Captive

Something simple and sexy to start the week. Sadly I’ve no idea who the artist is or where this is from. I get a bit of a deep South jail vibe from it. Maybe a no good country boy bootlegger with the Sheriff’s daughter? She plays the innocent, but has a devilish streak a mile wide.

Pascal Campion

I think you’re supposed to get more cynical as you get older. The optimism of youth fades into a jaded middle age, which it turns morphs into grouchy old age. Then death.

Oddly I seem to be going in the opposite direction. I’m way more sentimental than I was a decade or more ago. Presumably by the time I reach retirement, I’ll just be a mushy puddle. I think I’ll be OK with that.

The prompt for all this introspection is the art of Pascal Campion, as featured below. You can see more of it on his instagram and this gallery. There’s not really any femdom involved, but this particular image might give those that way inclined some warm fuzzy feelings. I’ve zero desire to have children, but if anyone wanted to pitch the concept to me, Pascal’s work would be a good place to start.

Failing to Read the Room

Like most bloggers I get my fair share of emails pitching advertising, paid content and guest posts. Normally I junk them as fast as they arrive, but one caught my eye today. Its opening paragraph, designed to prevent me applying my usual whack-a-mole approach, ran as follows:

….before you decide to stop reading, let me assure you that we don’t dabble in pornographic content of any kind, and therefore won’t make any indecent proposals.

Wow. Did they misread the room. I guess it worked, because I did keep reading to find out who’d be stupid enough to send a sexual explicit blog that kind of opening. They even ended up with their own post, albeit without any kind of link or name. Personally I’d love to get a few indecent proposals. I think my life has been sadly lacking in them.

In honor of my new puritanical email friends, I’ll close with an entirely non-pornographic image. This is a simple head shot, with no naughty naked bodies in view. Just a very nice lady whispering sweet nothings into her beau’s ear. Nothing indecent about that.

This is of course from the Divine Bitches site.

My ‘To Do’ List

This image dates from 1941 and was created in protest of the Hays Production Code. It featured ten of the hot button items that films of the day had to avoid. Amusingly, smoking wasn’t one of them, so that dangling cigarette in her lips was just an artistic touch. A glimpse of lacy lingerie on an exposed thigh was apparently much more dangerous.

According to Wikipedia the code ultimately expanded to around 25 different problem areas, which would be tough to fit into a single photographic still. However, looking back at the list now, any random episode of Narco’s probably covers a significant fraction of them.

This image was created by A. L. “Whitey” Schafer. You can read more about him here. I found it via this tweet.

Red. Yellow. Green.

My post on safewords a couple of days ago triggered some interesting comments. By coincidence, Max Fisch also has a good discussion on safewords ongoing. It started with the question of who should pick the safeword – the domme or the submissive? From there it segued into the value of using the traffic light system.

I’m personally not a fan of the whole green/yellow/red thing during play. Red obviously works fine as a safeword, but using the others feels too much like topping from the bottom. If I’ve got an issue that needs attention – like cramp or numbness – then I’ll need to describe it anyway. So starting with yellow doesn’t seem to add much. Unlike ‘red’, it’s also ambiguous. Does it mean escalate carefully, I’m reaching my limit? Or does it mean there’s some other issue you’re not aware of that I need to share?

In contrast, one technique that I have used and found valuable is scoring intensity of play from 1 to 10. It’s particularly helpful for quick calibration when playing with someone new. She’ll check in with me to get a few initial estimates of the intensity of particular actions, and then tell me to say a specific phrase – like “Thank you Miss” – when it escalates to a level 7 (or whatever target you like). That feels a much more natural dynamic to me than using a traffic light system. I’m following her instructions and trying to honestly meet her requirements, rather than being conflicted about imposing my thresholds on the scene. It also gives her the option to set a low threshold and push a little past it if she desires. I feel like I’m communicating my state rather than controlling her actions.

This image isn’t exactly crisp and focused, but I like the sense of energy that creates. I’d guess it’s a scene heading quickly past a level 7 intensity. I found it on this post at the whipmistress903 blog.

Go to the mirror boy!

Mirrors are a common feature in any play space. They’re a great way to create interesting visuals when the domme is working behind the submissive. In this particular case there’s the additional element of the photographer and the viewer. It’s a very clever composition, creating a sense of chemistry and engagement between the participants while also letting the viewer see that dynamic in multiple ways.

I don’t have a 100% attribution for this. However, based on the content and composition, I’m pretty sure it’s from the StrapOn Dreamer site.

More communication is never a bad thing

This Frisky interview with Joanna Angel annoyed me. Her stated goal of creating toys more appealing to kinky dabblers is a good one. But then we get to her advice for beginners, which contains the following…

Some people make it out like you really need to plan this shit out and really discuss it, like, I don’t know, do you really need a safe word with your partner? It seems like everything has to be so formal.

To which I’d say “Yes Joanna. If you’re going to bind, gag and beat someone, which is what your toys are designed for, you’d better fucking discuss it first. And when you’re just beginning to explore kink, that’s absolutely the time you need a safeword.”

Ironically, given her claim, I rarely feel the need to agree a safeword when playing with professionals. They know how to read me and can tell the different between “No (but do it some more)” and “No (my back is playing up and I’m reaching my limit).” Playing with a novice, who might be unsure exactly how hard she can push, and doesn’t have the technique to smoothly escalate intensity, is exactly the time you need a clear communication channel. It’s reassuring to both parties if there’s a magic emergency button always available to push.

This rather beautiful image comes from a tweet by mrunderheel. Despite his gag, they look like they’re in a happy space for communication. I love her smile and the marks on his body. Sadly I don’t have an original attribution for it. Amusingly, when I do a reverse image search on Google, the only thing it suggests is that a related search term is ‘fun’ and then it gives me the Merriam-Webster definition for ‘fun’. It’s both very wrong and very right all at the same time.

Treasure of a Different Kind

I’ve written in the past about the correlation between pro-domme tribute rates and session quality (i.e. there isn’t any). Mistress Servalan has an interesting take on the same topic in this series of tweets. She notes that she keeps her rates at the lower end of the average because…

1 – I genuinely love to play & love longer sessions. I would rather be in the dungeon than pretty much anything.
2 – I like to play with all different types of people. Some of my favourite subs scrimp and save for their sessions, some don’t have to….
Which leads to….
3 – Many of my play partners view my offical tribute as a starting point. If they are able to contribute more they do.

I think that’s a wonderful and very generous approach approach to take. It reminds me a little of the famous slogan from Marx – “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.” Although arguably the same view also traces back to the New Testament.

I did some basic currency conversion math on Mistress Servalan’s tribute rate. For a 3 hour session, her $700 Australian translates into around $500 US. Which is insanely great value for such a talented domme. I’ve played with a lot of US based dommes whose hourly rate alone is around that number. If you are lucky enough to play with Mistress Servalan, and you’re not scrimping and saving, then I really hope you’re tipping way over the odds. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go look up the cost of Seattle to Sydney flights.

This is from Mistress Servalan’s twitter feed, and features her lovely metal headcage created by Fetters. Oddly enough, they’re based just a few miles from where I grew up in England. So I’m sitting in Seattle, writing about a pro-domme in Sydney, featuring a company based in my childhood home of Warwickshire. Small world.

A Good Breakfast

This is by the Chinese artist Pixy Liao and it’s entitled ‘Start Your Day With a Good Breakfast Together’. According to this Guardian article it was inspired by the trend of eating Sushi of a naked woman’s body (Nyotaimori). The naked man is the artist’s boyfriend and artistic partner ‘Moro’.  Apparently he doesn’t like this shot because his hair looks messy. He should probably be grateful it was a healthy papaya breakfast rather than a ‘full english‘. Sizzling bacon and fried eggs would have made messy hair the least of his problems.

You can see more of Pixy Liao’s work on her instagram.

Sock Stud

Either this guy is the worst poker player in the world, or he is really trying to lose. He’s down to his sock suspenders, and she hasn’t even lost her bow-tie yet. The fact she has a full hand of cards while he appears to be playing with just a single ace might be part of the problem. Even in a lowball game, ace high doesn’t work all that well.

Can I also point out that his splayed pose, with that naked ass, is not going to be a good scene for that cushion. Put a towel down dude.

I think this is from a fashion shoot and features the male model Hao-Yun-Xiang. Unfortunately, I’ve not managed to figure out the original photographer or fashion brand, although I’d guess it might a sock related one?