LOCATION: DIANE KELLEY DANCE STUDIO TEENAGER PHOTOGRAPHED: NATALIE PHELPS PHOTOGRAPHER: MICHELLE WRONSKI Visual Communication Spring 2013 Final Project
For my final project, I photographed Natalie Phelps at our dance studio stretching and improvising. Dancing is also a great form of exercise, especially at the level that Natalie and I are at, where we compete on a team. Natalie and I dance together, and we can both agree that dancing has made us all-around better people. We’ve not only learned the art of dance, but we’ve learned time-management, discipline, and many life skills.
Before Natalie begins to dance, she needs to make sure she is stretched so she doesnâ€™t pull any muscles. It is especially important as dancers to stretch, because some movement involves a lot of flexibility.
Natalie is stretching her head to her toes. Some refer to this stretch as a butterfly or frog. I think she looks like a frog, which is why I titled this photo, â€œfroggyâ€?.
DOWN THE CENTER
For this stretch, Natalie has to have her legs in a straddle, keeping her knees straight and feet point. Her legs also must be turned out. She then lengthens her torso out and down to the ground.
QUADRICEPS Natalie is now stretching out her quadriceps. This is a huge muscle that we need to make sure is especially warmed up.
EVERY MUSCLE Dancers need to make sure that their feet are fully stretched. Whether we are pointing them or flexing them, if they arenâ€™t warmed up, they could cramp. This is one of the many ways that we warm up or stretch our feet.
BIG OR SMALL There are so many tiny muscles in our feet that we donâ€™t realize are there, which is why itâ€™s very important to warm them up, especially as dancers.
UP&OVER This stretch will focus on the entire back side of the leg on the bar.
COUPÉ Coupé is both an action and a position. It means “to cut”. This requires plenty of balance along with the engagement of your core and legs.
Natalie is now improvising, which means she is freely dancing without any choreography given to her. This is typically where a dancer can really express themselves and their emotions.
Sometimes when improvising, the still moments mean the most. It’s about doing the most impressive tricks, in fact, there are no tricks “allowed” when improvising. Tricks can be turns, kicks, leaps, flips, and so on. Improvising involves a lot of creativity.
Published on Jun 13, 2013