For the single subject prompt I bring you yet another photo from my lockdown photo project. Sometimes I spent a lot of time working to realise an idea, sometimes I went walking, knowing I’d be taking a photo along the way but with no idea in mind. Then there were the times late at night where I thought ‘Fuck! I haven’t taken today’s photo!’ This is one of them. The time stamp on this image is 22.26. I was still at my desk. I whipped off my top, turned off the light so I was lit just by the light of the screen and snapped a one take shot. Then it was back to work.
There is no repose like that of the green deep woods.
Sleep in forgetfulness of all ill.”
If had to choose my favourite photo from my lockdown photo project I think it would be this one. I love my legs, they’re the part of me that always give me confidence, even if I may be feeling ‘meh’ about the rest of me. I love their shape, their length and I really love getting messages back from lovers telling me how much they’d like my legs to be wrapped around them at that moment. Comments like that are a Pavlovian Bell for happy hot memories.
But I love this photo not just for my legs but for the woods. It’s no secret how much I love photographing in the woods but these woods now have a special place in my heart. I spent a huge amount of time wandering round the Great North Wood during lockdown and by the end of it I’d visited all the accessible patches of it (and snapped a daily photo in many of them!). Discovering all this woodland has been an absolute joy – so much so that I’ve now signed up to be a volunteer for the conservation work! I may keep my clothes on for the volunteering!
I was due to have a play date on the afternoon of Tuesday 17th March. When we planned it I thought it would be the perfect activity for getting over the Eroticon comedown and that I’d be sharing stories of the weekend with my friend. In reality, I was self-isolating having started to show symptoms over the weekend. He was also feverish and isolating. In lieu of having actual me that day I snapped a photo for him. It was a good photo so I also sent it to Exhibit A and American Chap. I didn’t know then that I’d started a ‘thing’. A thing that would last 122 days – exactly one third of this crazy fucking leap year.
I scrolled back to the messages that went alongside that first photo. A jokey chat about imagining what it would be like to not kiss another human for months on end and how ridiculous that would be. Me shout typing: “IMAGINE THE EPIC TENSION IF YOU HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO FUCK FOR WEEKS.” Him: “OMG, fucking after that would be phenomenal!” It seemed like a crazy notion at the time.
Six days later the UK went into full lockdown. It would be nearly three months before he and I saw each other again. We were right though. The tension was epic and the sex was phenomenal. Not-getting-past-the-hallway-pulling-clothes-off phenomenal. My reunions with him and with Exhibit A are not providing me with any strong evidence that a sustained absence is bad for chemistry!
I have absolutely bloody loved this project. It’s been a creative red thread through the strangest of times and a way to keep a part of myself alive while I couldn’t actually be with people. An unexpected benefit has been how completely confident I have become in how attractive my body is, to me and others. I always talked the talk; I often didn’t walk the walk. But it’s hard to not to be reassured about how hot you are when you take a daily nude for four months and receive numerous messages of lust and encouragement.
Many of you will already have seen this photo on Twitter but I wanted it to have a permanent home on the blog so I’m making it this weekend’s Sinful Sunday.
I’m in the final few days of my daily lockdown photo project and I decided that the last ten days would be a victory lap of the most common themes that have come up over the 17 weeks. Food has been a common theme so as this week was Exhibit A‘s birthday I decided to turn myself into a birthday cake for him.
I was idly scrolling Twitter late last week (read: procrastinating!) when I saw a photo of a friend in some new lingerie. I clicked through to the site she mentioned and before I knew it this set was winging its way to me. Judging by the reactions I got from the recipients of my daily lockdown photos I think I need to do more procrastination purchases!
“Spread a fern frond over a man’s head and worldly cares are cast out and freedom and beauty and peace come in.” John Muir
On Tuesday, Exhibit A and I had a photo adventure in the woods. It was food for my soul. I’m lucky enough that he only lives a couple of miles from me so we’ve been able to see quite a bit of each other over the last few months, through doorstep drops of tasty treats and an occasional wander in a park. There’s been a couple of times where I’ve had a physical pang of missing him, when I wished we could be hanging out on my sofa rather than talking to each other from a garden gate, but on the whole apart from the lack of physical intimacy I don’t think lockdown has been too hard on us. On occasions I’ve probably felt closer to him than in before times.
But getting on a train and spending the afternoon wandering around the woods, taking photos of each other and idle chatting was a dose of ‘normal us’ coming back. Of course, while Liv is still on her current contract we have keep physically distanced so whereas as it would usually be back to mine after an afternoon out this time it was tea and wagon wheels on opposite ends of a big log and then me on the train and him in the car. But I woke up the next morning with the same contented feeling I do after one of our really great date nights.
This week has felt a world away from last week where it suddenly all just got too much and I cried for five hours one evening and then started again the next morning when I woke up. As well as mine and EA’s photo adventure, I was able to hang out with one of the other recipients of my daily photos (hallelujah!) and time has been spent in drizzly gardens and sunny woods with friends. Add to this the fact my hairdresser phoned to book me in for mid-July (almost deserving of another hallelujah!) and my Pilates studio is taking bookings for a few weeks’ time and it’s almost like my life is coming back to me. Things won’t be the same for a long time (if ever) but the things that are creeping in bring joy and hope.
“The filter on that photo is absolutely perfect, btw – looks like an early 20th-century shot of some French prostitute, who’s probably about six months away from dying of TB (but in a good way)”Exhibit A
I started my photo a day project as a way to stay connected to both my partner and to a new friend where I didn’t want lockdown to snuff out that glorious lustful new relationship energy. Then I looped American Chap into my daily missives because even though the chances of us ever being naked together again are wafer thin, our chats always put a smile on my face and his dick pics are hot as fuck.
And I’m so glad I embarked on this endeavour. There have been times where I’ve been a bit grumpy with it but overall it’s been a blast. I’ve had moments of inspiration and snapped an image in seconds, I’ve plotted out some far in advance, and sometimes I’ve wandered aimlessly round my flat trying to work out what the fuck to shoot! But every single one has been met with a positive response from at least one of the recipients. I’ve never been left hanging!
Sometimes one just hits the spot and I get enthusiastic guttural responses from all three. On other occasions I send one into the ether with a fairly good idea of who’ll react most enthusiastically. I don’t know what I expected to get out of it but what I’ve had is consistent creativity which has been energising and a reason for daily contact at a time when it could have been very easy to feel lonely and disconnected from both them and my sexual self.
One thing I’ve done is give away the decision on which of the week’s seven images becomes my Sinful Sunday image to each of them on a rotating basis and I’ve enjoyed guessing who’ll choose which image. This week should have been been Exhibit A’s choice but I decided to make the selection myself. I made it not for the photo but for his comment. I think it maybe my favourite response of the whole three months!