These days vagary is most commonly used when we talk about the vagaries of a situation, meaning an unpredictable or erratic occurrence. But the etymology of the word is vagari, the Latin word for wander.
This weekend’s subject is @lovelustlondon. This coming Wednesday he’ll be joining club 40 and he should be enjoying a vagari in Tibet but due to the vagaries of 2020 he’s not!
This shot was taken a few years ago when we took an early morning walk in Richmond Park. We are going to do a new shoot for his 40th but much like a lot of 2020 it’s on hold until 2021. When spring rolls around we’ll take a day trip somewhere out of the city and get some truly celebratory shots, but until then you can feast your eyes on this one!
“Just living is not enough,” said the butterfly, “one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” ―
During my lockdown photo project, flowers became something of a theme. Each weekend I would walk to the market stall near my flat and buy fresh flowers to brighten up my home. Before they reached the vase they would become a prop for that day’s photo.
It’s funny that this quote features the word freedom, just as many of us have had or are having our freedom curtailed again. The other day when I was sending a flurry of shots to one of the recipients of my daily photos when I said “This is not me restarting lockdown project!” He quipped “Don’t say what you can’t commit to!” He knows my urge to be snapping away!
I’m not going to restart my own nudes projects (I’ve still got about 60 bloody shots in my bank that have yet to be published!), but I am going to pick up another idea that I had but didn’t get around to. It’s called Scenes on Screens. Instead of photographing myself during lockdown two I plan on photographing others.
The plan is I hang out with my subjects on Zoom or Skype and photograph them through the screen. Here’s a shot I took of Maria a couple of years ago which gives you an idea of what I have in mind. If you’d like to get involved and you know me (sorry, no strangers!) then DM or message me. Let’s not the creativity be stunted just because we’re stuck inside!
But until I get that project off the ground, here’s one of my flower shots from earlier in the year.
For rather obvious reasons I’ve called this Edit Us. This was a capture from the last moments of a wonderful evening with two amazing people.
Our plans had been in the pipeline for a couple of months and while we were all super-excited about it, I was ever so slightly nervous because I was introducing them for the first time. I knew they’d get on because they’re both brilliant people, but you never know how the chemistry is going to go. But I needn’t have worried because as you can see, we fitted together just fine.
The photo was taken by me and they’ve done an edit each. Which do you prefer?
I took this photo on 14th May, some two months into lockdown when there’d been a whooooole lot of time alone. I sent it to the recipients of my daily lockdown photos with the message ‘there’s one too many consonants between my legs right now!’
Tonight I’m putting the l back in to give a virtual high five to the wonderful Smutathon folk who are up against the clock, writing for 12 solid hours to raise funds for Endometriosis UK. Endometriosis is a chronic and debilitating condition that ruins lives. As Romantic Isa wrote in her story: “15 years of being told there’s nothing wrong with you while you’re in the worst pain possible damages a person.”
Despite Endometriosis being the second most common gynaecological condition in the UK, affecting one in 10 people AFAB, on average is takes 7.5 years to diagnose and there’s currently no known cure. Endometriosis UK is a charity achieving huge things with a tiny team and a small budget. With just seven staff and volunteers they supported over 25,000 people last year. Anything you can afford to give will go a long way. Please visit their fundraising page and donate now.
One of my favourite things about hanging out with a partner is not just the sex (although obviously that’s the best bit!), it’s the downtime between fucking. Idle chat, kissing and stroking with no immediate intent, bacon sandwiches in bed. It’s in those moments that I’ll often grab my camera to capture a moment. This was one of those moments – him stood in profile against my dark wall, drinking tea, not immediately realising I was taking a photo.
The photos from my day out with Honey and Monstrous Jaffa keep on coming. This time it’s me!
“Be like the sun and the meadow, which are not the least concerned about the coming winter.” George Bernard Shaw
August has been such a tonic. Hanging out with family and friends has felt like taking huge gasping breaths of air after too long under water. When we are hunkered down for what is likely to be a long and difficult winter I’m going to look at photos like this and remember these summer days of fun and freedom.
I was very happy on Wednesday to have a photo adventure with Honey and Jaffa. We got a whole load of photos but I think this is my favourite. Jaffa and I first talked about doing photos months ago and we wanted to get them in before he leaves his forties in a few months time. I wasn’t sure if these plans had had a 2020 done on them but happily I was able to get in on the #JaffasJollies fun and here we are!
“Forests may be gorgeous but there is nothing more alive than a tree that learns to grow in a cemetery.” Andrea Gibson*
On Tuesday afternoon Exhibit A and I headed to Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park to tick off another location in my mission to shoot nudes in each of the Magnificent Seven. Only one more to do now!
I really loved this cemetery. A short stroll from Mile End tube, almost as soon as you’re through the gates from the busy streets you’re into woodland that’s grown up around the old headstones. It’s not as wild as Nunhead but it’s certainly more rambling than some I’ve been to. I’ll definitely return to this one to explore more of its nooks and crannies.
We got a few different shots, more of which I’m sure will appear on one of our sites at some point, but this was my favourite. I love the contrast between the dusty path snaking out of the shot and the hard lines of the headstone and how the two elements perfectly frame his body.
*I found this quote through Google and I don’t know Andrea’s work (yet) but I think they may interest some of you. A poet and activist, their poetry focuses on gender norms, politics, social reform and the struggles LGBTQ people face in today’s society.