Being born and raised in a tropical island myself, people often find it odd when I tell them I prefer the cold temperatures of the winter. In many ways, I feel winter invites intimacy and reflection. It also carries a sense of melancholy and nostalgia which I’ve always been fond of. We seek shelter, warmth and comfort, often times in the arms of loved ones. It also can turn into a time of renewal, much as the caterpillar hides for a while within its cocoon to come out as a butterfly in due time. Winter is natures way of telling us to take it slow.
After photographing with the dancers in public and urban spaces I wondered what would the outcome be if turned things around and photographed them in private and intimate spaces. More specifically their own apartments. As the temperatures drop and it becomes harder for the dancers to perform outdoors in the winter, it seemed fitting to use the season as motivation to shoot this different series of works. I thus began developing the #DanceSnug Series on late November of 2015 and have continued pursing it this winter.
My thought was to create a body of work that would resemble that same spirit of reflection and intimacy which wintertime provokes. The result has been an incredibly poetic group of images. Where in the streets I would find the “power dancer”, at home I would come upon a lyrical and subtle one. Because of the intimate and comfortable mood their personal spaces provide, often times we agree to depurate the form and explore the lines of their bodies in its simplest manner.
Photographing indoors, specially in NYC, does come with it’s challenges but at the same time with its own rewards. Because the spaces are smaller, movement is limited. The indoors window lighting however, caresses and enhances their bodies in a whole new way. This allows me navigate the photography differently than I would do outdoors. Here is more about the perfect orchestration of light, shadow, body and spirit.
All images and text ©2016 Omar Z Robles. All Rights Reserved. Do not copy or use with out written consent from Omar Z Robles.