Tag: Photography

The Dark Arts’ LIGHT / SHADOW / COLOR and power in restraint

by Jiz Lee on / Art, BDSM, Books, Erotica & Anthologies

Restraint, or rather, the act of being restrained, can reveal power. Of all the elements of BDSM, at this moment in my life I’m finding inspiration in the art of restraint. It is within the act of locating and testing barriers, of pulling and fighting against tension that I discover what’s possible. It’s a feeling of physical and emotional strength that is the opposite of submitting or giving in, or of being dead weight. It’s an active push against limitations that creates a counterbalance, defies gravity, and transforms into dance.

This element is what I explored recently when I had the pleasure of shooting bondage photos with The Dark Arts. We produced some stunning photographs, and I’m very proud to see them included in a beautiful and unique new bondage photography book, LIGHT/SHADOW/COLOR.

If you follow my Instagram you’ve seen a few “SFW” versions, but here’s a quick taste without the ridiculous, needless censorship. (Can you tell I abhor censorship of the body and believe it does more harm than good? But I digress…)

LIGHT/SHADOW/COLOR is available for pre-sale through a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter. The book is beautiful and at $45 well worth the price of a full color 300 page photography book. There are other perks available, such as a framed print of the image I’ll share below. I’ve never felt so powerful and super-hero like than in this pose! If you do order this print along with the book, The Dark Arts will see that you’re added to my Holiday Card mailing list as well.

Pre-order a copy for yourself and support the creation of a beautiful and unique (and a hell of a lot more diverse) addition to bondage photography genre, one I’m honored to be a part of. Also, much love and shout out to Nenetl Avril, whom was among the first models I saw pose for The Dark Arts, and a big part of why I wanted to pose too.

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by Jiz Lee on / Art, Books, Erotica & Anthologies

What was it like to work as a photographer on porn sets in New York in the 1980’s? Help fund “AMERICAN ECSTASY”, a new photo book by photographer Barbara Nitke, to see for yourself through beautiful photographs that capture the atmosphere from the set.

A picture tells a thousand words, possibly more if it’s naughty! Barbara’s documentation presents an insiders’ view of a pivotal time in a unique industry. A fine art and commercial photographer known for her compassionate view of alternative sex, Barbara’s records extend beyond photographs, including recordings of interviews and other captured moments behind the scenes. What results will be a memoir that she says will be “funny, sad, sexy, controversial – and it’s going to be a collector’s item. I know everybody says that about their photo books, but I swear in my case it’s true.”

I don’t doubt it. Looking at these images, I’m tickled by comparisons to my current experiences in the industry. Here’s an image of performers waiting in make-up. The “hurry up and wait” aspect of being on a set is still the same today, though the quality of realistic dildos may have improved. 😉


Launched with no fanfare, Barbara Nitke’s crowdsourcing campaign on Kickstarter raised over $9,000 in the first few days. She hopes to self publish American Ecstasy, and take it directly to the public. The book is a memoir in pictures and words of the twelve years she spent working as a still photographer on porn movie sets in New York in the 1980’s.

“It’s hard to imagine now,” Nitke says, “but back in the 1980’s people lined up outside of real movie theaters to watch feature length sex flicks. It was the Golden Age of Porn, and that was where I got my start as a photographer.”

The book is a nostalgic view of those heady days. The photographs, while undeniably sexual, reach far beyond the usual sex machine image of the industry to reveal the touching humanness of the actors. In one of her favorite shots, a director comes into the frame to give Nina Hartley a few notes on her performance. The actor underneath her keeps right on going.

Hey look! It’s my friend Nina, one of the first out queer porn performers and, like her co-star in the image, she’s still going at it!

Check out Barbara’s video, which provides a great description of the project as well as a charming look at the photographer — stick around to the end, it’s worth it!

I’m a fan of crowdsourced funding, and of self-publishing (sometimes necessary due to the nature of the content). It’s inspiring to watch projects materialize through the efforts of many contributions. Barbara’s well past half-way to her goal, now in the final stretch which is the most exciting moment of funding. And of course she’ll make it, and I hope you can join me in helping to support her, and enjoy fun rewards such as classic postcards, prints of the photos, and you’re own of the book!

AMERICAN ECSTASY Campaign on Kickstarter


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