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It was a chilly winters day when we arrived early in Glemham Hall, a magnificent stately home, in the heart of Suffolk. The team – photographer Richard Burns, Hair & Make-Up artist Sally Kvalheim, model Jessica from Models 1 and I, the stylist were all excited about our ‘showgirl’ shoot.


Photo shoots always sound so glamorous and although I wouldn’t trade in my job for anything else, behind the scenes, the reality can be quite different ! The first task in the morning is lugging all the props, clothes and heavy photographic equipment into the location. Glemham Hall really is a huge rambling house, originally built in 1560 and is packed with eclectic furniture and priceless antiques. We were shooting in one of the upstairs wings so we had to do umpteen trips, schlepping equipment through the meandering maze of rooms.


Lingerie by Fauve Lingerie. Kimono by Beyond Retro
Lingerie by Fauve Lingerie. Kimono by Beyond Retro

Eventually we chose a space which we used as our dressing room. I set up my rails and hung up all the gorgeous showgirl outfits, meanwhile Sally positioned her beauty quarters by a large window so she had the best possible light to do make-up and hair.


Whilst Sally was creating a fabulous look on model Jessica, Richard and I had a good look around Glemham Hall. How had he found this impressive location?

“When we first moved to Suffolk, we met other creative people who all said we should take a look at Glemham. I did and fell in love with it.” Explained Richard, “ I loved the faded grandeur, the rooms look opulent yet slightly crumbling in places. Photographically it really is a stunning place.”


Silk dress by Vera Mont
Silk dress by Vera Mont

We weren’t the first photographic team to shoot here. In fact it has long been a favourite with Tim Walker, a hugely inspirational photographer whose breathtakingly beautiful and magically eccentric work has graced the pages of Vogue, Love and I-D.


Glemham Hall was the perfect theatrical backdrop for the shoot. I wanted the sense of silver screen glamour with our starlet ‘dressing up’ in silk lingerie through to dramatic satin, feather and sequin stage wear.


Lingerie by Dolci Follie, Shoes, Louboutin
Lingerie by Dolci Follie, Shoes, Louboutin

Model, Jessica made the shots look effortless. You wouldn’t believe that most of the outfits had been so pinned down the back she could hardly move. Or the fact that it was so cold in our wing you could see your own breath! After every shot we would throw blankets over Jessica to try and stop her from turning blue!


Photographer Richard cleverly turned the cold, dull day to our advantage, balancing the daylight with artificial light for a beautiful radiant look.

All in all we were a great team and the shots look amazing. As we were leaving I couldn’t help but notice the wonderful garden and sculpture park. Perhaps we could shoot something fabulous in the grounds next summer. I do hope so – Fingers crossed.


All photography copyright Richard Burns
Glemham Hall. All photography copyright Richard Burns
  • Posts like this make the inertnet such a treasure trove


    24th July 2016

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