Can porn empower women?

Posted at 12:09 on 5 Mar 2015 by Pandora Blake

Last Sunday I participated in a debate at the Women of the World festival entitled "Can porn empower women?" In my three minutes I didn't have time to go into the full complexities of that question - so I'm going to do so here.

Debating "porn" is difficult because the word means different things to different people. Some people use it to mean "sexy media I don't like", and the word "erotica" to mean "sexy media I do like". So I want to start out with a definition: porn is media that is intended to sexually stimulate the viewer. It doesn't necessarily have to involve nudity, or sex (whatever THAT means).

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Tags: Fairtrade porn, feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, Gender politics, labour rights, Politics, Porn Film Festival Berlin, sex work, Sex worker rights

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Sinful Sunday - pleasuring Zahra

Posted at 23:07 on 10 Aug 2014 by Pandora Blake

For this week's Sinful Sunday I wanted to share a sexy moment from a very special film which I shot at the Feminist Porn Awards in Toronto this April. I opened the video to capture a screengrab from one of my favourite bits - but I ended up with so many amazing captures I couldn't choose just one.

Zahra Stardust is one of the coolest porn stars on the planet - Australian pole dance champion, Penthouse Pet and political candidate for the Australian Sex Party - for House of Representatives, Senate, and for Lord Mayor of Sydney. She is a performer/producer of queer ethical porn, an activist, artist and she is studying for a PhD on pornography. An awesome woman and it was a huge pleasure to meet her.

In this collaborative film she expressed her curiosity about spanking... and confessed that she also loved to have her bottom punched and squeezed. Here I am after giving her a luxurious over the knee pleasure spanking and leather strapping, pummelling her perfect dancer's bottom while she brings herself to orgasm with the Hitachi.

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Tags: Bright Desire, crushing on Zahra Stardust, Dreams of Spanking, Fairtrade porn, featured photos, Female gaze, feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, hand spanking, hitachi, masturbation, Ms Naughty, orgasm, Performers and producers, Photos, pleasure spanking, punching, queer, Sites and studios, The Explicit Diary of Zahra Stardust, Zahra Stardust

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Feminist porn on BBC News

Posted at 09:13 on 13 May 2014 by Pandora Blake

I enjoyed chatting to BBC journalist Daniel Nasaw at the Feminist Porn Awards, but I wasn't sure when his article would come out.

The first I knew of it was when I woke up on Friday to find dozens of tweets about it in my mentions feed. I looked and there it was, right on the BBC News homepage!

Pandora Blake on BBC News: In Toronto with the worlds feminist pornographers

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Tags: Adele Haze, BBC news, Bright Desire, Dreams of Spanking, fairtrade porn, featured photos, female gaze, feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, gender politics, in the news, media, Ms Naughty, performers and producers, photos, politics, shoot writeups, sites and studios

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On leaving the USA, and loving without fear

Posted at 01:38 on 3 May 2014 by Pandora Blake

This is the article I was sent by Zoe Montana (who I think got it from Molly Malone) last week, which pretty much sums up my entire trip:

Casual Love - Carsie Blanton

"Im thrilled that young people are beginning to feel they have the option of exploring sex, safely and consensually, outside of the boundaries of long-term commitment.

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Tags: feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, kink, learning curves, making a scene, Photos, polyamory

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What is feminist porn?

Posted at 10:03 on 23 Apr 2014 by Pandora Blake

In my last post I wrote about my personal, emotional response to the Feminist Porn Awards and Feminist Porn Conference, but I didn't go into the actual question of feminist porn - what it means to me, how my work relates to it and so on. While I was at the feminist porn conference I did a bit of live-tweeting and I kept noticing @ClaireLitton's tweets in the hashtag, and retweeting them - she would often say exactly what I wanted to, and save me the trouble!

We spent some time talking, and after the conference she asked me (and a few others) to answer some questions for an article she was writing on feminist porn. Her piece includes insightful quotes from some top names in the field and is well worth reading. I hope Claire doesn't mind if I publish the full text of my response to her here, as the simplest way to explain my take on the subject.

Flare by Sensate Films at PinkLabel.tv

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Tags: Dreams of Spanking, Fairtrade porn, Female gaze, feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, Gender politics, in the news, media, Politics, Sex worker rights

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Feminist Porn Awards and Conference 2014

Posted at 06:45 on 21 Apr 2014 by Pandora Blake

The Feminist Porn Awards and Feminist Porn Conference in Toronto were an incredible, intense experience for me. In the four days I was there I was challenged and inspired as a filmmaker, turned on by screenings of uber-hot new porn, affirmed in my politics and given a sense of community. I shot a lot of porn and made a lot of friends. I listened, shared ideas and explored areas of difference and common ground. As a producer I felt isolated in some ways and welcomed in others. I was emotionally exhausted every night from judging when I should let myself be critiqued and when I should offer critique of my own. I was invited to speak and I received acceptance, reassurance and validation.

Pandora Blake at the Feminist Porn Awards - photo by Kirsty BoyceIt's a funny marriage - the awards in their ninth year, a Toronto project which has exploded to become an international event; and the conference in its second year, aiming from the start to bring people together from across the world. The two events have different organising committees and aren't particularly cohesive. They sit next to each other but there's no combined schedule of events, no public communal areas, no central hotel where everyone stays. If you want to know what's going on, you have to know the right people.

The awards (over Thursday and Friday) are all about celebrating the best in feminist porn. What with the press conference, brunches, workshops and shoots the days filled up quickly. I saw some amazing, erotic, cinematic films at the Public Provocative Porn screening on Thursday night, which both turned me on and made me think hard about the craft of film-making. It was a brief, horny masterclass in how to make engaging short erotic films. I left feeling inspired and motivated.

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Tags: Fairtrade porn, featured photos, Female gaze, feminist porn, Feminist Porn Awards, Gender politics, Kink activism, learning curves, making a scene, Performers and producers, Photos, Politics, Queer politics, Sites and studios, Videos

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