Porn star, lecturer, author and sexpert Conner Habib sat down with me yesterday in San Francisco’s beautiful Dolores Park to talk to me about his experience working with straight-identified performers, shooting scenes with their girlfriends present, teenage and not-so-teenage crushes on straight guys, growing up gay, and unpacking the desire that so many gay-identified men share towards straight guys.
Not only was Conner a sweetheart, but we were able help one another expand our understanding of certain issues, and he certainly opened up my thinking about this project.
Also, the guy knows how to pose for a picture.
ChaosMen’s Bryan Ockert has agreed to open his studios’ doors to me and my camera! ChaosMen (formerly ChaosInAustin.com) has been online for 8 years now producing videos of mostly straight guys – jacking off together, receiving their first blowjob from a guy, and so on. They’ve also introduced a new feature on the site – ‘Peep’ videos. These intimate solo videos are recorded by the performers themselves, after a quick camera how-to from ChaosMen model Ransom. These Peep videos are lower-budget, lower-quality videos than the rest of ChaosMen’s work, but offer a voyeuristic look into straight guys in their own homes.
Bryan has agreed to let me visit, speak with him, tour the studio, watch a scene being filmed, get some behind-the-scenes footage, interview the performers – basically everything my little heart desires. I’m so thrilled to be able to profile a studio like ChaosMen, and really pleased and humbled that Bryan has given me so much freedom. Can’t wait until the end of the month!
ChaosXplained.com – The ChaosMen Blog (also NSFW)
I suppose I could just say that ALL links are NSFW, but it’s always fun to reiterate.
Well, I’m going to Boston.
I’ll be sitting down with XTube sensation, CockyBoys exclusive model and prolific gif-maker Bravo Delta at the end of July and am pretty stoked about it. Bravo began uploading videos to XTube 3 years ago and caught the attention of NYC porn studio CockyBoys, where he has since released 5 scenes.
Bravo has identified as straight, but has expanded that definition somewhat as his work in porn continues. He’s very open with his fans, answering questions posted to his Tumblr almost daily about his work, his life, his sexual preferences, his video game stats. I’m really looking forward to speaking to him about his transition from ‘amateur’ cam star to ‘pro’ porn star, the importance of perceived authenticity in porn videos, and the desire of the audience to pinpoint his sexual identity (for a funny answer to the “how are you straight if you sucked a guy’s dick?” question, click here.)
Take some time getting to know Bravo, ask him a question on his Tumblr, watch his videos. So excited he’ll be a part of this project!
Bravo Delta on Tumblr (NSFW)
Bravo Delta on XTube (NSFW)
Bravo Delta on Twitter (pics are NSFW)
And a suitable-for-work gif of Bravo eating a pickle
Everyone’s favourite college instructor turned porn star, Conner Habib has signed on to Straight Guys. Blogger, NewNowNext Sexpert, prolific Vine-er, Conner can provide an articulate, intelligent (and handsome) insight into the world of gay porn, and into gay men’s attraction to straight guys. If you haven’t already, check out his fantastic blog here.
More great news: Straight Guys was just awarded a Social Studies and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC – pronounced ‘shirk’ for those in the know) Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship! The long title comes with a weighty sum: $17,500! SSHRC “seeks to develop research skills and assist in the training of highly qualified personnel by supporting students in the social sciences and humanities who demonstrate a high standard of achievement in undergraduate and early graduate studies.” Yeah, guy.
I’m thrilled and honoured to have been chosen. See the full list of competition winners here (PDF). “Straight Guys” stands out kind of adorably from the other project titles.
Over the last week I travelled to London, UK, to meet with Professor Sharif Mowlabocus. Dr. Mowlabocus is a professor of Media Studies at the University of Sussex in Brighton and is the author of Gaydar Culture and multiple articles in academic journals and anthologies.
Sharif took time out of his busy schedule to meet with me in London (at the lovely Whitechapel Gallery Cafe) to discuss the project and the interview. Even this ‘getting-to-know-you’ pre-interview produced some amazing results. With Sharif I got to looking at the project from an entirely different angle. We came up with two things I had never thought of before: that Straight Guy Porn taps into fantasies that many (if not all) gay men had in their youth and young adulthood for that classmate, lifeguard or neighbour who was inevitably straight. It also subtly hints at the flexibility of sexuality – if these Corbin Fisher and Sean Cody can experiment with their sexuality (and seemingly enjoy the results) then maybe heterosexuality isn’t the inflexible monolith it’s made out to be.
The following day, Sharif met me at the lovely University of Sussex campus in Brighton, where we filmed the interview. He spoke of porn’s role as an educational tool, as examples of gay sex and love that aren’t readily available in mainstream film and television. He also spoke about the importance of online gay porn to those who are outside gay metropolises (the ‘gay diaspora’, as he calls it) who otherwise would not have access to gay culture. The interview was a great success (as evidenced by how happy we are in the photo above) and I look forward to working with Dr. Mowlabocus in the future.
You can order his book Gaydar Culture here.
Success! Straight Guys is the recipient of an Ontario Graduate Scholarship, which is $15,000! I’m so honoured and pleased that my little gay porn project got chosen amongst so many interesting stories and research. It’s a huge validation of my research and will allow me to travel and produce this film the way I had imagined. I’m very grateful.