Pattern Recognition

by Dhamaka

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"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results"........ Albert Einstein

My new dance photography blog, DanceTog is here

My formal G20Voice blog is here

"When you're standing on a comfortable rug, you have to expect it to be pulled from under your feet sometimes"
........ Ben Moor
Global Warming - the debate

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This is my personal blog, not a venue for saleable images. In fact, because it's here that I share things that are important to me with the members of the moblog community, photo quality's not my priority. Events, occasions, achievements, thoughts, trips and experiments - you'll find them all here. Contact me for the development version of my photo portfolio, for a selection of saleable images or visit my dance photography blog or my website for cuttings. And remember that all photos remain my copyright unless I've specifically said otherwise.

* * * *

"Every time I see an adult on a bicycle I no longer despair for the future of the human race"
........ H G Wells

"All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better"
........ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Luck favours the prepared mind"
........ Louis Pasteur

"Never to get lost is not to live, not to know how to get lost brings you to destruction, and somewhere in the terra incognita in between lies a life of discovery."
........ Rebecca Solnit

"Give, give, give -- what is the point of having experience, knowledge or talent if I don't give it away? Of having stories if I don't tell them to others? Of having wealth if I don't share it? I don't intend to be cremated with any of it! It is in giving that I connect with others, with the world and with the divine."
........ Isabel Allende

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs - ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."
........ Harold Thurman Whitman

"The real voyage of discovery consists not of seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes...."
........ Marcel Proust

"It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them.. you have no such accurate remembrance of a country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle...."
........ Ernest Hemingway

"Ambition leads me not only father than any other man has been before me, but as far as I think it is possible for man to go."
........ James Cook

"The grand show is enternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapour is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls."
........ John Muir

"The bicycle is the most civilised conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."
........ Iris Murdoch

"Photography for me is not looking, it's feeling. If you can't feel what you're looking at, then you're never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your picture...."
........ Don McCullin

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Bata de Cola lesson #2

Wow ! spectacular, love the flow and movement in the skirts :-)

30th Dec 2006, 13:54

Dhamaka says:

thanks SLG
It's really difficult to catch nicely - the skirts are at least as big as the women and the studio is so small...

30th Dec 2006, 13:56

Have a mental picture of my self rather ungracefully falling over in one ofthese beautiful skirts ;-)

30th Dec 2006, 14:11

kristiyan says:

looks themely to my salsa sigarillos

30th Dec 2006, 14:11

Dhamaka says:

Kristiyan - indeed

SLG - nobody actually fell over, although there was a lot of one-legged jiggling and general hopping (you don't flick the skirts, you lift them with your leg and not getting the right point of balance with the leg in the air or the foot on the floor can lead to amusing consequences)

30th Dec 2006, 14:27

Sprocket says:

whirrly whirrly dressiness is soo cool - dancing is well sexy

30th Dec 2006, 14:41

Viv says:

so D - you love your work!

and who could blame you - wonderful sets

30th Dec 2006, 16:01

Dhamaka says:

I do indeed Viv, I'm so lucky :)
and thank you

30th Dec 2006, 16:15

oh wow, beautiful dresses, i always fall in love with dresses when i watch dancing!

30th Dec 2006, 17:31

jc1000000 says:

well cool!

30th Dec 2006, 18:20

Spike says:

beautiful dresses, beautiful subjects, beautiful dance, beautiful pictures.....

30th Dec 2006, 18:42

Joe says:

these are stunning....such movement and such amazing notch...whoever highlighted them beat me to it :)

30th Dec 2006, 18:54

nige says:

more crackers. wow. this must be amazing to watch up close.

30th Dec 2006, 20:17

Dhamaka says:

thank you all *grins hugely

mysocalledmoblog - The opposite for me because I learned to like this kind of dress only after dancing flamenco for a while

nige - imagine a studio with a roof so low even I can touch it, small, badly-lit studios and mirror walls that steam up and you'll understand that it's a lot less challenging to watch than photograph

30th Dec 2006, 21:32

Caine says:

Spectacular! I love them all. Amazing captures, D.

30th Dec 2006, 23:56

Spiderbaby says:

Wow! These are fantastic :) Very dramatic. Especially love the top one - those dresses really are huge. If you caught hold of the end when it's all twisted up like that would it spin the dancer round like some fancy move out of the Matrix or similar?

Very impressive :)

31st Dec 2006, 13:10

Dhamaka says:

thank you Spiderbaby - nice idea - and thanks for the HL too!

Happy New Year all...

31st Dec 2006, 17:36

SLG Nli says:

Congrats on the HL

And Happy New Year :-)

31st Dec 2006, 18:50

Dhamaka says:


31st Dec 2006, 19:18

Dhamaka says:

domo arigato Kozika San


... waits
u fu fu

1st Jan 2007, 09:21

Tori says:

Happy 2007

1st Jan 2007, 09:41

Dhamaka says:

to you too :-)

1st Jan 2007, 11:01

Excellent pics Dhamaka, happy new years to ya!

2nd Jan 2007, 10:10

Dhamaka says:

thank you BT!

(love the new avatar)

2nd Jan 2007, 14:31

Senorita Anita says:

I have just completed a workshop in my new Bata De Cola - it is hard to work with, but it makes you feel very glamorous. Your pictures capture the movement beautifully - well done.

12th Jul 2007, 11:48

Dhamaka says:

Anita - what school did you attend?

12th Jul 2007, 15:07

Senorita Anita says:

I am in Townsville Australia - in the middle of a tropical Flamenco Desert! Therefor I have to travel to any Flamenco that isn't in my little house on the beach! I went to the Bellingen Flamenco Festival in northern NSW to attend classes. The excellent flamenco troupe are from Adelaide - they are called Teatro del Mundo. They are on tour around Australia for a performance of their original work - "Duende" based on the writings of Lorca. It is phenominal.

19th Jul 2007, 00:59

Dhamaka says:

I hope you enjoy it. I occasionally write about flamenco. If you'd like to read what I do next drop me a line via the contact me button and give me an email address

20th Jul 2007, 01:19

Noga( ) says:

Anyone know of a bata de cola I could borrow (or rent) for one week?? I'd be *so* appreciative!! I live in Santa Cruz, California and can travel as far as San Francisco, Los Angeles... ~Noga

13th Aug 2007, 18:17

Sari says:

Greetings from Finland!
I've been dancing now almost 2 year,s bata de colas are absolutely stunning. My teacher let me try hers last week, I was feeling like a queen! Thinking of making one myself, have made couple of flamenco dresses and skirts so far...:-)
Merry Xmas to all flamenco people, photos are beautiful!

26th Nov 2007, 10:36

Dhamaka says:

Thank you for your compliments!

If you're making a bata de cola be very careful to use heavy enough material and a good pattern. People who have used light fabrics and/or the wrong pattern have discovered that the bata de cola becomes almost impossible to dance properly with! The lighter silky materials look great from the outside but don't work on their own, so if you use them you need to line the skirt with hidden panels which make the skirt weighty enough to dance properly with. Take care - it would be a terrible shame to invest so much time, money and care into something that didn't work properly!

When I have the time I'll put an entry on making a bata de cola into my dance blog over at at If it's not there by the end of January feel free to nag me here!

Oh and every Christmas and Easter Escuela de Baile in London runs an intensive course on the Bata de Cola and they do another one in Jerez in the summer.....

26th Nov 2007, 13:23

Marni(mbenavides-at-shaw-dot-ca) says:

Your blog is super enjoyable, and I am really excited to hear that you are willing to share your Bata de Cola sewing tips...looking forward to that a whoole bunch!! Thank you...

I would like the Bata to be my next sewing project, and as I have no real clue where to begin...any tips are much appreciated!

9th Oct 2008, 20:44

argghh.. after passing the details (and contacts) to the last person who asked I completely forgot that I had made a general promise. Won't have the time to do this now till next year but if you read this in 2009 and find I haven't updated the dance blog please come here to nag me...

10th Oct 2008, 07:03

I've also sent you an email, so if you come back here and haven't received it let me know

10th Oct 2008, 08:28

Ingrid says:

Dear Dhamaka.
Even though we have never been in contact, and that it is not quite 2009 yet, I'll take the liberty to nag you...;-)
Please please please, Do you have a pattern of the bata de cola? Both as a permanent part of the dress /skirt and as one you can take off. Or do you know where to get hold of one?
I would be so grateful. Have been on the net for ages looking for a patter, but with no luck, and then I saw your note.
All the best y un cordial saludo, Ingrid

2nd Nov 2008, 13:34