Previously, I shared photographs of some of the dance groups at XXX Festival Boliviano, the 30th annual Bolivian Festival held at the Prince William County Fairgrounds in Manassas, Virginia on September 3, 2017. In this post I share photographs of many of the individual dancers during their performances.
I loved watching the large groups perform moves in sync, all jumping or spinning together to the music. I admire the training and skill required to move as a group. But I also loved finding and photographing individuals, trying to capture the moves of a single person, showing their emotion and helping tell their story as a part of the group.
I recall a few times when a performer saw me photographing and turned to smile for the camera. There is at least one photograph in this set like this. But most of these images were created during a performance while the person was focused on the dance.
The weather changed throughout the day. It began slightly overcast, which was great. It provided a nice soft light on the dancers, creating beautiful soft shadows. But before long the sky cleared resulting in direct sunlight illuminating the performers, casting a more harsh and well defined shadow. The sun stayed out most of the rest of the day, but occasionally a cloud would move in front of the sun and for a brief period we’d have softer light again.
I really don’t consider myself a people photographer. I spend far more time photographing nature: animals, insects, flowers, landscapes. But events like this make me realize I can also enjoy photographing people, especially in such candid, fluid settings, even though it can be challenging. I have much still to learn and that’s perhaps part of why I enjoy it.