Inside the Photographer’s Mind: Lois Greenfield

Dance Photographer Lois Greenfield told us she’s been shooting more or less the same way since she started.

On our latest episode of Inside the Photographer’s Mind, Lois Greenfield graced us with her presence, knowledge, and overall creative thought process. Lois started out in photography as a photojournalist in theaters, but then she decided to do a different type of work in studios. Of any modern dance photographer, Lois is truly one of a kind. I reference this heavily in our interview. While Lois started out in film, shooting with a Hasselblad camera and Broncolor Lights mostly with black and white film, since moving to digital, she’s been able to do much more.

Lois often refers to these sessions as blind dates, but they’re interconnected because all of her experiments come from her network of known dancers. When she is commissioned for dance photography, she does full casting calls and there is a much more thorough process. But Lois feels that in some ways she is both a documenter and a creator. She gives directions a bit but mostly allows things to happen organically. In fact, that’s how Lois feels she gets her best photos.

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Lois started out not even looking through the camera. She would frame the scene, know what she was going to get, focus to a certain distance, and shoot after some communication with the dancer on where to be located. By being so into the moment, Lois was able to document all of these gorgeous moments.

Artwork and the lighting in museums and other places (like on sculptures) heavily influence the way her photos look. In fact, she considers every one of her photos to be a sculpture of her own.