Getting ready.

Getting ready for a big international trip is always fun and there are a lot of things that I just don’t stress about. Have I got all the right clothes? Have I got this or that? Who knows? It can all be sorted out.

Apart from a slight hiccup with Air BnB at the moment, all my accommodation is booked and mostly paid for. Flights and ferries etc are sorted and the rest is up to my whim. It’s little things that I wonder about at this point, a few weeks out. Since I’ve pretty much resorted to keeping my hair buzzed really short due to a lack of coverage, I buzz it myself every week or two. I expect during my nearly 4 weeks away I’ll be finding a barber and hopefully communicating what I need at some point.

The other grooming I was thinking about is my downstairs regions. I shave my junk every week and keep the pubes trimmed nice and close but I won’t have access to any clippers so the bush may be a little fuller by the time I get back.

I’m so ready for this holiday. It’s cold and windy outside tonight. I can’t wait to get naked in the sunshine, tan my buns and feel the breeze in my bush. Maybe I’ll just shave the lot.

Times like these

This weekend I’m taking Friday off work and heading a couple of hours south of Sydney to a beautiful spot called Kangaroo Valley. Some friends own a holiday rental house down there and occasionally book it themselves and go down with friends. It’s a magical spot with spectacular views.

Spending a weekend cooking and eating great food with friends, enjoying wines or beers overlooking the river having a laugh is the best way to relax. There is one thing that threatens to unsettle me. As is common with me, I’m going away with three couples. That’s right, I’m the seventh wheel. This usually means I’m sleeping on a fold out bed or inflatable mattress somewhere which I’m fine with but every now and then it gets to me.

This happens on family Easter trips as well. For many years now I’ve been sharing with my nephew. He’s really easy to share with but it’s the downside of being single. You never really get your own proper space.

Lovers

When two gorgeous men volunteer to be photographed during an erotic afternoon at home, there’s no way any sane photographer says no.

That’s exactly how this week’s download came about. This real life couple and I had been chatting on Instagram and we had a very limited time to make this shoot happen, so I jumped at the chance.

It’s a very special energy in the room when you get to witness this kind of intimacy between a real couple. None of us were quite sure how far they’d go but you can see these two went pretty far considering there was a stranger in their apartment photographing everything that went on.

If you want to buy LOVERS (and I suggest you do) then click here to download it now. It’s definitely over 18’s only and NSFW.

Three quarters done

There are only two weeks left of the Body Transformation Challenge at the gym and I have to say I’ve loved it. Week 5 was my plateau week apparently with no additional body fat loss or muscle gain but I did lose a little extra weight.

I’ve never been one for weekend workouts. They are something that have only happened on a rare occasion when I’ve felt guilty for slacking off during the week or if I’ve been oddly motivated. With this challenge I’ve been expected to do 6 classes a week and the easiest way for me to do that was including a Saturday class as well as the 5 Monday to Friday classes. Yesterday I did two back to back classes on a Saturday morning and nearly stayed for a third. They were both very different in their nature so don’t worry, I’m in no danger of becoming an obsessive fitness nut tagging instagram with #fitspo.

I’ve been taking progress photos once a week since I started but on Friday I decided to take a locker room photo on a whim and it’s the first one I’ve really noticed a difference. I’m going to save the before and after comparisons for the end of week eight with final weigh in and body scan.

My biggest fear for this challenge was to get to the end of the 8 weeks and not have made any noticeable changes. There is still a lot of room for improvement but I’m going to be heading to Europe feeling fitter and stronger and better about myself.

Incredible skill

In recent weeks I have found myself watching Youtube videos on art and other things like carpentry, renovation etc. Last night I came across the channel of Jono Dry who is an incredible artist.

If I had the space I would definitely be buying one of his pieces to put up in my home. They are dark, dramatic and incredibly beautiful. I’m not sure if he works from photographs or what his methods are. He only has about 9 videos on his channel so I hope he posts more about the start to finish process.

I highly recommend visiting his youtube channel and Instagram page!

Black & White

For a relatively small city, Sydney has a lot of talent. Some photographers don’t like to share much with other photographers but I’m lucky with a bunch of photographers that I consider friends. They are all very talented in different ways and it doesn’t feel like we are in competition. There is such a small pool of models here that we are all bound to work with lots of the same guys.

One of those talented guys is Sam Gatsby Lim who I was lucky enough to be in FRONT of the camera for a couple of years ago. Sam is a beautiful soul trapped in a beautiful man. He has such a lovely energy that being tied up in rope bondage for the first time to model was a wonderful experience.

He’s released his first book called Black & White featuring a lot of his rope bondage work and he’s planning more. The work is sexual, sensual and visually compelling. A very good combination. This book, the first of several planned books for Sam features 44 models photographed in 11 cities and 7 countries.

Please go and support Sam by clicking here and going to buy this beautiful book. Mine is on order now!

On Brand

There have been a few articles floating around this year about how Instagram is killing creativity and I wholeheartedly agree. The articles are full of compilations of almost identical images. People choose their holiday location, accommodation and activities on what will look great on Instagram. Personally I find that very sad. You can, and I know from experience, take a beautiful photo of somewhere that isn’t famous on Instagram. You can actually take a beautiful photo just about anywhere.

While I was doing a photo shoot on the weekend I was chatting to one of the guys who follows my work and I was wondering whether the fact that I jump from outdoor natural light to studio shoots and sometimes available light in a bedroom means that I don’t have a strong enough “brand” and that makes it hard to get cut through or marketability.

To be honest, I don’t really mind if that is a problem. I’d rather challenge myself with a bit of diversity in my photography and keep myself creatively stimulated than do what is expected of me all the time.

Musicians get the same criticism all the time. “Oh their new album sounds so much like the last one” but then if they try something new “I wanted another dance album, this isn’t what we expect.” Creative people need to do their own thing and their market will find them. That’s my strategy anyway.

Broaden your horizons

Now I know that I’m most well known for my photography of male nudes and through this blog, my tendency to be nude myself. I get that and I know that’s how this blog got it’s initial burst of followers. For those that are new here, way back in 2005 I started the blog and shortly after had a public nudity challenge. Readers sent in lots of photos nude in lots of places and then I was challenged to take part. When I posted these photos someone sent the link to Gay Fleshbot and they posted it and I had 13,000 hits in one day. So it’s fair to say that my success is largely tied to male nudity which I’m fine with.

Today though I had a comment on yesterday’s vlog on YouTube from someone with a very French name so I’m assuming they are French. The comment was just five words “‚Ķbeautiful nude men or nothing!”

Apparently I had the nerve to post something (as I have done before) that wasn’t tied to nakedness. Guess what? I will do it again. Even though I have seen a lot of nudity on YouTube, they have very strict rules about nudity and monetisation etc etc so while I will post more behind the scenes videos on photo shoots of nude men, I will also post a lot of non-nude adventures.

I think it’s sad when people are so focused on one thing that they can’t appreciate something different. Besides, there are dicks and beautiful nude mean all over the internet. A quick google, or likely click back through your browser history will get you there.

A country weekend vlog

Back in April I went out to a friend’s country property, a sheep farm, to take some photos of his newly, beautifully converted shearing shed which is about to launch as an Air B&B property.

It may have taken me about 6 weeks but I’ve finally put together the little vlog from the weekend. I’ll update links etc once the Air B&B is up and running but I highly recommend it for a couple or two couples for a really beautiful quiet weekend escape. It’s the perfect place to walk, rest, cook, eat, drink and relax.

Clearly I’m still not awesome at vlogging but I’m determined to do better at it. I just need to do more of it.

Incredible talent

Over the past few weeks I’ve binge watched a few seasons worth of a British show called “Portrait Artist of the Year” on YouTube. As you can tell from the title it is a portrait painting competition and my god there are some talented people in this world.

I took up photography because my father instilled in me a love of photography as a teenager but mostly because I’m not good at painting and I’m not patient enough for painting. Apart from inspiring me to want to pick up a paintbrush, which would just frustrate me no end, it’s made me contemplate doing some modelling for life drawing or posing for an artist.

From memory, I posted a similar thought on this blog several years ago and it resulted in one brief sitting with a reader/vague acquaintance who had done some life drawing. Of course the idea of being the focus of a room full of fully clothed people while I stand/sit there nude is absolutely terrifying but I’ve always loved the creative process and seeing yourself through someone else’s eyes is always an interesting experience.

Not close enough

With only 5 weeks of work left before my holiday adventure I’m running out of steam. Since I started in my job 18 months ago I have really only had the Christmas break off and I think I’m running out of steam.

Things are annoying me this week that possibly shouldn’t. I should be in a good mood after getting a good performance review last week and with a holiday so soon but today I was just tired and grumpy.

I don’t know if it’s a real thing but maybe I’m also “detoxing” or getting past my bad eating habit addictions. This is the fifth week of the challenge and mostly I’m feeling really good in terms of physical well being.

The other thing it might be is being sick of what we consider cold weather. My body is craving warmth, sunshine, outdoors and nakedness. Bring on Europe!

WAY too far

Sexual role play is not something I really understand or am into but I understand that people really enjoy it. Experimenting with giving up control can I guess be quite seductive and interesting but it pushes my insecurities and it makes me question why someone wants to dominate someone else to get off sexually.

Last week on twitter I saw an image and corresponding post that made me sick. The image was of a man with a black eye and the twee that went with it was something along the lines of him displeasing his alpha master and he needed to be told. Reading other tweets from this “Alpha” made me realise that the submissive wasn’t just role playing, and that the black eye was part of the physical punishment and complete subservience to the “alpha”.

Thankfully the responses to his tweet showed me that there are a lot of people who agree with me that this has moved past role play into a very dangerous mindset for both men. Firstly anyone that has their self worth defined by someone else and needs that, they need emotional help. Secondly to the asshole who needs to control someone to the point of violence and boast about it online, I want to know who hurt them as a child.

Something has gone horribly wrong in a life to end up where that guy is emotionally and it makes me scared and sad.

Go and Explore

If you bought my download called “Hotel” recently then this guy, Alex should look quite familiar. When he was here we did two shoots. One afternoon we did the Hotel shoot, then the next morning, Alex indulged his exhibitionist side in the outdoors for this download Explore.

It was a chilly morning but as you can see, that didn’t affect Alex in an adverse way at all and if you buy the download, you’ll see that he very much enjoyed himself.

It seems that I’ve found a new breed of models lately who aren’t as shy as some of the guys that have come before them. Sure, not all of them are as bold as Alex but more and more of them are going full frontal.

If you want to buy Explore to see every inch of Alex, click here.

Half way there

My Body Transformation 8 week challenge at the gym is now half way complete and I’m feeling great for it. I can see a bit of a difference in my torso and the definition in my arms and I generally feel better.

In the week just gone my diet wasn’t as strict so today I’m getting back into the task of food preparation. I think being organised is the key. It’s very easy to make bad decisions if you haven’t got a good meal already prepared. The main problem with food preparation is getting some variety into the diet. I have no desire to eat the same thing every day, especially if it’s not tasty.

I’m a bit nervous about keeping up the momentum for the last four weeks. Hopefully by focusing on feeling and looking good for Europe as well as making the most of this opportunity is enough motivation to keep me on track.

After the four weeks I won’t have access to all of the classes that I do now, that comes at a membership cost that is a bit out of my budget at the moment. I’ll be able to do two classes a week and use the gym as much as I want which I think will be fine. My thinking is that I’ll do one strength/gymnastic style class and one high intensity cardio based class a week and do my own thing the rest of the week.

Getting closer

It seems to be my habit to book a big holiday well in advance. Some people book an international holiday a few weeks out and that makes me very anxious. By the time I get on the plane I need to know I’ve got flights everywhere I need them and most accommodation sorted.

The upcoming European adventure was no different. I booked my tickets right at the very start of November last year, nine months in advance of the actual trip.

The countdown is now at 6 weeks. At this time of day in 42 days I’ll be at the airport, checked in and enjoying an overpriced beer at the airport, doing some serious people watching. I mean, have you even travelled if you haven’t fallen in love from a distance with a handsome stranger in the airport? The answer is no. Try it. You sit there and you spot a gorgeous man and from there you imagine you are off on a romantic global adventure.

In my head I’m going to take beautiful travel photos and record hilariously witty but gorgeous vlogs of my travels while I’m away. Travel and landscape photography is not my strong suit and I’m such a lazy vlogger but I’ll do my best in between eating delicious local foods, getting naked and hopefully making the acquaintance of lovely handsome strangers.