Self portrait, 2018

Self portrait, 2018


Marc Santos is a photographer who infuses motion into his still images. Showing motion in this way allows the viewer to time travel within the frame. Marc started shooting at an early age, learning from his father who was a professional photographer, striving to consistently create emotion-filled images. Marc is known for creating a positive and relaxed space on set that allows artists to feel safe and enable their daring nature. His images have been featured in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Marc has also produced images for music albums and book covers, having worked in legendary venues such as Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. “The Spirit of Dance” debuted as a seventeen piece gallery exhibit at The Salt Lake City Public Library in May 2018.

Artist Statement

I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of capturing multiple points in time within a single frame. For me, there is a certain allure when viewing an image knowing that my gaze is moving through time as well as space.

My work presented here, “The Spirit of Dance,” attempts to trace the movement of dancers and hold that movement within a static frame. In this way, the lines and shapes that dancers create with their bodies through movement is captured. Traces of light show movement through space, such as a leap or a run. Moving the camera also allows me to record an entire phrase of movement.

In order to show movement, these images are all long exposures. The dance movement is primary, but sometimes I move the camera as well. There are times when I want to match the dancer’s motion so I’m not using a tripod. Sometimes I get to watch a piece several times and make note of where and when to shoot. Other times this is not possible, such as with improvised pieces, and I instead rely on experience and intuition. The majority of post-production work is only cropping and toning. Removing pixels is rare in my work and is limited to very specific circumstances. I never alter a dancer’s body or position in any way. An organic approach to image making, similar to photojournalism, is important to me.