INSTAGRAM Photo Contest: Win a free print of this historical photograph. Check my Instagram now @KIKEO / 48 hours deadline / This post is the latest in the World of Dances Series, which profiles beautiful ballet and dance photographs, that photographer and National Geographic Expert Kike Calvo captures during his travels.
I could certainly say this photograph triggered my imagination to start working of my life-long-project World of Dances. It all started with an advertising campaign for the National Ballet of Panama. I got a phone call asking if I was interested in shooting a project for them. Their main goal was to create interest for ballet among younger generations and to those who are not familiar with it, which included me at the time. Their aim was to bring the ballet to the streets of Panama. Initially the approach was that the images were to be taken inside a theater. But as soon as I got into the project, I sought full creative freedom to really capture the essence of ballet and how I felt about it.
While doing this commercial photo assignment, I soon recognized that many elements of ballet had profound connections to my work. I felt that ballet dancers, like photographers, work very hard, with strong discipline and for long hours. Many times ballet viewers and audiences don’t really see all the hard work behind a performance, just as they don’t see all the hard work that goes into making powerful photographs. Both ballerinas and photographers make things look easy, but our respective audiences sometimes miss that there are thousands of repetitions on each technique needed to develop such perfection. Normally things that look beautiful and simple are the result of lots of very hard work.
Dancer: National Ballet of Panama
Ballet: National Ballet of Panama
Explore a selection of Ballet books
National Geographic Book “Stunning Photographs”
Dancers: Behind the Scenes with The Royal Ballet
Dancers Among Us: A Celebration of Joy in the Everyday