29 April 2011

Site review: Alt Exclusive

I chanced upon Alt Exclusive last month, and - as I strongly suspected - I couldn't resist the immense lure of so many lovely models, and so many great photographers. Although I don't have the physical magazine, I signed up to the accompanying site is where they post more full sets of the magazine shoots - including more nudity than makes it into print, together with some out-take videos and the like.

Alt Exclusive is a relatively new venture - now on the third issue of the magazine - devoted to pinup, fetish and tattoed glamour. That being the operative word here - I'm tempted to dispute the 'Alt' label since to me that suggests more punk/emo-type alt porn, along the lines of Suicide Girls, God's Girls and Burning Angel - which are all great sites, but this is definitely high glamour, albeit with tattoos and latex.

It's hard to know where to start describing the work here, because there is such a concentration of talent; somehow they've managed to get the top names in models, photographers and clothing designers all in one place - and I'm hugely enthused about it.

To start with, Viva Van Story has some amazing work here. Some wonderful pictures of Laura Dore, Marlo Marquise and Sharon TK, in her trademark evocative retro kitchen and bedroom scenes; but perhaps even more interesting are her more recent shots of Mosh, Jade Vixen and Angela Ryan, in more contemporary settings and in and out of some very seductive latex dresses.

And some great shots by Shannon Brooke - who I'm very fond of, since seeing her work in Korero's Kustom Kamera - including Sabina Kelly, Notorious Ang and Lourdes. Some of Ms Brooke's photos are done against a plain studio background; generally I prefer more context, but in this case, everything is spot on and they look amazing. But others are even better, contrasting the beauty of Mosh, Masuimi Max & Darenzia with harsh industrial backgrounds.

Continuing the who's-who theme, models you'll also find here include Ludella Hahn, Lauren WK, Vanessa Lake - and great to see Cervenna Fox & Ulorin Vex from the UK. And photographers Redrum Collaboration (Ludella in blue latex, on the left), Lithium Picnic (Mosh and Masuimi Max as geishas is inspired) and Monique Antoinette (Mosh and Bernie Dexter in bondage is very racy). And there are some fun behind-the-scenes videos, where we get to see the models chatting and posing for the camera.

Although the content can't be faulted, I have a couple of gripes about the site itself. It's a bit glitchy; some links to zip sets don't work, and the downloadable videos are smaller than the streaming ones. More annoying is that membership only gets you 1200 pixel images; the much-vaunted high-res, 3500 pixel versions are pay-per-download - that's per picture, not per set. The membership fee of $15 is relatively modest, but I'd have been much happier if either this restriction was obvious before joining (I see no mention of it); or if the membership was a bit higher but with access to the high-res pictures.

But, with those caveats aside, this is a good site with unparalleled and unique material. Although it's fairly new, and there are only about 80 picture sets of approx 15 pictures, they are stunning and worth joining get - and to support such a good venture, and all involved.

27 April 2011

House of Etiquette, via Jade Vixen

Here's a great find, courtesy of the very beautiful, sexy and charming fetish model Jade Vixen - who's just posted her interview with House of Etiquette on Lust Love Latex.

Although not quite as appealing as nylons, I'm finding myself increasingly interested/fascinated/excited by latex fetishwear. That doesn't really extend into some of the kinkier items, full-face masks and the like; I'm more into the glamour side and HOE have managed to combine the tight, curve-defining sheen of latex with my other passion - retro-style lingerie.

They've taken some very classic, sexy concepts - stockings, suspenders, girdles and bullet bras - and re-imagined them in latex, which lends a whole new dimension to the lure of stockingtops giving way to the top of a thigh, or the hip-hugging curves of high-waist panties. Add to that some wonderfully fitted outerwear (well, nominally outerwear, at least) - miniskirts, crop tops and ruched sleeve dresses, and we get the stuff that fantasies (at least mine) are made of.

Although I'm sadly unlikely to be a customer, House of Etiquette have a great niche in fetishwear which I'm more than a little excited about. I very much look forward to seeing some of their work showcased by fetish models and photographers; any number of models spring to mind who would look incredible in - and out - of their designs, but Ms Vixen is top of that list!

22 April 2011

Summer books from Goliath

Goliath is a favourite publisher - they have some great, fun and sexy books, of which I own quite a few and have already reviewed two here - Nylon Girls and Touch. So I'm always interested when something new turns up on their site, and this latest brace of racy tomes is no exception.

First is Latex Fetish Photography - just the preview page shows some familiar models and photographers, including one from a great set of Mosh by Holly Randall - I also know Viva Van Story's work is in there but hopefully there will be some new names to discover too. Either way, it all looks extremely tight and shiny; so much so that it's already preordered, and as such I'll write a little more when it arrives.

Next is Dave Naz's Butt Babes. I've been following Mr Naz's work for some time, but am afraid I don't yet have any of his books - I'll confess that his last at Edition Reuss, isn't quite, my niche. However, a recent Leg Show special on him has won me over to his fun, sexy and arousing - and sometime appealingly explicit - style of capturing pretty, natural girls without overdoing the glamour. As such, I'm now kicking myself for not picking up his two previous Goliath books - specifically focused on Panties and Legs (two subjects very close to my heart, not to mention other parts) - when they were readily available, they are far harder to come by now. I'll just have to make sure not to make the same mistake with this one!

20 April 2011

Book Review: Pantyhose Killer Girls

As a card-carrying nylon fetishist, I was pretty much sold just by the title of Edition Reuss' Pantyhose Killer Girls, by Mathias Angelov. However, I'll confess to a little naiveté, even upon seeing the cover; I read it as Pantyhose Killer Girls - killer in the sense of sexy, beautiful, perhaps a bit dangerous... well, perhaps that does apply, but it's actually very much Pantyhose Killer Girls, since the book is themed around models destroying their nylons for the camera.

The models range form 18-28 (the intro paragraph to each photo set tells us as much, and is a nice touch) and are pretty, mostly girls-next-door - at least some are amateur models and all look very much like they are enjoying themselves! Which makes the photographer's assertion in the preface (somebody has to read these things, after all) all the more believable - that he first came across the theme of nylon destruction as an icebreaker.

And destroy them they do, with obvious glee. The tights themselves are mostly plain, no fancy Wolfords here - but they are purely sacrificial - we see them pulled tight between the girls' legs, yanked up over their breasts, before succumbing to fingernails and having holes ripped in them until they are mere shreds of nylon - leaving only persistent seams pressing into their skin.

The tease of glimpsing a model's pussy though the nylon is therefore rewarded a page or two later by seeing it exposed - there's no shortage of explicit nudity here. The style is relatively unsophisticated - this is unashamedly posed glamour rather than evocative erotica... and I'll risk a generalisation by saying that it definitely has a German feel to it. None of which are a bad thing; the book is done in good humour and with a sense of fun - which in itself lends it a different kind of excitement to it.

Print quality and paper is really good, and the book is a nice size at about 25x18cm. You may pay a little more for this than some books, since it's relatively niche; but if it's your niche, then it's a very enjoyable addition to any collection!

16 April 2011

Gravelure de l'eau @ Wet2Nude & Wet Spirit

Given that a) the French have a particular talent for interesting smut, and b) I far prefer my racy material with an angle to it, chancing upon Emmanuel Genoll's sites Wet Spirit and Wet2Nude has piqued my interest. There are plenty of nude sites around, but I'm all for anything that provides a little more titillation and context rather than just endless naked nubile bronzed beauties we see elsewhere (which admittedly has some appeal now that I put it like that).

The sites focus on wet girls - largely alone, but sometimes with a boy or another girl - in the bath, under the shower, in a lake or river... anywhere that circumstances might contrive to render whatever (often thin and white) clothing they are wearing, very clingy and as good as transparent. The difference being that one goes as far as explicit nudity, whereas clothes stay on in the other - obviously seeing everything come off has it's advantages, but when clothed is defined as clad in soaked, skin-tight sheer dresses, t-shirts and panties, it's largely an academic distinction.

They are relatively new, still with a fairly small amount of material; shame they aren't bundled together; and as such €25 perhaps a little steep. With some great looking photos and some fun videos, still more than worthy of investigation, though!

14 April 2011

MagCloud & Bella Morte magazine

Whereas I'm a big fan of all the smut great photography available online, I guess I'm a little old-fashioned since I still love the tactile sensation of flicking through racy material in printed form. And having recently mentioned print-on-demand books from Blurb, I figured MagCloud was also worth a mention - it's very much the same concept, whereby publishers can set up their own magazine, and it's printed on demand and delivered when sold.

My favourite find on there so far is Bella Morte magazine. Now in it's 4th issue, it's a gothic-tinged showcase of alt/fetish/pinup creators; including both well-known and new models, photographers, tattoo artists and latex couture. For example, #2 held an interview with the lovely Mosh, and pictures by the equally (well, very nearly) as lovely Redrum collaboration; but I also discovered the wonderful UK model Fae Raven. Then in #3 I was grabbed by model Carly Zu and photographer Jade Noir. Content is relatively tame, with no nudity, but all the models look so good in latex, corsets and lingerie, that's almost (almost!) a positive. And they even feature a strapping male model in each issue.

Technically, the magazine could probably look a bit neater, layout and typography-wise (old habits... I was a designer/artworker in a previous life) - but that's a minor quibble since the content is good. It's also a little expensive at $15 per issue, each about 60 pages; but that's understandable for something relatively niche. And the print quality is far better than I'd expected from print-on-demand; not quite the standard of a traditionally printed magazine like Retro Lovely; but still good quality paper and great - if perhaps a little too saturated - colour printing.

On one hand, POD services like this need to be taken with a pinch of salt - I work in publishing and a great quote I heard recently springs to mind: 'the best thing about self-publishing is that anyone can do it; the worst thing about self-publishing is that anyone can do it'. But on the other, anything that makes it more accessible for creative people to create and disseminate racy material can only be a good thing. I like Bella Morte, and will be keeping my eyes open for more racy things on MagCloud.

10 April 2011

Site Review: Holly Randall & Forever Vamp

Chancing upon Holly Randall's work, I was briefly flung back (an undisclosed number of years) to illicit reading material of my youth, featuring racy photos by her mum, Suze - only to be brought back to the present by Holly's own talents and expertise.

Having recently reviewed Ellen Stagg's Stagg St, Ms Randall's photography could draw comparisons; both contemporary photographers, and featuring many of the same models - from fetish regulars such as Mosh, Darenzia, Angela Ryan, Vanessa Lake & Jade Vixen; to some of the biggest names in more mainstream smut, like Aria Giovanni & Ryan Keely. Ms Randall focuses more on the latter, though, adding considerably to it with many well-known porn actresses, including Alexis Texas and Sunny Leone.

But I'll try to avoid comparing, by way of a disclaimer - Holly's style of photography is a little more centerfold-glamour than the kind of erotica or fetish that I'm normally drawn to - most scenes being very strongly lit, the models quite made-up, the locations exotic more than evocative. But that's purely a matter of taste, and I'll counter that by saying that the standard of her photography is never less than excellent, and that I still found a lot to enjoy there.

My initial lure, her sets and videos of Mosh, Angela Ryan and Jade Vixen, are wonderful, as are those of the other fetish and pinup models, including the stunning Vanessa Lake. But the extra explicitness of the porn models - many sets leaving very little to the imagination with fingers and sex toys - was actually a welcome diversion from the kind of latex and nylon teasing that I like so much. And even though it's not normally my area of interest, I'll confess to enjoying the hardcore extra-racy photos and videos - perhaps it's because they are shot by a female photographer, but I found them more balanced and considered than most porn.

Now, although much of her work is arguably relatively mainstream, there's glamour and there's glamour, which brings me to one of the sister sites, Forever Vamp - subtitled Ultra Glamour Fetish, that's as apt a description as I'd be able to come up with. Here we see the glamour angle ramped up even more, but focusing on latex, alt models and pinups - just my territory, although I'll admit that some of the BDSM shoots out-kinked me! But with a great selection of models and fetishwear, for me this is the perfect direction for Ms Randall's talent and style - and although the site is relatively new, and with not much material yet, I'm looking forward to seeing more there in the future.

A brief note about specs - the sites are easy to browse, search and switch between (with number of additional sites included); recent videos are HD - my main complaint being picture resolution - OK-ish at 1600px, but I'd rather see at least 2000, preferably 3000, especially from such a well-known photographer. But such quibbles aside, the sites are great fun, and definitely worth joining.

Visit Holly Randall or Forever Vamp.

7 April 2011

Quickies in New York

Following from Ms Lust, another appreciated writer for me has been Violet Blue, whose all-things-sex blog is interesting, entertaining and (at least for me) educational. One of my favourite finds therein - at least so far - is Quickies in New York, a blog of sorts consisting of erotic photos and prose.

The Dirty Gentleman's photography is some of the best I've seen in erotica - evocative and sexy, sometimes just a glimpse of a thigh or breast; others kinkier with bondage overtones. And often with just a hint of disquiet to make you think a little more rather than just ogling (although I'm doing my fair share of ogling too).

Guy New York's text fits perfectly with the images; not directly related, but you'll find yourself looking back and marrying them together according to your mood. As the title implies, the writing is never too long, each post something that can be read within a minute or two; but thought-provoking enough to echo for much longer than that. Sometimes explicit, detailing sex itself and sex games between couples; some musing on the nature of love, relationships that are, have been, or never were.

I'm hoping that a publisher snaps this up, or that they perhaps put something together on Blurb; although QNY is very much of its medium on Tumblr, I can't help feel that I'd love the tactile sensation of leafing through pages of a book as I mull over the images and text. Visit Quickies in New York.

4 April 2011

Lust Film Fest

Have been following the lovely Erika Lust, who's beautiful smile is always a great start to every day when she tweets a good morning to the world. She's directed some particularly racy films over at Lust Cinema, which will doubtless find their way onto my (increasingly lengthy) shopping list at some point. But in the meantime, I've been enjoying Lust Film Fest, her great selection of erotic shorts and ads from around the web. I've found some very... inspirational clips there, including this rather surreal (at least in my world) vision of household chores.

It's definitely worth checking in on; and do reload the page since you don't see all of them every time!

3 April 2011

Book review: Touch

Here's something a bit different to my usual penchants for steamy erotica or glam pinups - but no less fun for it, and one of my favourite books. Peter Gorman is a New York photographer, who has somehow found himself in the incredibly arduous job of visiting women in their apartments, and taking pictures of them in various states of undress. The result is, I think, more and less glamorous than that sounds, but both in a good way. More because, although these not (at least I don't think so) being professional models, he's found a wonderful array of really pretty girls, in a refreshing variety of shapes, looks and ethnicities.

We see them in, I guess, whatever poses they feel comfortable or sexy with; from handstands, to being curled up in bed, to teasing the viewer with a hand slipped inside their underwear - or said same panties being pulled tightly upwards against their skin. And as that last group implies, more often than not with at least some semblance of clothing on - not enough to leave too much to the imagination (there's plenty of full frontal nudity here), but just retaining a bit more interest than being completely naked.

The key feature of the book, though, is the seemingly less glamorous aspect of photographing the models' in their own homes. It makes the images believable and natural, despite the posing for the camera. And the glimpses of their rooms, their own stuff - often in some disarray, clothes hanging up, piles of books, fridges covered in notes - lends the enterprise an arousing and unique degree of intimacy, voyeurism and eroticism.

I think this is his third book along this theme; I do have the one before this - Stripped Naked - but I'd say that in Touch he's got the formula just right; the models look comfortable, as if they are having fun; sexy without being too self-conscious. The photography here is also better; there's obviously a flash-reliant documentary style to it, but it's well-lit and considered for it, and very much part of the feel.

As to format, this is larger than Goliath's typical format, at about 26x18cm; also, they've rather cheekily numbered every page, so although technically it's about 220 pages, only the right-hand pages are printed, so there are half that many photos in there. But it would still a great book even if it were - as it should be - half the thickness. Recommended; more samples here at Goliath.