Dance Solo Photos Suggestions

Started Jan 26, 2013 | Questions thread
Shamus1 Senior Member • Posts: 1,717
Re: Dance Solo Photos Suggestions


A couple of suggestions. I shoot pro dance and among the multiple bodies I use, , I have a 5DMkIII, EF70-200L f2.8 II, EF24-70L f2.8 II, EF85L 1.2 & the 1.8, EF135L….

That body and lens should give sharp images, mine does. One thing to remember, if your focus point is on a plain colored surface, the camera may have difficulty getting an accurate focus. Try focusing on a plain colored wall and you will see the difficulty... Your granddaughter is wearing a solid color outfit which if you focus on that may give you some issues. You might want to try adjusting your focus point for the face and see if that improves your shots. Also I usually use my thumb on the AF-On to initiate focus lock vs. the half shutter press. More control...

Also I find that 1/250 to 1/300 is usually sufficient for most dance unless shoot a Turkish “Whirling Dervish” (I shoot a lot of belly dance). While f2.8 is fine for soloists, remember on a FF body that’s a really narrow depth of field. Might want to consider f4 to f5.6 if sharpness is an issue. You can always blur in post processing. When I shoot, the most critical is the shutter speed as I don’t want motion blur (except if shooting a drummer’s hands). I set that first, then pick what DOF I want with the aperture. I control my exposure with the iso on the fly , as you did, but I usually shoot manual.

The 5DMkIII handles high iso great and if you’re shooting RAW, easily corrected.

Also be aware of the background when you select you position (Do you really want the audience in your shots, or if using flash, AVOID MIRRORS LIKE THE PLAGUE! Sometimes if you put you back to a mirror and bounce your flash into it backwards, you might get a nice effect).

Since you weren’t using flash, consider shooting high speed fps (memory cards are no longer that expensive) for multiple shots as it will give you greater selection afterward. Have to be gentle on the shutter tho if you only want single shots in that mode. While it’s a personal taste, I prefer a little higher saturation level for a little more pop. Remember with the size of the 5DMkIII’s files you can easily crop in post for better composition.

The best advice is get to know your camera and lens and learn what it will and will not do. My 5DMkIII or 1DMkIV will shoot under extreme conditions where my 1DMkIII or 5DMkII cannot. If I'm shooting ballet, the 1DMkIV can’t be beat, as leap runs at 10 fps make life easier.

Most important, have fun with it and things will get better. You have a great camera and lens system and this forum has a lot of members with good advice and experience.

I did a crop the shot where your granddaughter is looking over her shoulder, and added some saturation and blur. If you like, I can put it here for your viewing on a subsequent post.

 Shamus1's gear list:Shamus1's gear list
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV Canon EOS 5D Mark III Canon EOS Rebel SL1 Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 80D +27 more
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