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September 23, 2012

A Lot Of Spanking
Sunday. To bed fairly early, before ten anyway, up this morning at eight. So good, a decent night's sleep. I could get used to them, maybe it's worth throwing in the towel and giving them a try.

Off to breakfast and back, of course, reading the Sunday papers. A photograph or two of the pandoreas, the larger group with a new reddish bloom, the smaller of the two holding their own, and then on back to the apartment in the car on this sunny and warm morning.

In seeing some of the pictures in the Chronicle of the Autumn Moon Festival in San Francisco yesterday, I had a pang of regret in not going over to photograph it. I've photographed it in the past, but I suspect the thoughts this morning wouldn't have changed my mind. Autumn Moon is running today as well as the Folsom Street Fair that I'll undoubtedly opt to photograph Folsom.

Leathers, naked men (and women), spanking (lots of spanking), whips and such on display: I have to say I'm not yet able to see how, other than through the drama, the choreography and the costumes, these folks are having fun. Still, it's undoubtedly good for me, helps to resolve the thinking and maybe dissolve some not so useful childhood inhibitions.

You have whips and leather childhood inhibitions?

From my “I don't see how any of these people are having fun” comment you can tell there's something going on about the images I'm perceiving. Pain and sorrow are obviously not my favorite forms of expression. Makes for the occasional interesting picture though, I'll have to admit to at least that. I guess I'd feel better if no children, small furry animals and women were abused in the making of the tableau, but what little I know of leather bars doesn't add to my confidence or reduce my inhibitions.

Later. Feel pretty good for having been out for three hours running around shooting, not particularly physically tired and the head is clear. I set out and arrived too early, about an hour after they opened at 11:00, but this turned out to be a good move as it was crowded when I arrived and became really crowded with tens of thousands of people as time went along to the point it was shoulder to shoulder and you only moved with people around you.

This is indeed an outrageous event, I'm sure a large component being to show the flag and freak out the uninitiated. Everyone seemed happy to be photographed whether they were wearing clothes or not, whether they were beating off or getting beaten, so some very large part of this street fair is definitely showmanship. Even the whips and such seem more benign, although you know somewhere not so visible this sort of thing is done for real and people get hurt. Or killed. Killed while getting thrilled? I'm out of my depth.

So you're still a little hung up with it?

I felt quite comfortable shooting the thing and suspect, if I'm still around come the next one, I'll have mulled it over, come to better grips and shoot it better. The earlier arrive, shoot some pictures and then leave too soon because I'm uncomfortable days are gone and we'll take more interesting images as our ability to see them develops.

You took a bunch.

I took a bunch.

Evening. Spent the time working on the photographs (what else?), some time but not enough time on the guitar along with an episode of Wallander on PBS playing in the background. The Kenneth Branagh series, which I find somewhat difficult. Swedish. Wallander. Lordy, after all those Bergman movies and now this written in Sweden Wallander thing, I hope Scandinavia is a little more upbeat than these damned psychological smashups seem to indicate, particularly given that my family on both sides originally came from two Scandinavian countries.

Well, hell, to bed now that it's after ten-thirty. I seem, in going through them, to have a whole lot of photographs, half of which are a touch more explicit than most of the photographs I've posted to artandlife. But such is life: art, life and, apparently, a lot of spanking.

The photo up top was taken yesterday on 14th Street near Broadway with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 24-70mm f 2.8 G Nikkor lens.