Every summer, I dream of ways to make more art at the Pillow. I love photographing performances, and you know Inside/Out is my favorite space to shoot dance, but I was craving more.
I’ve always been inspired by John Lindquist’s dance photos on the elevated platform behind The Ted Shawn Theatre. The landscape around it has changed – there are more buildings, the Pillow Pub, the Doris Duke, and the vegetation has grown – but it’s still a perfect place to photograph dance in the natural light of the beautiful Berkshires sun.
Another compositional inspiration is Richard Avedon and his simple, powerful portraits on white.
The set-up of my Natural Light Studio itself was inspired by my friend (and photography hero) Clay Enos. When I told him that I wanted to do something similar to his Street Studio at Jacob’s Pillow, and I wanted advice on his construction, he said, “Take my Street Studio. Enjoy!” So thank you, Clay!!
These last two weeks, I was able to play in my new studio with dancers from Morphoses, Inside/Out and more, in addition to photographing fabulous performances by Lee Saar The Company and Vertigo Dance Company.
LeeSaar and Vertigo were amazing. I have a specific affinity for Israeli dance – the dancers bring such a specific intensity to the work. There’s drama and incredible strength. It’s really impressive.
This weekend I hope to work in my Natural Light Studio with LeeSaar’s husband and wife team. They’re game for doing studio portraits with me and I’d like to do something with them as a couple.
There is such a richness of artistry and talent that passes through the Pillow each week. My idea for the studio is to invite as many artists as possible to work with me in a five-minute portrait session. And I hope that by the end of the summer I will have photographed a few hundred artists. Excited to see what develops!