Whether using stationary supports, traveling supports, or freeform techniques, the operator of the camera is empowered with the ability to influence the qualitative nature of the resulting footage. Attention to subtle nuances while partnering the camera, such as weight-shifts, breath, and energy can drastically increase the success by which source footage communicates effort. This attention to “the how,” which Alwin Nikolais calls “motion,” is determined by the precise combination and delivery of time, space, and shape components. All that dancers know about performance techniques comes into play here. Sensitivity is key.
For an in-depth look at the dancer’s ability to transfer energy from the body, through the camera, and into the resulting footage, see Glenn’s chapter, “Performance Techniques Behind the Lens: Applying the Nikolais/Louis Philosophy of Motion to Cinematography,” in Art of Motion: Current Research in Screendance, which was published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in 2014.