Displaying items by tag: IMsL - The Leather Journal

ccreaneimagesHS4MediaAbove: Christina Court (center) is surrounded by documentary participants on the red carpet debut of her award winning documentary High Shine.

In 1998, Amy Marie Meek announced at International Ms Leather (IMsL), that there would be a new Title for the Leather Women’s Community, and in 1999 the Title for International Ms Bootblack was erected. Now 17 years later, a Documentary about the Journey of the female-identified Bootblack Titleholders has been summed up in a one film, High Shine: 15 Years of International Ms Bootblack.

After IMsL’s 25th Anniversary, Jayson Daboi (a bootblack and IMsBB 2010 ) felt it was time to tell their story, the Journey of the International Ms Bootblacks. He wanted to tell the story of how significant it was to be a female-identified bootblack, and how they had impacted and made changes in the Leather Community...he and his good friend, L.e. LeGirl, another Leather Community Member, wanted to bring it into part of the 15 year IMsBB Celebration. They had come up with a proposal that included the Documentary. They weren’t sure how they were going to do it, but they began the process anyway. L.e. LeGirl dedicated herself to the fundraising, having Leather & Lace parties all across the country. They wanted to be able to have as many IMsBB as they could, interviewed on film, and their stories told.  In late 2011, Jayson Daboi approached Christina Court about making the documentary, and she agreed to take on the endeavor which included, coordination, research and production of "The Bootblack Film". It became a second job, spanning just over 3 years to completion this year, 2015.

SEE FULL PHOTO GALLERY OF HIGH SHINE RED CARPET HERE!

In 1998, Amy Marie Meek announced at International Ms Leather (IMsL), that there would be a new Title for the Leather Women’s Community, and in 1999 the Title for International Ms Bootblack was erected. Now 17 years later, a Documentary about the Journey of the female-identified Bootblack Titleholders has been summed up in a one film, High Shine: 15 Years of International Ms Bootblack.

To understand what it takes to make this Documentary, you have to remember, film was in different formats, and at various places.  There was dated film that reached all the way back to 1986 that was located in storage units in Berkeley. There were boxes of film in a basement in Omaha, Nebraska, and someone had to go get it. Christina had no idea of what some of the old film had on it, was it even salvageable, was it even useable...This Project also included getting as many IMsBB Bootblacks together and recording the stories of willing IMsBB Bootblacks. Then taking these various montages, and combining it all together into one film. With the help, coordination and assistance of various individuals, the dream making a documentary of International Ms Bootblacks became a reality, and High Shine: 15 Years of International Ms Bootblack was born.

Last month, “High Shine” finally made it's debut at the Cinekink Festival in New York City. In attendance were many of the individuals that not only helped bring the film together, such as L.E. LeGirl, but also a few of the International Ms Bootblacks, including the first of the IMsBB Titleholders, Leslie Anderson, IMsBB 2011 kd aka Katie Diamond, who also designed the challenge coin that is used as the logo, and Pony, IMsBB 2009.  Making a documentary is not an easy task, it takes tireless dedication, unwavering focus, a lot of help and a lot of time.

I decided to sit down with Christina Court to discuss what brought her to making this her first film, how she got through it, and a few insights into the process and just what it took to make this Documentary.

 

Q: Why did you make this particular Documentary on Female Bootblacks, or what inspired you to make this particular Documentary?

The better question is who inspired me to make a documentary about female-identified bootblacks...and that would be IMsBB 2010 Jayson DaBoi and IMsBB 2009 Pony.

In 2011-2012, I assisted then-IMsL owner Glenda Rider and the folks at Kink Academy with some of the storyboarding aspects of Sisterhood of the Sash, a film short that profiled the International Ms Leather Titleholders. I came into the project toward the very end, as they were making a push toward meeting the CineKink 2012 deadline.  I loved working on the film project and working with Graydancer, who was the film's editor. After CineKink 2012, Glenda began to talk about the IMsBB Documentary that L.E. LeGirl and Jayson DaBoi proposed to her as part of a larger IMsBB XV Celebration. I agreed to help with the research/directing/storyboarding aspects of the film.  It was at the GLLA (Great Lakes Leather Alliance) Weekend that I sat with Jayson DaBoi and smoked cigars until 4am, and agreed to take on the project.

 

Q: I would like for you to shed some light on how hard it was to make this Documentary...and what are some of the things you had to do in putting this story together?

I started doing the research for this film in August 2011. I live less than 15 minutes away from Leather Archives & Museum (LA&M), which is an exceptional advantage to me as a researcher. From 2011 through August 2013, I was also serving on the IMsL staff as the Historian and Archivist. Holding this role in tandem helped simply because it was my "job" to track down lost and rare IMsL organization materials...and I still have some "on loan" media materials that I utilized in the High Shine film that, within the next two years, will also end up at LA&M for future researchers and scholars. I spent much of my "free time" seeking out materials, converting footage from antiquated media sources.  

Then on to the interviews of the IMsBB Alumni. Most people don't realize that, to prepare for a massive, six-person film crew, one-time film shoot like we did at IMsL 2013 requires a heap of planning and organization and knowledge of the subject's backgrounds. Nine of the IMsBB alumni were in attendance, and I needed to know a bit of each of their stories, what their title year looked like, all before we put a camera on them or set foot in the IMsL 2013 hotel. Much of this information was buried within unconverted VHS tapes or without a centralized depository of images, articles, etc., it becomes a wild and challenging mystery.

I've read every single piece all the way down to the grocery lists scribbled on scratch paper.  I have watched every IMsL contest I could locate. In order to utilize old footage, which was mostly stored on VHS and mini discs, I needed to convert everything and do some sound and image editing before even considering whether or not they were "usable" in the High Shine film. These media conversions alone have taken hours upon hours, and I did them at night and on weekends when I wasn't working my full-time professional job. On average, since late 2011, I've worked between 30-40 hours a week on something related to IMsL or IMsBB history…

 

Q: Are there particular moments or people in the film that you feel we should really pay attention to in the Documentary?

I think it all depends on the motivation that brings a person to watch the film--each person walks away learning something "new," even if they've been in the Leather Community a long while or just trying to understand what some of this "Leather stuff" is about.

What strikes me the most about the International Ms Bootblack (IMsBB) and female-identified Bootblack "story" is how those who hear the calling to be a Bootblack work and support one another, and I am often stunned and humbled by just how close knit the Leather community Bootblacks are with one another. On a different, level, I find that the stories that the IMsBB’s tell about busting through barriers in the gay male Leather community to be inspiring and empowering...and the changes that have happened in terms of female accessibility to Leather space has been fast and furious over the past 15 years.

 

ccreaneimagesHS9MediaQ: Throughout the film, were there any in particular bootblacks that have touched or inspired you on a personal level?

The first International Ms Leather Leslie Anderson (IMsBB 1999) and I have worked closely together over the years on the High Shine film and within the Leather Archives & Museum's Leather Preservation & Conservation Project. In watching her work, I see the amount of research needed to keep our Leather alive--and not just research about leathers, but about so many aspects of the Leather Community. Loving Leather also requires someone to learn their Leather history, and Leslie embodies this.

 

Q: Was there anything in particular that you personally learnt about Bootblacking?

While making this film, I learned so much from delving so deep into Bootblack history and bootblacking.  What's most striking to me was that I quickly learned that I couldn't separate the art and act of bootblacking from the Bootblack her/him/hirself.  While there are some basic techniques, some standardized tools and beloved products, Bootblacks don't do everything the same. In fact, more than one person I interviewed said, "Ask 10 Bootblacks a question, and you'll get 20 answers in reply."

 

Q: And in making this Documentary, how has doing this changed you, if it has?

First, let me say this: I absolutely loved having the honor of interviewing the IMsBBs and talking with so many Bootblacks. Bootblacks give in amazing ways. Interviewing them and then reviewing,  and spending so much time with the footage containing their stories of joys and sorrows has filled me in ways that are nothing less than spiritual. I will always be grateful for those whom we interviewed, and those having the courage to be so vulnerable and open to me and my team.

Trust me: it's not easy working a full time job, then coming home to try and work on a film that's financially breaking you... I think it's also important to be very honest about this experience. Since 2011, I have gained 70 pounds from sitting at my professional management job, then going home and sitting and working on editing and media conversions until 1am nightly.  My back went out on me in August 2014, and I ended up bedridden for almost two weeks. I took unpaid leave of absence from work specifically to get through a particularly research-heavy section of the film between 2013 and 2014.  It is exceptionally hard to try and work through rich and empowering footage, all the while bill collectors call. In essence, this film has made me "Leather Strong".

 

Q: Why did you choose Cinekink as your first place to debut the Documentary?

CineKink was the "obvious" choice for debuting High Shine for two specific reasons. It was where the first film project upon which I worked, Sisterhood of the Sash, debuted. For me, applying to CineKink and hoping I could do my world premiere at CineKink NYC, was a coming home and a full circle journey of sorts, and I am so pleased that things unfolded as they did.

It was at CineKink Chicago where I saw Mike Skiff's film, Kink Crusaders for the first time. It is a documentary about the IML experience and the IML 2008 contest, and I loved it. I remember watching the film and wondering why the International Women's contests didn't have anything equivalent and thinking that Leatherwomen should work to change that fact. Little did I know that, shortly thereafter, I'd be involved in creating that change and that, in 2013, I'd be working with Mike Skiff himself to create a feature-length film about female-identified Bootblacks and the IMsBB Title.

 

Q: Now that the film has been completed and it is out there to be seen by the public, how would you like it to impact people?

I think the best narrators are invisible to the story being presented. Now that the film is finished and being shared, it's my hope that, during a viewing of my film, I am forgotten...that would be the highest compliment for me to receive. In fact, after seeing the film, rather than turning and thinking of me, it's my greatest hope that folks turn and think about whether or not they've been tipping Bootblacks the amount of money that they're truly worth and giving Bootblacks the degree of respect they deserve.

 

Q: What do you want the current or future women, who are interested in bootblacking to know, understand or learning from this Documentary?

I wish for anyone who feels that they have a Bootblack Heart or the bootblacking bug to embrace that part of themselves, and never be embarrassed to reach out to another Bootblack. I find this generosity of time and spirit consistent with most Bootblacks I meet.  In learning the art, they hold onto the traditions of mentors and those who've passed, and in being such an inclusive bunch that often sees the "Bootblack" identity before sex, gender, orientation or presentation, they illustrate what could be the future for Leather, and in caring for others' Leather wear.


Q: Do you see yourself making any other Documentaries in the near future? or will you take a different film avenue?

Now that I've finished High Shine, I can also begin to move through a backlog of other interviews of Leather community members I've filmed (or inherited from previous videographers) for the LA&M Fireside Chat series, and I can begin to dive full throttle into the IML video production work needed to make the 2015 contest visuals look sexy as hell.

I have many "dream" documentaries I'd love to create and share with our community, so let's see what's ends up on my plate next. What I do know is that having the intent to provide a voice to people and resources that may otherwise be overlooked, forgotten or misunderstood.

Published in Society & Arts
Wednesday, 01 January 2014 15:15

The top Leather community stories of 2013

Proposition 8 Overturned Marc Watrel By Dave RhodesAs in every year, there are stories that define a year, mark a change for the better or worse, establish the end or beginning of an era, lend recognition to achievement, or just simply make a statement that cannot be forgotten. Here are ours.

The Leather Journal's Top Story of 2013

US Supreme Court overturns Proposition 8 - Marriage-ban states fall like dominoes

Not long after the United States Supreme Court ruled that the plaintiffs who sued to have Proposition 8 reinstated had no standing, enabling same sex marriages to resume in California, marriages resumed.

Only a handful of states allowed same-sex marriage at the beginning of 2013. By the end of the year, 18 states, plus the District of Columbia, permitted same-sex marriage, with a few more likely to change. The last of the bunch, Utah on December 20 because a court judge ruled their same-sex marriage ban that was voter-approved in 2004 is unconstitutional. This was the biggest surprise of all. A dagger was struck into one of the main arteries of the devil that has fought against same-sex marriage.

Published in National Leather
Monday, 14 October 2013 15:12

IMsL/IMsBB 2014 judges announced

IMsL New LogoInternational Ms Leather and International Ms Boot Black 2014 (IMsL/IMsBB) will be held April 24-27, at the DoubleTree by Hilton in San Jose, CA

International Ms Leather and International Ms Bootblack are under the new ownership of Pat Baillie and Sharrin Spector..

Traditionally, the judges for IMsL/IMsBB and tallies are announced at the Ms San Francisco Leather contest and this year was no exception.

 

Published in International Leather

IMsL_Logo_GrayscaleMark your calendars for April 24-27 when International Ms Leather 2014, which is under new ownership, will be held at the recently-remodeled Doubletree San Jose Hotel, CA.

The new owners are International Ms Leather 1994 Pat Baillie and Sharrin Spector.

International Ms Leather 2014 will include a large and well-equipped play space open more hours; new Friday all-day and half-day intensive courses that will challenge and help build one's skills; more classes; as well as an expanded vendor market and lots of space to network and hook up with friends old and new.

 

Published in International Leather
Saturday, 01 April 2017 11:56

IMsL 2017 Contestant: Alaina

alainaleatherjournal

Alaina

Ms. Philadelphia Leather 2016

Philadelphia, PA

I produce a monthly gear event called Clutch at The Bike Stop

My favorite piece of leather is my harness boots.


Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about all your Sponsors (feel free to include a copy of their logos and a urls to their websites) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.   The Bike Stop owns the Mr. and Ms. Philadelphia titles. Their owners and staff are like family to me. Thebikestop.com
Philadelphians MC produce the Philadelphia Leather contest and I am an associate of the club. Philadelphiansmc.org
The Leather Man creates custom pieces for me. Theleatherman.com

 

Tell me about your favorite charity.    Youth charities have long been my focus, but there’s a new organization that I have been focusing on lately, the LGBTQ Home for Hope, that has really galvanized the community. The only LGBTQ homeless shelter in Philadelphia, it is a 37-bed facility that also aids those in recovery and is funded exclusively from private donations.

 

Tell me in your own words how you feel about community service.    I feel that community service is an integral part of the leather community, especially as a title holder, and it is enriching to me to be a part of a group that I believe is like-minded. Community service is the most rewarding aspect of being a titleholder.

 

What makes you a Leather Woman and/or Bootblack?    Leather and kink have been a part of my entire adult life. Forgive me for being trite, but I think that I was born this way. Being able to participate in the community has allowed me to be a teacher, a leader and resource which is truly what's at the heart of being a leather woman.

 

Who is your favorite Leather Woman…Why?    My favorite Leather Woman (excluding my Philadelphia predecessors, of course) is Christy Lee, Ms. New Jersey Leather 2016. From the moment I met her she has been nothing but welcoming,  kind, and generous and has the biggest heart of anyone I know.  She is currently undergoing treatment for cancer and the overwhelming support she is receiving is reflective of how much she means to so many.

 

Published in International Leather

VT-TLJ: Is your contestant run sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization?

Patty: I am honored to have three amazing sponsors!

Heart of the Flag Federation Inc. (HOTFF), of which I am a founding member, produces a variety of leather, fundraising and educational events. http://hotfftoronto.com/

Northbound Leather is a Canadian owned and operated leather/fetish business. I was Ms Northbound Leather 2013 and they have continued their generous sponsorship of me as Ms Leather Toronto 2014. http://hotfftoronto.com/

The Black Eagle Toronto has been my “home” for almost a decade. Whether I’ve been running women and trans* events, hosting fundraisers or just being social, the Black Eagle family has been an amazing support. http://blackeagletoronto.com/

VT-TLJ: Tell me about your favorite charity.

Patty: I have spent my title year promoting and raising funds for an incredible charity, The Rainbow Railroad (www.rainbowrailroad.ca). In the spirit of and with homage to the Underground Railroad, the mission of the Rainbow Railroad is to help lgbt people as they seek safe haven from state enabled violence, murder or persecution.

Published in International Leather

IMSL Contestant LasciviousJaneName: LasciviousJane

Current Title: Ms Philadelphia Leather 2015

City, State: West Chester, Pennsylvania

Website & (if any) regular community events that you produce or participate (limit 3):

Twitter @LasciviousJane
Instagram @Lascivious_Jane
FetLife @LasciviousJane
www.facebook.com/lasciviousjane

Regular community events that you produce or participate: I produce, perform and Emcee for Vixens & Vagabonds Queer & Kinky Cabaret with Liberty City Kings Drag & Burlesque. Our monthly show is the only regularly occurring kinky show in Philadelphia! Nearly every show benefits a local organization.

I am excited to be one of the Entertainment Coordinators, and the Emcee, for my club Queer Leather Alliance’s big fundraiser The Black & Gold Ball
I have been involved with Diabolique Ball Philadelphia’s Fetish Charity Ball for years, as a model, go-go dancer, stage manager, performer, Emcee, and now on the Board of Directors as the Entertainment Coordinator. Each year the Diabolique Ball raises critical funds to help benefit several different organizations in the Philadelphia Community.

 

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear: As my favorite Leather item, I would have to pick my blush-pink corset. It’s the first leather corset I ever purchased, the color is amazing and it makes my breasts look fantastic!

Is your IMsL run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about your Sponsor:  

I have many sponsors and supporters in my home community, my official sponsors are the producers of Mr & Ms Philadelphia Leather, the Philadelphians MC with our home bar The Bike Stop. I am also receiving generous support and sponsorship from our local leather craftspeople, Wolf Stryker Leather as well as our local fetish store, Passional Boutique & Sexploratorim. All of these groups have been integral to creating and growing Philadelphia’s vibrant leather community. I am honored that they have allowed me to represent them at International Ms Leather.

 

Published in International Leather
Tuesday, 18 February 2014 08:00

IMsL & IMsBB 2014 Contestants Announced

International-Ms-Leather-gen-4-logo

IMsL Contestants:

subMissAnn, North American Pony/Trainer 2009 Los Angeles, CA

Mel,  Ms Alameda County Leather 2013 Sacramento, Ca Sponsors:  Alameda County Leather Corp,  The Bolt Bar Sacramento, ca   Leather Masters 

Lydia Joie Divine,  Ms Leather Sydney 2013/2014   Sydney, Australia  Sponsors: No Trees Aquila, Safari Lee Jewellery, Divine Bespoke

Jenniffer Allen, Ms Iowa Leather 2014  Des Moines, Iowa  Sponsors:  Blazing Saddles, Liberty Gifts

contestantsmosaiclynn, Great Lakes Ms Leather Pride 2013  Indianapolis, In. Sponsors: Great Lakes Leather Alliance (GLLA)

Patty, Ms Leather Toronto 2014   Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Eh    Sponsors:   Heart of the Flag Federation; Northbound Leather; The Black Eagle Toronto

Flossie, Ms Southeast LeatherFest 2013  Columbia SC  3  IMsL   Sponsors:  Bulldog Custom Leathers   

Nerine, Oakland, Ca Ms San Francisco Leather 2012  Sponsors: Ms San Francisco Leather

 

International Ms BootBlack Contestants:

Published in International Leather

kylie ms sydney leather 2015Name: Miss BEEHave

Current Title: Ms. Sydney Leather 2015

City, State: Sydney, Australia

Website & (if any) regular community events that you produce or participate (limit 3):

Sydney Leather Pride Assoc.
Sydney Femme Guild  
Extra Dirty

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear: Full length leather barista apron....I bought this custom made piece from a well known quality leather maker in Sydney, Jo King.  I love that it can worn as a formal or informal piece, and my waist size doesn't matter as its fully adjustable.  I often wear sequin hotpants underneath, a treasure I picked up from San Francisco Folsom in 2014 for a cheeky surprise when I leave the room.

Is your IMsL run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about your Sponsor:  

My major sponsor is Marquis De Sade in Melbourne Australia - a gorgeous bespoke fetish wear designer and corsetiere.  We have a shared spark, a contagious energy when we talk of the promotion of visibility of leather women in Australia.  Marquis De Sade offer customised steel boned corsets, leather ladieswear, leather menswear, fantasy costumes, corseted dresses, fetish wear, with online tailoring, their work is available to international visitors to order.

 

Published in International Leather
Saturday, 01 April 2017 12:53

Meet the 2017 IMsL IMsbb Contestants

imslbb

Meet the 13 Individuals who will compete in San Jose Enjoy!

Published in International Leather

kate-bornstein-keynote-IMSL-2014IMsL Productions is pleased to announce that Kate Bornstein, author, playwright, performance artist, provocateur and gender theorist from New York, will be our 2014 Keynote speaker. She will bring her thoughts, her humor and as always, challenge us to expand our understanding and perceptions. Kate will also serve as one of our judges for the IMsL/IMsBB contest this year.

Many of us discovered Kate with her first book in 1994, Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women, and the Rest of Us. Kate edited Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation in collaboration with S. Bear Bergman published in 2010, which won the 2011 Lambda Literary and Publishing Triangle Awards. Bornstein's autobiography, titled A Queer and Pleasant Danger: A Memoir was released May 2012, and in April 2013, Bornstein released My New Gender Workbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Achieving World Peace Through Gender Anarchy and Sex Positivity.

One of the best parts of the IMsL/IMsBB weekend is the diversity and power of women who span the spectrum of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. Kate, as our key note speaker at the April 24-27, 2014 event at the DoubleTree by Hilton in San Jose, CA reflects these principles and this is a rare opportunity to hear Kate speak on the West Coast!

You can read all about Kate at her blog. Register now and be sure to purchase a brunch ticket or sign up for an all-inclusive weekend package so you don't miss this opportunity to see all the ways we are bringing sexy back!

 

Published in International Leather
Monday, 04 August 2014 08:56

ROMP San Diego will be held August 22-24

ROMP San Diego-logo-web.pngROMP San Diego will be held August 22-24 at the Victory Theater in National City and will feature the Mr. and Ms San Diego Leather 2014 contests and the first San Diego Bootblack contest.

The judging panel will include International Ms Leather 1987 Judy Tallwing-McCarthy, International Mr. Leather 1979 David Kloss, International Mr. Leather 1992 Lenny Broberg, American Leatherwoman 2013 OB Hamm, American Leatherman 2013 Aaron Duke, Ms San Diego Leather 2012 Wish and International Mr. Bootblack 2004 Allen Tunstall.

The San Diego Bootblack judges will be International Ms Bootblack 2008 Q, International Community Bootblack 2006 Henry James, Maryland Mr. Leather Rik "Hooker" Newton-Treadway.

 

Published in Local Leather
Sunday, 08 September 2013 11:36

Mr. and Ms Iowa Leather to be named in October

You are formally invited to enjoy fun and debauchery in the corn fields of Iowa October 4-6, 2013 in the form of the 25th Annual Iowa Leather Weekend. The titles to be awarded during the weekend will be Mr. Iowa Leather and for the first time, Ms Iowa Leather. Unlike most contests that combine the contests into one day, Iowa Leather will host the Ms Iowa Leather competition on Friday, October 4 and the Mr. Iowa Leather contest on Saturday Oct 5. A continuing tradition is the partnership with Le Chateau Exotique as the official Leather vender and Liberty Gifts as the official lube and toys vendor.

Judges for the Ms Iowa Leather contest will include Elena Franco, owner/producer Heart of America Leather Weekend, & Producer Kink-U Kansas City; Sarha, International Ms Leather 2013; Mike Pagano, cofounder of Titans of the Midwest and Mr. Iowa Leather 2011; His Most Imperial Majesty, Matthew ‘Wait for it’ Aspire, Emperor for Reign XX of the Imperial Court of Iowa; and Her Most Imperial Majesty Muffy Rosenberg, Empress for Reign XX of the Imperial Court of Iowa. Mark Turnage, Mr. Iowa Leather 2013, will be MC for the evening and Pup Itus will be the tally master.

The Blazing Saddle will be the host for the 25th anniversary of the Mr. Iowa Leather contest. The winner of this contest will go on to represent Iowa at International Mister Leather XXXVI competition in Chicago, IL May 2014. The panel of judges for this year's MIAL contest will be Chad Neil, co-founder KC boys of Leather, Chester Munroe, former Mr. Chicago leather, Sir Papa Bear, Great Lakes Leather Sir 2013, Jesse Driscoll, Mr. Midwest Rubber 2013, former Mr. Blazing Saddle, executive board member Titans of the Midwest, and Mr. Friendly - Team Iowa co-founder, and Mark Turnage, Mr. Iowa Leather 2013 and Top 20 IML XXXV contestant. The emcee will be David Watt, founder of the Mr. Friendly program and former Mr. Michigan Leather. The tally master will be Pup Itus and the den daddy for the evening is John Jack Trujillo. 

A Victory Brunch will be held on Sunday, October 6 at the Blazing Saddle at noon. The Iowa Leather travel fund will be the beneficiary for the Victory Beer Bust fundraiser held at the Blazing Saddle at 2 PM.

Anyone interested in competing should contact any Iowa Leather staff member or former title holder for the application. Applications may also be downloaded from the Blazing Saddle website.

 

Published in Regional Leather
Saturday, 01 April 2017 11:00

IMsL 2017 Contestant: Girl Complex

GirlComplexLeatherJournalGirl Complex

Ms. Alameda County Leather 2016

I produce events for Alameda County Leather Corps and I also do marketing for Catalyst SF.  My favorite leather item is my custom made

My favorite leather item is my custom made harness.

 

Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about all your Sponsors (feel free to include a copy of their logos and a urls to their websites) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.   My first sponsor is Alameda County Leather Corps, that is the leather, levi and uniform club that I am a member of and the current title holder for. My second sponsor is the Knight Hawks of Virginia, that is the first club I ever joined and I am currently the only girl member.   My third sponsor is Inked Kenny Photography, I started stalking Inked Kenny’s work through a friend and have been in love with his amazing work ever since.
www.acleather.org   
http://www.knighthawksofva.com  http://inkedkenny.com

 

Tell me about your favorite charity.    United Negro College Fund – I attended a HBCU and I relish in that experience. The UNCF supports Historical Black Colleges and Universities and has given tens of thousands of dollars in scholarships to African American college students.

 

Tell me in your own words how you feel about community service.    I love community service. I ran for my current title because I knew it would be one that I would have to raise money for  my local area charities while at the same time increasing the exposure of our presence to non leather folks to our community in a way that is approachable.

 

What makes you a Leather Woman and/or Bootblack?    I am a leather woman because when Tom of Finland was painting he forgot to include women. I am a leather woman because I want to love in the way that Tom of Finland portrays in his pictures. I am a leather woman because I love the smell of leather and I love the look and feel of it against my naked skin. I am a leather woman because my little heart has been kinky since it arrived.

 

Who is your favorite Leather Woman…Why?    Vi Johnson - Vi Johnson is part of my herstory as a black woman in leather. Vi Johnson’s dedication to preserving the his/herstory of the leather, fetish history is very inspiring to me.
What do you feel is the most dangerous mis-information passed through traditional & social media affecting our community today, and how would you combat it should the opportunity arise?    The most dangerous misinformation that I believe is passed about our community is that we are somehow abnormal or defective. And that our abnormality is that the way we love is wrong.  I would combat that by telling them that the family we have built under the umbrella of leather builds a community that I have not seen replicated in the world.  We bring men and women together and support not only each other but the general world around us.  Leather grow.

Published in International Leather
Saturday, 01 April 2017 10:52

IMsL 2017 Contestant: Mina Hart

Mina Hart.LeatherJournalMina Hart

President of the Salt Lake City girls of Leather

Executive assistant for Sin in the City

Founder of Meow Mixx- a queer womens bar night

Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about all your Sponsors (feel free to include a copy of their logos and a urls to their websites) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.   Denver Bound, where I first learned rope skills and found community. I later became one of their teachers
Black Boots- a local gay men's organization that has been  supportive and encouraging to the local women's community and helped our group and others with event logistics, connections and support
President of the Salt Lake City girls of Leather- these ladies are my heart and keep me encouraged and energized
Utah Leaf and Leather- I am a board member and representative of the women's community within this group. This group pairs my love of cigars coupled with my love of the Leather community.

 

Tell me about your favorite charity.    I truly love the Woodhull Freedom Foundation. They do amazing work in the constant battle for sexual freedom and tirelessly fight for human rights. The work they put in gives me the rights I have today and I am incredibly grateful for their sacrifices.

 

Tell me in your own words how you feel about community service.    Community service is what creates the cohesion in a community. Some of my most precious memories have come from real work put in my myself and my community. It isn't always about teaching a class or being in front of an audience. Sometimes the events that create the bonds of a community are helping to landscape your community space or helping to build a library so those after you can have access to that knowledge. Community service builds strong communities.

 

What makes you a Leather Woman and/or Bootblack?    Leather is about freedom. Freedom to express oneself authentically and without judgment. Leather is about honor. Honoring oneself and others, keeping our history close to our hearts while we forge on and create new experiences and traditions for ourselves. Leather is about integrity- about holding on to your own beliefs and values no matter what storms you may weather. Leather is about respect. Respect for my community, myself and for the beliefs and traditions of others. Finally, Leather is about sex. Embracing one's sexuality and allowing ourselves to find the deep, raw, animal passion that we have learned to bury and deny. As a leather girl, I hold all of these things dear. I hold my community and my chosen family close, knowing that I have the freedom to be myself whatever self that may be. I hold pride in the leather I wear and in the Leather I am

 

Who is your favorite Leather Woman…Why?    There are so many incredible women who have come before me and who walk with me.  
If I had to pick, I would say Lolita Wolf. She is down to earth, open about her sexuality, clever and witty. She finds strength in submission and fights tirelessly for sexual freedom.
My own story mirrors hers in many ways with the road to discovering, being comfortable with, and embracing my sexuality. I am grateful for her openness, encouragement and volunteerism that supports this community.

 

Published in International Leather
Page 1 of 4