When local dance extraordinaire Breena Cocco contacted me about doing a Panama City dance photographer session I was pretty excited. I have much respect for dancers and the amazing ways they can move their bodies to music. While I love the art of dance, anyone that knows me knows that I myself am a horrible dancer. Sure, my wife has taught me the running man and I learned how to moonwalk back in the 1980s, but that just about encompasses everything I know about dancing. My dancing style is a horrible combination of Elaine from “Seinfeld” and Ronald Miller from the movie “Can’t Buy Me Love.” My seven-year-old son is a better dancer than I am!
Over the years I have photographed lots of live dancing, but nothing like what Breena had in mind. She was looking for a more gritty photo session vs. a polished/more static “on stage” session. Growing up on a skateboard, I am accustomed to roaming the streets in search of the perfect skate spot, so roaming the streets looking for the perfect photo locations is right up my alley (pun intended). I searched out a few spots and Breena had also done some recon, so we hit the streets for our Panama City dance photo session a couple hours before sunset.
At our first location we started out by getting a few head shot variations and then got down to the nitty gritty – the dance. I did not realize how cool dancers dressed. Breena had these amazing outfits that really photograph well. I broke out some lights, she broke out some dance moves and we got several nice photos at our first spot.
After Breena worked up a sweat dancing, I worked up a sweat by carrying my lights down the street to our next spot. This location yielded itself to lots of variety and I am glad Breena found it. She switched into a more colorful outfit that was a great contrast to the muted tones of the old building. This is were she taught me a new dance move to add to my repertoire….the rock and roll jump. After a few bad attempts, I finally got a good one and have continued to work on it since then, although I think I am getting worse at it rather than better. I even attempted the jump on our family’s latest Christmas card. I will keep working on it and hopefully do the move the justice it deserves.
Now that my dance lesson was over, we moved on to our last location. I spotted this really beautiful blue wall during my cruises around the backstreets and Breena agreed to give the location a try. By this time the sun was getting pretty low, so we had to kick it into high gear. With some help from Breena’s mom I raised the light on my stand as high as it would go and we got a nice series of dance photos against the blue wall. I got a little creative and moved one of my lights behind some scaffolding to create a more dynamic effect with the photo. We were all happy with the photos from the Panama City dance photo session and we called it a night.
If you are looking for a choreographer or dancer, Breena is your girl. She is great at what she does and has a wonderful personality. I hope we get the chance to work together again someday.
Keep dancing everybody and when you learn some sweet moves, hit me up and we will schedule your Panama City dance photographer session.