Or in which I briefly yell about some awful porn I watched. Obviously NSFW topics ahead.
Back in my late teens, I was shown lesbian porn for the first time. It was the era of dial-up internet where it took 10 minutes to download one song on Napster and you had to painfully wait while images loaded line by line. Porn was still to be found in secret magazine stashes and VHS tapes that started to lose integrity from being re-wound over and over in primitive gif-fashion. Or, if you were fine with soft-core, you could stay up late to catch re-runs of Red Shoe Diaries on Showtime. I mean, who didn’t want to see more of David Duchovny back then?
I watched this specific porn on VHS and it was definitely a little worse for the wear.
I can still see it. I don’t think it can be unseen. The teased 80s style blonde hair, comically giant fake boobs and blood-red fingernails that looked like they could slice your femoral artery on contact. The video was an exercise in exaggeration. I visibly cringed as I watched close-ups of sharp claws poking around sensitive places. In fact, I was so completely turned off that it took me ten years to understand my sexuality. Yes, there were other factors in that whole debacle and I may be exaggerating a little, but believe me when I say it was BAD. I was definitely not the target audience. I didn’t realize this at the time, but it was obviously made by men for men.
Part of me sometimes wonders what it would have been like to have been exposed to softer expressions of intimacy between women earlier in my life. Like all of the little heterosexual examples in media that are often taken for granted – married parents sharing a kiss before heading off to work or before bed, a young couple holding young hands in the park, or lovers waking up in bed together.
Here I wanted to grab a piece of passion while discarding the brash voyeurism of the video I watched so many years ago. I wanted to create something softer but with more emotion, passion and intimacy in one still frame than in an entire 15 minute video.
After all, filling in the blanks with your mind can still be exciting.
Chemist by day, dodgeballer and photographer by night. Relationship anarchist and passionate Earper.