Led by award-winning dance photographer Rose Eichenbaum, this workshop focuses on the art of photographing dance and dancers. Produce stunning visual images by capturing the beauty of the physical body, the essence of a dancer's gesture, the choreographer's vision, and the spirit of performance.

Details for the 2016 Art of Photographing Dance workshop coming soon.


Increase your understanding of the principles of photography: lighting, composition, perspective, and the interface of the temporal and bodily nature of dance. This workshop provides intimate classes, photography sessions with professional dancers in a variety of locations and situations, individual and group critiques, and immersion in the performances, events, and educational offerings of the world-renowned Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival. 

Workshop participants will be encouraged to bring their own imagination, creativity, and innate sensibility to the creation of their photos. The most compelling dance photographs reveal not only the athletic prowess of a subject, but the artistry with which the images were conceived and executed.

Topics and assignments will include: 
  • Choreographing your own dance photos
  • The essential dance portrait
  • Action shots
  • Photos for dance marketing
  • Dance documentation
  • The creation of fine art dance images
Participants will develop their photographic eye and unique aesthetic, hone technical skills, build portfolios, gain familiarity with the mechanics and vocabulary of dance movement, and learn to communicate with dancer-models collaboratively, safely, and effectively.

For aspiring professional and advanced amateur photographers with a working knowledge of digital photography and basic Photoshop or Lightroom; ages 18 and up. Younger applicants will be considered on a case by case basis.

The Jacob's Pillow Experience
Lauded as "the dance center of the nation" (The New York Times) Jacob's Pillow offers workshop participants the chance to dive into the world of dance while in residence on the historic and bucolic campus, among an international community of artists and dance lovers. 

  • Attend Festival performances
  • Work side by side with significant and emerging dance artists
  • Attend Festival artist talks, film screenings, exhibitions, tours, and open rehearsals
  • Follow your special interests in the Archives' rich resources of videos, historic films, photographs, and programs representing more than a century of dance.

Sample Daily Schedule
7:30-9:30am  Early bird shoot assignment (optional)
8:00-9:30am  Breakfast
8:00-9:00am  Community Dance Class (optional)
9:30-11:00am  Critique of photos, preparation for shoots
11:00am-12:15pm  Workshop Session
12:15-1:15pm  Lunch
1:30-5:00pm  Shooting sessions, live rehearsals, and setups
5:00-6:00pm  Dinner
6:15-7:00pm  Attend Inside/Out performance
7:30-7:45pm  Pre-Show Talk by Pillow Scholar (optional)
8:00-10:00pm  Attend a Festival performance or edit photos in the lab

Evening options:
Attend Post-Show Talk (Thursday and Friday)
Social time in the Pillow Pub with dance artists, faculty, and staff
Personal editing time
Festival Finale celebration with artists (Saturday)

Photography at Jacob's Pillow
The Pillow has nurtured rich and fruitful relationships with dance photographers over eight decades, beginning in the 1930s with John Lindquist and continuing with John Van Lund in the 1940s and Jack Mitchell in the 1950s. The Archives at Jacob's Pillow houses tens of thousands of dance photos and negatives, including images by George Platt Lynes, Edward Weston, Barbara Morgan, and George Hoyningen-Huene. Annual exhibits showcase and give insight into dance and dance photography, and leading photographers including Annie Leibovitz and Philip Trager have discussed their work in public talks. In recent years, many renowned photographers have shot at the Pillow, including Rose Eichenbaum, Mike Van Sleen, Christopher Duggan and Toby Old. Each summer Jacob's Pillow also offers a 15-week internship in Photography. 

Photographs by Workshop Director Rose Eichenbaum

The Art of Photographing Dance at Jacob's Pillow

Details for the 2016 workshop coming soon.

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