Monday, June 6, 2016

Gisele Bundchen, Eat Your Heart Out

So by now you've gathered I recently spent some time in Vancouver, getting up to all kinds of shenanigans with Melanie.  I took a lot of photos while I was there, including some of the scenery and a wonderful event that Mel managed to get us invited to, but those are saved for future posts.  Right now, I want to show you the results of a photo shoot I did with Melanie, shot by, and starring myself and Melanie (and a little help from a tripod and a remote).

But first we had to get ready....

Model #1 - Melanie, blogger, expert in creative posing and notorious farker of all things fabric, putting finishing touches on her own makeup after wielding her colour magic on model #2 (see below)

Model #2 - yours truly, blogger "of a certain age", decided that blue brows and lips were the way to go (go blue or go home) and my makeup artist was only too happy to oblige.

Location Scouting....

We found this public art installation - "Alien Terrarium" by artists Elisa Yon and Amanda Arcuri in Queen Elizabeth Plaza, next to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, which wasn't far from where I was staying. The work features some of the invasive plant species that have moved into the Vancouver region, and despite the fact I knew nothing about the work or what it represented when we chose the location, I think it was an apt choice, given that bloggers could be considered an invasive species...

We are both wearing thrifted outfits - Mel's is a multi-layered confection of faux fur, lace and polyester, while I chose to keep it simple in stretchy, slinky, big-shouldered black. 

I borrowed Mel's bug-eyed blue sunnies for part of the shoot as they complemented my lips and brows sooo nicely, and helped me feel like I was incognito.

This was the first time I had worn this dress, and I was delighted to see that the silver pattern on the dress gave the illusion of curves where I don't actually have any. 

I think this is the only shot I got of Mel looking all dreamy and reflective - isn't she gorgeous?  The shades of green in the background set off the colours of her outfit wonderfully.

 The rest were more like the above, in which Mel demonstrates the "Fuck, Yeah" method of posing

The pink robe/coat had excellent swish-a-bility

Modelling is exhausting, and sometimes you have to sit down on the job

The approach each of us took to our posing was very indicative of our personalities.  While I readily admit to not caring what people thought of us as they passed by, I was conscious of the fact that I pretty much have the same facial expression in every photo.  I've been very self-conscious of my teeth my entire life, and have trained myself to smile without showing them, and I was keenly aware that Melanie is much more "expressive", to put it mildly, with her face.  The two collages below show what I mean....
Serious me

Not-so-serious Mel

A young man walked by us carrying this beautiful guitar and Mel asked if she could borrow if for a photo.  She has no problem getting into character at a moment's notice.

At a certain point we both became rather giddy and decided that was the perfect time to move to the other side of the installation and take some shots together.

Apparently that was all it took to loosen me up

We had no inhibitions left by this point, and I'm sure the guys sitting on the benches not far from where we were posing wondered what the heck was going on.

You can find the "serious" version of this photo on Mel's blog here

Melanie has already put two posts up on her blog about my visit, so if you want to see more of what we got up to, head over to Bag and a Beret.  She has included a little video I choreographed of us meeting for the first time.

And in a delightful turn of events, one of the photos of me that Mel put on her blog was incorporated into a post on the blog Warning: Curves Ahead.  You can see the post here.  I am in fantastic, and very humbling, company.

It was such a treat to meet Melanie in person after a couple of years' worth of emails and phone calls.  More of my West Coast report coming soon!


  1. Hi, Shelley! Longtime reader/lurker on your blog, which I read partly for the fashion stuff but mostly for the awesomeness that is your life. This great post plus the links on Warning: Curves Ahead made me laugh out loud with sheer joy and I thought I'd de-lurk to let you know. Keep being your fabulous self!

  2. ....Me clapping gleefully....your post...Warning: Curves Ahead's post...all of it...fabulous!

    I'm not picking a favourite photo because they are all amazing, but I keep coming back to the photo with your hands over the lower portion of your face. I LOVE that photo!

    I never mentioned it when we were visiting, but I was admiring your rings that day!

    1. I will be using photos from our brunch in a later post, and will definitely include one of your marvelous jacket.

  3. Gah! So much awesome! I have joined you in spirit, if not in actual body (bodies being prohibitively expensive to fly from and island to the the mainland for a lunch, what am I, rich?), or maybe body, since I've gotten minty brows, I don't know, this is far too complicated for such a fun post.

    I wanted to be there so much. :(

  4. Hahaha, Shelley! I LOVE your post! This is exactly what our shoot was like. The photos of you are stunning; you truly are a most amazing model and highly photogenic. I don't think your face looks the same because of all your cool moves. I'm glad you put the one of your hands and face - your eyes pop!

    And I'm so happy with the demented Gloria Swanson shot of me "ready for my closeup" in the lower right of the collage. Bwahahaha!!

    I wondered how you were going to handle this - there was so much going on. You were here only about a week ago; it's hard to believe but so great to relive through these photos. We must DO IT AGAIN!! Did you know that the Curves post has had more than 725,000 views? They ALL saw you - you are truly a star! So happy you came out here.

  5. A magnificent post! The two of you are fantastic together and very creative. I love your makeup, of course. You are both amazing stars and it's a joy to view your adventures. Brava!!!

  6. Wow! What a blast! So many fantastic photos here! You do look like a pro model here. Congrats on the Curves Ahead! You fit right in.

    Everyone around must have really enjoyed the free entertainment you two provided.

    Also...I'm in love with your dress.


  7. These photos are so great!! I love your hair and make-up, but srsly your nails and rings are so amazing!!!!

  8. fun, Saw you on that other post, too. That dress is sweet.

  9. I have no idea how you and Mel pose so fabulously! I can totally picture the reaction from nearby. (Whaaa?) And huge congrats for the Curves Ahead post. You show those snarky people! Ra-ra-ra!

  10. You two are really too much fabulousness. Your dress and shoes are pretty darn fantastic. Honestly. The Make-up. The Poses. The Spirit. All those vapid little tootsies with their sparkly pouty Instagram accounts can not even come CLOSE to you two. I am without wor.....d....s....

  11. awesome shoot-you and Melanie obviously share that quirky fashionista spark, loved every shot, make up, outfits shoes and shenanigans-thanks for taking fashion in your own fabulous direction!

  12. So much fab in one place - love these photoshoots and your exquisite hair/makeup. You rock and rule style, you two. xox


  13. Ain't blogging wonderful? Without it you two would never have met and that would have been a tragedy, I can see that you're soul mates. xxx

  14. Where did you get those fabulous black ankle strap shoes? At least let me know who made them, I love them!!

    1. The shoes are Fly London brand and I purchased them at From Mars, here in London Ontario

  15. ohhhh, so much fabulousness!!, love that you could meet and have lots of fun together!!! blogging is becoming a neverending source of lovely meetings and true friendship!!

  16. Upeaa (= fabulous in Finnish)!

  17. I read Mel's posts, and what fun to see yours too! It all looks like way too much fun! Thanks so much for sharing!

  18. What great photos! I was thinking when I saw them first on Melanie's blog, that you looked like such a STRONG WOMAN. And I especially liked your current haircut which adds to the STRONG WOMAN aura. Kudos, too, on being included in the Warning: Curves Ahead post. That was the greatest!
    And by the way, are you planning on attending Spy Girls' meet-up in Dec. I am going. I would really luv to meet you fer real.

  19. I LOVE the theatricality of this - and you two! So fabulous to see art being complimented so well.