CRLS Dance Performance, January 2010
Isabel danced in the high school modern dance program. CRLS is lauded for its arts programs in general.
Photographic conditions were tough: low light (no flash allowed), often fast motion, and a partially obstructed view (mostly people in front) from a regular seat position. After some experimentation, I went with high ISO (800-1600), 50mm and 85mm prime lenses stopped down to about f/2.5 for some extra image quality and especially depth of field (using aperture priority), and often relatively low shutter speeds (generally 1/20th sec. and up), using my EOS 5D on a monopod for stability. The 5D's full frame sensor handles high ISO quite well; I would've been fine sticking to 1600. I liked the tighter cropping of the 85 better than the 50. Better knowledge of the pieces would've allowed me to anticipate better compositions. Focus is key with wide apertures; I tried to make sure I had positive focus where I wanted it, using a single focusing point, but didn't always succeed. The monopod worked well; I didn't have room for a tripod.