For our latest body positivity photoshoot, we had the pleasure of visiting the enchanting and other-worldly Neon Dreams Studio in Hampshire – and joining us for the day’s festivities was Verity, founder of The Body Confidence Issue! Here, for the very first time, is an exclusive look at some of our favourite images of the day, along with a complete round-up of how the shoot unfolded.
Having worked our way through the majority of photo studios available to us in Brighton over the past year or so, we decided to hit the reset button and seek out somewhere completely different – and upon stumbling on the Neon Dreams Studio in Hampshire, we quickly realised that this hidden gem would provide the perfect inspiration and help us achieve an entirely different vibe to everything we have achieved in the past!
I don’t think it’s too much of an exaggeration to say that it proved to be the quirkiest and most interesting studio we’ve worked in to date, and as you’ll see in the photos dotted about this page, it’s chock full of retro props and tidbits and loaded with nostalgia and fun. We certainly weren’t short of options, and we couldn’t wait to get started on what promised to be an entertaining day of shooting!
As mentioned above, we were joined on the day by Verity, a body confidence expert and founder of The Body Confidence Issue – and those of you who have been with us since day one may well recognise our star of the show from several of the other photoshoots and events that we’ve hosted since we launched back in the summer of last year. Verity also gave us a really fantastic interview, discussing her experiences modelling for Sophie Tea and lots, lots more, which you can read here.
We’ve always loved collaborating with Verity, and her genuine passion and enthusiasm for spreading the self-love message and encouraging others to feel comfortable in their own skin ties-in perfectly with everything Britain Uncovered is striving for. The Body Confidence Issue, a project which Verity launched at the start of 2020, continues to dissect the lumps, bumps, rolls, unflattering angles and the realities of social media, and we would definitely recommend throwing them a follow over on Instagram for timely reminders and motivation on why it’s so important to embrace your bodies and show yourself some much-needed love and affection!
The Neon Dreams Studio is owned and operated by Tasha, an experienced model and photographer who decided to open this facility as a passion-project and to provide those on both sides of the camera exactly what they need for a successful shooting environment. Her warm and friendly welcome got our day off to the perfect start, and Tasha kindly provided us with her expertise and shooting tips throughout our stay, which made such a big difference. Over the course of our four-hour slot, we ended up with a really diverse set of images that were all created to shine the spotlight on body confidence, and Verity did a fantastic job navigating her way around the different areas of the studio and presenting a contrasting range of emotions in the process.
In addition to the neon signs and other illuminations that you might have expected based on the name of the studio, the venue also offers lots of other shooting areas, including a psychedelic 1970s-style living room, a selection of graffitied walls, an entire wardrobe of weird and wonderful props and outfits, and even a wet room adjacent to the make-up area that we decided to make use of at the very end of the day.
The different areas each come with their own unique vibes, and our shoot drifted back and forth between outrageous fun and silliness (thanks in part to giant inflatable doughnuts and a bright pink wig that wouldn’t look out of place at a cosplay event), to more contemplative and serious moments (including our finale in the wet room, pictured below). Both have their own, unique merits, of course, and the fact that Verity exuded such strong confidence in herself throughout the shoot, whether clothed or unclothed, was testament to her inspiring levels of body confidence - which was really commendable and actually very empowering to experience. It also served as a reminder that nakedness needn't be a limiting factor that changes our mood or perception of ourselves, and Verity seemed just as relaxed and at ease for this part of the shoot as she had done for everything else up until that point.
Having played around with so many props and outfits earlier on in the day, the shots under the neon-tinged shower presented a raw and stripped-back feel, both figuratively and literally. With human vulnerability at the front and centre of these powerful images, I feel that they present Verity in a completely new light and offer a stark contrast to everything we had achieved prior; with the water washing away any remnants of a façade and offering a sense of clarity and honesty that isn’t always easy to find inside the four walls of a photo studio.
A huge thanks to Verity for taking part in our latest shoot, and it's always a pleasure to work with somebody who is so passionate about the body confidence movement. This was our fifth shoot with Verity since we first met at Sophie Tea's nude catwalk event back in 2019, and we both agreed that this was perhaps our best shoot yet! We continue to be inspired by Verity's ongoing efforts to raise awareness of body positivity-related issues, and let's hope that it's not too long before we get to do it all over again!
- You can find Verity on Instagram over at @veritypitts, and we would strongly recommend following @thebodyconfidence issue also. Verity also has her own website, www.veritypittsnofilter.co.uk, where she details many of her body confidence-related activities and provides guidance and assistance for those currently struggling to accept their bodies.