Caleb in Brooklyn | New York Dance Photography

The last time I was in New York City, I reconnected with a few friends from Jacob’s Pillow Dance. I did dance sessions with three of them while I was in town.

Caleb was one of them. The year I was at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, he performed with Dorrance Dance (I photographed them here). Last summer, he went back to perform with his own tap company Caleb Teicher and Company. Caleb has been touring the world teaching and performing with his new company. Plus, he told me about a secret hidden brunch place that was amazing!

Tap has always been one of the most challenging dance forms for me to photograph since it’s so fast paced and unpredictable. But the challenge is what makes it so fun and intriguing to me! For this session, I wanted to find some creative ways to photograph tap dance. I tried to focus on the feet, and I got some fun shots that way, but Caleb is so great at incorporating his whole body and moving fluidly, so I did a bunch of wide shots as well. Overall, I think we made some great portraits that show Caleb’s talent and the beautiful neighborhood of Willamsburg.

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We found this really cool mural outside a shoe store and Caleb was already wearing some green leather Chucks. Perfection!

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I loved being able to incorporate the skyline and shore into the photos. This is one of the things I love about New York City. The skyline is one the greatest features of my hometown of Chicago so I love any city that can show theirs off as well.

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

At A Crossroads Promo | Denver Dance Photography

One Sunday morning in February, about a dozen kids and a bunch of adults woke up at the crack of dawn and started running through the middle of the street. Did they all go crazy? Was there something in the water? Nope. They were just dancers.

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Park Hill Dance Academy and I planned out this elaborate dance creative session to promote their show, At A Crossroads (get tickets here!). We wanted to convey that theme of being at a crossroads in life, of decision making and turning points.

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Mary Chase Doll is one of the the guest choreographers for this work and she had the idea to do the photoshoot at the intersection by the dance studio. We had parents pushing the crosswalk buttons and watching for cars. I was up on a huge ladder, and Mary was shouting directions at the dancers from off camera. It was really fun to see everything come together to create Mary’s vision for the poster.

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We all had a super fun morning and got some really cool photos! I always love the behind the scenes shots too. Here are a few of the dancers practicing their moves and Karlyn talking to her students.

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

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6 Gift Ideas for Dance Teachers | Denver Dance Photography

Dance Teacher Appreciation Day is next Wednesday! Dance teachers work hard. Show your gratitude with these fun gift ideas. Below are seven gift ideas, from personal gifts to gifts from your whole class.

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Spa Day: Your dance teacher works hard and puts a lot of wear on their body. Treat them to a relaxing day at the spa or bring the spa to them. You can get them a gift card to a spa, like the Woodhouse Day Spas in Denver or DragonTree Spa in Boulder.

If you’re the crafty DIY type, you can make your own spa gift basket. Get some massage oils, lotions, bath bombs, and lots of Epson Salt. A dancer can never have too much Epson Salt.

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Leg Warmers: If you’re good at crocheting, handmade leg warmers is a very thoughtful gift for your dance teacher. Find out their favorite colors and make a pair they’ll love! Here are a bunch of free crochet patterns to get you started.

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Dance tickets: Gift your favorite dance teacher a night out. Get them a pair of tickets to a dance show they’ll love. The Newman Center in Denver always has a great season filled with dance companies from all over. There are tons of great local companies as well from Colorado Ballet to Cleo Parker  Robinson.

Dance Books: Misty Copeland’s “Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina
American Dance: The Complete Illustrated History by Margaret Fuhrer
Apollo’s Angels: A History of Ballet by Jennifer Homans

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Music: What dancer doesn’t love music? Getting your favorite teach a nice pair of headphones, a speaker set, or a subscription to Spotify Premium is a great way to give them the gift of music.

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Creative Session: A dance photography session can be a fantastic way to show your dance teacher how much you admire them. This gift not only shows them that you think they’re great, it shows them that you think their creativity is worth celebrating and showing off. Especially if your teacher doesn’t perform as much as they used to, a photo session is a ton of fun and a great way to get creative and “perform” in an out of the box way. I offer Denver and Boulder dance photography as well as session gift cards. Click here to find out more about creative dance sessions.

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Want to celebrate your creativity or honor someone else’s? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

Aerial Dance in Colorado Springs | Colorado Dance Photographer

I have always wanted to do an urban aerial dance session, so when Sadie and I met up for our photo shoot in Colorado Springs, we started wandering around the city looking for a place to set up. Well, it turns out the cops weren’t as excited about our idea. We started by going to a fire house and asking if they could help up with our project. They said no, so we kept searching. We finally found the perfect bridge to suspend the silks from and just as Sadie was finished tying all the knots and making sure they were secure, the police pulled up. They kindly told us to leave so we went to a nearby park instead. At the park, there was a really cool, vine-covered structure so we set up there. Before ending our session, Sadie did some dancing on land as well.

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Want dance portraits that show off your creativity? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

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Beach Maternity Dance | Denver Dance Photography

Karlyn and I met at the Park Hill Dance Collective photoshoot we did in the spring. She is the artistic director of the company and owner of Park Hill Dance Academy. We were both really excited to make maternity dance portraits so a month or so later, we headed to the beach with her partner, Kevin.

First the two of them did some partner work and even a couple of lifts. I’m pretty sure lifting one person is hard, but lifting one and a half people in sand must be way harder. Then Karlyn braved the water and even rolled around on the shore, because she is one badass mama!

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

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Travel Alert: New Orleans Sept. 3-5 | Dance and Family Photographer

I’m going on a super fun trip! Over Labor Day weekend, I will be in New Orleans with my best friend and a bunch of other cool people. NOLA has been on my travel wish list since the HBO show Treme came out. I love the richness and uniqueness of the culture there. My aunt once said that New Orleans culture represents what all of America should be. A mix of cultures that keeps the uniqueness of each, while creating a magic all it’s own.

While I’m visiting, I’ll be taking a limited number of dance and storytelling sessions on September 3rd, 4th, and 5th. I am offering in-home family storytelling sessions for all types of families and on-location creative dance sessions for individual dancers and companies, anywhere within the city of New Orleans. It could be years before I am back, so book now to save your spot. Fill out the form below, to book your NOLA session!

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Find out more about Creative Sessions and Storytelling Sessions and get in touch to book yours! 

Hamilton Musical Workshop | Colorado Dance Photography

Have you heard!? Hamilton is coming to Denver! I’ve been listening to the soundtrack on repeat and I think I have most of the songs memorized by now. I’ve also seen some killer dance photography from the Broadway production. I am so pumped!

This show is familiar to me though. Two years ago, at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Broadway choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler workshopped Hamilton‘s “Yorktown” with the Jazz and Musical Theater participants. They performed it that summer at Inside/Out and A Jazz Happening.

I remember my first reaction to hearing that there would be a hip hop Broadway musical about American history. I thought it was such a cool idea but I had no idea how popular this new hit would be. It was so interesting to see this piece come together. As the dance photography intern that summer, I was able to photograph each step throughout the workshop.

It was even cooler to see it performed in it’s final form at the Tony Awards. I recognized so many of the same elements and moves from two years before. It wasn’t until then that I realized what these students had been apart of. Something historical. Something revolutionary.

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.