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Swan ballerinas at the Lake
  
 
friscoron
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Congratulations to friscoron for winning Feature Thread of the Week with 10 votes - View Previous Winners


Seems like 90% of what I post here are my dance shots, but it really makes up probably less than 10% of my business. I think it's just where I'm able to flex my creativity the most, plus I have such a huge appreciation for dancers. I promise my next FM post won't be dancers, but rather an Ice Queen composite shoot that I'm doing this coming weekend.

Okay back to this shoot. We got lucky and it warmed up to the upper 60s here in the Chicagoland area this past weekend, so the local dance company I shoot for wanted me to do some marketing shots for them for their spring production of Swan Lake.

I brought four lenses for this shoot, and used three of them (70-200, my workhorse for outdoor dance shoots; my 85 f/1.4G, and my 24-70. I brought my 14-24 too, just to be safe, as I knew I'd be working with 10 dancers, but never pulled it out. For any individual dancer shots, I shot wide open at f/2.8 with my 70-200, and for the groups, I stopped down to f/4.5 to f/7.1. I wanted to be sure all dancers were sharply in focus with any group shots.

Comments always welcome.

1.






2.






3. Edited to incorporate changes suggested by Steve and Dan.






4. Edited to incorporate changes suggested by Steve and Dan.






5. Okay, I had to include this one. We were moving to another part of the lake and the "swans" started running, flapping their wings. Note the mud on the bottom of their pointe shoes. :-)




:

6. Added a flash to this one (two, actually) as I wanted to retain the blue sky.






7.






8. Flash again to retain the setting sun.






Edited on Feb 21, 2017 at 05:19 PM · View previous versions



Feb 21, 2017 at 06:02 AM
Steve Wylie
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Hi, Ron,

A couple of thoughts and questions. I like the concepts here, with swans at the lake. In your second and fourth shots, there isn't much contrast between the water and the white costumes. Do you think it would be a good idea to drag down the luminance of the water just a bit to increase that contrast level? Not as much as in your first photo, but just a bit? Also, in your third photo, what's happening a the left edge of the image? I really like this composition, but that aspect is a question for me. I also like your seventh shot a lot, and my favorite is the running swans. The only thing that would improve that one is a sound track of them cackling!



Feb 21, 2017 at 06:34 AM
Danpbphoto
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Hi Ron!
I agree with Steve. White on white blends together too much. The "flying wing(6)" formation is great as is the bridge...nicely done.
Dan



Feb 21, 2017 at 02:16 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake



Hey Steve, thanks for your suggestions! I really didn't think there was enough blue in the lake to pull the luminance down in relation to the white costumes. But it worked fairly well, I think you'll see a distinction between the two now. As for the bridge shot, I added a sun flare there. Late last night, I really liked it, but seeing it from someone's perspective who wasn't there, I can see that it could look odd. So I removed it.


Steve Wylie wrote:
Hi, Ron,

A couple of thoughts and questions. I like the concepts here, with swans at the lake. In your second and fourth shots, there isn't much contrast between the water and the white costumes. Do you think it would be a good idea to drag down the luminance of the water just a bit to increase that contrast level? Not as much as in your first photo, but just a bit? Also, in your third photo, what's happening a the left edge of the image? I really like this composition, but that aspect is a question for me. I
...Show more




Feb 21, 2017 at 05:23 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake



Thanks, Dan!


Danpbphoto wrote:
Hi Ron!
I agree with Steve. White on white blends together too much. The "flying wing(6)" formation is great as is the bridge...nicely done.
Dan





Feb 21, 2017 at 05:24 PM
Steve Wylie
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Thanks, Ron. So now, where's the sound track of the fleeing swans??


Feb 21, 2017 at 06:34 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Steve Wylie wrote:
Thanks, Ron. So now, where's the sound track of the fleeing swans??


Maybe I should create a GIF, huh?



Feb 23, 2017 at 02:18 PM
Jim Rickards
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Well done, Ron. Really enjoyed this set - showed it around to friends too.


Feb 23, 2017 at 02:36 PM
unclechuck
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Ron

Always enjoy and appreciate your work; these are super --- esp 6 & 8.

Charles




Feb 23, 2017 at 08:26 PM
BobnJake
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


LOVE # 3, great shot


Feb 24, 2017 at 02:38 PM
 


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lowside67
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


A very nice set of images! The one thing that jumps out at me is both of your flashed photos have a significant white balance challenge caused by the different colour of light from your flash vs the sun. There is no global adjustment that can fix this, but depending on your skill level, you could selectively rebalance the girls (their white outfits make this especially apparent) to warm them to match the overall tone of the image. I think that would result in a big improvement over those two images, the first of which I really like.

Cheers




Feb 24, 2017 at 04:43 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Jim Rickards wrote:
Well done, Ron. Really enjoyed this set - showed it around to friends too.


Thanks, Jim!



Feb 24, 2017 at 04:52 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


unclechuck wrote:
Ron

Always enjoy and appreciate your work; these are super --- esp 6 & 8.

Charles



Thanks, Charles! It was a fun shoot. Threw No. 8 together within a minute, then got two shots of each girl (one was a safety) before we lost the sun.



Feb 24, 2017 at 04:54 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


BobnJake wrote:
LOVE # 3, great shot


Thanks, Bob! That's probably my favorite shot of this session.



Feb 24, 2017 at 04:54 PM
Dave 1234
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


My favorites are #3 and #8 but all look nice, Ron. My favorite photo shoots are always dancers, outdoors. And it doesn't get any better than Swan Lake. You have me wistfully drooling. . .


Feb 24, 2017 at 07:28 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


lowside67 wrote:
A very nice set of images! The one thing that jumps out at me is both of your flashed photos have a significant white balance challenge caused by the different colour of light from your flash vs the sun. There is no global adjustment that can fix this, but depending on your skill level, you could selectively rebalance the girls (their white outfits make this especially apparent) to warm them to match the overall tone of the image. I think that would result in a big improvement over those two images, the first of which I really like.

Cheers



Thanks for your comment. I'll take another look at these.



Feb 25, 2017 at 03:06 AM
Herb
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


You must have had a heck of a challenge with them in front of the pond/lake. Had they been dressed in black I think it would be great....but the white on the nearly white background is challenging to say the least


Feb 25, 2017 at 04:15 AM
friscoron
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Dave 1234 wrote:
My favorites are #3 and #8 but all look nice, Ron. My favorite photo shoots are always dancers, outdoors. And it doesn't get any better than Swan Lake. You have me wistfully drooling. . .


Thanks, Dave. I wasn't even sure what I was shooting. They just called and said to meet at this park with the pond. When I saw them all in their Swan costumes, I thought that was pretty cool!



Feb 26, 2017 at 04:22 AM
friscoron
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


Herb wrote:
You must have had a heck of a challenge with them in front of the pond/lake. Had they been dressed in black I think it would be great....but the white on the nearly white background is challenging to say the least


Yeah, the pond was pretty icy so more white in it than I would have liked. But I'm not one to back away from a challenge, especially when dealing with 10 Swan Lake ballerinas!



Feb 26, 2017 at 04:23 AM
unclechuck
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Swan ballerinas at the Lake


friscoron wrote:
Yeah, the pond was pretty icy so more white in it than I would have liked. But I'm not one to back away from a challenge, especially when dealing with 10 Swan Lake ballerinas!


I guess 'ice water' clears up the mystery of the missing "Seven Swans a-swimming" frame!

Seriously, congratulations on your Feature Win: skill plus personality with a dash of daring = Great

Charles



Mar 07, 2017 at 07:44 PM







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