Dreams of Spanking: fairtrade spanking, corporal punishment and discipline fantasies by Pandora Blake. Join us »

 

Members file error

Due to a server error many of the members only files on the site are currently missing. I'm working to restore them - they'll be back within 48 hours. I'll grant all members an extension on their membership as an apology for the hiatus.

How to make a severe Victorian birching film

Molly Malone and Amelia Jane Rutherford behind the scenes at Dreams of Spanking

There’s always something endearing about behind-the-scenes material. I’m rather fond of that photograph of Robert Powell taken during the filming of Jesus of Nazareth: the actor, strapped to his cross, is wrapped in a blanket and being given a drink and a cigarette by a crew member between takes, which deliciously demystifies the whole thing. There are some similar enjoyably fourth-wall-breaking moments in this excellent look at the making of Mrs Smith’s Method: Pandora strolling into shot in modern t-shirt and knickers to give a bit of directorial advice; the discussions over how to achieve the impression of an utterly frenzied birching of Amelia Jane’s bare arse without going beyond what would be safe, sane and consensual for the actor.

Molly Malone, Adele Haze, Pandora Blake and Amelia Jane Rutherford behind the scenes at Dreams of Spanking

Mrs Smith's Method, released a couple of years ago, is one of the more ambitious and elaborate Dreams of Spanking productions. It pushes many buttons: sly pokes at Victorian moralizing, hypocrisy and weirdness, especially via Molly Malone’s fabulous portrayal of a thrashing-obsessed, for-your-own-good religious loon; the ritualistic elements involved in hardcore discipline, such as kissing the implement and thanking your chastiser, and the closing blissed-out, yielding contrition. However, seeing the cast interact between takes as themselves is endearing and a good reminder that, no matter how dark the scene you want to play out might be, it can still be enjoyable fun entered into with full knowledge and great enthusiasm.

I’ve recently been dabbling in spanking shoots again myself and, along with the indisputable fun it is to yell at a cute girl and spank her pert bum till it’s glowing and hot, the laughs and hugs and the reassurance afterwards that she enjoyed it, that it was fun working together, and that we’re all good, are as important a part of the experience as the actual scene.

Pandora Blake and Amelia Jane Rutherford behind the scenes at Dreams of Spanking

Severe punishment, the sort that comes with a few darker overtones of wretched humiliation and the crushing of a free spirit, may not be to everyone’s taste, though it’s definitely hotter than hot for a lot of people. I’d have to admit that my own preferences run more to the knockabout comedy end of the spanking scene, so I probably like this making-of version slightly more than the original. It’s also a good way of showing just how much work goes into the making of a porn film that’s a little bit more ambitious than most, and would be just as helpful as a masterclass in making your own historical romp, should you be so inclined. Mrs Smith Behind The Scenes is certainly a terrific companion piece to Mrs Smith’s Method: watch them back to back, if you have a free afternoon. As to whether you prefer to tantalise yourself with the making-of and then watch the film proper, or enjoy the feature first and then go back and see how it was all done, that’s entirely up to you.

Molly Malone behind the scenes at Dreams of Spanking

What's going on at Dreams of Spanking

Nearly two years ago I wrote a letter to Dreams of Spanking explaining why, with great reluctance, I needed to step away from the project for a while. At the time I wasn't sure if or when I would be able to come back to it. It was over a year before I updated the site again, with a new, sexier queer spanking porn film co-created with Chelsea Poe and Courtney Trouble. There was another pause, and since February this year we've released three new scenes - one a month, and we have another one lined up for this weekend. It seems that one way or another Dreams of Spanking has wiggled its way back into my schedule - and my heart.

I thought it was time to touch base and let you know what's going on with the site, and what you can expect.

In the immediate term, there's a new update coming this weekend - one for fans of our cinematic Victorian epic Mrs Smith's Method, showing Amelia Jane, Molly, Adele and I in a new light.

Mrs Smith's Method Behind the scenes at Dreams of Spanking

Beyond that, I have ten new scenes edited - all they need is images and previews, copy, trailers etc. I've been having good success this year with delegating those sorts of jobs (thanks Zak and Violet for the fantastic copy writing, and Nimue for the trailers!), and I'm currently trying out different image editors to see who's a good fit. Once I've put the finishing touches to the team we'll be able to continue to keep the site updated regularly with minimal input from me; all I'll need to do is edit the films themselves, plus whatever promotion I feel like doing.

Those of you who have been following my personal blog and social media posts will already know my happy news, but it's just occurred to me that I haven't shared it here explicitly yet. After trying to conceive for a year, I'm now eight months pregnant, and absolutely thrilled to be bringing a new life into the world with my amazing partner Felix. Our baby is due in July, and I couldn't be happier!

As well as gestating a human infant, I'm also gestating a book. It's about what we do with the sexual fantasies we have that are in tension with our politics and personal ethics, and how we resolve that tension. It's non-fiction, combining autobiography, personal essays, and academic writing. I've got 60000 words of it written so far, two thirds of that since January. Book and baby are currently racing to the finish line; I'm well aware that I'll need to substantially revise what I've written, but I'd love to have a zeroth draft of the manuscript finished before I give birth. To prioritise that project, and look after my body in the final weeks of my pregnancy, I'm stopping all other work and taking a writing sabbatical from 1 June. It's just going to be me, at home, writing and getting ready for the baby. 

Long-form writing is deeply immersive and requires far more of my attention than pretty much any other endeavour I've found to date. Loading the project in my head takes a lot of wind-up time (and energy), and once it's loaded, it's really hard for me to focus on anything else. It's not convenient for me to multitask, or interleave writing the book with other projects. 

For the next two months I'm going to focus on writing - which doesn't leave much attention spare for updating Dreams of Spanking. And from mid-July onwards (perhaps later, perhaps earlier - eek!), I'll be a fulltime parent and totally unavailable for anything else for a while. I intend to ease myself back into part-time work gently once my baby is a few weeks or months old, but I'm not putting myself under pressure to do so on any particular schedule. So if I want to update the site while I'm on parental leave, having a team of people to help me do it is absolutely essential. I'm in conversation with someone about taking on a project management role, so I can hand over that final step of keeping track of everything and making sure it all comes together in time to deliver you regular new spanking content. 

With ten scenes in the bank, it looks like there'll be regular updates for a while - which is great! However, I haven't committed to a specific update schedule yet. One a month would take us to next March before I had to edit anything new. I'll almost certainly be able (and want) to edit new videos before then; I have eleven other scenes filmed and waiting to be edited, mostly dating from before I called a halt to the weekly Dreams of Spanking update schedule in 2017, and Nimue and I are planning to shoot at least one more next month. (I'm eager to shoot at least one pregnant spanking film before I give birth!)

I was wondering about whether that's enough content to go up to two updates a month, but that would only take us up until the end of October - which would put a lot of pressure on me to edit two videos a month from September onwards, on top of my parenting (and other) commitments. I don't want to commit to a schedule I can't sustain.

So it will probably work out somewhere between the two - at least one new scene a month, perhaps one every three weeks if I find myself shooting and editing new content more rapidly than I expect. Members will, of course, get access to everything new the moment it goes live - follow us on Twitter, add this blog to your feed reader, and join our mailing list to stay abreast of new releases.

It's been a while since Dreams of Spanking had a regular, predictable update schedule. Feels good right?

Pandora Blake pregnant and giving the cane

In Big Trouble: porn and art

Welcome Violet, who has recently joined the Dreams of Spanking team as a copywriter. She regularly posts erotic photography and writing and her blog Love, Violet.

It’s an interesting thing to look at porn that is “not my thing” and try to see it objectively. Not surprisingly, this isn’t an easy thing to do. It makes sense that we process stimuli we find pleasing more readily and more directly than stimuli that doesn’t quite float our boat. However, the photo gallery In Big Trouble is beautifully made and has enough artistic merit to stand alone, regardless of one’s personal tastes.

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

Porn is a faction of the overall canon of contemporary art, in my opinion, and I say that as someone whose education is in fine art and critical theory. Many people would disagree, but when the crafting and production of pornography is as considered as its themes and narrative, like the films and photos here on Dreams of Spanking, I’d be hard pressed to dismiss it as too low-brow to be art. In Big Trouble is a beautiful example of visual storytelling that is highly narrative, emotionally demonstrative and visually satisfying to the viewer.

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

I’m not privy to the details of the creative process or art direction behind a scene like In Big Trouble, but it’s clearly well considered with captivating details. The inspiration for this custom hard spanking photo story came from a client with a particular vision, based on tales of his ex lover’s accounts of hard caning and OTK spanking conducted at home in her younger years. He said,

“Her stories to me of being punished were always the most engaging when she was describing the more ritualistic preparations of being led to the living room, being made to assume the position, being told to lift her dress, being instructed to lower her panties, and then later being ordered to lay down over his knees."

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

So much of what is described and desired in this scene is internally felt; both by the client as he relives his response to his lover’s stories, as well as the actual scene as it unfolds, grippingly portrayed by Pandora Blake and Mike Pain. Nuanced focus, attention to detail, and the rich storytelling of photography allows the viewer to be transported to the dining room, where paternal hand and rattan cane befall Pandora's tender bottom over and over. I found myself holding my breath as I moved through the images, struck a bit dumb by the intensity and anxious discomfort I felt as the story unfurled. I could feel the heat of the welts, the humiliation of her bottom being bared, and the potion of fear and obedience she must have felt to be able to resist flinching, kicking or squirming.

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

The artistry of these photos is, for me, in the discomfort that they elicited in me. Not all art is pretty or comfortable. These images are striking (ooops, what a pun!) even though they are not what I turn to for visual titillation. How then, did they resonate so deeply for me? I understand the client’s desire to have that tension highlighted: to experience, indirectly, his lover's humiliation and fear, as well as the unquestioned power and authority of her disciplinarian. These are potent archetypes and themes, because of the power dynamics of the domestic relationship and the ritualised experience of punishment.

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

This photo gallery made me pause, examine and interrogate my responses. It made me reflect on the nature of the relationships and fetishes depicted and the powerful emotions they provoke. In short, it got me thinking, and it made me feel something. Although that is not the same as being turned on, I was certainly stimulated. And that, folks, is what both porn and art are meant to do.

Pandora Blake spanked at home at Dreams of Spanking

Does Auntie Margaret enjoy punishing a little too much?

Spanked and Scolded by Auntie Margaret - Pandora Blake Dreams of Spanking

POV porn films are a nicely immersive experience, though most of the ones I’ve seen in the past have been aimed solely at a male viewer. I once watched something that I’m sure was filmed by taping the camera to the end of the chap’s dick, which was a little disconcerting. Part of the charm of our latest film, Spanked and Scolded by Auntie Margaret, is that it is deliberately but not ostentatiously gender non-specific. Watching this video, so anyone who likes the idea of a proper old-fashioned OTK spanking from a dominant woman can feel that they are the one being thoroughly scolded, and about to feel that mean-looking hairbrush on their bare buttocks any minute.

Pandora, in her role as strict Auntie Margaret, wears a classy vintage outfit of frilled blouse, tight pencil skirt and wide patent belt, with a pair of deliciously intimidating black-rimmed specs. She’s also wearing vintage nylons. One of the nice touches which will thrill the vintage CP lover is the sound those stockings make each time she crosses and uncrosses her legs (and yes, you do get an upskirt flash or two of stocking-top.)

Something about this film put me in mind of my encounters with the Aristasian Empire back in the 90s: an all-female crew who were dedicated to vintage values, clothing, and domestic discipline: plenty of hairbrush spankings and stern lectures on it being for your own good were on the menu there. While I’m not in the least tempted to go over anyone’s knee myself, I enjoy Auntie Margaret’s classy charm, and the mixture of scariness and underlying mischief that comes across throughout. Her smirks left me wondering whether Auntie Margaret perhaps enjoys punishing naughty nieces and nephews a little too much...

It’s a simple premise, but effective: you-the-viewer know you’ve been bad and deserve everything you’re going to get, and the lovingly-detailed description of exactly what will happen to you and just how much it’s going to hurt, enlivened with various little mimes of pulling down your underwear and laying you over her lap, builds up the anticipation magnificently. It’s well-paced, with the tension increasing at a steady rate.

The effect on anyone who identifies as a brat or naughty little is easy to envisage. Go on, just think about how red your arse will get as you lie over Auntie Margaret’s lap, held firmly in place, with that wicked brush being wielded again and again, each stroke harder than the last one

Spanked and Scolded by Auntie Margaret - Pandora Blake Dreams of Spanking

A knowing twinkle in Headmaster and schoolgirl's eye...

Pandora Blake caned at Dreams of Spanking

I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for strict teacher/naughty pupil spanking scenes, and Even Teachers Make Mistakes pushes all the right buttons. There’s the décor – crossed canes on the wall, Union Jacks to show the upholding of Proper British Values, and all the rest of it. There’s Pandora’s choice of bad-girl attire – super short denim shorts, and a tight Ace of Spades t-shirt. There’s the ritual ‘Oh but Sir!’, and the ‘Don’t answer back, get those knickers down!’ And then there’s the caning itself, expertly delivered and beautifully paced.

I like it when scenes like this are done with a knowing twinkle in the eye of each performer. In this film, I love watching Pandora’s face as the caning progresses; her little yelps and gasps for breath, and the way she chews her lip once the pain kicks in. I know some people find school caning fare a bit camp, but my tastes have always run to kink that is fun for all concerned - and despite Mike's strictness at the start, this film delivers. I particularly like the ending, which I won’t spoil for you except to say that it’s probably not quite what you might expect.

Over the years, I’ve done a fair bit of school-themed play and, of all the spanking things I’ve ever done, for me school scenes always seem to tend to end up with everyone involved nearly helpless with laughter, even while there are also tears of pain from whoever I’m whacking. I love to elicit tears in a reaction to a particularly hard stroke – but laughter and tears are more closely linked than some people think. No one actually gets to the point of giggling in Even Teachers Make Mistakes, but I couldn't help observing the occasional hint of enjoyment or trace of a smile which didn't quite seem entirely in character. For me, these moments of joy bubbling up through the strict disciplinary facade of the scene make the whole thing more enjoyable. I also spotted what I reckon was a hint of imminent tears from Pandora - which I liked even more.

Both Mike and Pandora clearly know one another well and are comfortable working together; apparently Danielle K, who was behind the camera, is a friend of Pandora's who is new to Dreams of Spanking. On the strength of this scene, I would say she fits right in – it’s a beautifully shot short film. I’m tempted to go get my cane, now, and see if there’s a willing bottom available, so I can practice some more until my tramlines are as precise as Mike Pain’s.

Pandora Blake caned at Dreams of Spanking

It's coming...

After a quiet year, I have some big news.

Chelsea Poe and Blake in queer porn film Velvet Touch

I filmed this scene in March with queer porn stars Chelsea Poe and Courtney Trouble. Here's what I wrote after the shoot:

I’m stretching my creative wings again with some new queer porn collaborations. Last weekend I filmed a scene with Courtney Trouble and Chelsea Poe with me and Chelsea performing together, which was a dream come true. I have a massive porn crush on Chelsea and we had so much fun. Our scene was (of course!) very kinky and involved butch/femme dynamics, spanking, flogging, makeouts, Chelsea making me squirt everywhere with her fingers and tongue (she kept asking me to cum on her tits, which I’ve never done before - it was very horny) and me sitting on and fucking her face with my cock until we were both drenched in jizz. Chelsea had to hop in the shower afterwards to rinse my cum out of her hair. It was so great to connect with her and I hope we get to work together again.

Courtney, who was our videographer, was so great to work with and made everything super easy. They were warm, sweet and welcoming, delightfully enthusiastic about my gender expression, and helped me get over my nerves. I stopped getting regular pre-shoot anxiety ages ago, but it was a bit scary shooting with two porn icons whom I’ve admired from afar for years. I’m so so glad to have worked with them both and can’t wait to release the finished scene, which is a collaboration and will be distributed through QueerPorn.tv, Dreams of Spanking and other channels.

It's coming. And so are we...

Chelsea Poe and Blake in queer porn film Velvet Touch

Letter from a female site member

I recently received this glowing letter from a woman who had joined the site, and it touched me so deeply that I wanted to share it. This is the reason I built Dreams of Spanking. This, right here, is the reason I've done everything I've done.

This is the first time I’ve had the nerve to contact you, and I really do want to let you know how much your work has meant to me, and especially if you’ve decided that stepping away from the site is the best thing for you, I wanted to be one more voice telling you that the work you’ve done is incredibly meaningful and still having an effect.

Before I found Dreams of Spanking, I was aware of, though not at all comfortable with, my kink, and had this vague idea that porn was sleazy and not really something women were interested in. I did try a couple of other spanking sites first, and while it was super exciting to finally be able to do more than watch ten-second clips late at night, I always felt a bit icky about it –from a “there’s something wrong with me for wanting to be spanked” standpoint, but perhaps even more so from a “I really don’t know how I feel about paying for this material” – buying a scene described along the lines of “Blond hottie’s huge bubble butt spanked HARD!” didn’t feel like particularly great feminism.

And then I stumbled across Dreams of Spanking (and bought a subscription, and stayed up until 4 AM watching videos until I physically couldn’t keep my eyes open anymore!). And I found EXACTLY what I’d been looking for – stories about real characters with real plotlines that involved spanking! Content that was artistic and beautiful and brought to life some of my favorite fantasies (and introduced me to a lot of new ones)! And most of all, respectful descriptions that called performers by name and showed an appreciation of their work, and commentary and behind-the-scenes content that assured me that the performers were not only “not exploited” (what a ridiculously low bar!), but people who were genuinely into what they were doing, whose boundaries and limits were respected, and who had input into the scenes they chose to do. And all of that together made incredible art, art that felt not like “what the company assumes the average porn consumer wants” but art that was creative and expressive and fulfilling for the people making it.

And then I started reading your blog, and learned that a creative, articulate, intelligent, successful, poised, independent woman can like getting spanked, and there’s nothing about any of those facts that are not compatible with each other. And something inside me relaxed.

The last thing I wanted to say, because I’m aware that I’m really rambling now, is thank you so, so much for your focus on diversity in all areas, but especially meaningfully for me personally, for hiring performers with such a diverse range of body types. Your website shows SO many people with all different kinds of bodies and they’re all presented simply as what they are – photos of people looking beautiful (and/or hot, sexy, sweet, cute, etc.) – with no fetishizing size, no “how brave of x to be seen naked despite x,” no “real women look like x” – just gorgeous photos of people presented as exactly that. Thank you, thank you so much for that. 

Dear Dreams of Spanking

Dear Dreams of Spanking,

You are the realisation of my hopes and dreams. You are the safe space I dreamed of creating for people to explore and express their spanking fantasies without shame; a community offering reassurance and support to likeminded kinksters. You are my proof that a spanking site bringing together all genders and sexual orientations can be a success. You model a way of publishing online porn that makes explicit the difference between fantasy and reality, and transparently reveals the enthusiastic consent of those taking part. You do all this while paying performers and contractors decent market rates, never exploiting unpaid labour, and paying me last, if at all. I am so proud of you I might burst.

Cynical people told me that this commitment to integrity would make you untenable as a business, but in 2015 you were a financial success. You had enough traffic and a high enough turnover to cover your costs, invest in exciting new productions, hire contractors to help with editing and marketing, and still have enough left over to pay me a reasonable wage for my time. Eventually, if you had been allowed to continue uninterrupted, I would have been able to train up trusted team members to do more of the production, post-production and marketing, until I could step back completely. I would have been able to keep earning income from you as the business owner, while I freed up time to move on to new porn projects. As a self-employed person I don't have much of a pension plan, but you were my nest egg.

If it hadn't been for ATVOD, we'd have pulled it off. You would still be flourishing and I'd be halfway through nursing your sister site to life. But that's not what happened.

ATVOD singled you out for censorship, investigating you while ignoring other UK spanking sites. I still don't know why this was, but I can guess: you became a target when I criticised the oppressive AVMS regulations in mainstream media. Or perhaps it was your queer and female-gaze depictions of masculine submission that singled you out as subversive. Either way, I regret nothing. Integrity and inclusivity are two of your core values, and I’m proud to have stood by your principles.

I endured the trauma of the investigation, the threat of being outed, and the bitterness of having to put you to sleep while you were in your prime. And then we won our appeal. We emerged victorious over ATVOD, gained the moral high ground and saw the whole organisation disbanded. Even better, we won the right to publish the content we had been prevented from publishing - and we've spent the last year doing just that.

So let’s talk about these last twelve months.

After ATVOD

When you re-opened after a ten month hiatus, you were in a state of financial precarity that put me in a triple bind. I’d hoped that if we generated enough press coverage around the appeal win it would boost sales enough to cover my losses, but since we re-opened you’ve never recovered your former success. I’ve been juggling three fulltime jobs: political campaigning against the Digital Economy Act, editing new content to keep you updated, and since neither of those things have been paying me enough to live on, I’ve had to somehow find time to do enough billable work to pay the rent. It’s been a tough year, and I’ve been able to give neither you nor the campaigning the attention you deserve. I’ve stubbornly persisted, because I love you and I don’t want to let go. But it’s time I accept that this isn’t working.

Since your hiatus, sales haven’t been high enough to afford to hire editing help, so my only option has been to cut back the amount of content I put out each week. In the good old days, we’d publish a complete new spanking video plus photoset, trailer, and behind the scenes video every week - and preparing and promoting all that is considerably more than a full time job for one person. So then I cut it back to a photoset one week, an audio story another, and started splitting longer videos over multiple updates. And I still haven’t been able to stay on top of it. There have been too many missed updates this year, and you and your members deserve better.

I’ve been so busy it’s been hard to take stock, but even so, I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching since the appeal win. Throughout the autumn, with the Digital Economy Bill looming and the future uncertain, I started to entertain the idea of leaving you. But I’d made a commitment to complete what we’d started. When ATVOD ruled against you, the idea that we might never have the right to release the content we’d already shot was one of the most painful aspects of it. It was deeply frustrating that creative endeavours I’d invested time, imagination, money and effort into might be thwarted. Then we became free to finish them, to put them out into the world, and I’ve felt myself stubbornly determined to carry out that commitment. Giving up would have felt like admitting defeat - like letting the government bullies win.

Morally and legally, we beat them and I’m glad of it. But in a practical sense, they’d already won before I even filed my appeal. They cut you down in your prime, wiped out years of carefully accumulated momentum and traffic, and turned you from a growing small business to an expensive hobby I can’t afford to continue.

I’ve been mulling it over for months, trying to decide what to do. In December I decided to not shoot anything new - it seemed pointless with the Digital Economy Bill hanging over us - and just keep going until we ran out of content. Originally I had enough scenes in the can to last until April; then the new slower update schedule stretched it out until June, and now every missed update delays the finishing line. It’s started to feel like completion is impossible. I’m away for most of July, and I absolutely don’t have time to prepare a month’s worth of updates in advance around the other paid work I’m doing. I’d set my sights on getting to the end of the content already shot, but I’ve had to accept I won’t manage it before I go away.

Trying to keep things limping along is just letting the situation continue indefinitely without conclusion. It's in my power to step away. A shift of attitude is all that's needed.

Love and fear

We’ve been together a long time. It’s been six and a half years since you opened for business, and I was working and planning for two years before that. You are a labour of love, and before the ATVOD investigation, you were a pleasure. I was passionate about you and preferred you to any other project. But under the present circumstances the weight of obligation is growing increasingly heavy.

I have always wanted to do what I love, and love what I do. Years ago, I sat down to create a job for myself which paid the bills, was creatively fulfilling, self-expressive, and politically worthwhile. You were what I came up with, and you ticked all my boxes. Then ATVOD came calling. Since then, the political importance of this work has become more acute - but it is no longer financially rewarding, and the constant legal struggles have made it hard for me to enjoy the creative aspect of the work. I used to pour my heart and soul into every update. The ATVOD investigation, the threat of being outed, the unfavourable ruling, the helplessness of waiting to hear my appeal result, and now the Digital Economy Act - all these have tainted my enjoyment of you. Since the appeal win I’ve stubbornly persisted in the face of financial losses, legal uncertainty and competing priorities, but now I only have time to do the bare minimum each week, it’s much less rewarding.

Spanking is a core part of my identity. It's my original fetish, hard-wired; it’s been with me for as long as I can remember. I am deeply attached to it, and spanking is what has kept me attached to you. Our relationship has always been one of love, as well as business. Now I need to ensure that I don’t let that love distort my ability to make rational decisions.

When I had to take you offline I was badly burned out, and it took about six months to recover. Now I'm finding myself heading towards burnout again. I need to start re-assessing my priorities, and putting what truly matters first in my life.

The thing is, this pressure of obligation is self-imposed. I can free myself if I want to. If I reprioritise, perhaps I can create more space for relaxation and celebration, and be able to enjoy some of the rewards the last few years has brought me. There are opportunities opening up for me, and I want to be able to take advantage of them rather than being stuck in the same situation forever.

For a while now, I’ve sensed that the rational decision was to stop updating you. And yet each time I’ve thought about it, I’ve found myself refusing to make that choice. So what am I afraid of?

You have brought me so much. Creative and erotic satisfaction, the pleasure of connecting with likeminded fetishists who affirm my interest and make me feel less alone. You’ve given me peer recognition, a political voice, social status. Our legal battles have brought me a reputation as a campaigner who keeps on fighting rather than backing down. I’m scared of losing that. I’m scared of giving up too soon. I’m scared of letting them win; and I’m scared of making people think that I’ve let them win.

The thing is, although we’ve been in conflict with UK authorities, ultimately this struggle is not with an external enemy, but with my own fear of letting go. My inner enemy is the very stubbornness that has made me a successful activist. That reluctance to back down, to lose face, has served me as a campaigner. But it’s not serving me now. An opportunity opens up for liberation and change; a new period of my life can begin.

The impact of age verification

I had hoped that this new period would be one in which you were a going concern, a profitable and liberated enterprise which could financially support me while giving me a space to express my authentic erotic self. But that’s not the world we find ourselves in. Thanks to the ATVOD hiatus and the Digital Economy Act, the economics are stacked too high against us.

Just for a second, let’s consider the possibility that I might want to keep updating you. I’d have to stop doing paid work and borrow money to free up time to build you back up to the successful business you used to be. It would mean going back to start-up mode, spending another couple of years accumulating debt and working for free. Realistically, to have a chance of being successful I’d also have to stop spending time on political activism, end my Patreon campaign and turn away from the chance to make a difference. But even if I wanted to do this - and I don’t - the new age verification rules would make it an impossible endeavour.

The mandatory age verification in the Digital Economy Bill leaves me three choices. To maintain my current level of page views, I’d have to pay several orders of magnitude more than your turnover each day to age verify every viewer. This is obviously not possible. To avoid having to age verify non-paying viewers, I would have to completely reorganise the site - months of unpaid work - and put everything classifiable as 18 or higher behind a paywall. I’d no longer be able to use any of the preview images, trailers, or explicit promotional materials I’ve spent years making. We’d make fewer sales as a result of not being able to publically promote the scenes in the archive, unless I spent yet more time creating new PG-13 promo materials for all the old scenes. Not only would this be a colossal waste of my time, it would lose the transparency which was always one of our core missions.

The third option is to geo-block all UK site visitors - 40% of your paying customers - and suffer a corresponding loss of sales. You’re already barely covering your costs, and I’m not getting paid enough to keep updating you. None of the available options are going to improve that situation.

The conclusion is clear. It’s time for me to step away. In fact, you’ve probably noticed I haven’t updated you for several weeks already. It was late April when the emotional reality of this situation hit home. In early May I went into hospital for an operation, and ended my twelve year relationship with D. It’s been a hard month, and I’ve had a lot to deal with. But even without those unusual circumstances, this would still have been the right decision.

It’s taken me a while to put this into words. I fear what your members will think; I don’t want to let them down. I don’t want them to feel disappointed, resentful or betrayed. I don’t want people to think that I’m weak, that I’m giving up too soon. But in the end, I shouldn’t be led by fear of what others might think.

For a few years, you were the reason I got up in the morning. I was gutted when ATVOD stopped us from doing the work we had set out to do. Now, a year after your triumphant re-opening, I’ve finally reached the point where I feel ready to step away.

Yes, I mourn the injustice that saw you cut down at your height. But what's happened has had a silver lining too. My campaigning against the AVMS 2014 and, more recently, the Digital Economy Act 2017, has given me the opportunity to challenge the criminalisation and stigma of sex work, and advocate for the right to enjoy consensual BDSM. My political work has taken me to places I’d never been before - from lobbying the House of Lords to leading the discussion on age verification at the Adult Provider's Network tech demo. I’ve built up a successful Patreon to support my ongoing political activism, and I'm finding myself increasingly drawn to this sort of work. I have you to thank for that, but ATVOD played their part in getting me fired up, too.

After the time I’ve spent with you, I know I can bring my dreams to life. I’ve learned how to build a successful enterprise, innovate, and take risks that pay off. You’ve given me confidence that any new venture I turn my hand to will yield results.

You have fulfilled your purpose, and it’s now time for me to move on. One of the hardest wisdoms of the heart is knowing when to leave a situation and let go. Our natural tendency is to want to have, to hold and to keep - letting go can seem a rejection of important values such as commitment, dedication and responsibility. But there is a season and a cycle to all things. Something that has served us at one time may now no longer do so. And I’m starting to realise that stepping away is not a rejection of one thing, but an embracing of another.

There is no need to blame anyone or anything in the past for my decision. I’m not bitter about ATVOD or the Digital Economy Act. These experiences have shaped me, given me skills and experience and connections, helped me step into my power. I see the future calling to me as I give thanks for the experiences of the past. Now, it’s time for me to take a break to recharge and rededicate myself to what I sense is the core purpose of my life.

So what does this mean in practice?

The Digital Economy Act has a one year window before enforcement will begin; we’re already a couple of months into that. So whatever changes I make to the site in response to the age verification requirement, they must be complete by next March, or earlier to be safe.

To avoid having to pay for age verification, I’ll have to geoblock UK IP addresses. This will mean that if you’re visiting the site from the UK and you aren’t using a VPN or onion router, you’ll be redirected to a PG-13 page which doesn’t contain any content that would be classified 18 or higher. Users from the rest of the world will still be able to view the site and buy access to scenes.

There won't be new weekly site updates. Current members will continue to have access to the archive. Members who bought subscriptions before this change was announced will be given extensions to their memberships to compensate them for the lack of new updates. If someone doesn’t have a membership yet and wants to be able to watch films in the archive, they will still be able to buy a subscription, but it won't entitle them to new content each week.

I still have several photo galleries, videos and audio stories which have not yet been published. I’d like to put them up at some point, but I’m not committing to any particular schedule. I’ll do it when I feel like it, if I feel like it. I suspect I’ll need to take a break for a while to recover my enthusiasm. I’m looking forward to this being a pleasure again; to sharing new spanking scenes for the joy of it, not because I’m tied to a neverending weekly obligation. Those with memberships will have access to new material when it comes out, and I might even give members a heads up when I’m working on something new - but I won’t be holding myself to any deadlines.

I’m planning a redesign. I’ve been meaning to do one for years, I even started work on it, but ATVOD et al got in the way. I’d like to set up more powerful video on demand functionality, with individual films available to stream or download without needing a membership. I’m not intending to walk away from you entirely; but I won’t have time to implement these changes while still struggling to edit new content every week.

What does the future hold?

Well. I still have so many porn ideas. New projects, new enterprises, new films. I doubt I’ll be gone for good. And without being tied down to a membership site, my time will be freed up to work on the new projects that excite me.

But in the short term, I think I’ll be taking a bit of a sabbatical. I’ve spent far too much time since 2009 editing porn and campaigning around porn politics, and not enough time with my loved ones, enjoying hobbies, or campaigning on any of the other social justice issues I care about. I have a book I want to write. I have plans that require money, and non-porn opportunities to earn it.

You can stay informed of what I’m up to by adding my blog pandorablake.com to your feed reader, and by following me on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Instagram. If you want regular newsletters and sneak previews of my latest work in porn and out of it, you could consider becoming one of my supporters on Patreon.

So this is farewell, of a sort. Thanks, Dreams of Spanking. You’ve changed my life for the better. And I like to think that the two of us, in some small way, have changed spanking porn for the better, too. This has been the best job of my life, and now I find that I've reached a point where I am complete with it. Looking forward, the opportunities feel infinite. I’m excited about what I might do next.

Audio porn that's a delight for the senses

Audio porn is such a wonderful invention. You can curl up (with your hands free!) close your eyes and enjoy listening to Pandora Blake’s lovely voice narrating a naughty story just for you - like this one by Spanking Theatre.


Image from Instructed, another sexy spanking scene centred around a letter.

Message in a Bottle is an alluring story that pulls you in and stimulates your imagination. It’s a sexy little mystery with a wonderfully devious twist. We hear a tale of punishment for the previous night’s misdemeanours. It's hot, and oh so carefully delivered (the story, I mean - although the punishment is that too). This spanking audio story teases with a delightful mix of sensory deprivation, touch, anticipation, pain, taste and the pleasure of wanting.

We begin with a mystery letter. The recipient has been ordered not to open it until she is told to do so; hoping to be able to sneak a peek, she turns the envelope to find the same warning on the reverse. She has to sit through boring work meetings wondering what the letter contains; what promises or torments does the letter hold? When she is finally given permission to open it, the anticipation of the unknown shifts to the eagerness of arousal, and she spends the rest of her work day distracted by the instructions she has been given.

The description of her naked wait with senses deprived, perfectly builds the same expectation in the listener as in her. I love the way the writer has managed to convey the build-up of emotions, the careful detailing of the indiscretion she is now being punished for, and the lesson that is being delivered in the punishment.

A game is played. The picture that is painted in words of the rich scent of wine is heady and almost intoxicating. You are on tenterhooks waiting for her guess of the age of the wine, you can almost taste the mouth-watering aroma - and that’s when it happens… 

I won't spoil the twist for you, but this erotic audio story tantalises in more ways than one. Give it a listen - it's a sensory delight on so many levels, and if you're anything like me it will arouse your imagination as well as other things.

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