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Fantasies and Illusions: A Shoot with Morgana of Threnody in Velvet

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A few months ago, I went to the UK for bit of touristing and to attend the Oxford Conference of Corsetry. While there, I also had a couple of photoshoots with two photographers I’ve admired for ages. One of them was Morgana of Threnody in Velvet/Iberian Black Arts. Morgana’s face is world famous for her campaigns with some of Britain’s most well-known lingerie brands. However, many people are unaware that Morgana is both a model and a photographer, and her stylized, fantastical images are in high demand from both the intimate apparel industry and her personal fanbase. As someone who isn’t a model (but who does love wearing lingerie), I was interested in getting the official Morgana makeover, and these images are the result.

First of all, I have to speak to Morgana’s professionalism. She has a kind of easy confidence about her work that’s immensely comforting, especially if you don’t make a living being in front of the camera. The shoot takes place in her private studio (there are no people milling about or accidental foot traffic), and she handles makeup and hair in addition to the photography (though, in my case, my hair handled itself). Morgana is also very accommodating. A wicked case of unceasing jet lag had me sleeping at all hours (and therefore running late for the shoot), and Morgana was still willing to work with me. I feel like this is a good place to also mention that I paid full price for the shoot. There were no freebies or discounts, so you’re getting perspective of a paying customer.



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During the actual shoot itself, Morgana is great at helping guide you into poses and showing you what works and what doesn’t from the back of the camera. She’s also incredibly efficient (that professionalism again). Once the makeup is done, the actual shoot itself takes almost no time at all. I was in and out much faster than I anticipated.

While I’ve done pinup work and boudoir work before, this is my first experience with imagery stylized to this degree, where not only are my actual face and body highly (and noticeably) photoshopped, but the entire background of the photo is photoshopped in as well. While (almost) all lingerie photography represents a fantasy to some extent, this imagery is explicitly fantastical in nature, and I’m intrigued at how Morgana doesn’t attempt to hide or obfuscate the “hyperreal” nature of her images (which is all the more interesting in a current fashion climate that praises “authenticity” and “no photoshop“).

Also, I would be totally out of line if I didn’t remark on just how much I love the brows Morgana did for me. The next time I decide to get my brows done, I’m taking this photo in because this is pretty much my brow ideal!

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As a lingerie blogger who doesn’t really share many images of myself, the fun part of shoots like this for me (apart from getting to play dress up), is getting to learn about a photographer and their style and how they like to work. I love watching artists in their “natural habitat,” to speak. There’s something endlessly fascinating about observing someone truly skilled in what they do at work.

The leopard print cami and shorts below are by KissKill Lingerie. The black bra and panty set is by Dita Von Teese Lingerie. The lace tap pant is by Karolina Laskowska. Stockings are by La Perla, and the lace skirt is by Cadolle. With the exception of the tap pants, which were a gift from the designer, all items were purchased by me.

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Have any of you ever shot with Morgana? Would you be interested in one of her makeover sessions? I’d love to hear your thoughts!


Cora
Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. Author of In Intimate Detail: How to Choose, Wear, and Love Lingerie. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that everyone who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

11 Comments on this post

  1. RH says:

    You look gorgeous!

  2. TangoUrilla says:

    Wonderful :) you cant make over perfection.

  3. Redseouls says:

    You look fantastic!! And of course I love your hair sis!

  4. Denocte says:

    So gorgeous! Thank you for sharing. It’s the one thing I’d love to do one day, get that makeover treatment with Morgana because I’ve admired her for far too long now <3
    You look lovely, it's cool to see you so completely different! I love the ensembles you chose (the tap pants!) and the quiet fierceness the pics show.
    Also, your brows. wow.
    Great work!

  5. Laura Brasinha says:

    I need to mention your hair. It’s absolutely fabulous and I’m in absolute love!

  6. Thursday says:

    Ah, such great outfit choices! It’s really interesting to see Morgana work her magic here, as I am so familiar with her work, and especially her self portrait modelling. You look very different, and whilst it’s very glam, there’s no doubting it is also, as you say, hyperreal.
    On somewhat of a side note, I personally dislike the term “makeover shoot”, as it tends to evoke the idea that the “before” is of less value, that the constructed image of the shoot is “better”.

  7. Lauriana says:

    These images are great! I have known Morgana’s work as a model for years but I didn’t know she was a photographer as well. It makes sense she would be good at guiding even an unexperienced model into poses that work, considering that double experience.
    I think your remark about the Photoshop work is interesting. Although all fashion photography has been highly artificial for as long as it has existed (I recently saw an exhibition of the work of Horst P. Horst which included some 8 by 10 inch contact prints with editor’s notes for the retoucher drawn and written all over them), there has been quite a backlash against that in recent year. Personally, I don’t think clearly altered work should make anybody feel bad about their own looks and in the case of a “makeover photoshoot” it is pretty desirable.

  8. I love how you talked about having a chance to see yourself through a fantastical or hyperreal lens. I think it’s kind of fun– it’s clearly an interpretive lens, rather than a “realistic” one, and it’s really cool to experiment in that world! Also, your brows look SPECTACULAR, and the lingerie ensembles you put together are PERFECTION.

  9. Estelle Puleston says:

    Eep these photos are stunning! I’m such a fan of Morgana’s work, I don’t care that it’s all photoshopped, the end result is always so artistic and unique. Also, loving that Cadolle skirt :)

  10. Kitty Wood says:

    I do so love these photos! I love seeing Morgana’s photos of Jess Abidde (one of my besties) so seeing you work with her is great too. I’m a photographer and plus size blogger, and her make over shoots are so intriguing!

  11. Emily says:

    Oh my god these are gorgeous!!!! I adore the makeup; that lipstick is fantastic on you.

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