Understanding Dance

— 06/01/2016 by Monika Wertman —

Ballet and dance, especially the classical variety has always been my favorite to capture in photos.  I danced as a child and teen and my oldest danced seriously through high school and even attended a performing arts high school.  We were both trained in the Ceccetti method, and learning to understand the dancer’s body through training stays with you.  When I work with dancers, this knowledge really helps and makes it easy to show what I would like to receive from them in photos.


Dancers are wonderful creatures who instinctively know what looks right if they are at least a few years into their training.

ballet dancer

It is important to also understand that not every pose looks good in pictures,and that certain poses need to be shot from certain angles.  It is equally important for a photographer to see when the dancer is over her pointe, has the correct turnout and is holding her shoulders correctly.  All of these nuances can make or break the image.

ballet dancer

I have always felt intrigued by the “behind the scenes” aspect of daily training.  The element that makes the dancer tick.  As an audience we only see the beautiful outcome of countless rehearsals in the studio, but never the stretches, the rituals and the comfort zones that all dancers have.

ballet dancer

I have captured a few of those over the years and am sharing a couple of them in this post.

ballet dancer

I am also always intrigued by contrasting the softness of dance against something contrary, something hard and unusual.  Sometimes, however, it is nice to just capture the pure beauty of a certain gesture in warm light.


ballet dancer

If you have a dancer, consider Wertman Photography to capture her or his essence.  We understand how to portray it and how to create beautiful images.