Denver, Colorado USA-based photographer Kelley Dallas loves travel and cultural experiences. In fact, for 20 years before she married and had a child, she took an international personal trip nearly every year.
And she made the beautiful photograph of a ballet dancer seen here during a trip to Cuba.
Marriage and motherhood may have kept Dallas home a bit more in the past few years, but it hasn’t stopped her from continuing her passion.
“They say to photograph what you know. So, that is what I began to do – photograph my day-to-day life with my child. I started out with a more traditional approach to child photography, with posing and staged scenarios, but I quickly realized it wasn’t for me.”
Just as Dallas captured a beautiful moment in real time, un-posed, of the Cuban dancer while traveling, she now does the same with her spontaneous and documentary approach to family photography, with her young daughter as her muse.
But travel remains an important aspect of her life.
“Currently, my goal is to combine both passions – documenting my international experiences while traveling with my daughter,” Dallas says.
When their little girl was just four years old, she and her husband took her on a trip to Japan. “And now, my husband and our daughter, at age six, will be traveling to Italy with me for the SIPA celebration.”
Dallas said she first developed her love of travel and photography while on a trip to Europe as a 22-year-old fresh out of college.
“The appeal of photography was making a ‘piece of art’ with the click of a shutter,” she says. “I have a fine art background and would spend weeks to months on making my art. With photography, I was able to use my developed eye to create instant fine art. Although I go lightly on the editing and don’t even know Photoshop, I do really love creating a finished mini piece of art with each photo edit.
More recently, photography has allowed Dallas the opportunity to keep her creative and artistic side alive and thriving while simultaneously being more in the moment and patient with her daughter.
“I feel lucky to have found a passion that I can indulge in on a daily basis, while being present and available for my family.”
In the future, Dallas would love to teach, grow her professional business working with families to tell their stories, as well as continue to elevate the status of fine art documentary childhood photography through her highly valued authentic, honest approach.
“The documentary movement is much like the impressionist art movement of the late 1800s, where artists departed from the perfectly posed models for the creation of their art and moved toward the creation of paintings that gave impressions of everyday life,” Dallas reflects. “Pissarro and peasants, Manet and cafes, Degas and dancers.”
Location: Havana (Cuba)
Settings: 1/320 – f/3.2 – ISO 6400