“I enjoyed the experience it was quite cathartic.”
As these interviews and photoshoots are expanding I come to realise the wide variety of men and their reasons for coming for a photoshoot. Much as the pigeonhole term bisexual covers a broad range of sexuality; the men who have participated so far have a broad range of experiences and feelings when it comes to how their sexuality is embraced within their life.
This man describes spending far too long trying to deny his feelings, living in denial and suppressing these desires. Finally reaching an age whereby he wants to remove complications and admitting to these feelings are a large part of this. He is now slowly coming to terms and accepting the part of his personality which has a deep seated desire for another man. His interview was open, honest and eloquent and I was left with the impression the photoshoot was as much about finding acceptance as it was about creating lasting images. The shoot itself was also about capturing his form to give him a visual sense of self – the thought of being photographed is something that had always appealed so he was very interested in the opportunity to be photographed by me. This is an interesting thing to consider as his attitude reflects that the male is not used to being regarded in such a way…my shoot enabled him to be seen through the eyes of another as a sexual being…a desirable form to be objectified. A very interesting dichotomy as we are more than used to regarding the female form via the Male Gaze, but to turn the table upon the male himself is still a moderately new view.
“It’s about being me, rather than pretending I’m someone else.”
We got some very nice personal shots for himself which I hope he will be proud of. Although these were not anonymous so will probably be unusable for the websites from which I source my subjects. A couple of very nice portraits and sculptural nudes which show him for the attractive man that he is.
For my images – as well as expanding upon the shots that fracture the male into compositions that signify masculinity, I wanted to push the boundary a little to get as close as possible to revealing his portrait; pushing the trust relationship between myself and the subject to its limit. it is possible he may not grant me permission to use these shots of his face, but I really would like to depict the sensuality of the lips as well as their inherent sensuality they also represent the secrets and lies these men are often forced to tell.
I return to another dilemma with this model…the contentious issue of an aroused male. When I started photographing men several years ago I was a little embarrassed at dealing with naked men, but it did not take me long to realise how natural and innocent the nude form truly is. So now I am invariably too busy considering lighting, poses, angles and camera settings to even realise the model is unclothed. It therefore follows on from this that a fair number of the men I have photographed have become aroused in the studio…it is the nature of the beast very often that we do not always have (or want) complete control over this part of our anatomy. So a couple of the subjects in this body of work have found themselves in a state of arousal…whether this is because they are natural exhibitionists, that they found the experience stimulating or that they simply lost control temporarily. It could be worrying that I am not worried by this turn of events. I am more than happy to incorporate this into the shoot in as subtle a way as possible. To my mind the object itself has become tainted by some of the minds that control it…as the saying goes “guns don’t kill people – people kill people”. I would like to attempt to allow this piece of skin and muscle to regain a little portion of innocence.