In ancient Rome, persona meant ‘a mask’ and the word mask came via French masque and either Italian maschera or Spanish máscara and its possible ancestor is the Latin (not classical) mascus, masca which means “ghost”. In modern terms a mask is an article worn on the face, typically for protection, concealment, performance or amusement. The fetish appeal of masks is founded on their enduring powers of pretence and play. For a submissive a mask hides his or her likeness beneath an undifferentiated screen that indicates their captive state. It is for the dominant that the real influence of a false face can be found. For them the correct mask can combine, simultaneously, the hiding of personal identity with the promotion of a powerful and intimidating image. Any obvious indications of enjoyment or vulnerability are obscured; it is the assumed persona that prevails. I felt anonymous behind the catwoman disguise but my most significant features loomed large in the lens of the camera. My huge and hungry eyes stared out of the slits cut in the mask and my rich, pouting mouth appeared beneath it like the homicidal promise of a sensual predator. The photographer shrunk back as I felt a different Venus flaunt her power. Buy the featured PVC gloves here. Photography by Sebas Romero.
The armpit fetish – or maschalagnia – has only recently crossed over into mainstream consciousness via popular media. Armpit fetishists experience a powerful sexual attraction to underarms. This fetish works in two major forms or, in some cases, both simultaneously. Some fetishists are aroused by the appearance of armpits– either shaved or hairy – as a voyeuristic stand-in for the female genitalia that they enjoy in photographs or by close observation of other people raising their naked arms in public places. Other fetishists are attracted to the distinctive odour associated with armpits. This odour is the most intense that the human body can produce and fetishists achieve stimulation and arousal from it even without skin to skin contact. Activities associated with this variation can include licking and/or sniffing armpits either hairy or shaved, sweaty or washed. An outcome of the fetish can be the practise of armpit sex which makes the equivalence of the under-arm area and the vagina quite clear.
Behind Bars – Cage Fetish
When an exotic creature is kept imprisoned behind bars it is the interested spectators inability to look away from it that determines the length of its confinement. There is dreadful pleasure in seeing a beautiful beast trapped in a cage; some imported animals are powerful and dangerous and we need to be protected from their unusual powers as we become voyeurs.When it’s a fetish model gripping those bars and looking back at us our pulses quicken with a presence that is awe-inspiring and sublime.The goddess in a cage reminds us of that part of ourselves that we are urged to keep under lock and key except when it’s safe not to. I had no real intention of shooting an impromptu set of images on that day until I saw the metal bars in the grounds of my friends home. I pictured myself as a prisoner of sensual conscience kept isolated from the vanilla public for their own protection but inspiring awe and devotion in growing rows of visitors to my fetish cell. If you look closely, between the bars, you’ll find me staring back. So, look away; I dare you. Photos taken by Lars Koudal. Lars has also been helping me with my web and he’s been fantastic. Enjoy the set! Venus O’Hara
No Pain, No Gain (BDSM)
Pain has always been a part of accepted behaviour in conventional sexual relationships. The loss of control that defines the act itself anticipates scratching and hair pulling; love bites are a more obvious reminder of recent pleasures.These “in the moment” expressions of passion are intuitive and spontaneous. The application of pain when associated with BDSM is different, it is methodical and organised for a specific purpose; it refines the production of pleasure by the exploitation of its polar opposite. There are many intelligent applications of pain in the world of BDSM, enough to sharpen appetites that are subtle or broad. Spanking is an arousing interplay of punishment and sensuality, randomness and design.Whipping is a more direct approach to the use of formal chastisement without sweetness to balance it. Temperature play tests our reactions to heat and cold to enhance sensation to a much greater degree. Even rope burns from shibari bondage can have an appeal all of their own.The list goes on and on. To read a lot more about the uses and value of pain in the search for greater pleasures and to enjoy more images from this set, please refer to LOVE ME LIKE YOU HATE ME, my forthcoming book about BDSM written with Erika Lust and due for publication in Autumn 2010. Photos by David Vega. Enjoy! Venus O’Hara
I knew that I needed something colourful to wear for the upcoming photo-shoot so I searched through my cupboards and draws and dug out the bathing suit that I had almost forgotten.It had a high-cut leg, which proved just how old it was since that style hadn’t been seen since I had left university. I knew that I would have to pair the suit up with a more contemporary item to hide its age so I found some almost-new bikini bottoms and found the look I wanted. I had been in the second year at uni and I knew that I would be spending the next academic year living and studying in France. The first thing on my wish list was a new bathing suit because I didn’t have one and I knew how much I needed it. I arranged an overdraft but to be able to use it I had to provide an itemised budget to justify the amount. I sat in front of the Bank manager as she read my list, saw the purchase from Top Shop and asked me whether a bathing suit could be called an essential. I said it was, made my case and got the money. Years later, in the kitchen of my apartment, I put the old bathing costume on and poured out-of-date tetrapak soups and bad tomato ketchup over myself to get into character. I went a bit mad then and turned the kitchen, and myself, into a total shambles. After a […]
Modelling the Orgasm Dress – Venus O’Hara
My good friend Carolina Medrano asked me to model her “orgasm dress” which was part of her Masters Degree in Fashion Design. I was more than happy to collaborate and I enjoyed the experience of having a dress made-to –measure immensely. I haven’t had much experience in fashion but at least I didn’t have to learn to walk in any killer heels as part of the presentation! The dress was made with fiber optic making it light up in the dark. I’m just hoping that I can find the opportunity to wear the dress again because it really was… orgasmic! Orgasm Dress designed by Carolina Medrano. Photography by Toshiko Sakurai Enjoy! Venus O’Hara
Apron Fetish – Venus O’Hara
In Japan, the word Hadaka means nude and when it is paired with apron, a particular fetish is described. The term Hadaka apron is used to describe a situation where a person, almost always a woman, wears an apron over over her nude, or partially underwear covered body.Many men love the fantasy image of a maid. The idea of seeing a woman performing menial tasks while they sit and watch, go about their business or lead a more relaxing life is timeless. When I wear a white linen apron and fix my hair in a vintage style I begin to feel like a fantasy maid; sweet and subservient to a masters desires. I imagine all of those Victorian maids embodying the wildest fantasies rehearsed by deeply repressed Victorian and Edwardian gentlemen. They may look pure but the flimsy, revealing fabric displays their young bodies perfectly. Today the Victorian maid has been tranformed into the saucy, provocative fetish temptress that is imagined and lusted after today. She is the stuff of erotic legend and has been at the heart of their fantasies for almost a century and a half. Many men love the fantasy image of a maid. The idea of seeing a woman performing menial tasks while they sit and watch, go about their business or lead a more relaxing life is timeless. When I wear a white linen apron and fix my hair in a vintage style I begin to feel like a fantasy maid; sweet and subservient to […]