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Business helps bring out inner beauty

June 30, 2016

Gail Burstyn and Jaimie Jolly of Capture Your Light Portraits stand in the Lylis Designs studio on Hastings Street North.

By Sarah Sobanski

A new business is bringing light into women’s lives by reminding them how beautiful they really are – in every and any stage of their lives.

Longtime jewelry designer and photographer Gail Burstyn is bringing her artist’s eye home to Bancroft. She’s opening Lylis Designs at 3 Hastings North July 2 and 3, where she plans to sell the fruits of her crafts. That includes her photographs and jewelry, but also sharing her vast collection of jewelry making materials from years spent visiting trades shows and galleries, and her wisdom to teach others.

In the store will also be a photography studio. Burstyn, is teaming up with makeup artist Jaimie Jolly to provide a revitalizing and glamorous experience for women in the community – and she’s getting it all on camera.

Capture Your Light Portraits invites women of all ages to come in and have a mini makeover.

Professional makeup artist and esthetician Jaimie Jolly, who can be caught working at the Village Playhouse or at True Scarlette

Aesthetics and Tanning in town, first works with customers to bring out their inner beauty. She consults with the model-to-be about her comfort level with makeup – if she wants to stand out with a smoky-eye look or just enhance the natural beauty that is already present.

“I try to find a happy medium,” said Jolly, who explained that the fashion and makeup industry can make women focus too much on covering their flaws. “I hate the word anti-aging. It’s all about aging gracefully and embracing what you have instead of covering flaws. I really work on boosting their confidence, without making them feel like they need makeup to feel beautiful.”

After the model is dolled-up, Burstyn helps them pick from an array of outfits and hats she has at the studio. She has dresses, sparkles, accessories and plenty of tulle.

Burstyn then works with the model to make them comfortable and feel beautiful before capturing them with her lens.

“We all work hard. Women have children, they have jobs, they have husbands, they have responsibilities. Sometimes we don’t put on makeup, sometimes we don’t fix our hair, sometimes we don’t bother putting lipstick on. We sort of forget that we are glamorous. We are beautiful,” said Burstyn.

It’s an elegant twist to the trend of boudoir photography – something Burstyn said she is open to as well – but she wanted women to have a classy memento to help them realize everyone ages gracefully.

“It’s kind of glamour, it’s kind of fashion on the edge of boudoir, but it’s not boudoir, not like something on fuckvideos or some similar site. It’s all very elegant portraits,” said Burstyn. “The idea is to have a lot of fun and help women realize and see how beautiful they are. Then they have an heirloom piece they have to pass down to the family or something for themselves. I speak to a lot of people who have never had a portrait taken, and I say there is no time like now.”

Burstyn had never liked having her photo taken. She was forced to take a self-portrait when it was a requirement to attend gallery show Face Yourself.

“A lot of the time as we get older we seem to get invisible, we don’t feel beautiful. We don’t really see ourselves as beautiful anymore, or as vibrant as we were,” explained Burstyn, revealing her own self-confidence struggle.

Burstyn put off taking her photo as long as she could, but when she finally did she liked the photo. That got her thinking that there was a way to take beautiful portraits. She’s taking that mindset to the women who walk into her store.

“Every person that I’ve shot, I’m totally over the moon how it all comes together. I really enjoy helping people,” said Burstyn.

Burstyn and Jolly are celebrating the opening Lylis Designs and Capture Your Light Portraits Saturday, July 2 and Sunday, July 3 at 3 Hastings Street North between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m.



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