Angus McBean creating the plaster-of-paris robes for his portrait of Vivien Leigh as Aurora (photographed by his assistant John Vickers). In the finished portrait the robe has an addition of a modesty-preserving sprig of flowers.
“It involved making plaster clothes for her, so on the occasion of her first visit, we first of all stretched her as tightly as possible over a minimum of underclothes with a sheet of white rubber. She was put slightly reclining on a scaffold board. She had to have some support because the operation would be lengthy and the plaster drapery, when wet, and very heavy…When Vivien came, she slipped into the dress from behind. The front of the dress, it turned out, was a little too plongé for those days, so a spray of cherry blossom was popped there, and at the last moment, I scattered more blossom on the clouds. The picture caused a lot of attention but it must have been due to Vivien, not myself, becayse as a photograph it does not rank very high amongst my other surrealist efforts."