Welcome to the Ballroom...
I have photographed my little sister since I was 10 years old. When she was 3, and flip-flopped across the stage in back walkovers for her first gymnastics/dance performance, I was there with my new camera, a little box 126 with a flash cube. When she was 6, I had acquired a new disc camera just in time to capture her as a flower girl in our oldest brother's wedding. At age 11 she competed in a youth beauty pageant. Shortly after the pageant she wore the pageant dress in our older sister's wedding as flower girl and again, I had a new camera. My father had given me the choice of a decent new camera at the age of 14 or a car when I was 16. One of the biggest and best decisions of my life. My new Minolta XD11 in hand, my little model and I headed out to the backyard to practice before the big wedding. Fast forward to high school and captain of the dance team and then again to her own graduation photos.
College came for both of us, and she was performing for the UW Green Bay Fighting Phoenix as captain of the UWGB dance team. The hardest wedding I ever photographed was hers, as both my older sister and I were matrons of honor in the wedding. My poor husband on that day, had charge over our two young boys who were wreaking havoc everywhere.
My photography of her morphed to include her family, as it began to grow. First came her Goldens; Simba & Nala. Then one day she had a little boy followed shortly by little girl and finally a parrot. A couple of new dogs and lots of family photos later, she has gone back to her youth and has begun to dance again.
Recently I was able to photograph her on the Ballroom Dance floor as she competed in the Tango, Foxtrot, Waltz, Viennese Waltz, Rhumba, Cha-Cha, Swing, Mambo, Bolero, and Bolero Contemporary. As I watched her gracefully pour herself from a sitting position off of her partner's shoulder, up-side-down in to a back walkover in her solo performance, I was reminded of that little girl flip-flopping across the stage. If you have a minute, take the time to watch pure grace in motion as my little sister and many others swirl across the ballroom floor to create magic and romance. It does the heart good. Enjoy both the videos and stills that can be found in the featured photos.
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