Dancers in Sacred Spaces – #openskyopenroad

person jumping and dancing under trees


The Dean’s Award for Summer Research conference was last Friday. It was incredible to see the work that everyone has done over the last six months come together. I was very inspired by my panel, and I was excited to see the overlapping themes that many of the other panelists and I were studying. I look forward to exploring this more later; hopefully some lovely collaborations will come out of the conference day!

So everyone, congratulations, and thanks for sharing your work! I feel so thankful to have been a part of this community.

I wanted to take a minute to share some of my own work my #openskyopenroad trip. I only posted  a few photos on my last blog post, so I figured I’d share a few more! 

On my road trip, I started a project I’m currently calling “Dancers In Sacred Spaces.” I get in touch with dancers and asked them to think of a place that is significant to them for some reason. It could hold spiritual, emotional, artistic, or historical significance for them. I met them at their chosen space, and we made dance portraits there. 

I started this project in an attempt to make dance portraits that were about more than simply a dancer’s body. So often as dance photographers, we focus only on the shape that the body is making within the frame, and lose the greater energy or soul of the person who is inside that body. I wanted to create portraits of “bodies in space” (which just happens to also be the name of my concentration,) that use both the person and the space they are in as a part of the narrative of the photograph. 


I will share two of my favorite shoots here. One is of Dan, who is a dancer with the Cincinnati ballet. He brought me to one of his favorite parks in Cincinnati. The other is Lauren, who is a dancer and actress based near New Orleans. She invited us into her home, where both she and her sister live. They use it as studio space, her for dance and her sister for painting. Both were incredible shoots. 

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Congratulations again, everyone!