motion & SounD Left, this dancer’s skirt is spangled with metal “jingle” cones, and her footwork is controlled and intricate. “Each dance has its own personality. The Jingle Dance is poised and dignified. I love how the characteristic movements of each dance are recorded differently by the camera.”
Last Dance It’s getting late, but the children aren’t ready to call it a night. “As a photographer, I’m always looking to capture moments that tell a story. I remember the sense of victory when I clicked the shutter on this shot, capturing a boy coaxing a man to continue dancing,” says Johnson.
Tiny dancer Opposite, the pow wow is a family event, with competitions for children as young as toddlers. “As I was sitting on the sideline, this little dancer swooped in for a closer look at my camera after an intertribal dance, which invites everyone into the ring to show off their best moves.”
Paying tribute The pow wow begins with a Veterans Dance led by former service members, or “warriors,” in attendance. “The reverence for military service is palpable and touching,” Johnson says.
two worlds “When you’re young, a hot summer night seems electric with anticipation, whether strapping in for a thrill ride or waiting on the sideline for your competition to begin,” Johnson says.
Show of strength The Fancy Dance, with all its flashiness, vigor, and athleticism, is generally performed by young men. When the drum beat stops, the dancers have to strike a pose. The pow wow is also a competition for groups of singers and drummers, who sit in circles beating large, hide-covered drums with mallets and singing in unison.