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  • Writer's pictureLele Bonz

McCune Mansion Photoshoot

Updated: Mar 11, 2022

Hello friend, I hope you're doing well!

Today I wanted to share a dreamy client photoshoot I did a couple of months ago. I was approached by this gorgeous girl, Gianna, and she told me that she wanted to shoot in a Victorian mansion with me the next month.

As you can imagine, I was ecstatic at the sound of it. How could I say no?

I did not even think about it for more than 1 second, my answer was immediately yes.

Gianna was amazing at organizing everything. She booked the mansion, communicated both with me and two other models, and even organized rides so that we could travel all together. Honestly, a dream client.


The Mansion

When Gianna contacted me, she already decided that she wanted her photos taken at the McCune Mansion in Salt Lake City. I could not blame her.

I believe she paid around $200 to $250 to rent the whole thing for 2 hours. Honestly, it was a more than fair price for such a beautiful location.

The historic Victorian mansion was absolutely stunning. Everything from the outside to all the different rooms was incredible. The staff gave us complete freedom to use the place to our likings, and they did not interrupt us a single time. They were kind and very discrete.

There was parking inside, which was very relieving because finding parking close to the Capitol is a mess. The outside featured an elegant staircase and a garden full of flowers and grand trees.

The inside made us feel like we were transported to another time. They had two available floors for us, and every room was photoshoot-worthy. Downstairs, I remember a stunning fireplace and a couple of elegant couches. Every wall was decorated with centuries-old artwork, which created a gracious and warm environment.

Upstairs, there were multiple rooms where we could shoot in. They all had elegant and vintage furniture, big and sunny windows, mirrors, antique columns, and gorgeous artwork on the walls. One room had a long, red couch under big open windows, and it looked like paradise.

I remember stepping into the bathroom and seeing a stunning, antique bathtub. Even the sink and the toilet seemed incredibly expensive. I could not decide if it was there for decoration, or if I could actually use it because of how stunning it was. Turned out that I could, in fact, go to the bathroom.

The most mesmerizing room upstairs was the ballroom, which was grand and open. It featured a stunning vintage all round couch that had a column covered with mirrors in the middle (you can see it in the photo below). It had an elegant wooden floor, mirrors that would reflect the light from the windows on every wall, and antique lighting fixtures. As you can imagine, we shot more than half the session there because it was too gorgeous to step outside of it.

The only thing that I would recommend for other fellow photographers is to bring a flash. While the windows are an amazing source of light, some rooms like the fireplace room are not very lit. I did not bring mine and I had to work really hard to compensate for it.

Overall, the McCune Mansion was beautiful with an elegant and antique environment. I would shoot there again if I ever had the opportunity. It would definitely be a perfect location for a wedding or a formal event.


The Photoshoot

The photoshoot went perfectly. The drive was a bit long, since we were coming from Logan, Utah. However, it was well worth the wait.

When we arrived, I met the other models, Jazzy and Suzi. They were adorable, and they had very different personalities. I was delighted to work with them.

Since we had two hours of complete freedom in the mansion, we took advantage of it. While they were getting ready, I toured the mansion to brainstorm different ideas, compositions, and poses. As I mentioned before, I think I was standing in the ballroom, speechless, for a good minute or so. I was so excited to see how this session would turn out.

They changed into their outfits, and we were ready to shoot. I believe I took them separately upstairs to shoot some solo pictures for about 20 minute per model. Because of their different personalities, I had to approach each model in a very unique way. I wanted to let their soul shine through my pictures, so I was trying to get to know them while shooting since we did not have much time for a meeting beforehand.

Gianna is a delightful, assertive, and creative girl. She holds an incredible power shining through poses and facial expressions, which is really hard to find.

Gianna, the true MPV - McCune Mansion

Jazzy is very outgoing, talkative, and determined. She also knows her self-worth, and she behaved like a literal queen.

Jazzy - McCune Mansion

Suzi is the kindest person I ever talked to. She was a fantastic listener, and she completely trusted my judgement and ideas, which was honestly liberating.

Suzi - McCune Mansion

Overall, I had a fantastic group. After shooting the solo pictures according to what I thought would fit their personalities best, we started touring the house together for the group pictures.

We honestly had so much fun. They came up with ideas, and they also were engaging with my directions and advice. It didn't even feel like work. We even made a TikTok in some of the down-time. The 2 hours flew away, but I was satisfied with how much I was able to shoot.

Group photo - McCune Mansion

I think I shot about 1200 pictures in the 2 hours. I was so excited to see how they turned out, which is why I immediately started looking through them as soon as I got home.

The Gallery

As I was expecting, the final result was a dream. Let me show you what we were able to create:

Aaaand, that's it!

How do you guys like the results? Would you shoot in a Victorian mansion?

Let me know in the comments!

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Cathy Trope
Cathy Trope
Feb 28, 2022

This is absolutely stunning. The mansion is the perfect backdrop for these amazing ladies and I love how you brought out the best in each of them. If you are ever in Los Angeles, I'd love to invite you to the ranch - I can bring in some model friends and shoot with the horses!

Lele Bonz
Lele Bonz
Mar 12, 2022
Replying to

Hey Cathy,

Sorry for missing your comment! I would love to come out there to see your ranch, you're so sweet! Thank you so much!

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