Ponytails & Peonies Shoot

You may remember a couple of weeks ago I posted a link to a bridal blog which was featuring a recent shoot I worked on. As promised I have put together a post breaking down what I did and what I used to create this make-up.
The location of the shoot was Danson Park in Bexleyheath. Listed as grade II on the English Heritage register of parklands, the 78 acre site was a private estate the design of which has been in part attributed to Capability Brown. The park became a public space in the early 20th century and today has extensive facilities including a boating lake, cycle routes, tennis courts and ornate gardens. We set up camp in the Old English Garden outside the 18th century manor house.
Héline Bekker was behind the camera and our model for the day was Gwenda, co-collaborator for the shoot and owner of Fearless Florals and therefore also supplier of the beautiful peonies we used on the day.
I began by applying a light primer to Gwenda’s face and allowed it to settle into the skin before applying the foundation. I used a foundation with a satin finish and worked it into the skin with a buffing brush before covering any remaining blemishes with a touch of lightweight concealer.
Using an angle brush and clean mascara wand I tided and filled the eyebrows using a matte brown eyeshadow. I tend to prefer using a shadow to a pencil on brows as I find the line much more forgiving on the whole.
I applied a soft creamy shadow all over the eyelid and up to the brow and then using a mixture of three mid to dark toned browns, blended and worked them into the lid and socket line to create a soft smokey eye. I then re-applied the base tone to the inner corners of the eye to lighten and brighten. Dampening a liner brush I ran a fine line of very dark shadow along the lash line and then enhanced the inner corners of the eye with a little liquid liner. I then used curlers on the eyelashes and finished with some strip false lashes and a sweep of mascara to the bottom and top lashes.
I worked a little peach toned cream blush under the cheekbones with the foundation buffing brush to add a contour and then using the same brush, used a slightly softer tone on the cheekbone itself to create a natural glow to the skin.

A tinted pressed powder was my pick to remove the bulk of the shine; Using a large powder brush I lightly dusted a little of the powder across the forehead, nose and chin.
I used a nude lip pencil to add a little definition to the lips before finishing with a fairly nude lip gloss which had a slight peachy tone. During the latter half of the shoot I used a fuschia Lip gloss to change the look.

Gwenda has a very blunt fringe and mid length hair and so I applied a hairpiece to add length before pulling it into a simple and sleek ponytail. I straightened her fringe and then pinned fresh peonies into the base of the pony to tie in with the theme of the shoot.
Halfway through the shoot I added a fishtail plait and then later on dressed it into a loosely pinned bun, adding peonies of different sizes and colours at each point.
Here is a selection of shots from the shoot:
Make-up Breakdown:
  • Couleur Caramel eyeshadow in Matte Brown on the brows
  • Couleur Caramel eyeshadow in Yellow Beige, Matte Brown, Light Brown and Chocolate Brown
  • Elysambre liquid eyeliner in Prune
  • Couleur Caramel mascara in Brown
  • Jane Iredale Lash Glue & Eylure lashes
Giovanni, John Masters Organics and Tigi Love, Peace and the Planet
Images Courtney of: Heline Bekker

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