Category Archives: Porn

An Explanation

Camille Crimson having hot sex

Hi everybody!

I know that a lot of you have been asking questions about what’s going on, so I’m here to set the record straight. I’m sorry that I couldn’t post here sooner, but this domain name was a contentious issue for a while and I didn’t want to ruffle any feathers by posting here, even though I wanted to clear things up. I did explain what happened over on the new blog at The Art of Blowjob, but the news didn’t necessarily reach all the way out here. For now, I’m not writing up any press releases or making any grand statements, just trying to explain what’s going on.

Before I get down to the explanation, I did want to say one thing that’s not always really thought of with regards porn: there’s a whole lot that goes on outside of the end result of a production, and that’s even more true with beautiful porn. The reality is that beautiful porn was conceived of to show the beauty of sex through filmmaking and through expertly captured photography. It’s about glorifying the passionate and celebrating the sensual, but fundamentally it is about the artistic process. Mike has always been a visionary in this regard and, though he’s always stuck behind the scenes because he’s not so much into the glory of recognition, he has always been a huge part of this company and he’s not going anywhere.

Once Camille was out of the woods and stable after her second surgery, she had a lot of time to think and she realized that she was in love with someone else, so she left Mike. It’s sad, but it happens. It was clear right off the bat that The Art of Blowjob would have to change because it would no longer feel right for them to make porn together. As for CamilleCrimson.com, that was more unclear. In the end, she decided to do her own thing with her new partner. We respect her decision and wish her the best.

Mike and I thought about whether or not we were going to continue making porn, but ultimately the desire to continue changing the industry and making something beautiful outweighed the potential challenges of the transition. The Art of Blowjob is completely back on track with new weekly updates featuring the same gorgeous cinematic style that’s always been synonymous with what we do. We’re currently working with new models who are passionate about giving sensual blowjobs, and Mike is shooting at an even higher artistic calibre. While we’re not looking to “replace” anyone or planning on having just one “star” of the site, we’re still committed to showcasing the personalities of the fascinating women involved over on the blog and they’re taking care of their own social media. Although a lot of you have become accustomed to following one person, we really hope you’ll give these other women a chance… They’re smart, funny, artistic, interesting and kind people, so I genuinely think that a lot of you will find commonalities and intrigue with them.

As for CamilleCrimson.com, that’s a bit more challenging. Obviously we can’t put new content on it without using a new face. For now, we’ve unearthed a never before seen video featuring lots and lots of sex, plenty of close-ups and a beautiful blowjob, too. We have a few options, which we’ll be weighing over the next week or so, and we’ll come to a decision on what to do about it in the new year. We know that you’ve been going a while without updates, so you can contact me at theartofblowjob@gmail.com if you’re upset and would like to discuss that and I’ll find a way to make it right. This was unfortunately a completely unforeseen circumstance, but we don’t want anyone to feel wronged as a by-product of this turn of events.

The most important thing to take away from this is the fact that the artistry and the ethos remain the same. Mike has always been the visionary behind the site and the reason it was so emblematic as beautiful porn. We’re not trying to diminish the role that real love played in the beautiful porn process, but he’s committed to continuing to make something visually stunning and doing so with women who are passionate, interesting and really into the pleasure of giving pleasure. From my perspective, I want to keep on giving advice/tips, writing erotic content, discussing the worlds of porn, sex, sexuality and gender and generally trying to help people find the passion and sensuality of beautiful porn in their own lives. While it may be slightly different now, the beautiful porn spirit lives on and will continue to be shared and propagated throughout the industry.

- Sophie

Studying Porn

Sometimes I have a pipe dream of becoming a pornographic academic. I’ve been lucky enough to speak on a few panels and even present a paper at the first Feminist Porn Conference here in Toronto last April. That was definitely one of the highlights of my life, and it’s something that I’d definitely like to experience again. I don’t know exactly what form that’ll take, but it does mean that I take the concept of porn academia to heart in quite a serious way. I spoke with Dr. Chantelle Tibbals for her podcast a while back, and have had this interview that she did with Slate in my back pocket, waiting for a time that I might be moved to blog about the dire need of more research and critical thought with regards to porn… That time has come, blog. That time has come.

The problem is that, because of the general preconceived notions about porn, people have a real tough time seeing value in attributing precious academic resources to its study. This is a really negative bias, because it is an otherwise very culturally dominant medium/art form/phenomena. There’s certainly something to be said about the taboo nature of porn, but if anything, that only feeds the potential for discussion and research, and it should ideally also play a role in piquing general interest about said discussion and research. It’s film, biology, psychology, sociology… It’s obviously the study of sex and gender. It’s ripe for all types of analysis.

As with my unfaltering belief that the answer to bad porn is not no porn, but more porn, I think that more work in the field will balance out some of the more unfortunate pseudoscientific snap judgments that people make about the way porn impacts teens, relationships and the psychosexual self. Maybe this means I should dust myself off and get into writing porn academia in a more serious way. After all, that’s sort of how Dr. Chauntelle came to it. Who knows? Maybe I could be Dr. Sophie some day. There is so much room for a balanced, sex-positive critical and academic response to porn. As far as I know, while mainstream and actively queer/feminist porn is getting traction, very little at all is being written about porn from a pro-am or aesthetically artistic way. Maybe beautiful porn needs a place in academia. What do you think?

Love, Art and Porn – The Life of Carlos Batts

The late Carlos Batts with his wife April Flores

The late Carlos Batts with wife and muse April Flores – Courtesy of LAWeekly.com

It’s been a tough couple of days, probably for many reasons, but chief among them is the fact that the world has lost a talented, innovative man. Carlos Batts was a fabulous photographer and videographer who made a name for himself in art, commercial work and adult content. His body of work on all fronts is truly gorgeous and lush with a uniquely vibrant feel. He engaged with a lot of subjects outside the norm, focusing on exposing “unconventional” beauty in raw, creative ways. Though he had many subjects over the years, his muse was his wife, adult film star April Flores. They were together for over 13 years, married for 10, and in that time he said that shooting her never felt like work, according to Gram Ponante‘s wonderful account of their working and intimate relationship. While reading Gram’s piece after finding out about Carlos’ passing, a particular topic stuck out to me:

Can what you do when you’re in love be porn? Is it porn when there’s commerce involved? Each scene of Alter Ego [a film shot by Batts, starring Flores] is lovingly framed, lit, scored, and constructed, but there are women fucking each other with dildos in it.

Sure it’s porn, but that doesn’t mean it’s soulless.

Michael Ninn could have made Alter Ego, or Andrew Blake, but it would have seemed cold.

That is a question I find that I’m asking myself a lot. Porn is hard to define and nail down, and people imagine that the love slips away from the creators and performers when you cross a certain sexual threshold or when money enters the equation. In my experience working with Camille and Mike, and in meeting, talking with and listening to many other people who blur the lines between love, art and porn, there is some almost inexpressible third heat permeating the work. There’s a warmth and closeness, not only drawn out through familiarity, but through the meeting of the professional and the personal in a defined artistic medium. It invokes a kind of solidarity and that radiates out to the audience, creating a community. They’re in this together, and we get to witness this rare thing.  It’s absolutely something you can see between Carlos and April.

My heart aches for her today. Losing a soulmate is an unfathomable thing. I encourage you to peruse his inventive, original work as well as some of the films they made together. I’ve been lucky enough to meet Carlos a number of times, including when I heard him speak at the Feminist Porn Awards screening and again at the Feminist Porn Conference. His desire to move past stereotypes and labels resonates immensely within the industry. As a big girl, seeing his unabashed approach to other big women in his work made me feel beautiful, and I know I’m not alone in this. He will be remembered for his amazing work, his unique approach to blending sexuality and love with his art and, just as importantly, for being a wonderful partner to April. Rest in peace, Carlos.

- Sophie

Nude Selfies: What’s the Big Deal?

Without lauding what this particular lawyer dude from Delaware is up to (because he seems kind of skeevy) I do think that he has a point… Why do we care so much about people seeing our nude and/or sexual selves? This is an idea which is near and dear to my heart because, well, I get freaked out about it a lot. You see, my work is what I’d call porn-adjacent. I’m in the thick (PUN!) of it in terms of my day to day operations, but I am not the subject nor am I sexually available in any meaningful way because of my job. Sometimes I dabble in blogging, reviews or interviews which include a glimpse into my sexual life (these days, it’s absolutely nothing to write home about anyways) but it’s always done in an arm’s length kind of way. I’m lucky that I don’t feel any pressure to go any further than I feel comfortable. Camille and Mike are very respectful of me and would never ask anything beyond my desires…. But I am undeniably curious at times.

I mean, I have a very outgoing personality, I’m a decidedly sexual person and, even though as a bigger girl I’m not everyone’s favourite flavour, I know the niches that would work for me. Every year, along with representing our sites, making valuable contacts and soaking in the inspirational environment, the Feminist Porn Awards always brings at least a few tempting offers to shoot with some of my idols. So far, I’ve shrugged them all off with sheepish statements about just being a behind the scenes type of gal, but it does make me question why I’m so reticent to share my sexuality and my body online.

This reluctance doesn’t just mean that I wouldn’t likely shoot professional porn, but also that I’m almost overly judicious about any way that my body could appear online. The only sexy videos and photos I’ve shot with former partners were mutually deleted in what is almost a half-ceremonial/half-legal exchange — last time over delicious Vietnamese takeout. On the increasingly rare occasion I’ve had any reason to get sexy over webcam with an object of my affection, I’m actually very cautious to only have my face OR my body in the shot, and to have a sufficiently ambiguous backdrop. With the propagation of ex-girlfriend/revenge porn sites devoted to ogling non-consensual sexts and screengrabs, you can never be too careful even though I trust those with whom I’m e-intimate.

I certainly have absolutely zero sexual shame, I’m confident about my body, I’m quite up-front about sex with the people in my life… There shouldn’t be any reason for such concern, but there are still external societal pressures to keep the theoretical sex separate from the physical embodiment (or digital reproduction there-of) in order to feel safe from the more intense ramifications of sex-negative culture. I’m happy and secure with my job and feel an increasing comfort in my path in the sex-positive sector, so I’m not particularly concerned about my image in that respect and I’m relatively confident that I could explain a foray into porn to absolutely any friend or family member… I guess it’s largely that, though I don’t view sex itself as private, I struggle with the vulnerability required to share it. Once it’s out there, it’s out there, and you can’t entirely control the way people interpret it, even as a person with a background in porn PR.

Maybe I’m just too uptight. After all, I’m also not the type to get a tattoo for fear of regrets over that which cannot be undone, but I so deeply admire those who can let go and do what they want. I’m a little too in my head to divorce my desires from the potential impact of doing something which is stigmatized in many ways, though less overtly so. Perhaps if it became more normalized, it’d be easier. It’d definitely be healthier for everyone societally to share and bare our sexual and physical selves to reduce shame, promote our differences and find kinship in our baser natural states.

I’m not saying we should make like that University of Iowa TA and accidentally attach a sexy video instead of the solutions to her math homework, as I think that there’s a time and a place for everything and that a delineation between overt public/professional persona and the sexual self is still important, but I think that we should be able to shrug off such situations as a moment of exposed humanity and move on. That takes some doing, which only comes through normalizing such sexual expression. It’s kind of a catch 22. I know that more people need to be willing to be open to cause the shift, and that starts with the individual… In this case, with me. Will I do it? I guess we’ll see.

- Sophie

16 Beautiful Cumshots

16 cumshots on beautiful redhead Camille Crimson

16 cumshots. That’s like a valu-pack of cumshots.

How to best celebrate the news that Camille may very well be getting her second surgery this weekend and exiting the hospital not long after? A 21-gun salute? A thousand monkeys at a thousand typewriters? 76 trombones? (Did I just make a musical theatre reference on a porn blog? Seemingly.) But no. 16 beautiful cumshots, which is the full cumshot count of the latest update on The Art of Blowjob. This is ingenuity at work here. Even though Camille is still cooped up in her hospital bed, they managed to put together something that won’t just tide people over until she’s back home, but they put out something that people actively ask for all the time.

This video is made to be enjoyed and celebrated, just as Camille approaches every single blowjob and resulting cumshot. She’ll continue to rest up and heal so that she can be back here in full working order, and in the meantime, you have 16 cumshots in which to revel… At least in the full video. After all, what better way to support Camille while she (literally) gets back on her feet than by enjoying a membership to one of her sites. Or all of her sites… You do get a lot more sexy photos and videos that way! And, really, what’s better than that?

I hope you all have a very happy weekend, and hopefully I’ll be back here with more good news soon.

Facebook FAIL Makes News for Camille and Fellow Redhead Erika Napoletano

Camille may be hopped up on goofballs (legal, prescribed and carefully monitored goofballs, that is) but this blog can still thrive. Hey, it’s not the first time I’ve yammered on here. Before this accident knocked everything (including Camille’s bones) off-course, she was going to go into detail about a hilarious Facebook happening from a week ago. Friday was update day, so the blog was dedicated to that, and her Thursday post was already up by the time this fully took shape, so it was left until Monday… Until she accidentally popped a wheelie and much of her leg. This means that it falls to me to recount her completely accidental rise to Facebook FAIL fame.

Erika Napoletano is a speaker, writer, branding consultant and she just happens to be a redhead. She seems like a badass and I would very much like to be her when I grow up. She has a Facebook Page just like Camille does, only hers has little or nothing at all to do with blowjobs. Fair enough. Different strokes for different folks. (Pardon the pun.) She even did a TEDxTalk! But she’s a redhead, and that seems to be all that counts when it comes to Facebook’s page recommendation algorithm because everyone who liked her page immediately got this:

camille-crimson-facebook-recommendation

That’s very nice of Facebook and all, but they’re not exactly similar outside of their appearance which, I have to say, is fairly striking. Erika noticed this too, and did perhaps the most fearless and hilarious thing she could do: she did a temporary Facebook page makeover made up of a photoshoot homage to Camille. The results are quite on point:

Courtesy of ErikaNapoletano.com

Courtesy of ErikaNapoletano.com

She initially thought that this sudden Facebook recommendation was because of an ad campaign that we had launched targeting other redhead pages. As one of the people responsible for making these decisions, that would be a bad move for us. Camille has already had a page and a profile deleted on Facebook for no good reason. We’ve built back up a great following and we’re not looking to cause any trouble by having a Facebook admin approve or deny an ad campaign. That seems like it’d go badly given how trigger-happy they are about deleting anything even remotely sexual. It’s the most puritanical social media out there.

Once Erika and Camille talked and they figured out that this was just a big ol’ Facebook FAIL, it was all water under the bridge. It brought these lovely redheads together and, even though they don’t seem like they have much asides from their red hair in common on the surface, they actually have surprising overlap in terms of their personalities and their business acumen. Sometimes metrics issues make friends!

But, as always happens on the internet, it actually went pretty viral! Sites including Adweek, The Daily Mail, AVN, Daily Dot and Business Insider all had something to say, which ended up bringing up an interesting side point: people underestimate the porn industry. This most evident in Adweek‘s backhanded compliment in their summation of the situation:

Most marketing professionals, of course, would never have the guts to pull off something like this. Then again, most porn stars probably wouldn’t have the marketing savvy to run social targeting campaigns.

Yeouch. Even if that were true, that’s kind of a dig, but it’s flagrantly not the case. The adult industry is pretty much entirely online at this point and it’s imperative to have an active social media presence to differentiate yourself in such a saturated market. Camille (and many other people like her) run their own sites and aren’t part of a major corporation. She’s not just part of the product, she’s involved in every aspect of running her business. This is true for a lot of porn performers and even those who do contract work for mainstream porn companies still have a huge stake in their web presence.

Porn performers have blogs, columns, endorsement deals, consulting firms, editing houses, production companies, books… That takes a hell of a lot of savvy and is probably more true and necessary in porn than any other segment of the entertainment industry. I mean, look at cams. Many porn performers have turned to cams as an additional revenue stream and it’s definitely not as easy as it looks… As someone who has run targeted ad campaigns for my volunteer work, I’m sure that setting up a Facebook ad campaign is a hell of a lot simpler than what porn performers do in their day to day lives. It’s not exactly rocket science.

It’s so reductive to assume that porn performers are just vapid people who smile (or sometimes grimace) and look pretty while having sex. Even though this is “just” a micro-aggression, it reinforces the idea that it’d be an anomaly for porn performers to actually be good at other things. That’s a sucky attitude to have towards an entire industry of different human beings. Just look at Seska‘s nuanced sexual education, Stoya‘s insightful views, Dana DeArmond‘s quirky charm, Ariel Rebel‘s many facets and even James Deen‘s hilarity… These aren’t just people portraying their authentic selves… They’re doing so in a very intelligent, social media-savvy way.

This seems to have, in some small way, started a dialogue. AVN brought this up, and I think this is because it takes someone in the industry to notice the way we’re subtly undermined in the mainstream. But we’re slowly pushing porn into a public discourse. This is all a part of it.