Thursday, 18 July 2013

Not quite a model

Several weeks ago a post came up in one of the groups that I'm a member of on Facebook. It was advertising a makeover and photographic session at a photography studio in Bristol. The moment I saw it I was interested and so I emailed them and left it at that. Not for long though as within a few hours I received a phone call from someone at the studio and before I knew it I had an appointment booked for a Tuesday evening.
The session was roughly 3 hours in length with the first hour being the makeover, full make-up and hair. After that would be the photo session and at the end I'd have the chance to look over the pictures that had been taken and selected any that I wanted to buy.
All I had to do was turn up on the day with up to 5 outfits and wearing no make-up.

I've wanted to do a burlesque themed photoshoot for a while. Having someone do my make-up and hair for me was a dream come true so I selected two costumes that I've worn when I've performed and a third which was the costume I'm working on for a routine I plan to perform in the future.

Before the shoot I had a few preparations to make so that I looked my best. First I paid a visit to the salon and had a bit of waxing done, my eyebrows included and my eyelashes tinted. On the Monday evening I made sure that any other body hair was removed and painted my finger and toe nails bright red.

I'd hoped that I could find a nice white bra to go under the dress I was planning on wearing for one of the outfits. Unfortunately the one I bought I discovered was too small and so I decided to make a quite stop at a shopping mall in Bristol before I went to the studio.

Of course I now found myself hitting a slight snag. I was going to be trying to find a bra while wearing no make-up and more importantly no breastforms. Now usually that wouldn't be a problem but today I was clearly wearing nail polish and that would draw attention.
As Baldrick from Blackadder always said "I have a cunning plan". I could wear a pair of running gloves. Nobody would see my nails that way and I could get a new bra without drawing undue attention to myself.

The trip to Bristol was quiet and I soon found myself wandering around the mall. The first shop I tried didn't appear to have anything in my size so I tried one of the department stores. Fortunately I was able to find something that was perfect.

With the last of the items I needed in a bag I made my way back to the car and headed to the studio, arriving with literally minutes to spare. I found a parking space outside and popped into the studio to ask where was a better place to park as the streets only had an hour parking limit. The assistant that dealt with me pointed me a nearby car park and I headed off there.

When I arrived back at the salon I had a questionnaire to fill in about the sort of look I wanted with make-up and hair, backgrounds and various other things to do with the photos.

With the form completed I sat and enjoyed a glass of orange juice until I was called through to have my make-up done.

The lady that did my make-up was wonderful. She started off by asking me about the style I wanted and after we'd gone over my preferences she gave me a mini facial. With that out of the way she began to apply my make-up.
I immediately began to wonder what she was doing as she started working on my eyes and applying eye shadow to them. I was expecting her to apply foundation first but nope, she began working on my eyes. It crossed my mind that perhaps she had taken me for 100% female. I decided to wait and see what happened before asking about foundation. My worries were unfounded because as soon as she'd finished working on my eyes she applied foundation to the rest of my face before finishing up with blusher and lipstick.

One thing that had made me a little bit uneasy when I'd arrived was the fact that the area where they did the make-up was just off the waiting area and although not in full view of everyone was large enough for 3 people to have their hair and make-up done at the same time. While I was having mine done the only two people that had anything done to them were to young children who were there to have some pictures taken with their parents.

With my make-up done it was time to sort out the hair. I'd wanted something with some wave to it. Again my wonderful make-up artist did me proud. Using a hair straightener she managed to curl the hair around it and get some waves into it. Getting the most of my hair looking right was fairly easy, getting the last few curls at the front and side ready was a bit more difficult but worth it in the end.

After about an hour my make-up and hair was done and after apologizing in case I mussed up my hair removing my t-shirt I sat back in the waiting area for the photographer.

Before long the photographer came through to collect me. We wandered down a corridor, where I collected the bag I'd brought with the outfits I planned on wearing and my props, to the studio.

I was quite impressed. There was a small curtained off changing room, a large space for various standing shots, some blocks that looked like they belonged in a children's play area to sit on, a bed like affair for more seductive shots and a table with some reflective sheets that could be used for head and shoulders shots.

I put my bag in the changing room and we went over what I was hoping for, which was a burlesque themed shoot. We then went through my costumes and props.

Now that the photographer had a good idea of what he was working with I was left to get into my first costume, the one that I wore to do my True Love fan dance. Getting into my costume took a little bit of time as I had nobody to help me into the corset. Eventually though I was ready and made my way out of the changing room.

The first photos were close-ups of me sitting. There was a mix of shots with me wearing my glasses and without.

I had thought about wearing contacts but I'm still a bit insecure about my looks without glasses. In the end for the majority of the photos I wore my glasses.

With the close-up shots done we started on pictures of me with my fans. I held my fans above me, to the sides, behind me. It was great posing with them. We even did a couple of poses without fans.

I have no idea how long the first batch of pictures took but soon it was time for a costume change.

The second costume I'd brought was a variation of the one that I'd worn for my burlesque performance. A black corset, stockings, gloves and a feather boa.

The second set of poses and pictures started off with me standing up. After a few of these we moved across to where the bed was on the floor and I was asked to lie down in a variety of poses.

Looking at those pictures afterwards I thought some of them were very sexy and seductive. I would never have thought I could look like that in a million years.

Back off the bed and I did a few more poses standing up, a couple of them leaning against the wall.

Finally it was time for the third and final costume change.

The last outfit I'd brought was a white dress, red cape, very reminiscent of Red Riding Hood, and a pair of silk fans.

This time all of the shots were done standing up. No lying around for me this time.  Silk fans make a wonderful fire effect and we made the most of that. Once again we did a few shots where I was leaning against the wall and also some where I had the fans draped over me. All too soon though it was time to get changed out of my costume and back into normal clothes.

With the shoot part over I went back to the waiting area where Jo who was going to show me my photos told me that she would be a little while and I was free to help myself to a drink while the pictures were uploaded and she played with them a bit.

While I waited I decided I'd pop back to my car and drop my bag off. This killed a bit of time but I still had a little bit of a wait until she was ready.

The viewing was in a small room with a large monitor. Jo started a slideshow of all 55 pictures that had been taken. Normally a photoshoot is between 40 and 50 pictures. I'd had more than that so was quite happy, until I saw the pictures.

Well what can I say. I was stunned. I'd hoped that there would be some really good pictures but there were so many of them. It was going to be really hard to chose which ones I was going to buy.

After all of the pictures had gone by Jo and I went back through the pictures while I tried to whittle them down. After the first pass I had 15 pictures. That was the easy bit as there were some that I didn't like the way I looked. All 15 picture I loved the way I appeared. Now came the really hard part, selecting just 3 pictures.

After a bit of deliberation I picked 3, one of each costume. With my choices made I paid and finally it was time to leave. My photos would be with me in about 5 weeks.

After nearly three and a half hours at the studio I finally left and headed for home. I'm so glad that I went as it was a fabulous experience. I'll definitely do it again, maybe not just yet but definitely when I'm more confident about my looks without my glasses and also once I've developed enough up top to not have to wear breastforms.

Ever since I started with burlesque I've wanted to do a photoshoot, I've also wanted to try some burlesque modeling and maybe even something a bit more risque in the fetish arena. Having done the shoot I know that its definitely something I'd like to explore more in the future.

Anyway after telling you all about the shoot I suppose that its only fair if I let you see the photos I bought. Well here they are.

Large Fans (True Love)

Pensive (Stoned Soul Picnic)
Red Riding Hood (Moon River)


  1. Hi Jenna!

    OMG! These are AMAZING! All three are wonderful, particularly that second one. :c)

    Puzzled as to why you are afraid to take off your glasses though. You look lovely with them, but why hide those big blue eyes, sweetie?!? :c)

    Thank you for posting these, hon, and congratulations!


    1. Hi Cass,

      Thank you for the compliment.

      I was so impressed by the pictures. These are the ones that I picked, the ones that I didn't were equally has good.

      I asked one of my friends at work the glasses/no glasses question some time ago and she said no glasses as you can see my eyes. I think the reason I wear the glasses is because it helps to make my face look more feminine and that's something I just can't seem to see when I look at my face without glasses, I see a face that is still to masculine looking, see him with make-up on.

      Will have to try and wear my contacts and not glasses more at work to get use to being "naked" facially and give myself that bit of extra confidence.