Archive for the ‘Ballet’ Category

Connecting through Images Online

(Click on any image in this post to see in a LARGER size.)

The internet continues to amaze me, even after all these years.

Last week, a designer and university professor at Northern  Kentucky University, Hans Schellhas, sent me an email and asked if he could use one of my photographs for a design competition he was entering. I said “yes.”  The photo, of a ballet dancer, is incorporated into Hans’ design for a street poster, above.

There are over 200,000 images uploaded, just to Facebook, every MINUTE. I forgot to ask Hans how he found my image – I’m guessing he Googled “ballet images” and chose it out of a dizzying multitude of pictures.

Of course, Hans could have just lifted my picture without asking permission – this happens all the time to photographers. I appreciated his honesty in coming to me for permission.

Others from the US and foreign countries have found my work online. A man who writes a blog about clocks asked permission to use an image of mine of the famous clock over the information counter at Grand Central Station. Another gentleman from England saw some images I’d taken of Philip Johnson’s Glass House and hired me to go back to the Glass House and shoot a specific view from the interior of the house for a commercial project.  Increasingly, new clients come to me, have searched online for photographers in our local area here in Connecticut.

We’re connecting more and more with one another through the internet. We take it for granted now, but it still amazes me. Good luck with your competition, Hans!

Here’s the original of my image of Kristen, the ballet dancer. 

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.

“Individual, Indelible, Iconic Images”





Dance Extravaganza!

_DSC6967-EditOne of the highlights of the Darien performing arts year is the Darien Arts Center Dance Show, put on each October. This year, there were something like 18 different numbers, covering ballet, modern dance, hip hop, Indian Bollywood and other genres.



I had the privilege of photographing the dress rehearsal again this year. It’s a thrill to see how much fun the adult and youth dancers have putting on this show. Everyone’s enthusiasm was infectious.


Photographing a dance performance is difficult – I have so much respect for photographers who specialize in this work and do it well. They have to deal with poor lighting, strange lighting colors and fast moving subjects. Contrast that to my work in the studio where I have perfect lighting, colors I can control, and subjects that generally sit still !


For those of you who are interested in the technical details – I shot these images at ISO 4000. This produced some “noise” which I was able to reduce or eliminate in Photoshop Lightroom.


The other camera settings were generally: 1) manual mode, 2) shutter speed 1/800th of a second, 3) aperture F4.5, and 4) continuous focus.

_DSC7387-EditTo steady the camera, I used a monopod. A tripod would have been difficult, as the action moved so quickly. It would have been helpful to attend a rehearsal before the dress rehearsal, so I had some idea of the choreography and thus could anticipate the moves. This year, I was not able to do that, and so had to guess a bit as to where the action was going to be.


Congrats to all on a fabulous show!

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.

“Individual, Indelible, Iconic Images”


Be Positive: An Extraordinary Girl

Nicole is an extraordinary young woman indeed. This high school junior has a serious, life-threatening disease. She’s doing well now, but was very, very sick in the fall.

Nicole wears this pendant on her necklace: B+, Be Positive. From what I have leaned about Nicole and what I observed when I was photographing her in the studio, this is not just a nice idea for her – it’s a way of life. She is one confident, courageous and determined young lady. I’m sure her attitude has made all the difference in carrying her through these last few months. Nicole got her pendant from an extraordinary organization, The B+ Foundation, Inc. Check out their great work in supporting kids with cancer.

When she got her diagnosis in September, she cried in the doctor’s office, but has not cried once since.

Nicole is always smiling. This, of course, makes the photographer’s job easy. She was a joy to shoot with and has a wonderful easy and relaxed way about her.

I did catch one expression that was not an open smile. The family did not choose this image as one of their favorites, because it is so unlike Nicole NOT to be smiling. But I liked the picture because it shows her self-assurance and strength. Her blue eyes and gold nail polish are pretty awesome too!

You can read more about Nicole’s story on the Blythedale Children’s Hospital website, Nicole’s Miraculous Recovery. Be sure to see Nicole’s video at the bottom of the article.


The evening after our shoot, I got a note from Nicole’s mom, which read in part:

” It was the best medicine to spend 2 hours at Nicole’s photo shoot.  I could tell Nicole felt really at ease with you. The pictures are so beautiful. Thank you so much for taking time to create a beautiful keepsake for her.  I have lots of photos from this time — of Nic goofing around, of her getting chemo, with groups of friends — but none that truly capture her inner glow and spirit, which you have so artfully done.  She came home and was bursting to tell her friends about her adventure.  Moments like these are precious to me. I know we will always treasure Nicole’s photos.”

This is why I’m a portrait photographer. It’s a true blessing for me to take pictures of – and to get to know – inspiring people like Nicole. She and her family are in my prayers – this day and always.

Working both in the studio and on location, photographer Blake Robinson serves the Connecticut communities of Darien, New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Westport and Greenwich.