Would it be cheating to include these two shoots into the project?
The intent when I began was to create a body of work that challenged the stereotypical view of bisexual men and how they are represented…in particular those that are in heterosexual relationships but are forced into infidelity in order to ‘scratch an itch’. These two men, while they were married with children, now identify as gay. So this leaves me with a dilemma but also forces me to question my original intent. When I began the project I was being approached by bisexual men asking for photoshoots so I thought to create the project based upon them and their experiences. As the images have developed I realise that while they are the large source of my subjects the images themselves are portraying a far broader range of concepts and issues. I brainstormed a ‘word cloud’ of words or phrases that pertain to the work….
Acceptance; Ageing; Anonymity; Boundaries; Concealment; Conformity; Desire; Disclosure; Disruption; Ethics; Exhibitionism; Fetish; Infidelity; Intimacy; Invisibility; Masculinity; Objectification; Personae; Power; Provocation; Representation; Repression; Self-identity; Sensuality; Sexuality; Stereotypes; Stigma; Subversion; Trust; Validation; Voyeurism; Vulnerability;
And I am sure other people could pick up on another dozen or more.
So now I ask myself again if these two shoots could be included into the larger body of work? While it is true they may not have been sourced in the same way as the rest of the subjects; their images display much of the same characteristics and thereby explore the same issues as the larger project.
Many of these shots are variations upon a theme of the body of work I have captured so far. I chose one shot that comes extremely close to betraying the real identity of the subject as I would like to get a few more along this line…something that comes within a hairs-breadth of exposing their portrait and breaks the trust relationship between myself and the subject. Another shot that differs slightly is the full-body shoulders to feet where the majority of the images collected to date are small intimate parts of their anatomy. There is an element of the statuesque about the capture whereby we initially question if it is flesh or carved from marble…bringing up connotations of classical statuary and the idealism of form which has culminated in today’s search for the perfect body.