Ambit was on the scene for almost all of Creative Music Guild’s annual festival, which brings improvised dance and music together through collaborative performance. Images of the event are special, in that they represent an immediate experience, one that cannot necessarily be replicated. Photography captures the moment which is completely fleeting, and in improvisation, the moment can be unsettling, blurry. The photographer hawks out the perfect moment and strikes their shutters in hopes of capturing the artist in creative honesty. These images document that movement and hold it still.

On Friday night and Saturday afternoon, I did my best to cover the scene with a Canon PowerShot A590-IS, with a little supplement from the iPhone 5c, just trying to reach press standards. I did nothing to alter them before bringing them to you today, but probably should have. Friday, Jenny Scholten stepped up the game and used a Nikon D7000. Her images achieve the highest standard of performance photography. I understand she also held back on after effects. Saturday was split with me working from Noon to 5pm and Jairus Dathan Smith capturing the night program from 7pm on. Jairus used his Panasonic Lumix GH3. He found the balance between standard press and artistic performance photography.

Between the three of us, we managed to document almost every performance at the Improvisation Summit of Portland 2015. It should interesting for the technically minded to compare each camera, each photographer, but for everyone else, there are a lot of pretty pictures and people to gawk, and for those who attended, memories to relive.




Photos by Sean Ongley


Photos by Jenny Scholten


Photos by Sean Ongley and Jairus Dathan Smith

Published by Thru Collaboration

Sometimes it's good to work together. That is what this article is all about. Not one author can be attributed to this work, so it is a collaboration. Details are in the text.

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