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  1.  (576.21)
    Liquidcow- I can't see the youtube video until I get home (damn workplace internet censors... tiny little men who sit in a locked room and decide what and when someone can look at something online...), but I can respond to your art/porn points. Everyone has their own opinions when it comes to both art and pornography. While I think that pornography is something that's ultimately functional, I think that a lot of art is intended to be functional as well. Hell, anything designed to give you an emotional reaction is fulfilling a function. I'm not sure that I understand a sliding scale of where a piece that elicits tears has more artistic merit that something that can elicit an orgasm. I'll concede that the overwhelming majority of porn is not art, and the overwhelming majority of art is not porn, but I don't think that there is a highway, a sidewalk, or even a thin line between the two. The same is true for advertising. Personally, I think that art is as much about manipulation as it is expression.

    I don't know, give me a few more minutes or an hour and I might have a more thought out answer. This discussion isn't up my alley, it is my alley. Like I mentioned, I'm at work and I can't put together a coherent thought. (What am I saying? I can never put together a coherent thought.)

    -Johnny
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      CommentAuthorrev'd '76
    • CommentTimeJan 22nd 2008 edited
     (576.22)
    Viceroy: Porn & humor? Not possible?

    Leaving aside the reality-based trampoline hijinks of a pair of midwestern twentysomethings posted to YouPorn late last week, there's Crumb's 'My Troubles With Women' pts. 1 & 2, 'Birdland' by Gilbert Hernandez, Carla Speed McNeil's pillow book stories in Smut Peddler, Brandon Graham's rent-paying 'Perverts in Space' & 'Pillow Fight', and 'Slut Girl' by Isutoshi-- all of which are quite warm, sticky & filled with laughs.

    EDIT: I forgot two of my most recent favorite sometimes-smutty 'tooners, Jess Finklestein and Lucy Knisley. I look forward to the day I can put these kids on my shelf alongside the rest of the library.

    FURTHER EDIT: And while not a laff-a-minute sort of thing, Maka-Maka is quite loving & sincere in its intentions. Artful, even.
    • CommentAuthorNadreck
    • CommentTimeJan 22nd 2008
     (576.23)
    I have to say, I was pretty impressed with how Shortbus handled sex. Very sex-positive, and in general really well done (good soundtrack, too). I second Johnny's endorsement, and if any of you've not seen it, I'd definitely recommend taking a look.

    I don't think it's odd to want porn to be more sex-positive: frankly a lot of porn out there is a caricature of sex, taking fantasies and running with them. Porn tends to simply have a plot sort of casually draped over the sex, which really doesn't leave any room for becoming engaged by the characters. This precludes any sort of real sense of romance or involvement with the film.

    I think as we become a more sex-positive society (it's a slow battle, I know), there will be a lot more room for "porn" of a different color -- one where you're engaged with the story and the characters, and you're not just fast-forwarding through the talking parts.
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      CommentAuthorlizbt
    • CommentTimeJan 23rd 2008
     (576.24)
    I think a lot of Eon Mckai's alt porn films have a definite sense of humour while being sexy as hell. They are also very straight girl friendly, especially any scenes with James Deen.
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      CommentAuthorUnsub
    • CommentTimeJan 23rd 2008
     (576.25)
    I'm having a time out until I can learn some manners.
    If sex becomes to normal with no taboos it will become boring and we wil have to develop weird fetishes because we need to violate taboos to get a thrill.
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.26)
    "If sex becomes to normal with no taboos it will become boring and we wil have to develop weird fetishes because we need to violate taboos to get a thrill."

    I don't think anyone's ever going to not get turned on by sex. Sure, often it's more erotic to not see something than to see it, but if we're talking about attitudes here, then it's not taboo for a married couple to have sex at home, or newlyweds to have sex on their honeymoon, but that obviously still goes on. It's not so much breaking taboos that turns people one (although I suppose it can do), it's more things that are new and exciting, which is why new couples are always at it like rabbits. But I don't think the point is that we should all be fucking in the street and watching porn on daytime TV. It's more that a film shouldn't get an NC-17 slapped on it because of a glimpse of pubic hair, or that sex shouldn't be seen as evil or dirty.
  2.  (576.27)
    I don't think anyone's ever going to not get turned on by sex.


    *Cough* Can I raise my hand here?

    When watching TV/Movies, as soon as the sex-making starts I normally pick up something to read. Of course I may just be some sort of freak for not being utterly sex-crazed like every other human on the planet.

    And in an effort to bring this comment back on topic - How would you make porn to interest people who aren't hugely interested in sex?

    I'm guessing you need to make the story inseperable from the sex.
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      CommentAuthorVespers
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.28)
    hello again, Reynolds.

    I also am not turned on whatsoever by random sex scenes in non-porno movies. They are annoying. Especially in movies that it just doesn't fit with and has no purpose, or in ones such as Underworld, where the hot chick in catsuit with pistols killing things is hot enough in the first place that the sex scene is in fact less sexy than the movie.

    And that's the same problem you mention with getting it interesting to people who aren't interested in sex. You must make the sex actually be plot-related. This does not seem to happen lately.
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.29)
    Sorry maybe I wasn't being clear, I wasn't talking specifically about sex in movies, I know some people don't get anything from watching sex on tv or whatever. Unsub seemed to be saying that sex in general, as in in real life, would become uninteresting if it wasn't taboo, and people would stop actually having sex if it wasn't naughty. People are always going to have sex, is basically what I was saying.

    As for making it integral to a story, surely that's already been done? Last Tango In Paris springs to mind, as well as Romance, maybe 9 Songs, Ai No Corrada. The thing is with these films is that they do feature explicit sex, but no more than they need to to express what the film is about. Porn films have different categories and approaches but generally the point is to show a lot of sex for its own sake, so in the context of a narrative film, where the skill is in showing what you need to show to tell your story, aren't 20-minute sex scenes going to be completely gratuitous in 99% of situations?
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      CommentAuthorVespers
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.30)
    aren't 20-minute sex scenes going to be completely gratuitous in 99% of situations?

    Yes. Obviously. So is it in fact possible to re-create that 1% of situations in porno form, or... should we just get back to art movie where the characters get it on a lot but not for so very relatively long each time?

    and as for your first-paragraph point (sorry for taking them backwards); Sorry, I answered Reynolds and didn't really consider what he had been answering. I've gotta say I agree with you and
    People are always going to have sex
    Is pretty damn accurate. Humans are horny lil bastards and, unless you've gotten to the point where, as Terry Pratchett so eloquently put it in Making Money, you've just kept on adding horseradish to your ham sandwich until you've reached the point where the ham all fell out and you didn't even notice, well.. unless you're past that point, a sexy lady/man/(leaving this one blank, fill in your own preference here, people) will always be enough to make people go "Rawr!" *jump*.
  3.  (576.31)
    what you need is the beautifully captured storage cupboard 'quickie'. should take no more than a few minutes, so they say (he typed quickly)
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      CommentAuthorhyim
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.32)
    Writing this entry took me some time so I apologize if i missed any new additions to the discussion in the process.

    I think everyone here interested with the relationships between erotica, porn and the creative process has read Alan Moore's article in Arthur "Bog Venus vs. Nazi Cock-Ring: Some Thoughts Concerning Pornography" so I won't go over it as it is far better read than summed up.

    There seems though to be a confusion in subject and concepts when discussing sexuality and artistic expression. The very term art porn is a frankensteinian porte-manteau in the same vein as gastronomic frozen dishes. You can try and bring chefs all you want but at the end of the day, it's still a frozen dish. Adding wine doesn't help.

    I'm currently reading a history of eroticism : from olympus to cybersex and the author makes a fine distinction between sexuality, erotica and porn(ography.) : in our current state of back noise common sense knowledge, erotica is a calmer/more prude version of porn on the explicit graphical scale, with softporn in between for lack of better term. The author argues that we make a confusion between the thing, the word and the commodity.

    Sex being the object, erotica is its artistic expression and pornography a commodified incarnation of human sexuality. Sex wrapped up with a sticker price.

    Pornography is in its greek roots the spectacle of selling sex. Hence the weakly fuzziness in the term art porn : there is rather limited headspace in artistically representing the sale of sex. What we inadequately mean by art porn is the sale of artistic representations of sex, in another word, erotica.

    The distinction is important because we have a tendency to understand the whole by its specificities. Someone in this discussion stated that we will always need taboos, as violating them is an integral part of sexual arousal. This is true only in part. Taboos are a subset of sexual fantasies, an even smaller subset of sexual desire. Because we experience sexuality only in its particularities, we tend to think that's all there is to it. The sadness of the fetishist is that he can only experience sexuality through a minute detail, living one of the most important, enthralling and enlightening of human conditions through a pinhole.

    Pornography -an invention of the mercantile era- because of its status as a commodity only cater to a smallish aspect of the sexual desire, and a masculine one at that, the objectification of the other. Male centric porn, whether 'tis male slash female, slash male or slash other, has at its backbone the use of another as a meatbag orgasm machine. Anyone with some consequent sexual experience under his or her belt understand that being used as a sex object and using the other similarly is mightily arousing, even for the just the simple fact that the other entrusts you with his/her self entirely. But he or she also knows that objectification is only a subset of what the spectrum of sexuality has to offer.

    The reverse cowgirl called the porn industry a meat grinder for the human condition. Not only because it is selling sex as an object, but how it uses the spectacle of sex as this no competition, no obstacles, no challenges frictionless world where the other is waiting to be used, willingly, orifices at the ready. Just hit play. A multi billon dollar industry based on a fraction of dust in the vast glorious sand beaches of human desire.

    Porn is an orgasm vending machine. Add coins, press play, get stimuli. And because it's selling you your arousal -putting your crude masturbatory orgasms on a shelf for you to consume- the maitre mot is More. Faster, stonger, deeper. To a point where, and this is where we tie up with the Ellis mind- porn nowadays is like watching the sex life of aliens, to paraphrase Warren in his suicide girls column. The increase competition in the fish market of porn gives us more extreme, cruder, holy shit images for our eyes to feast on. Long far gone the arousal, or even the sex. Only remains a finger pointed at sad people doing sad things, the message being "Look, just Look. Keep looking." They are, to quote Sorkin, just this side of snuff films.

    The horizon for artistic expression is large, because sex is an integral part of what the bloody hell we are doing here (trying not to reuse the term human condition here. woops.) Sex is what changes the obedient child into a self thinking independent human, and that is why every system of societal control has its locks firmly in place on it, from excising the most enjoyable parts to lonely strangers in dark rooms riffling through every depictions of sexuality to stamp the word inappropriate on it. Sex as plot has been done, sex as not-sex has been done, sex as orgasm pill has been done to death.
    Sex as a theme is infinite, and glorious, and always relevant.

    So really, we should be making sex, instead of making porn.
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      CommentAuthorroque
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.33)
    especially any scenes with James Deen
    I got curious and looked up a naked photo of him. he looks like somebody's Second Life character.

    I guess that is my major problem with porn, in a nutshell. I don't seem to find sexy what other people find sexy.
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      CommentAuthorlizbt
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2008
     (576.34)
    I got curious and looked up a naked photo of him. he looks like somebody's Second Life character.

    I guess that is my major problem with porn, in a nutshell. I don't seem to find sexy what other people find sexy.


    Yeah, he may look like a typical alt boy, but what he doesn't look like is a typical porn guy, and that is pretty hard to find.
  4.  (576.35)
    I've enabled porn.

    Not just by buying it mind you, but I've helped friends make it, invested in it, allowed them to use equipment and space and generally helped. All without remuneration or credit mind you. I like my anonymity and I'm neither photogenic nor aroused by the idea of fucking on camera.

    It's all been what I would call sex-positive porn. Everyone is well paid, educated about the process and the repercussions. The producer sits down with everyone and has the "Your kids could see this, your parents could see this, every person you want to be with romantically from now until you die could see this" talk with performers. There's no deception in the production. Everyone is clear about what they're doing and with whom. All the kink is talked about before hand, limits are made clear and everyone is informed that they can, and should, call for a stop at any fucking time. And it happens, but the few times I've seen it, it was always the person inflicting (the domme spanking, the top with the crop) who called time and wanted to make sure the person was ok.

    People get rejected. Alot. Not just for being ugly (though that happens) but for being drugged out, desperate, twitchy, crazy, mean. Guys who show up and start trying to boss around the directors and producers, who are all female and many of whom are dommes or ex-dommes, because, well, they're guys. They tend to end up getting politely asked to leave by the largest and most imposing person on location. Message received.

    The sex itself? I'm kind of vanilla personally, but I have some truly fucking kinked out friends. Bisexual (male and female) polyamorous is pretty much the standard. Lots of BDSM running from simple tying up to shibari. Gender play (girls as bois, drag kinging, pegging) is very prominant. Pegging especially. There's a huge demand for watersports porn. Huge. I get teased because I just like, y'know, fucking. Part of the reason I get on so well with these very kinky people is I'm not trying to keep up with them.

    Most of my friends are of that, and they would kick me right in the balls for saying this, Suicidegirl look. Dramatic clothing, hipster style, tattoos, kitsch, body mods of all kinds. They're very savvy about the business end of things. Right now they're working on an LLC to put together one large site for their collective in Chicago but they've also been producing stuff for sites like NOFAUXXX for a while as well as doing alot of private order fetish work. Again, watersports. There are guys who happily pay 500 dollars for a half hour of women peeing on each other in the shower. A friend of mine who does it semi-regular says she almost feels bad for it. One time she offered to at least masturbate or play with her friend. No dice. The guy wanted them to pee, on each other, then shower off and above all be happy and nice to each other. Paid her rent.

    I think that's what makes these people some facinating to me as friends. They're upbeat. There's no drudgery to them, they're always bopping from one project to the next. There's a joy to their perversity that's infectious. These aren't glassy-eyed 18 year olds being tossed into porn-valley hoping to become the next vivid girl. These are vegan hippe girl punk-bois who fuck for fun and figure why not get paid for it?

    Some of them are sex workers (dommes and escorts) in addition to their porn work. Many of them work in alternative theatre, burlesque (there are something like 20 burlesque troupes in Chicago right now) and art. All of them are under thirty and most of them make about as much or a bit more than most people our age.

    I do wonder what they'll think at 50 or 60 about how they spent their youth. Some of them live in such a way that that, sadly, just isn't an issue. But I think most of them will always embrace their kink and never be embarrassed by it.

    Sorry, that was very long, but I'm a bit squishy drunk and loquacious and online. Hence, the above.

    Some Links:

    http://www.nofauxxx.com/
    A great site for porn of all shapes and sizes, alot more open than suicidegirls. in terms of body types and style.

    http://livegirlreview.com/
    Audacia Ray produces some of the best porn and sex reviews I've ever seen.

    http://fattyd.com/
    A gorgeous porn star/model whom friends of mine have worked with.

    http://www.early2bed.com/productions.html
    Local Chicago porn starring and produced by friends.
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      CommentAuthorhyim
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2008 edited
     (576.36)
    a passage I just read :
    There was a whole chain of separate departments dealing with proletarian literature, music, drama, and entertainment generally. Here were produced rubbishy newspapers containing almost nothing except sport, crime, and astrology, sensational five-cents novelettes, films oozing with sex, and sentimental songs which were composed entirely by mechanical means on a special kind of kaleidoscope known as versificator.

    There was even a whole sub-section -Pornosec, it was called in Newspeak, engaged in producing the lowest kind of pornography, which was sent out in sealed packages and which no Party members, other than those who worked on it, was permitted to look at.

    oh how do I love the year 1984.
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2008
     (576.37)
    That definition of pornography from hyim is interesting, it puts it more eloquenlty (and intellectually) than what I could, but it's somewhat close to what I was saying, I think, in that porn is about selling something to someone, it's almost like providing a service. Same as an advert, it has a job to do, and if it doesn't do it, it fails. Art doesn't necessarily have to have a role, or it can fulfil may roles, maybe different roles for different people. Like I say, adverts and porn are separate from art in my opinion.



    As for the idea of getting people who aren't interested in sex into porn, it just isn't going to happen. I know it sounds obvious, but if people aren't interested in something they won't watch it. There comes a point where you have to accept that. Marketing firms have three types of people that they think about; existing customer, potential customers, and (I don't know what term they use) people who will never be interested in the product/store/service. In some ways an artist should be the same. I see a lot of threads on forums saying things like 'what comic would you give to someone who doesn't like comics', 'what album would you give someone who doesn't like this band'. I wouldn't, it's a waste of time - excepting situations where I think someone thinks they don't like something because they don't know about it, or something like that - just accept that some people just don't like some things. If you try to appeal to people who otherwise don't like something, you're ignoring the people who do, and you end up making something that appeals to no one.

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      CommentAuthorroque
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2008
     (576.38)
    Yeah, he may look like a typical alt boy, but what he doesn't look like is a typical porn guy, and that is pretty hard to find.
    that's true, actually, and a plus. typical porn guys are hideous.

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