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After months of waiting, the photoshoot

May 23, 2013

Bro, stop right here.  I can’t guarantee your sanity if you read any further.  You have been warned 🙂

Yesterday was the photoshoot at Divine Divas in Bath.  Did I have a good time? HELL YES!

I was met by the lovely Jo who helped put me at ease by giving me some bubbly starting to talk about what clothes I had bought with me and what I wanted for hair and makeup etc.  Rummaging through the suitcase of clothes/shoes/accessories I had bought with me we roped in her husband Neil, the photographer, to get his opinion on what would/wouldn’t look good. I’d gone prepared with pics of images I like and pretty soon he was buzzing with ideas about how to stage and light shots.

Dita von Teese – a simple classic look. Wish I had her figure 🙂

Meanwhile, I’m whisked away for hair and makeup.  Now, my hair is fine and not exactly full of life (mousey brown and straight) , so I wasn’t holding out much hope of a style.  Well, thanks to the miracle of setting lotion, curling tongs and hairspray Jo achieved a sort of ringlet-y bed-head kind of look.  After a few Jennifer Aniston-esque  ‘because I’m worth it’ hair tossing moments we moved on to makeup.  Time for a tough choice, smokey eyes or Dita von Teese 50’s styleee.  I went with Dita, which turned out to be a good choice, as with false eyelashes it was simple but dramatic.  When Jo was done I really didn’t recognise myself in the mirror!

Then the nerves started as Jo ushered me through to the studio (needs a sound effect – dun dun derrrrrrrr).  Thankfully, Neil suggested we start gently with more traditional glamour type shots of me in dresses.  Now, you would think that it would be straightforward to lean against a wall in a sexy fashion.  Nope! A barrage gentle stream of instructions followed – raise that shoulder, put our weight on the other foot and stick your hip out, push your chin forward and down, put your hands there, relax and smile gently with a slightly open mouth.  It was a lot to take in at once, but it certainly took my mind off what I was doing and helped me to relax.

Having learned my left from my right, hands and feet, I spent quite a long time showing two walls some love and appreciation.  If I end up posting pics of those you’ll understand what I mean.  Advanced level posing involved furniture and I graduated to a chaise longue. I’ve always thought these looked fab, I’m less keen on them now.  Having spent time trying to drape myself over one in all sorts of positions I can honestly say they are not that comfy.  It was around this point that I started to learn the lesson that the positions that make you look great (good curves and long lines) are the least comfortable.  Next time you see a model looking sexy in a photo, take some comfort from the fact that almost certainly she is hurting somewhere (mwah ha ha).

Anyway, I’m just starting to enjoy myself and really get into the swing of things, while in my head West Side Story ‘I feel pretty’ is playing on a loop. The bubble of confidence shrinks slightly as Neil suggests we move on to another costume.  Eeeek, time to take a brave pill and put on a basque – more bubbly waiter! After some assistance with lacing I emerge from behind my screen like a butterfly, or at least would be if butterflies were burlesque/dominatrix inspired.  The basque was steel boned and seriously hauled in my waist, which combined with spiky 4in heeled boots, fishnets and pearls even I had to admit the effect was pretty hot.  What wasn’t hot was trying to move/breathe in it.

I was photographed in all sorts of poses in it while perched on a vintage style dressing table and lying on a bed.  I learned several things;

  • no matter where you put the clasp on a pearl necklace it migrates to the front
  • you can’t pull up stockings easily while wearing long gloves
  • when dressing in a steel boned basque PUT THE STOCKINGS ON FIRST, because you can’t bend.  If necessary put shoes on too.

Having conquered these issues my favourite bit was lying on my back and being asked to slowly roll from my back onto my front, stopping in any pose I liked along the way.  It was at this point I was thanking any deity who would listen that Neil was not shooting video.  While the groaning may have been more suited to a porn video it was definitely due to the fact that I got stuck half way rather than passion!  Lets just say that more time was spent laughing than posing for this one.

So, having rocked the basque theme I now reached the moment of no return, to go nude or not.  Thinking about it for a second I figured ‘what the hell, let’s go for it’.  Mainly because I was feeling pretty relaxed and happy with the surroundings and Neil.  I was invited through into the ‘black room’, which lived up to its name, with very little in it except a block to sit/lie on and lights suspended from the ceiling.  The first moment of losing my robe did feel a little awkward, but by then I’d taken it off so what was the point in going backwards.  After a while though I can honestly say I forgot I was naked and was soon chatting, joking and laughing as I had been for the rest of the shoot.  The poses I had used as examples for the nudes were a lot more physically demanding so I was mostly too busy trying to stretch and arch in an artistic fashion and not fall over to worry about anything else.

Just call me Nev von Teese.  Trying to recreate the expression from the shoot, not developing a wallpaper fetish....... honest

Just call me Nev von Teese. Trying to recreate the expression from the shoot, not developing a wallpaper fetish……. honest

Looking back it all went really quickly, despite being 4.5 hours start to finish.  I drove home buzzing with energy and excitement and that feeling and the confidence has really stayed with me today.  When I got home I snapped a pic trying to do the sort of pose and expression Neil had been guiding me towards and this was my rather shoddy attempt.  The makeup was still good, but the hair had dropped so you wont really get an idea of what it looked like.  If this is what a ‘happy snap’ looks like I have high hopes for the rest of the pics and I get to see them next Thursday.  Cant wait and by the sounds of things neither can some of my friends on Facebook, although I suspect some of them wont end up on there!

So, would I recommend a boudoir shoot?  Definitely. It is a major confidence builder. The right photographer will coach you and make you look and feel amazing.  It is as glamorous or risqué as you make it, so don’t feel you have to bare all.  But, don’t be afraid to push your boundaries and try something that isn’t ‘you’, because chances are it will turn out good and be a reminder for the future that you can adapt and conquer. I personally like the idea of capturing a moment in time as a reminder of just how fabulous you really are.  I would definitely do another shoot, but maybe in 6-12 months time having lost another stone.

Oh, I nearly forgot.  I reached my 179lb target!!!!!!! I may not have gone down another dress size yet, but I did manage to lose a stone since November.  Double cause for celebration!

Finally, I’m going to add some links showing the sort of images I was using as inspiration at the bottom here rather than show them in the blog.  I wouldn’t want to offend so the choice to look or not is up to you, but some of them will be themes around nudes. Whether my versions make it on here remains to be seen 😉

a Dita style look reclining

lady in basque holding pearls

nude lying on bed

nude sculptural look



10 Comments leave one →
  1. May 23, 2013 10:06 pm

    Fantastic!! What an awesome thing to do – I bet next Thursday can’t come quickly enough. If your ‘selfie’ is anything to go by, the results will be stunning. So glad it went well (and that you’re on a confidence high) – you are worth it. *flips hair*. 😀

    • May 23, 2013 10:09 pm

      Every girl needs a Jen moment – flips currently limp hair 🙂

      I feeeeeeeel preeeteeeeee, oh sooooooooooooo preeeteeeeeee

  2. May 24, 2013 12:05 pm

    It sounds like you had an amazing time! You’re very pretty too Nev, and I’m sure the shots will come out amazingly! Also, muchos congratulations on getting to your target! Whoop! Thank you for posting your experience, as it is making me think I may dabble. Do you get the photos in print and as a soft copy?

    • May 24, 2013 4:41 pm

      Ta #blushes
      The Groupon voucher was cheap @ £20-30 and I get 3 small prints with that. I can assure you that additional pics won’t be, but you aren’t committed to buying anything. Most places do prints in various sizes and formats as well as retouched digital images. Often they’ll do packages. However, expect to pay several hundred pounds. If I like what I see I plan to invest and don’t mind paying for a quality product. Roll on Thursday 🙂

  3. May 24, 2013 4:24 pm

    You look totally fab! Which means I’m sure the ‘official’ photos will look amazing! I love the sound of these girly days 😉 Not sure if I would have the courage to do it by myself, but I could imagine it being a super duper fun thing to do with a gal-pal. Congrats for having the bravery to do it, can’t wait to see some more shots (the PG rated ones of course hehe 😉 )

    • May 24, 2013 4:55 pm

      A lot of these places do mother/daughter makeovers with pics after. Or couples/friends shoots.
      I must admit the ‘lets play dress-up’ is great fun for a die hard tomboy 🙂
      Hit Groupon or Wowcher and see if there is anything in your area. You’ll have a fab time

  4. May 31, 2013 8:55 pm

    Wow!! That sounds pretty amazing – I’ve been considering doing one. How fun!! 🙂

    • May 31, 2013 9:04 pm

      Go for it! Its a brilliant experience that is great for morale. Looking at your blog and with what you’ve achieved from p90X results you would look amazing 🙂
      Or you could do a couples shoot with your other half 😉

      • May 31, 2013 9:57 pm

        Awww thanks so much!! Yeah I’m thinking a sneaky photoshoot as a surprise might be kind of fun. You have me feeling inspired! 🙂

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