Rehearsing Company B (III)

Friday’s rehearsal was a complete run-through with the second cast, brief notes, and then a run through with the first cast. Still shot with work lights (camera set at 3200 ISO).

The majority of the shots were taken with my newly purchased Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.4G, which is the fastest lens that I’ve ever used (my 85 mm is 1.8). Unfortunately, I was still getting used to it during much of the first run-through.



  1. these are a fabulous set of photos. so well composed in a situation where it is hard to compose. if you were still getting used to the faster lens, i can hardly wait to see what happens when you have mastered it! these are really beautiful, dramatic photos, robert.

    1. Thanks, mom. I took over 1,000 shots during the one-hour rehearsal, mostly due to using the Nikon md 10 grip back, which allows 8 frames per second.

      I trimmed them down to around 360, out of which I selected these 11.

      Next week’s rehearsal will be done in costume, as well as with (I think) full lighting. I’m really looking forward to it.

      1. are you learning a lot from the editing down to the 11 you chose? do you have specific criteria or is it more “feeling”? i’ll bet you’re looking forward to photographing the dancers in costume. i am too.

      2. Basic stuff to start with… whether the shot is in focus, needed body parts are in the frame, what is happening in the background, that sort of stuff.

        Then comes the more technical things about the position of the dancer… are the jumps high enough, the feet pointed, legs properly extended, positions correct, facial expressions okay….

        I’m not looking for perfection, but these elements have to be good enough to pass review by the dancers and the person who is staging the ballet.

      3. ahha, that’s very interesting. a layered editing based on both the composition and an understanding of dance itself while also taking into account what the dancer and the person staging would respond too. that’s a lot going on!

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