As we continue to navigate the pandemic, we're thinking about how to produce new spanking content while keeping our cast and crew safe. Is there such a thing as a COVID-safe set when you're shooting spanking porn?
Towards the end of last year, we spent three days filming. One was during the November lockdown and the other two were just before Christmas when we were in Tier 4. Even during lockdown it's legal to travel for the purposes of work if you absolutely can't work from home. My job was to comply with the guidelines to make our indoor workplace as safe as possible.
What does it mean to run a COVID-safe porn set?
Firstly, it means being careful with our behaviours and activities in the days leading up to the shoot, and being transparent with each other about our risk exposure and activity level. Fundamentally, how much activity feels okay before the shoot is up to the cast and crew. This isn't about me prescribing an organisation-wide policy, but about fostering communication between the people who are going to be sharing space, so that everybody in the room is comfortable.
It means preferring to work with people who drive rather than take public transport, to minimise risk exposure.
It means maintaining social distancing wherever possible. When somebody is over your knee of course this isn't possible, but the rest of the time we can maintain a safe distance. Crew can distance from performers.
It means ventilating the space. That might mean having a window open at all times and cranking the heating up to compensate. And we can open the windows wide between scenes to blast as much air through as possible.
It means people wearing face masks if they feel safer doing so.
Face masks in porn
This is a controversial subject. I did a Twitter poll a little while ago asking how people felt about seeing face masks in spanking videos, and I was actually reassured to find that the majority of respondents felt that safety was sexy, and that they were happy to see facemasks in a porn film, because then they can feel comfortable that the performers aren't being placed in undue risk, and are only having as much contact as they're comfortable with.
However, I know for a lot of people, porn is an escape from the real world. I understand if viewers don't want to be reminded about the pandemic when they're watching a fantasy. I also know that for many viewers facial reactions are important, and face masks can make a scene less erotic.
There's no pleasing everyone, and I suspect preferences will vary from scenario to scenario as well as person to person. In some films, a face mask might be a lot less intrusive; in others it might feel more of an impediment, depending on where the emotional charge in the scene comes from.
Dreams of Spanking is founded on principles of consent and performer-centric production ethics. We also try to make films which are aligned with our values in one way or another. I think we have a role to play in modeling good practice. I wear my mask when I'm going to be in contact with people outside my bubble: if I ever go to the shop or if a tradesperson has to come into the house. We won't beat this virus until everyone takes the same level of care. Porn is fantasy, yes, but it can also play a part in normalising mask wearing and making it sexy.
Plus, facemasks open up possibilities for all sorts of hot scenes. How about medical scenarios featuring sexy nurses? Or historical scenes set during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic? When the masks are part of making the setting more believable, it can add to the fantasy rather than intruding on it.
We need to talk
What safety protocols are needed on a given shoot is really up to the people who will be taking the risk. There are lots of things to consider.
I won't shoot with anyone if they've shown symptoms or been in recent contact with someone who has. But other considerations are up to the performers. How vulnerable or susceptible do they feel they are personally, and how at-risk are the people in their bubble? How immune are they - have they had COVID? Have they had the vaccine? If so, how recently? Finally, how big is their bubble, and how porous is it? Can they name everyone in it? Do they know the risk exposure and activity level of everyone they share contact with?
For example, two people who both work from home and socially distance in all other situations will present a lower risk to others than someone who's got a child in school or nursery, or a key worker who can't socially distance at work. COVID safety isn't about me as the director laying down the law, but about asking everybody involved in a shoot to be honest with each other and make an informed decision.
It's similar to the conversations we have before having sex. Before having sex with someone new, or directing a sex scene, the people involved need to talk about their sexual health history, and share any relevant information about their risk factors. They might talk about previous infections, recent sexual activity, and the date of their last negative test result. Armed with this information each individual can then make an informed, consensual, risk-aware decision about how to proceed.
As we navigate this pandemic, we need to talk to each other. This is true in every scenario where we might share air, not just porn sets - but as directors and producers, people making porn have a special responsibility towards the people we employ. As adults we're allowed to take risks if we all agree, but it's crucial that this is done consciously and intentionally - and when money comes into the equation, especially during a time when sex workers are struggling for work, there's a power balance to be aware of. I don't want anyone to feel pressured to shoot in an unsafe way because they feel they need the money. So my job is to create a permissive space which encourages and normalises strict safety protocols, so that performers know that they aren't under pressure to take undue risks.
It's not possible to live a completely risk free life. Following the government guidelines isn't enough to stay completely safe - early years childcare settings remain legal, although they are a significant transmission risk. For myself, my policy is to only take risks that are essential or extremely valuable - wanting to see my friends isn't sufficient reason, but keeping my business above water is. All of us need to inform ourselves about how the virus spreads, and be upfront and transparent with other people about the choices we're making. Who have we seen lately? Have we gone to the shops? Have we sat indoors with someone and talked? What are our childcare arrangements? Who's come to the house lately? Who have the other people in my bubble seen? If performers are going to be working together, all this information needs to be exchanged.
Testing and self-isolating
One option we're considering going into 2021 is suggesting that performers test and self-isolate before shoots. But this is a big burden. Tests cost £100, and in order to give a useful answer you need to isolate for three days before taking it, and then continue to isolate until you get your result and go to the shoot.
If someone lives alone or in a closed bubble, self-isolating might not be a big deal. But for someone who's got a child attending school or nursery, or one member of the bubble works outside the home, it might not be possible. And the expense is a significant one, whoever pays it.
So with all that in mind, as we continue to shoot in 2021 we may sometimes need to mask up.
Does this mean that everything we produce this year will be masked? No. Does this mean we'll stop shooting entirely? Also no. We're planning to shoot, and in a way that keeps our cast and crew as safe as possible. Yes, we have already shot some face masked scenes, which you can expect to see over the coming weeks. Depending on who we're shooting with, sometimes it will be necessary, and sometimes it won't.
Let us know your thoughts! Do our safety precautions sound good to you? Is there anything we haven't thought of? And how do you feel about the idea of face masks in spanking porn? Our first scene with masks comes out this weekend, and we look forward to hearing what you think!
Lana Moon and I have been friends for many years, and we've been talking about shooting spanking films together for a long time. When we decided to make it happen one of the circumstances we needed to navigate was chronic illness. Due to her health Lana can't always predict when she's going to be at her best. I wanted the shoot to be a fun experience, and that meant building in a degree of flexibility. It proved a good exercise for me to stretch myself in the art of relaxing and going with the flow.
We ended up postponing our November shoot two or three times - for my reasons as well as Lana's. Between my kid getting sick, her kid getting sick, and her health needs, it felt like one thing after another. But thanks to the history and trust between us I knew we'd get there eventually. Luckily during lockdown none of us had much else going on, so rescheduling a couple of times wasn’t a problem. I felt very grateful that David Oak, whose house we were shooting at, was so understanding about the changes of plan.
It was a very different way of working than I'm used to. Uncertainty makes me anxious, so I tend to be hyper-organised. I plan in advance exactly what's going to happen, and then I try to stick to the plan as much as possible. But I realised that putting a date in the diary for a month's time was bound to end in failure. Instead Lana and I exchanged daily texts, checking in with each other and pouncing on an opportunity to shoot when one came up.
I ended up packing my shoot bag three times before we actually got there. But in a way, the extra time was good: it gave me the chance to chase down a couple of extra props and costume pieces which made some of the scenes even better.
On the appointed day, Lana and I stayed in close contact. She was feeling good the night before, and that morning said she was a bit wobbly, but game. I got my makeup on, had breakfast and loaded the car before receiving a very upset voice message from her that her health had taken a sudden turn for the worst, and she wasn't sure when she was going to make it.
I tried to think. Should I go ahead to the venue and shoot some solo content, in the hopes that she'd be able to join us later, or stay at home and get some other work done on the basis that the shoot was probably cancelled? I spent some time drinking tea, calming my nerves and thinking it over before deciding to go, and give it a try. I wasn’t sure if it was going to be me and Dave all day or whether Lana was going to be able to join us at all, but either way I hoped we could create some good content.
Dave and I started off shooting a solo film commissioned by a viewer via our customs website. I'd been planning to shoot it by myself the next day at home, but since we had time I thought I'd take advantage of Dave's help with camera and lighting. This worked out really well - the result is a lot better than I could have achieved by myself. That film will go up on Dreams of Spanking in due course, and it's a must-see for fans of curvy bottoms in tight pencil skirts. It's also got some fetish content which I'd never done across before - I love this about shooting customs! - such as humping and grinding on furniture. I'm not even sure if there's a category for that on Clips4Sale, but I found it surprisingly erotic!
Once that was done, it was time to improvise. I was still hoping that Lana would arrive, but she hadn't been able to leave yet. Dave and I decided to use some of the costumes I'd packed, and come up with some new scenarios we could shoot just the two of us.
I had some Victorian-themed costumes with me, so I got dressed up as an old-timey strumpet working in a bordello, revealing far too much thigh and even more cleavage. Dave has a really cool leather saddle in his playroom which is mounted on a stool - just about the right height for straddling the saddle and bending over (funny coincidence, that). "I don't have a plot," I said. "You've got the costume, you've got the saddle - sounds like a scene to me," he said.
We shot a POV scene with me telling my best friend (the camera) about the young stableboy that I had a crush on, gossiping about my fetish for all things equestrian, and my fantasies involving horses and saddles and stableboys. While I was waxing lyrical about how erotic I found all this, I was mounting the saddle and grinding against it. I guess that furniture-humping custom film had put me in a lewd mood!
I ended up self-spanking using a riding crop, swishing onto my bottom, my thighs and my breasts while mounted on the saddle. I was having so much fun that Dave and I were inspired to keep going.
We set up cameras on tripods, and Dave put on a waistcoat and played the bordello owner who comes in and catches me messing around. At this point we both put on face masks, since we couldn't socially distance. We decided not to labour the point, and just imply that this was during the pandemic in 1918 or something like that. I really enjoyed Dave's performance as the sleazy brothel owner who takes advantage of his position and inflicts the punishments which he caught me fantasising about.
He gave me a really hot whipping with the riding crop on my breasts, inner thighs and bottom. At this point I enjoyed a tantalising personal discovery - although my nipples have been uncomfortably sensitive to touch while I've been breastfeeding, it turns out I still I really enjoy having them hit with the riding crop! This was a lovely little gift to take home with me - the joys of having a job where I can be sexually self-expressed. It's so lovely to be able to explore the things that turn me on at work, to write my own scenarios and play with the people I want to play with - and even discover new things about my body and pleasure.
I wasn't ready to take the corset off yet, so we filmed a sequel with the same characters in which my Victorian wench character gets herself into more trouble and faces a more severe punishment. It included this porn career first: the first time I have ever 'lacquered' a leather saddle by carefully rubbing my cunt juice into it with my fingers! Needless to say, I got a hard thrashing for being so naughty.
I think the fates smiled on us for being so resourceful - Lana arrived at 3pm! She was utterly determined and did incredibly well to get herself there, despite the many obstacles in her way. I had to leave at 5pm because of my childcare arrangement, so we had a couple of hours and we were keen to make the most of them.
Lana threw herself into the roleplay. I've had a look at the footage and I can't wait to share these scenes with you. She's a fantastic performer, charming and funny with a beautiful body, and she can take a hard spanking too.
We picked out two scenes to shoot that day, and planned to get together another time to shoot the rest of the films. The first one was a political satire called The Party Whip. Lana played an MP who had defied the whip and voted against party policy in the House of Commons, and I played the Whip who summoned her to my office for the traditional whipping due for this violation of protocol!
Despite the political scenario, I wanted this to be a comedy, and to avoid reminding viewers of the more upsetting issues happening in politics at the moment. The Dreams of Spanking crew had fun brainstorming ideas for crazy legislation, and we settled on a law that exists in one of the southern states of the US, which limits the number of dildos owned per person! It was the perfect choice, and gave Lana the opportunity to passionately defend the right of the individual to own as many dildos as they want. A worthy cause!
We had great fun with it, and Lana looked utterly beautiful during the punishment, outstretched on the dining table with her bottom in the air.
Finally, we filmed a caning scene with Lana on the receiving end. We'd planned a scene for both of us getting spanked together, but it needed both of us to have unmarred bottoms. I was quite marked from the thrashing I'd already taken that day, so instead we did a sequel.
The setting is that Lana and I are going out with Dave's two nephews. We're really hankering for a spanking and trying to get our boyfriends to spank us. They're oblivious and not particularly interested - but Uncle Dave, who we're staying with for the summer, is. The two of us just keep on getting into trouble with him, and he keeps on finding reasons to punish us. It's a traditional uncle/niece dynamic with a fun, consensual twist.
In this episode Lana is home late during lockdown. She's in trouble with Uncle Dave for breaking the restrictions and missing the dinner that he's cooked for her - and when he tells her off, she just gets naughtier and naughtier. An over the knee hand spanking isn't enough to rein in her sassy behaviour, so he bends her over for the cane.
At the end of the day, despite the day's uncertainties I felt very satisfied. Although the day hadn't gone to plan, and I hadn't managed to shoot the six scenes I'd planned with Lana, we had a successful day and filmed some hot additional content. Plus I got to be spanked more than I'd expected, which was no bad thing!
Lana and I planned to reconvene to shoot the other four scenes, as soon as a good opportunity came along. That day came along quicker than I expected. I'll tell you about that in a separate post - and meanwhile keep an eye out for Lana's first official Dreams of Spanking release. I'm really happy to welcome her to the cast!
This shoot with Lana is the first since I had a baby - and I'm feeling even more nervous than usual.
I'm always a little nervous before a shoot, especially one I'm organising. Have I packed everything? Will anything go wrong? Will I get there on time? I'm naturally quite disorganised and so I compensate by being extremely methodical. Lists, lists and more lists. I leave extra time and then double it to make sure I won't be packing late into the night. Even so, I often sleep badly the night before a shoot, my mind racing with anticipation.
This time, returning to film production for the first time after my parental leave, is even more nerve-wracking.
It hasn't helped that it's been postponed twice already. First Lana found out she had a hospital appointment the day before, so we put the date back a week to create more space. Then my toddler was sick and needed me to stay home, so we pushed it back another few days. David Oak, whose venue we are using, and who's also going to be taking part behind and in front of the camera, has been very understanding about the scheduling slips so far.
Now it's the night before the shoot and I'm worrying something else is going to go wrong. I hope we all get there on time. I hope I don't forget anything crucial. I hope I sleep well tonight, as well as can be hoped with a little one. I hope no-one's ill again. I hope I don't do anything stupid tomorrow, like failing to set the camera running or accidentally deleting footage. I hope my kid's okay with their childminder all day.
I'm good at thinking of things that might go wrong.
It's not true, but it feels a bit like I've spent the last week preparing. I thought the extra time would create more space, but the prep has expanded to fill it. Today I spent an hour clearing my memory cards, charging batteries and testing my mic (it seemed to have a problem the last couple of times I used it, but it's working fine now). I spent an hour on all the personal grooming I've been neglecting during lockdown. I spent an hour trying on outfits and finishing my packing, and an hour going to the shop to pick up shoot food. My toddler, who is feeling better than they were, helped admirably with those last two tasks.
To console myself after postponing last week, I ordered a new costume item that would be perfect for one of the scenes. I wrote Lana and I a nurse scene forgetting I'd got rid of my nurse uniform during a clearout. So I ordered a new one - and found out today that it's arriving tomorrow. Timing! So I had to raid my wardrobe and come up with an alternative.
Now everything's ready, and I just need to calm my mind enough to get a good night's sleep. At least I'm experienced enough these days that I'm no longer nervous about the acting, or the spankings themselves. Those are always fresh and stimulating, but in another way they're also delightfully familiar.
It's hard to believe that it's been three years since the last duo shoot for Dreams of Spanking. By duo shoot, I mean a film with two people in front of the camera and one person behind it.
But now, three years have passed and in the intervening time, the only shooting I've done has been solo scenes at home.
There are two very good reasons for that - I had a baby, and there’s a pandemic. Even at that last custom shoot, Dreams of Spanking wasn't updating regularly. That only restarted in 2019, when I started updating once a month. I'm really pleased that at the end of 2020, we're updating three times a month and considering going up to four times a month or even more because we've got bags of content! The only thing slowing us down is finding the time it takes to create all of the images, trailers and promotional material.
This blog post is about what goes into a shoot - and my renewed appreciation for actually how much it takes now that I'm trying to fit it around being a parent. We’re shooting with Lana Moon on Friday, so I’m going to use that as a case study.
Let’s start with pre-production. I’ve already spent half a day preparing the scenarios, negotiating with Lana to find out what she’s comfortable with, emailing her and our cameraman David Oak to find a date, and researching COVID-safe workplace practises. I could write more about that last point, but in the meantime here’s a link to the UKAP Producer’s Guide on the topic which I found very helpful. Then, I’ll be spending my entire working day on Thursday preparing. I've got to find camera chargers, charge cameras, pack cameras and tripods and lights. I need to find all the clothes I'm going to be performing in, the clothes I'm lending to Lana and any implements and props we're planning to use, and pack those too. I'm going to have to either prepare or buy food for lunch, hitting the cashpoint on the way to take out money to pay everyone. I need to empty memory cards and pack my microphone. Then there's the printing: my kit list to check off as I pack things, the call sheets with the schedule for the day and the treatments for each scene, and the release forms for Lana and Dave. And I'll need to shower, shave, and give myself a lockdown haircut.
Then comes Friday - the day of the shoot. I’m going to be out of the house 9am-6pm, which will be the longest I’ve ever been away from my child. I'm quite nervous about it. We've got our wonderful childcare provider coming, and I'm confident that the munchkin is going to be in good hands with them. But although the small one is 16 months old, we are doing extended breastfeeding and they and I are very closely bonded. They don't rely on breastfeeding for nutritution - they eat three solid meals with us and have snacks in between, and they love drinking water and herbal tea. But they also have one or two breastfeeds during the day and that's often how they'll have their nap; by feeding to sleep with me. And this week they had a bit of a raised temperature and have been extra clingy. So tomorrow they'll need to skip their usual daytime feeds and nap with our childcare provider. It has happened before, but usually I would be around at least once during the day for a cuddle and reassurance.
Let’s say Friday comes and the munchkin is settled and I’m ready to go. In order to start shooting at 10am I'll need to be there at 9:30am. It's a half hour drive, so I need to leave at 9am. Before I go either me or my partner needs to collect our childminder from the station, which is a half hour drive. So I need to have my makeup on and the car loaded by 8.30am.
We’re shooting six scenes. Each video will be about 12 minutes long in the final edit, and we usually spend an hour shooting each video. The actual filming often only takes 15-20 minutes: we very rarely have lots of cuts as we tend to let the cameras roll once the performers get warmed up, but it takes time between each film to set up, get changed, have a cup of tea and move the lights. So with six different storylines and characters, the fastest we can go is one hour per 12 minute movie. I always like to coordinate shoots with plenty of space in them, so there's time for breaks and downtime, including an hour-long lunch break. I find it's more fun when there's no time pressure and it feels relaxed. If everything going smoothly, we’ll get six scenes out of our seven-hour shoot. So we're scheduled to finish shooting at 5pm, after which we'll need 30 minutes to pack up, and I'll be home at 6pm.
And that's before we've even started the post-production!
My partner Felix and I both work part time from home. We both run businesses and we split childcare equally. We use Toggl Track to record how much time we work, and every so often we check the record and whoever's not had as much lately gets extra work time. When it's just the two of us juggling work and toddler time, we usually manage to work around three and a half hours a day each, with the rest of the time going on childcare, cooking, tidying, and all the other household chores.
I've been doing more work than Felix lately because of getting the new custom spanking films website launched - which I'm really excited about. We're starting to get orders in already and I can't wait to bring people's ideas to life. So I'm already ahead - and my shoot day is going to put me way ahead. It means I basically have to borrow work time from next week make up for being out of the house fo 8 hours. That affects everything else, including the post-production and promotion .. and before long you can start to see why I have a lot of unreleased content!
I'm really, really excited to be getting back to production and to shooting duo scenes for Dreams of Spanking. I'm obsessed with all the scenarios: we've got a nice mixture of entertaining and dramatic scenes for you including a period piece (my favourite). They are written in creative collaboration with Lana and I can't wait to discover what our chemistry is like on camera.
I love performing. It's my favourite thing about this job, and I’m dying to get back in front of the camera. Before I was a parent, I'd schedule a single day in my calendar for a full day's shoot. I might plan to be a little tired the next day, but otherwise I'd fill my calendar before and after. Now that I'm very aware of what it takes me away from, I'm appreciating that a day shoot isn't just a day shoot. There's actually a lot more that goes into it as well.
This is a jam-packed double announcement post, so settle in with a cup of tea and let me get you excited.
It’s been almost a decade since I settled on the name Dreams of Spanking for this site. There were many reasons for the name - not least that it was somewhere where spanking dreams come to life. Over the years we have produced hundreds of films tapping into our deepest desires. Despite this, there are so many kinks and fantasies that we are yet to explore. There is no limit to the imagination of erotic desire.
The spanking fetish is all about the details. Sometimes when we watch a spanking porn film we're looking for something simple - just a lovely bottom, getting spanked. But sometimes we need everything to be just right. The position, the clothing, the language, the camera angles - if a spanking video doesn't get these details right, it can be a non-starter. That's why we're proud to offer to make you your very own custom spanking film, with you calling the shots from start to finish.
I am beyond excited to launch our new customs website. I've been making custom spanking videos, photo galleries and audio stories for long before this in a more informal capacity. Now, we want to open up the opportunity to all you lovely spankophiles to have your deepest desires turned into film.
At first I was thinking it would just be a page on this website, but then I realised that there was so much to talk about that it became its very own site. Visit our new custom spanking films website now, and let us make your spanking dream a reality.
But wait, there’s more...
New spanking performer debut
It is with great excitement that I introduce you to Lana Moon.
Lana and I go back a long way and we've been playing together for a while now. After I introduced her to the spanking scene we shared some fun duo sessions before I had my baby. She's always been interested in performing in spanking videos, but shy about showing her face. Well, now she is ready to have her debut, and her first ever spanking shoot will be with Dreams of Spanking!
Lana is a natural beauty and an enthusiastic switch, with a gorgeous toned bottom and a surprisingly crisp hand spank. Her infectious giggle has become renowned; those who have been lucky enough to play with her know that she just can't help giggling if you spank her bottom just so. She's full of creative ideas and I can't wait to make spanking magic with her on camera.
Our shoot is planned for Friday 20th November - in just over one week's time! We have some hot scenes planned, and we've set aside time to shoot a couple of custom spanking videos. We would love to fulfil your fantasy, so if you’ve had a kinky idea burning in your brain for some time, now is your chance to bring it to life!
Since Lana is new to most of you, we've made a short video so you can get to know her a little bit.
Isn't she adorable? Go to our new custom spanking film website, send us your scenario, and let Lana Moon and I realise your desires.
A new video blog from me about yesterday's photoshoot for Dreams of Spanking, how I decided what to shoot and how, and some hints about what you can expect on Dreams of Spanking over the coming months. Worth a watch if you're interested in how the looming Digital Economy Bill in the UK will impact the site. Enjoy!
The reason Dreams of Spanking is called dreams is that one of the core concepts of the site is to clarify the boundary between fantasy and reality. This is important to me because my fantasies are often fucking twisted.
I get off to thinking about being bound, violated, totally helpless, and punished against my will. This does not mean I endorse or desire non-consensual acts in real life: far from it, my edgy fantasies make me more invested in enacting and promoting good consent and communication, and in making sure I don't ever take advantage of anyone, or let myself be taken advantage of. Those of us with dark sexual psyches have good reason to think hard about the ethics of erotic power, and how to play with these ideas in a safe, securely-contained space that doesn't impinge on the real world. Actually doing something to someone against their will might be fine to dream about, but it's totally off-limits in reality.
So exploring that boundary line, where dreams end and reality begins, is one of the ideas behind this site: that's why we never publish an edgy non-consent fantasy without accompanying it with behind the scenes videos, out-takes and performer interviews, to show you that fantasy is just fantasy, and make visible the reality behind it. It's also become a policy of mine to not write non-consent scenarios for performers. If I come up with a film idea that is really dark and twisted, I'll either play the submissive role myself, or assign it to another performer only after they've raised the idea of shooting something similar; in that case, I'll run the script past them and amend it to suit their taste before we shoot. But my preference is to work with spankees who have a strongly-developed sense of their own kinky sexuality, and who come to the shoot with scenario ideas of their own.
That's one of the many, many reasons why Tai Crimson was such a pleasure to work with.
You're not a true trans ally unless you're choking me while beating my ass till it's a deep purple. Sorry, I don't make the rules.— Tai Crimson (@TaiCrimson) April 21, 2016
When we were making plans for our second shoot with her - the first since she came out as transgender - she sent me the link to her sex menu, and invited me to peruse it before coming up with scenario ideas. Reading it, I learned two things: firstly, that Tai is the most self-assured teenage pervert I have ever met, and secondly, that she is even filthier than I am. A lot of the stuff on Tai's sex menu already takes me out of my comfort zone - for instance, her fetish for "swirlies", which is when a bully shoves your head in the toilet and flushes it. Luckily, I'm relatively practised at navigating discomfort, and perfectly happy to up the ante and add further twists and intensity until the scenario comes back into the realm of my own twisted imagination. Sometimes two wrongs really do make a right. For instance, one of the scene negotiations went like this:
me: (reads Tai's sex menu) How about a school bully scene including slapping, spanking, wedgies and (maybe) swirling, with Nimue topping Tai?
Tai: Oh gosh, yes! Struggling/roughhousing that leads to being facesat on & taunted might be a nice addition as well. Plenty of fun bully stuff to toss in as well - like, say, having armpits shoved in my face. (My ass, thighs, and tits are also open for punching!)
me: Awesome! How about having you be cousins, or even foster siblings in a shared home, and it be an after-school type thing with both of you still in uniform? With Nimue threatening to get you in trouble if you don't do what she says - actually having you both be in care would make this EXTRA edgy, as she could threaten to get you kicked out. If that's too dark, I will totally understand :)
Tai: Personally, it's dark enough that it just made me wet. Which is a resounding yes.
It's tough writing porn planning emails when you keep having to stop to jerk off to the fucked up ideas you're brainstorming!— Tai Crimson (@TaiCrimson) July 22, 2016
The shoot was at my place, and we were together for two days and two nights. The first day was spent shooting trade content for Nimue's World, and Tai's forthcoming Amateur Porn studio. I got to witness the filthy hotness that is Tai first hand, viewing some incredibly hot scenes from behind the camera. Tai and Nimue have great chemistry, and I really enjoyed watching it develop over the course of the day. For Nimue's site we shot a bathroom control scene, an introductory striptease, a tit torture photoset and a queer sex scene; and for Tai's clip store it got even kinkier, with a figging and anal ice cube scene, a bondage and tickling scene, a super-edgy interrogation scene, and a forced intoxication/breath play scene where Tai was forced to smoke weed and hold it in, only breathing when Nimue permitted her to. I have to admit that it's unusual for me to feel like the least kinky person in the room, but there's no denying that Tai and Nimue are way ahead of me.
So by day two, shooting four videos and two photosets for Dreams of Spanking, we were all warmed up and ready to roll. Last time we shot with her, we didn't get the chance to shoot an introductory photoset with Tai, as the day was already over-full getting all the shots we needed for our cinematic production Houseboy. So this time, we kicked things off with a cutesy photoset of Tai as an adorable schoolgirl, showing off her new girly look, her spankable bottom, and her puffy, newly developing breasts.
I quickly discovered that shooting an innocent photoset with Tai is pretty much impossible. She loves being looked at, and as she removed her clothes the evidence of her arousal became more and more visible. This gallery is going live on the site this week, so you don't have to wait much longer to see how horny she got...
Throughout the shoot, Tai was taking selfies and updating her Twitter - which I thoroughly recommend following. I love this behind the scenes shot of her spread-eagled on the bed before our next scene, posting to the internet while she waited for me to be ready:
The next scene was another photoset - this time a domme/sub scenario with me using Tai's body as a pretty canvas for colourful hot wax. I bought these coloured play candles from Kink Craft at Eroticon earlier this year - they're lovely people, and I highly recommend their toys! I've played with wax before in private, but never brought it into a shoot. Tai was the perfect model, whimpering (and getting more and more turned on) as the wax dripped on her body - including in her most intimate places.
I really enjoyed covering her in colours to match my bedspread, making her wriggle and squirm, and seeking out all her sensitive spots. We also learned that the wax that burned hottest was the black one - and it left Tai with some lovely pink marks, as well as the beautiful decoration of the wax itself.
Once Tai had brushed all the wax off (and we'd shaken out the sheets!) we stayed in the bedroom for our first video - a more sexually explicit scene than the usual fare on Dreams of Spanking. When I first shot with Tai, she mentioned how much she loved anal play and big butt plugs. These are two of my favourite things too, and initially the Houseboy script had an extra femdom BDSM scene where I tormented Tai in all sorts of delicious, sexy ways. Sadly, we had to cut it due to lack of time, so when I planned to shoot with her again I was even more eager to make sure we got the chance to indulge in some butt play.
Tai is infamous for her love of anal CP - that is, smacking the butthole itself, rather than the buttocks as in traditional spanking. It's more exposing, more humiliating, more intimate and much more vulnerable. It's one of my big kinks too, and I was thrilled to have the chance to explore it on camera with a fellow queer femme who gets it.
you know, if you took a carbon fiber rod and left welts/bruises all around my asshole, I bet it'd *really* hurt to get fucked.— Tai Crimson (@TaiCrimson) August 9, 2016
Finally, once I'd warmed up Tai's hole, her cheeks and her thighs with smacks of my hand and my whippiest implements, the scene culminated with a strap-on fucking with my biggest dildo. This isn't the first time I've done this on camera, but it is the first time on Dreams of Spanking. Tai took it beautifully, and the scene was very real, very powerful, and very hot. It was an honour to explore something new together on film, and I can't wait to share the results with you.
After lunch, we moved to the lounge for the foster home bullying scene mentioned above. I got to take a break from performing, and it was gorgeous watching Nimue and Tai work their magic, with Tai as the new kid in the home, and Nimue as the boss bitch who smacks her around. This scene was straight out of Tai's filthy imagination, combining forced undressing, some tit and face slapping, lots of super edgy degradation and verbal abuse, over the knee spanking, wedgies and - last but not least - the ultimate humiliation: shoving Tai's face in the toilet, and flushing it.
I would never have written this scene if Tai hadn't listed all of these acts in such glowing, horny terms in her sex menu. Watching this scene unfold from behind the camera was a real treat. It's lovely to know that after ten years in porn, things can still surprise me - and I can discover the appeal of acts I never thought of as hot before. I'm grateful to Tai for being so authentic, so utterly open about her filthiest fantasies, and for trusting us to realise them for her. Even if wedgies and swirlies aren't your bag, I think Tai's total immersion and submission in this scene makes it really watchable - you can tell how into it she is, and it was wonderful to see her face light up when she talked about it in the post-scene interview!
This is the face of a girl who just had her clothes ripped off & head flushed in the toilet. Because she likes it. pic.twitter.com/S1bHfaDuNV— Tai Crimson (@TaiCrimson) July 27, 2016
I'd love to say that after the toilet-flushing everything got lighter and fluffier, but I'm afraid that it just escalated from there. The last two scenes of the day were, if anything, even more intense.
Although Tai had received lots of pain and domination so far, she hadn't been spanked with much other than the hand. That was about to change: our penultimate scene, lifted straight out of her sex menu, featured me as a no good, very bad therapist, and Tai as my vulnerable young client who confides her kinky fantasies to me. I shame her for having them, tell them that they're disgusting and wrong, and then take sadistic advantage of the situation and coerce her to take 'corrective punishment' from me.
It's interesting to note that even describing this scene to you now, I'm feeling a flutter of nervousness and vulnerability that you'll think I'm a terrible, terrible person for having this scene on my site. It's a fantasy that goes so strongly against the core principles of my morality - that there's nothing wrong with being kinky, that you shouldn't be ashamed about what turns you on - that I'm shy even about telling you we filmed it, even though you already know it was Tai's idea, not mine. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with this being a fantasy of Tai's, either. That would be pretty ironic.
But I can tell you that I struggled to shoot this scene. I had to call cut at some point, just because I knew that my toppy dialogue sucked and I was totally failing to be the nasty, shaming abuser that Tai's fantasy required. Tai patiently fed me the script - "Tell me I'm a perverted freak, that there's something wrong with me, that no respectable or normal girl would be into stuff like this, that I deserve everything I get" - and I nodded and took some breaths, and we got back into character and tried again. I think we got there in the end.
It was pretty humbling, though. It's not often that the top is the one that has to safeword: and it renewed my admiration for Tai's strong sense of self; how aware and assured and accepting she is of her sexuality, that she can take ownership of her own shame scripts in this sort of consensual play. I hope the scene turned out well enough to do her wholeheartedness justice, despite my hesitance in the role of the kink-shaming authority figure.
I can attest that she took a pretty hard beating with some wickedly painful implements, including my much-hated stingy bathbrush, and the senior tawse. By the end of this scene Tai's bottom was ... well, crimson.
Then it was time for the final scene of the day; the caning Tai had been dreaming of since before she first shot for us.
Let's take a moment to appreciate the canings I've gotten in my life, and recognize how many more I utterly need! ðÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂ pic.twitter.com/u5cQYcsKwy— Tai Crimson (@TaiCrimson) July 16, 2016
By this point, you won't be surprised to hear that the plot involves unfair punishment and excessive severity. Tai plays her character from the bullying scene with Nimue; Nimue tattled that Tai was smoking and selling weed, and I play their overly strict caregiver who believes everything Nimue says, and punishes Tai with a hard caning. Luckily, I am 100% secure in my confidence that hard caning is something Tai loves and craves, and so it was easier for me this time to get into character and bring it to life.
It also helped that giving hard canings is one of my favourite things to do - I love the craft of it, lining up perfectly parallel lines and judging the accuracy and power just right. Tai took it beautifully, and I'm delighted with this scene, and everything else we shot that day. I very much hope that she was satisfied with the results!
It was a pleasure and a privilege to host Tai's first shoot as a female spankee, and to assist one more trans girl in the valiant mission of queering up the spanking scene. It certainly needs it. All I can say is, those spanking sites that won't shoot trans performers are totally missing out. Tai is a treasure, and I can't wait to share her scenes with you all.
Since its inception, Dreams of Spanking has always been queer inclusive, and our performers have included transgender and non-binary folk from the very beginning (although they haven't always wanted to make a song and dance about it). My feminist politics of bodily automony and sexual freedom have always included the right for any individual to define their own gender identity, and to manifest their identity however they damn well please, whether through clothing, hormones or body modification.
In this day and age it seems bizarre to me that anyone would not be accepting of this - particularly those who make a point of their own right to express their kinky sexualities however they wish, despite the social stigma that often rejects kink as unwholesome, self-destructive or abusive. Transgender people experience much greater marginalisation than cis kinksters - particularly trans women, who inhabit a unique intersection of transphobia and misogyny which sees them as othered by many movements claiming to be radical, including some feminist and queer communities. The way I see it, us marginalised folk should stick together and support each other. BDSM and spanking has always been more body positive than vanilla porn, in some ways - it's more common to see fat performers in kinky porn, for example, and curvy bottoms in particular are fetishised in the spanking world. But in many ways, the spanking and BDSM communities are just as white-centric, sexist, ableist, ageist and transphobic as the wider culture they are embedded in. Being kinky doesn't automatically make people open-minded, unfortunately.
It seems very strange to me that Dreams of Spanking is still the only spanking site in the world that I know of to shoot with trans men and women, and to openly celebrate their transness as part of their whole personhood, if that's how the performer wants to be identified. Even among BDSM porn more generally, trans performers are a rare sight.
Having had trans men and genderqueer performers amongst our cast members from the very beginning, it took longer than I wanted for Dreams of Spanking to shoot with our first trans woman. This wasn't intentional, but I could certainly have done more to seek people out sooner. It was listening to Courtney Trouble's keynote speech at the Feminist Porn Conference in 2014 that motivated me to up my game.
Skip ahead to 2016, where we have three out-and-proud trans women on the site - gorgeous Eliza Grey in Houseboy, and Michelle Knight and Submissive Sarah who took part in our sponsored caning project. And now, I'm here to tell you that since ATVOD forced us offline, that number has quietly gone up to four without you knowing it. Since shooting for us in May 2015 - already much more genderqueer than the male character they played in Houseboy - Tai Crimson has come out as a trans girl. And she is fucking adorable.
I learned about Tai's transition when I saw her in Berlin last year, and I was delighted for her. When she mentioned that she would be in London this summer and was interested in shooting again, I nearly bit her hand off. Houseboy was an incredible project, but the flipside of the ambitious cinematography was a long-winded shoot that involved a lot more getting the shots right than actual spanking. Last time we filmed together, Tai expressed her regret that she hadn't gotten more marked (in fact she asked for a behind-the-scenes caning in her end of shoot interview so she would go home with enough welts to be satisfied, and I was more than happy to oblige) and it led to some reflection for me on the fact that our normal, low-key, point-and-shoot filming style is actually a much more immersive and fulfilling kinky experience for my performers than more cinematic shooting.
After Tai worked so hard to help us produce an award-winning short film on her first ever porn shoot, I wanted her second shoot with us to be more down-to-earth: just me, her and Nimue, at my house, cramming as many hot experiences as we could into the time available. And oh my goodness, it was filthy enough to exceed all my expectations. I've got some incredibly hot previews to share with you all, but this post is already long enough. So - watch this space.
Our new film Houseboy is a departure from the usual videos on Dreams of Spanking - and most other spanking sites. This is our first attempt at a cinematic short film, aiming for a higher standard of cinematography and storytelling than we are usually able to achieve. I wasn't planning to shoot this way from the start - it came about from a convergence of factors that created the perfect opportunity to try something new.
Casting Tai Crimson
It started last year, when I met an enthusiastically kinky and ridiculously cute young person from San Francisco. He was gorgeous, he loved spanking - he could certainly take it - and he expressed an interest in shooting for Dreams of Spanking. He wasn't old enough at that point to perform in porn, but I said that once he turned 18 I'd be very happy to work with him. We made plans to shoot together when he was next in the UK - which happened to be May 2015, less than a week after his eighteenth birthday. How's that for a coming-of-age celebration?
I normally prefer to work with kinksters who are a little older, simply because I value emotional maturity and experience in the people I shoot with. I think the common fetish for "barely 18" performers in porn is partly based on the idea that young performers are vulnerable, and so it's easier to take advantage of them and push their limits. I find this sleazy and totally unethical, and I'd always much rather work with older players who know their own minds and are able to look after themselves. It's important to me that the performers I hire can take responsibility for their own limits and communication, are experienced enough players to know their bodies and their preferences, and are secure in their decision to appear in fetish porn - because once you've done it, there's no going back.
When I met Tai, however, he exploded all of my preconceptions. Although a teenager, he has a rock solid sense of his kinky identity, and he's been exploring his interest in private for years. He is calm, confident, intelligent, self-reliant, and very emotionally mature. So at eighteen and a few days, Tai officially beats Talia Lane to the position of youngest performer on Dreams of Spanking - and yes, we do have his ID on file to prove it!
We put a date in the diary, and meanwhile Tai and I exchanged emails discussing his interests and preferences. But by March this year, when I needed to start firming up plans, I already knew that ATVOD were investigating Dreams of Spanking and that I was likely to have to stop updating the site for a duration of several months while my appeal was underway. I had lots of scenes already shot starring Fauni, Mike, Talia and David and others which I wasn't going to be able to publish, so there was absolutely no point spending money and energy shooting more material that might never see the light of day.
Towards a cinematic style
Meanwhile, I'd attended the British Fetish Film Festival in February and the Berlin Porn Film Festival last October, and I'd been thinking an awful lot about shooting styles, production values, and the budget and time constraints under which I was shooting.
Over five years I have developed a shoot style that produces one 10-15 minute spanking film per hour, in a remarkably stress free environment, with plenty of breaks. This is based on improvised scenes filmed live by one or two handheld camera operators, with perhaps some close-ups or cutaways to enhance anticipation in the build up to the spanking scenes, but otherwise shot with as few cuts as possible - unless the performers themselves need to cut. Lightweight, consumer-grade cameras make handheld shooting manageable without the camera operators getting too tired, and using auto-focus allows us to get visual variety by roaming around the scene shooting different angles, rather than stopping the action to reset each shot.
This non-disruptive shooting style allows the performers to get into an immersive scene space and stay in character, which helps the roleplay flow more smoothly, and also helps the bottom stay in their headspace and makes the spanking itself easier to take. It's a system that Nimue and I have got down to a fine art, and I was pleased that we'd reached a point where we could create nice-looking films within budget, while maintaining a relaxed and fun shoot environment for everyone involved.
The downside of this low-key shooting style is that the resulting films would never achieve the cinematic quality that I was seeing at the film festivals I was going to. I'd had a couple of films rejected from international festivals, presumably because the videography, audio quality and storytelling wasn't up to scratch. I found myself wanting to level up, and see if with a bit more money, time and effort, I could raise my production values and put Dreams of Spanking on the map as a credible producer of cinema-quality films.
So rather than hire Tai for a day shooting a number of improvised ten minute website updates, I decided to use him to do something different. I booked amazing boudoir photographer Matt Christie to help out with the videography - he'd expressed an interest in shooting video last time we shot together, he has a commercial-grade camera and he also had access to an amazing location perfect for the scenario I had in mind.
I started penning ideas for a single 10-15 minute short film. Not five films, or six films, or seven. Just one.
Developing the story
With Tai, I had an articulate and gorgeous masculine-of-center performer with a submissive streak a mile wide, who loved being spanked. I thought about the films I was seeing at festivals, and the lack of beautifully-shot female/male BDSM films shot from a female perspective, with a male submissive who is both beautiful and interesting, and not just a cipher propping up a sexually objectified female dominant. Instead of this I wanted to make Tai the lust object and protagonist of the film, focussing both the lens on his body, and the story on his character's journey.
I started with a fairly traditional plot - a young man applying for a submissive role in the household of an established mistress. I brainstormed ideas for visual storytelling, thinking about ways to focus the storyline on the tension and anticipation Tai's character feels before he takes the plunge towards fulfilling his submissive desires. I considered ways to create an interesting power dynamic between his character and mine. I quickly realised that I'd need a third performer, another submissive serving the mistress - someone to make his arrival at the house feel more formal and more intimidating.
I'd already talked to my friend Eliza Grey about having her on set as a shoot assistant, helping out behind the camera (she had planned to be with us on our shoot in November, but had sadly been unable to make it). I realised she'd be perfect for the role of a bitchy receptionist, enhancing Tai's nerves before his interview with the Madame... and once I'd cast Eliza, the rest of the story fell into place.
Writing the script
Ten days before the shoot, I was hurrying to finish the script on my laptop on the train. I'd never written lines for characters to say before, and I was finding it surprisingly difficult. I'd write a line, then agonise over it. What if Tai doesn't feel comfortable saying that? What if that's not what Eliza would say? I've always made a political point of not putting words in my performers' mouths, and suddenly that was what I was literally doing. At the same time I was all-too-aware that they were going to need to memorise their lines, and time was running out.
I closed my eyes, wrote some lines telling myself they were only placeholders, and sent it off with an apologetic email saying this was a very rough draft, and inviting them to make any changes they wanted. But my anxiety proved unfounded. In the end, bar one wording change, that script was the one we used - and Tai and Eliza rocked it.
Working with a storyboard
A week before the shoot I was on D's sofa after a fetish party, scribbling a 'storyboard' in biro on A4 paper from his printer while my friends chatted around me. After writing the screenplay I had a strong visual image in my mind's eye of what most of the shots would look like - now it was just a case of creating a visual reference so I could communicate my ideas to Matt on the day. I'd visited Matt's location a week ago, so the rooms were fresh in my mind. It was a useful exercise to think through camera angles and compose the shots, but I'm pretty sure it was the crappiest storyboard anyone has ever worked from. The most hilarious of my terrible stick figure drawings was this sketch of Eliza being spanked over my knee and feeling sad about it:
Professional production all round, innit.
The day of the shoot
The shoot day approached. I bought food and props, looked up travel options, packed suitcases, selected implements, printed scripts and release forms. Shortly before the day I realised that I'd inadvertently booked our shoot on the same day as the London Marathon, and the location we were using was only one block away from the route. That meant that not only would transport potentially be disrupted, but the exterior shots would all have a huge amount of background noise. Still, at this late stage there was nothing to be done about it. I booked an 8am taxi, the traffic at that hour was fine, and I was on set at 9am. Matt and I drank coffee and looked through the storyboard, then Tai and Eliza arrived - and it was all go.
Shooting from a script was a totally new experience for me, and a steep learning curve. I'd worked out the best shooting order, shooting the story in as close to chronological order as possible while minimising room and lighting changes. After that it was just a question of staying calm, following the callsheet and taking it one shot at a time.
I was using an external mic for the first time, and was grateful to have Eliza helping out and sharing the responsibility for making sure the mic was a) close enough, b) not in shot, and c) recording each time. She was also an absolute star helping out with moving lights, checking camera batteries and memory cards, making tea and tidying up behind us. A+++, would work with again. Plus it turned out she could seriously act...
It was a full day, perhaps a bit too full - nerves started to fray after a few hours, and everyone was feeling tired by mid-afternoon. The shoot would definitely have been easier with more camera crew or fewer scenes to fit in. After a few hours, Matt noticed a round smudge in the middle of the lens, and wiped it off - but of course there wasn't time to go back and re-shoot the shots we'd already done. By the time we came to shoot the confrontation between Tai and Eliza in the kitchen, everyone was so tired that that scene took about seven takes. Some of the shots ended up out of focus, and we got through so many cans of tonic that I was worried we'd run out!
Editing the film
Still, despite all that, when I came to look at the footage I was pleased to discover that most of it looked how I'd expected. There were a few surprises in the edit - such as that moment when I realised the reverse shot in one dialogue scene crossed the line and was therefore unusable, and was suddenly grateful that we'd shot three angles of that particular scene, even though at the time it felt like overkill. It was a monster of an edit, but satisfying too, sorting through all the footage, plugging it into place, and seeing how the scenes I'd envisioned in my mind played out on camera.
Choosing the music was another daunting prospect - I knew I wanted to avoid re-using the same creative commons soundtracks that you hear time and time again in indie porn, and that meant spending money. But how to start looking? First I worked out where music was needed - in the intro sequence, the montage, and the closing credits, which meant I needed two or three pieces in total. Then I did a rough edit of those sequences so I had a vague idea of how long the music would need to be. After that, I set a day aside to browse SoundDogs, typing in different keywords and playing pieces with my eyes closed, visualing the film, until I hit on a genre that felt right. I realised that for this story my usual taste in piano and cello-dominated classical and film score music wouldn't work - Tai's character needed something moody and masculine, guitar-led, energetic and driving. Finally I whittled down a selection, downloaded some samples and started laying them over the edit to see what worked.
Primarily, this film was intended to be screened at film festivals - which meant that the narrative would have a different structure than standard spanking films. In a film intended for someone to watch while having a wank, you need a carefully paced build-up and pay-off that sustains uninterrupted shots of climactic spanking action for long enough for the viewer to reach orgasm. In a longer film, there might be two of three of these build-ups and climaxes, separated by character-driven story. But at a film festival, the audience are watching to have their minds stimulated, not their genitals. Fast-paced editing is preferable, providing lots of new visual information with every shot. Explicit sequences need to be edited down to the bare minimum necessary to develop the characters and progress the story. So that was a new challenge: cutting the 15 minutes of high quality spanking action in, for instance, Tai's audition scene, down to the three minutes earmarked for it in the festival edit. The only way I was able to do it was by promising myself that I'd release the full, uncut scene as an extended edition on Dreams of Spanking later. But meanwhile the deadline for the Berlin Porn Film Festival was June 30th, so I had to get the shorter edit finished first...
In the end, thankfully, it was finished in time to submit to Berlin, and I'm hopeful that they'll accept it. I'll be submitting it to various other film festivals over the summer as well. I'm really happy with the finished film, and completely honoured to have been trusted with Tai and Eliza's porn debuts - and thrilled that they had a good time.
And that's a wrap!
It was a really long shoot day. We finished the scheduled shots around 7pm, 10 hours after I'd arrived on set. But then we cracked open the champagne and ended up chatting and buzzing on a total high, which led to another two hours shooting performer interviews, and even a behind the scenes caning for Tai when he confessed he still didn't think he'd been spanked enough...
By the time we finally turned the cameras off, sat down for some supper and tidied everything away, the sun had gone down - and it was 11pm before I finally got into a cab. Matt and I had been on set for fourteen hours, Tai and Eliza for thirteen. I am so grateful to the three of them for their enthusiasm, dedication and professionalism. It was a long fucking shoot and everyone put in so much energy and creativity it was kind of overwhelming. Overall, this production cost ten times as much as an average Dreams of Spanking video, but even so I still came away feeling like I hadn't paid people enough for the amount of work they'd put in.
Overall, this was a very satisfying project, and I'm really happy to have it under my belt. But it also taught me a lot about the trade-off that arises when you move towards a more cinematic shooting style. My previous method gave my performers more breaks, less stress and a much more satisfying kink experience. Shooting Houseboy, we did the bare minimum of spanking needed to get the shots I wanted - and stopping to move the camera, check the focus and lighting, consult the storyboard every few seconds made it hard to get immersed into a satisfying spanking headspace. I'm glad I hadn't scripted any particularly hard spanking scenes, because I think severe corporal punishment would be much more emotionally and physically challenging to take in this context.
I hadn't realised it before, but shooting in a more amateur style results in a much more rewarding experience for the performers - with more opportunity for top and bottom to develop an in-scene chemistry, focus on each other rather than the camera, and time for the bottom to sink into a yummy submissive headspace, without constant distractions.
So what can I take away from this? Well, I've learned that shooting in a cinematic style is something I can do, and that's good to know. I've learned that it's hard work, at least ten times as expensive as my usual shooting style, and considerably more time-consuming to produce and edit. It's also exhilarating, exhausting, and very creatively satisfying. I'm glad I stepped out of my comfort zone and gave it a go, and I'm hopeful that the finished film will be screened in Berlin this year. But I've also learned that I don't want to start shooting this way every time. Perhaps I might be able to put out one cinematic film a year, but this experiment has restored my faith in my usual low-key way of shooting, which it turns out is preferable experience for me and my performers - and a much better environment to ask people to take hard spankings in. Our standard Dreams of Spanking shoots emphasise process over product, and trying something new has re-affirmed my faith in that process.
You can watch the long-play trailer for Houseboy below - and if you're a site member, please watch the full film and tell me what you think - and make sure you also check out the extended editions of Tai's and Eliza's spanking scenes, performer interviews and Tai's off-the-cuff behind the scenes caning.
I know it happens from time to time, but so far in three years of running Dreams of Spanking, I've never had a performer fail to show up to a shoot. Maybe it's luck, or maybe it's a consequence of mostly shooting with my friends, people I already know and trust. The closest I've come was our M/M shoot in January last month. I'd booked a European performer who had applied by email, but three days before when I wrote to him to confirm some final details, he told me that his travel plans had changed and work was now sending him to China instead.
I already had a top - Dr Richard Barton - and a venue booked, but now I needed a bottom. I hastily sent messages around to a few kinky friends asking if they'd be interested - or know anyone who would. To my relief, one turned out to be both willing and available. It was a bit of a long shot - I'd met him at a sex party and knew he was a fetishist, but I wasn't sure how he felt about spanking. As we chatted on the train, I discovered that he was an enthusiastic spanking switch who enjoyed playing both ways with his girlfriend. Result.
It turned out that Fauni Cate had been thinking of doing porn for a while, but was yet to take the plunge. There are few things more exciting than a brand new spankee, and I felt honoured that he trusted Dreams of Spanking with his first time.
Before the change of plan, the scenes I'd planned had been all traditional, old-fashioned domestic punishment, with an emphasis on over-the-knee hand spanking. I do love to indulge my taste for the fantastical from time to time - and my fetish for male/male spanking is rooted in Roald Dahl and Charles Dickens, with their emphasis on formalised, severe school canings. But the most popular M/M scenes on this site have been simple, classic spanking scenarios featuring over the knee bare bottom hand spanking, such as School Report and An Unorthodox Tutorial. It seems that a lot of you enjoy the squirming embarrassment of a lad who is old enough to know better taken over an older man's knee to be spanked like a little boy.
Luckily, this sort of scenario is ideal for a first time spanking performer - and when I ran my ideas past Fauni, he was enthusiastic about all of them.
We started with an introductory photoset, taking advantage of some rare January sun to indulge in a bit of cheeky flashing in the garden.
Then it was time for the first video - always a bit of a nerve-wracking experience, even with a top as seasoned as Dr Barton. We started with a scenario that had been tailored to Fauni, casting him as a queer youth who defies his uncle's wishes to attend Pride. He looked the part in a rainbow t-shirt and punky jewellery, and the roleplay went smoothly - although it took mild-mannered Dr Barton a bit of effort to get into character as the repressive homophobic uncle. Fauni took direction well - and he took the spanking well, too. This scene has just gone up - you can watch Fauni take his first ever spanking on video here.
The second scene continued the domestic theme with a "short sharp shock" style paternal punishment, in which Fauni drives Richard up the wall by playing his music too loud. After the third complaint from the neighbours. Richard hauls Fauni in by his ear and takes him over the knee for a brisk, on-the-spot spanking. Given their relative sizes it was easy for Fauni to kick and struggle over the knee, and we were able to indulge the requests I've received by email for over the knee punishments where the male spankee has both feet kicking off the floor.
Film number three was my personal favourite. This time, we departed from the theme of strict old-fashioned punishment with a more nurturing scene, in which Fauni visits Richard for some consensual discipline. Fauni has a strong Daddy/boy kink and Richard plays in this way in his real life, so it suited them perfectly.
We filmed a negotiation between the two of them beforehand, and Richard let Fauni call the shots by asking for what he wanted and choosing the implements. The scene was affirming and positive, and gave Fauni a chance to relax into the spanking without having to worry about staying in character.
This turned into an extended nurturing dominance/submission scene, and I'm planning to release it in two parts. I particularly loved the ending, with Fauni kneeling naked at Richard's feet for some gentle aftercare.
The final scene made use of the study (famed from Sting Pictures films), with Dr Barton as the sarcastic headmaster and Fauni as the rebellious schoolboy called up for uniform violations - from his dyed hair and facial piercings to untucked shirt and wonky tie. A straightforward, no-nonsense telling off and over-the-trousers six of the best. Short, sweet and simple. This was Fauni's first ever caning, which gave his schoolboy character some very authentic nerves, but he took it bravely.
All in all, it was a very relaxed and successful first shoot. I was impressed by Fauni's professionalism and really enjoyed working with him. Given this shoot started out with my first ever last-minute performer cancellation, things definitely turned out for the best.
It was a pleasure to give Fauni his queer porn debut, and he's welcome back at Dreams of Spanking any time he likes. I'm looking forward to seeing where his fledgeling porn career takes him next!