It's been a long, cold winter. It's finally broken, with a string of truly summerific days already this May. But the stresses of the holiday season, and being sheltered indoors for so long, has taken its toll. I've been spending a lot of time on a huge non-photography-related project, and various health issues have been interfering with my regular exercise for far too long. As such, I feel a bit out of shape and haven't had much motivation for photography of late. But I also recently moved again, and I love to take advantage of shooting in empty apartments. I don't know what it is about abandoned spaces, but I know I'm not the only photographer (not even the only nude portrait photographer!) with a fascination for them.
I was thinking about it while shooting, and in true "hindsight is 20/20" fashion, I realized that my serious photography of late has very much been in the theme of "apartment life". That wasn't really a conscious choice, but merely a reflection of the changing circumstances of my life. Unfortunately, I seem to have less opportunities to go outside and take pictures these days (although there have been some notable exceptions), which is kind of a bummer. Two or three years ago (gosh, it's getting harder to keep track of time as the years go past...), when I got my first mobile phone (with a camera), I went crazy taking hundreds of shots in the "sexting" style. I really had a lot of fun with that, though it's cooled down now, and my current phone doesn't even have a self-timer (!).
It's also been very different not posting on flickr anymore (now that it's been about a year since I left that website), although I've been splitting my time between deviantART and XTube. But, even there, it's mainly old material I'm posting (although the XTube videos are previously unreleased), so that my current stuff has kind of taken on less of an "exhibit" type feeling. On the other hand, I'm probably more critical about the shots I take now more than ever, with less of an impulse to post new stuff all the time, and I'd like to think that my photography skills have only improved with time and experience; it kind of makes me feel like I may be evolving into the next stage as a photographer, who is more calculating about the work he produces, and the work he shares. It's just too bad I'm still limited by the same restrictions I've always had - plus, my body's not getting any younger.
Remember when it was monsters you had to worry about hiding in the closet? Nowadays it's sexual deviants...
The artist at work.
Another thing that came to mind while doing this shoot is something you might not realize about male erotic photography, because it's all behind the scenes. But as much as it looks like it's all fun and games, you have to realize how difficult it is to maintain an erection over an extended period of time. It's one thing if you're focused on whatever sexual act you're engaged in, and you have constant stimulation. But try keeping yourself hard for upwards of an hour, while you're in the middle of a job (posing, composing, and constantly adjusting camera settings) that takes a lot of creativity and concentration. It can be a real chore when you've gone soft for the third time, you have the camera set up, and you think to yourself, this shot would look better with a stiffy, and then you gotta stand there and pump yourself up as quickly as possible, and then try to keep yourself hard while you try out different poses, and (as a self-portrait photographer) repeatedly walk back and forth between the camera and the set...
These two shots were an idea I had based on something I read once about an art gallery featuring a controversial exhibit which included hired nude models to stand in doorways, forcing gallery viewers to squeeze uncomfortably between them to go from one room to the next. I thought, how wicked would it be if the nude models had hard-ons, and the gallery viewers actually had to push through them to get through the doorway? I'm terrible, I know - but you have to admit, the idea has some pull. Keeping the previous discussion in mind, though, it would be pretty tough if not impossible to keep the models aroused for the duration of the exhibit (you'd have to, like, use Viagra or something, and switch out the models every so often to avoid medical problems...).
A lazy clone shot, just to use the space.
Appropriately titled: Filthy Animal
And in case you missed it, that was the end. ;-p