Amongst the many terabytes of archived images I have here in the studio, there are a small handful of images that seem to be permanently on my favourites list. One of those images is this shot of international burlesque performer, fire breather and snake charmer Missy Fatale.
I first shot Missy Fatale at London Burlesque Festival, although it wasn’t until I started shooting at Proud City – then known as Proud Cabaret – in 2010 that I started working with her regularly. Proud Cabaret is a wonderful little underground venue in Tower Hill, with a grand staircase of giant mirrors and an intimate stage with a catwalk into the audience. Back then however, the stage was significantly smaller, so there was a lot more space for a burlesque photographer to sneak down the front between the booths! Shot on my old Canon 450D, I love the light burst, and the softness in the image caused by movement. I’m not usually a fan of grain, but it ties in well with this image.
Missy has since appeared in my portfolio a number of times over the years, including a snake charmer shoot on location in Dalston and a Victorian Siamese Twins shoot with friend and fellow performer Billie Rae. However, my favourite image of her still has to be this live shot.
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