting!  Here are a couple of steps to get you going:

1) Think not just about the shape or pose you are making but also a mood or emotional attachment to the shot from the beginning.

2) Fine tune your angles and lines. Start from the bottom up: your supporting leg then torso then arms and head line.

3) Add your mood or emotional content in a mark.

4) Really let the emotion wash over you before you perform your movement or pose and keep it going as you release into the movement.

5) Fine tune your movement as sometimes the extra energy of an emotion changes the way you perform it.

Give it a shot and let us know how this works for you!!!

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Robyn Jutsum

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