How I Got the Shot – Finding Inspiration

We are just loving this shot of Giovanna, a student who came in for some portfolio images in addition to audition photos. Before creative shoots, Rachel gets on the phone with her dancers to have a conversation where she grabs inspiration from their personal stories, likes and dislikes in order to feature them in the best light. Before we know it, we see her creative vision come to fruition; beautiful and powerful moments are captured and voila, we’ve got the shot!

Dancer Pictured: Giovanna Maria, Ballet Dancer

Our studio assistant, Shannon, sourced the branches from a park in Brooklyn and braved the NYC subway system with the bundle of twigs.  After painting them to the Rachel’s requested color, we rigged them to background stands with fishing wire and gaff tape; after all, if it can’t be fixed with gaff tape (or duck tape…)

The lighting for this shot was kept really simple.  We used a gridded medium soft-box as our main light up high on camera right. To highlight both the trees, our dancer, (and lovely assistant, Ed, as in our test shoot!) we had two 1×3 gridded strip soft boxes in the back corners of the space.

Curious as to what gear we used?

Nikon D5
Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 VR ED G III
Profoto Air Remote
Profoto D2 1000 watt x3
Chimera Super Pro X Medium Softbox with grid
Profoto RFI 1×3 strip softbox with grid x2
Avenger Stands
12.6 ft background pole with supper clamps



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Emily Carriero

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