TLJ - Long Beach, CA Leather, kink and fetish community news for Long Beach - The Leather Journal
Thursday, 22 March 2018 22:06

Dave Rhodes Hump Day March 21, 2018

 

 

Mr. and Ms San Diego Leather, and Bootblack Contests

Mr. San Diego Leather Doriam Manuel Couto, Ms San Diego Leather Kira Renee, and San Diego Bootblack Shilo Vix were sashed, medaled and patched on Saturday night, March 17 at the WorldBeat Cultural Center. Bennett Evan Robbins was the second man competing for the Mr. title. About 200 cheering Leatherfolk, an increase of about 30 percent from 2017, were there including from as far north as Portland, Oregon and east as Baltimore, Maryland. Tiger and Wayne Dietz served as emcees. Afterglow Party with High Leather Cocktails, Open Bootblacking and Cigar Social at 9 PM. WorldBeat Cultural Center, 2100 Park Blvd., San Diego, CA 92101. http://www.sandiegoleatherpride.com

Mufasa Ali's keynote at the Leather Leadership Conference
By Mufasa Ali
ONYX founder Mufasa Ali delivered a rousing keynote address during the Leather Leadership Conference in Atlanta, GA on XXX. "I’d like to start off with a story! The story is told about a lion...and this lion was very proud of his leadership over the animal kingdom. One day he decided to make sure all the other animals knew he was the king of the jungle. He was so confident that he by passed the smaller animals and went straight to the bear...." The rest can be read at https://www.theleatherjournal.com/news/regional-news/item/2007-mufasa-ali-s-leather-leadership-conference-2018-keynote-addressnews/item/2007-mufasa-ali-s-leather-leadership-conference-2018-keynote-address

Conductors LL - Track XXXVI

The Conductors Levi Leather Club. of Nashville, TN hosted their Track XXXVI - Into The Woods Run at the Whispering Pines Campground and Retreat the weekend of March 15-17 in Hampshire, TN. A Mr. Friendly presentation was made on March 16 as seen in the photo above. Founded in 1982, the Conductors is one of the longest surviving gay social and service groups in the city, having been involved in Nashville's gay community for over 35 years. http://conductors.net/

Grand Opening of the Carter/Johnson Leather Library – Florida Annex
By Miss Rae and chris
We are happy to announce the Grand Opening of the Carter/Johnson Leather Library – Florida Annex to be held on Saturday, March 31 at the SFC10 Community space in Oakland Park, FL. One special guest author, Vi Johnson will be there. Her most famous books are To Love, to Obey, to Serve: Diary of an Old Guard Slave and Dhampir: Child of the Blood along with being a contributing writer on numerous other pieces. The other world famous authors, and local community members, will be John and Libby Warren. They authored The Loving Dominant, and John authored Safe, Sane, Consensual and Fun and Murder at Roissy, among others. Drinks, appetizers and desserts will be provided. Library Memberships will be available. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2051902315033074&set=p.2051902315033074&type=3&theater

Mr. LA Leather
The Mr. Los Angeles Leather 2018 contest will be at the Globe Theater on Saturday night, March 24 in los angeles, CA. Mr. LA Leather 2017 Jeff Wilcox will pass the title to the next man who will represent the City of Angels at International Mr. Leather in Chicago, IL in May. This year's theme is We Are ALL LA Leather. 11 men have won preliminary titles all over los angeles County and it all comes down to this. For a complete schedule go to https://losangelesleatherpride.com/

Beyond Leather
By sirtopsslave
Save the date April 26-29. Beyond Leather will include 55-plus educational workshop choices on power exchange relationships, newcomer 101 education series, edge play, blood sports, skills, rope track, sex and more, by esteemed well known International presenters, four delicious meals, four outstanding theaters putting you on the edge of your seat either laughing or cringing, two contests, three nights on site dungeon play with 9,000 square feet that powers your darkest desire, three nights hospitality delicacies to tempt your palate. http://beyondleather.net/bl

Save Twin Cities Leather & Latte
Friends, I implore you to consider making a donation to the Gofundme that my wonderful sash wife Mikayla Victoria Stanek has set up to help save Twin Cities Leather and Latte. Our community is a better place, because of the work that Karri Plowman and Tynan do. Safe spaces are incredibly important and we are fortunate to have TCL as a place to call home. No donation is too small. Thank you. Mr. Midwest Olympus Leather 2018. Help Twin Cities Leather and Latte at https://www.gofundme.com/save-twin-cities-leather-amp-latte

San Diego Leather Pride Opening Ceremonies
The Opening Ceremonies for San Diego Leather Pride on Friday, March 16 included a Color Guard, Blessing from the San Diego Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and Contestant Introductions and a Leather History display at the World Beat Cultural Center in Balboa Park in San Diego, CA. Four contestants vied for three titles. The blessing by the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence was an unbelievable riot. There were a few vendors on hand all weekend. DJ Matt Effect from Sydney, Australia had the beat going all night. http://sdleatherpride.org/

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Trivia Question of the Week

This Uniform club will celebrate its 50th Anniversary in September. Who is it?

1. California B&B Corps.

2. Rangers of Ohio.

3. Regiment of the Black and Tans.

4. Corps of Rangers.

5. Mid Atlantic Uniform League.

Answer next week when a new question is asked.

Last week's Question answered - Who is the author of Urban Aboriginals? Geoff Mains.

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ProNE Leather Pride Night
ProNE Leather Pride Night will be at the Providence Eagle on Saturday, June 2 at 8 PM. ProNE Leather Pride Night will be a live charity auction event benefitting A Perfect Place NB-AGLY, the Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health. Providence Eagle, 124 Snow Street, Providence, RI 02903. https://www.facebook.com/events/402234806871139/

NCSF Celebrated its 21st Anniversary in Atlanta - elects officers
At the NCSF's Annual Meeting on March 9th in Atlanta, GA, the Coalition Partners elected the board members and discussed new and ongoing projects, like Consent Counts which aims to decriminalize sexual conduct between consenting adults. This year 11 people ran for the NCSF Board, all of whom had excellent qualifications. The current board members are: Chairperson Susan Wright, Vice-Chair Keira Harbison, Secretary Jackie Harris, Treasurer Kevin Carlson, Treasurer; at-large board members are Ruby Bouie Johnson, Ben Schenker, Judy Guerin, Rudy Serra, Richard Richbart, Russell Stambaugh, Max Rulz and Julian Wolf. http://www.ncsfreedom.org/

Sixth Annual Off Sunset Festival

The Sixth Annual Off Sunset Festival will be outside the Eagle LA and up Santa Monica Blvd. toward Sunset Blvd. on Sunday, March 25 at 12 PM and hopes to exceed its attendance of 10,000 from 2017. Off Sunset Festival closes out a week of events for los angeles Leather Pride. Off Sunset Festival is for guests 21 and over only and will have live bands and DJs, gourmet food trucks, ice-cold beer and specialty drinks, artisan jewelry, fine art and furniture vendors, lots of Leather and fetish gear and yes, a clothing check so you can wear your fetish gear. Off Sunset Festival, 4219 Santa Monica Blvd., los angeles, CA 90029. Advance purchase tickets can be obtained at http://www.lalptickets.com

CLAW XVIII - Three silent auctions
Three silent auctions feature hundreds of bargains and one-of-a-kind items. Don’t miss the reprise of Master Sponsor Square Peg Toys’ Land of Misbegotten Toys, where near perfect silicone butt toys can be had for a fraction of their regular cost. 100 percent of the proceeds from the silent auction and the Square Peg sale are donated to CLAW community charities. CLAW gladly accept donations of all kinds. See our website or contact for more information. The CLAW registration package includes Men's BDSM Play Spaces, over 100 Skills and Education offerings, three huge Silent Auctions, Cigar Deck, Naked Pool Parties, Pup Mosh, Speed Dating, Vendor Mart, Fetish Parties at local Cleveland bars, transportation to and from the bars, and numerous special events. https://www.clawinfo.org/home/reg/

Leather Pride Flag Raising in San Diego
The San Diego Leather Pride Flag Raising on Friday, March 16 preceded the opening ceremonies for San Diego Leather Pride Weekend. Since 2013, the Leather Pride flag has been flown from Friday to Sunday during Leather Pride. A Leather color guard raised the flag at the Hillcrest Flag Pole at the intersection of Normal and University, thanks to the Hillcrest Business Association. http://www.SanDiegoLeatherPride.com

Southern Most Puppy 2019
Southern Most Puppy is all set for April 6-8 at the New Orleans Phoenix. Friday night starts the weekend off with a meet and greet beer bust for all judges and contestants. Saturday will include interviews for contestants at Phoenix, classes, demos, community panel at MAGS 940, bar crawl to local bars in the French Quarter starting at MAGS 940, Southern Most Puppy Contest at Phoenix. Sunday victory brunch. New Orleans Phoenix, 941 Elysian Fields Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70117.

29th Pansexual Butchmanns
The 29th Pansexual Butchmanns Experience hosted by Machele Kindle will be April 27-29 in Phoenix, AZ. The Butchmanns Experience is an experiential weekend offering opportunities for self-discovery. The event uses hands-on basic SM practices to explore awareness of internal direction, and it uses the practice of Master/slave dynamics to mindfully observe inner resources and qualities that are transferable to our relationships in life. The activities of flogging, ritual temporary piercing, mummification, and Responsibility-Obedience practice are further explored through in-depth discussions. The weekend environment is structured to encourage safely entering new experiences, with the Faculty members supporting each individual's unique experience. https://www.facebook.com/events/177648792963451/

LA Leather Pride 2018 Kick Off Party
ONYX SoCal-Southwest and los angeles Leather Pride hosted the LA Leather Pride 2018 Kick Off Party at the Eagle 562 in Long Beach, CA on Sunday, March 18. The Kick Off Party featured a motorcycle ride-in by Satyrs MC where Mr. LA Leather contestants individually entered on bikes ridden by members of Satyrs MC. About 250 Leatherfolk packed the Long Beach bar where the ride-in was done in the adjacent alley and introductions were made on stage where each contestant drew their numbers led by emcee Chad ONYX. https://www.facebook.com/events/1452020741587071/ and/or https://losangelesleatherpride.com/

SouthEast LeatherFest
SouthEast LeatherFest will be held June 14-17 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Atlanta Perimeter Dunwoody i n Atlanta, GA with tracks from play to relationships. Don't miss out on the 150-plus activities to learn, socialize, connect and play. SouthEast LeatherFest is an annual event for alternative, Kink, BDSM communities of all genders, ethnicity and sexual preference to explore education, sexual freedom and sex positive discovery. SouthEast LeatherFest has dynamic speakers giving six subjects and individual perspectives including Marty, Tina Landi, Sir S'ango, Lady Kita, Master Scott, and BlueFrost during a do-not-miss luncheon on Saturday. http://www.SECURE.SELEATHERFEST.com

LA LA Leather, Opus 2
LA LA Leather returned for the second year to MCC in the Valley on Monday, March 19 at 7 PM, in the Classic Meets Fetish tradition of Folsom Berlin, with an emphasis on classic and original music that has been used in film, television or other media. As always, musicians and attendees will be wearing fetish/Leather gear. Music Director Michael Crane's ensemble of seven instruments played The Theory Of Everything, The Music Of The Night, Rachmaninoff's Vocalise, Planeterium from LA LA Land among many others. Food was provided by Hunter and Charlie's which is formerly Farm Boy Kitchen in Hollywood. Sponsored by Bears LA and Jonathan A. Wright, Attorney at Law. https://losangelesleatherpride.com/

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Farm Boy Kitchen is now Hunter & Charlie's
Farm Boy Kitchen changed its name to Hunter & Charlie's in March. Serving American Food, the restaurant in Hollywood has been popular with LA's Leather community. Hunter & Charlie's, 1050 Vine Street, los angeles, CA 90038. (323) 848-4790. http://www.hunterandcharlies.com

Girls Night Out
Bikkja Amy, Mistieyes and The Compound present the next Girls Night Out women's BDSM play party in San Diego, CA on Saturday March 31 starting at 7 PM. Smoking hot demonstration by Daddy Naria who is a longtime Radical Sex Perv Daddy who has been involved in the Queer BDSM Community for 35 years as a practitioner, organizer, activist, writer, speaker, and educator in the Kinky Arts. She is the new Co- owner/Producer of DESIRE along with her wife, Bikkja Amy. The demonstration will begin at 7:15 PM, followed by a brief circle of introduction then play. https://fetlife.com/events/649144

Master/slave Conference XV hotel taking reservations
By Master Taino
The hotel reservation process for Master/slave Conference XV's new venue, the Westin Tysons Corner Hotel, is underway. The hotel is not exclusive but most of the meeting space is, and we have 15,000 square feet of meeting space. The Westin was recently remodeled and all the rooms will have a refrigerator. The dates are August 30 - September 3. We have been able to negotiate free parking and WiFi. The rate for both King rooms and Double rooms is only $99 per night. The fare is good for three days before and after the event Join us at MsC 2018 - our 15th Anniversary online registration is already open. To book your hotel room, visit http://masterslaveconference.org/home/

Leather Pride in Texas
Leather Pride in Texas 2018 will be April 6-8 in the Austin suburb of Round Rock, TX. Leather Pride in Texas is committed to building unity within the Leather community and providing Leather Space for Leather People. Friday night - DJ hosted cocktail party, cash bar, cigar social, drag show; Saturday - Leather panel discussions, information booths, classes, bootblack and puppy play workshops, puppy mosh, cigar social, vending, Fetish/Kink art display, Carter Johnson Leather Library on display, free lunch and men's, women's and mixed play parties; Sunday - Sendoff social. Wingate by Wyndham Round Rock Hotel and Conference Center, 1209 Interstate 35, Round Rock, TX 78664. For detailed schedule and all other pertinent information about Leather Pride in Texas, please visit http://www.leatherprideintexas.org

'eco-fetishism' explores bdsm through a queer feminist lens
By Michelle Lhooq for i-d Vice
The performance artists behind Sacred Sadism, a new line of 'eco-fetish' sex toys, are changing BDSM's archetypal studded leather aesthetic. Putting a flower up your butt or getting whipped with a bundle of sharp leaves might not be the first idea that comes to mind when you’re trying to level up your sex life. But scrolling through the Instagram photos of LA-based artists Genevieve Belleveau and Themba Alleyne, suddenly, I get the appeal. Belleveau and Alleyne, a loving couple who often incorporate BDSM practices into their work, are the first “eco-fetishists” I’ve ever met, and they make nature look downright sexy. https://i-d.vice.com/en_au/article/pam9ky/eco-fetishism-explores-bdsm-through-a-queer-feminist-lens

NYC debut of Obie Winner Ain Gordon's play 217 Boxes of Dr. Henry Anonymous
The play is about Dr. John Fryer a gay psychiatrist who, at huge personal risk, addressed the American . sychiatric Association in 1972 about removing homosexuality from their list of mental illnesses.He was so convincing, that the following year - 1973, they voted to remove it from the list. That was 45 years ago this year; this play is being presented by Equality Forum during this years APA conference at the Javitz Center a block away from the theater (May 3-9). This year's conference will have panels about John Fryers, who is one of the major in not well known civil rights pioneers. http://217boxes.com/

Kink - In The Air Tonight
Kink - In The Air Tonight, Play party in Hollywood/Silver Lake, will be held at Kink LA on Wednesday, March 28 at 10 PM. 18-plus. Free before 10:30 with RSVP. We like our music dark - Witch House, Darkcore, Dark EBM, Dark Techno, Dark Electro, Dark Psytrance, Dark Step, Dark EDM, Dark Ambient, Dark Cabaret, Dark Wave and Dark Folk. Kink LA, 4212 Sunset Blvd., los angeles, CA 90029. https://www.facebook.com/events/196901527745682/

Yellow and Black Party
SF Catalyst and Yellow and Black are hosting a Yellow and Black Party at SF Catalyst on Friday, March 23 at 8 PM. Tickets $20 in advance at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/yellow-and-black-party-tickets-43220018238, or $30 at the door. Discounts available for volunteers. The Yellow and Black Group is for and about men who enjoy including watersports (piss play) as part of their sexual or BDSM activities or fantasies. SF Catalyst, 1060 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA 94102. https://www.facebook.com/events/192865404634035/

Cruze by FMSD, A Men-Only Party and Social

Fetish Men San Diego's CRUZE is a night where men can explore their fetishes and cruise as they like. The playrooms of House of Black will be set up to accommodate pick-up play, socialization and fetish exploration instead of our traditional dungeon setup. Friday, March 30 at 9PM. Cost is $20, payable via Paypal or by contacting CRUZE is a new party we're hosting! Unlike our Members-Only Play Party (MPP), CRUZE is a Men-Only night of fetish and cruising.

Urban Bear X
Urban Bear will celebrate its 10th Anniversary the weekend of May 17-21 in New York, NY. A full weekend of events is planned including an Urban Bear Street Fair on Sunday, May 21, Stash Bash at Julius Bar and Grille and Brutus Party at Nowhere bar on Thursday, May 18, Bear Invasion: Highline and the Whitney on Friday, May 19, Bears on Bikes on Saturday, and Grizzly Guzzler at the Gym on Saturday, May 20. Also, Urban Bear will now have monthly bar parties at Nowhere, 322 East 14th Street, New York, NY on the second Friday of each month. For more go to https://www.theurbanbear.com/

Puppy and Handler Play - all you need to know
The go-to website for all things pup play, from the basics for newcomers to advice and opinions to inspire those with serious ambition. This is not meant to be taken literally or as a rule-book. This is designed to inspire pups to be the pup they want to become and find resources to help them reach where they want to go in the pup scene. Pup play is when one person takes on the role of a pup or handler. The pup acts like their canine counterpart and the trainer, for the most part, handles the pup like he would a biological puppy. For many it serves as a release of the primal animal part of them. It is not is bestiality: real animals are not involved. http://www.pupplay.info/

Leather Heart Foundation launches General Assistance Applications
Over the last year the Leather Heart Foundation (LHF) has gone through structural changes and reorganization internally to bring all of the fetish communities LHF serves a strong foundation for those facing financial hardships. LHF is the only non-profit group of its kind - by the community, for the community. Recently, LHF opened applications to the Disaster Relief Fund for individuals affected by the devastating wildfires and hurricanes. Today, LHF is announcing the reopening of regular applications for support due to financial hardship. Members of the various fetish communities including, but not limited to, the Leather/BDSMKink/Rubber communities may apply at http://www.leatherheart.org

Folsom Street East Celebrates SLUTS
Folsom Street East, Inc. (FSE) will celebrate 21 years of gear, kink, fetish, in-your-face sexuality and benevolence at the annual FSE Street Festival, Sunday, June 17 from 11 AM - 6 PM on 27th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues, NYC. This year’s theme is our reclaiming of the word SLUTS, which to us stands for Sex, Love, Unity, Trust, and Safety. FSE envisions a world that celebrates and inspires participation and pride for expression of sexual identities in LGBTQ+ and Allied communities. Beneficiaries are New York City Anti-Violence Project, Trinity Place Shelter and Transcend Legal. The Notorious OMG has been the Mxtress of Ceremonies for all manner of drag, burlesque, and charity events throughout the Northeast. Based in Philadelphia. When offstage, OMG’s alter ego Rudy Flesher serves on the board of Folsom East. http://www.folsomstreeteast.com/event/folsom-street-east-street-festival-xxi-s-l-u-t-s/

Sherman Oaks Munch
The Sherman Oaks Munch is held the second Tuesday of every month in the River Rock restaurant at the Sportsman's Lodge in Studio City. 6:30 - 11 PM. This munch has been going for over six years and draws in excess of 250 kinksters each month. No host bar and food. Sit and eat, move around and share. Sportsmen's Lodge Hotel, 12825 Ventura Boulevard, Studio City, CA 91604. http://sportsmenslodge.com/river-rock/

SoCal Leatherfest Boy

By Steven Carlisle
Calling all boys in Southern California, the application is open for the first SoCal Leatherfest Boy contest to be held as part of SoCal Leatherfest the weekend of July 6-8 in los angeles, CA. Grab the application today and let us know if you have any questions. SoCal Leatherfest is the Anniversary for the LA Boys of Leather. We will have an amazing line-up of events including educational sessions, barbecue, pool party, and more. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1QbofHnZgX03T6vACWKqhbwNTwfQh-vOu/view

LUC's Roaring 20s Prom
Roaring 20s Prom hosted by Leather Uniform Club of Las Vegas will be at the Fallout Shelter on Friday. April 27 at 8 PM in Las Vegas, NV. This year is LUC's 20th Anniversary and to celebrate they are having a Roaring 20's prom. There will be hors d'ourves and drinks, a silent picture show and Disc Jockey Chase with the latest tunes to get the rub going for all you Oliver Twists. Fallout Shelter, 3600 West Oquendo Road, Las Vegas, NV 89118. https://www.facebook.com/events/1982217885366200/

Puppy 101
By Papa Woof Roth
We are bringing Puppy 101 back to it’s original focus - Education and Discussion. Discussions of issues, and things directly relating to the puppy community. Event-related posts must have a direct educational focus for the puppy community, such as, discussion about workshops or looking for input for educational topics at an event, etc. Educational topics on gear, training, safety, etc. Gear pics - Once a month we will have a Show and Tell Sunday, you can share all the gear pics you have that abide by Facebook standards. https://www.facebook.com/groups/puppy101/

Folsom Europe
Folsom Europe 2018 will be at Fuggerstraße in Berlin, Germany, September 5-9 The 14th edition of Europe's largest gay fetish event will take place at various venues in Berlin, with the Street Fair along Fuggerstaße on Saturday, September 9. Part of the proceeds will go to AIDS charities. Fuggerstraße, 10777 Berlin, Deutschland. http://folsomeurope.info/

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Timeline of Pup Play

Timeline of Pup Play is a web site with tons of puppy history. When going to the site you will see a timeline for 2011 to the present. Yes, there is a lot of puppy history prior to that. Not to be alarmed - scroll down and you will see 2001-2010. There is more than that you will discover. The Go-to website for all things pup play, from the basics for newcomers to advice and opinions to inspire those with serious ambition. This is not meant to be taken literally or as a rule-book. This is designed to inspire pups to be the pups they want to become and to find resources. We try our best to gather information and experiences from across the community and compile them into one place so the content is not biased to one persons experiences but to have content made by the entire community to inspire those who are curious and those who are also long time veterans to animal role-play. https://www.pupplay.info/2018/02/18/timeline-of-pup-play-milestones-2010-2019/

Palm Springs Leather Pride dates announced
The Palm Springs Leather Order of the Desert publicized the dates for Palm Springs Leather Pride: Renegade to be October 25-28. Just shy of Halloween which is the Wednesday immediately after. Palm Springs LGBT Pride is the following weekend. Palm Springs Leather Pride Chair/Media Director Randy Carmanaty said, "This past year we had a 30-percent increase in attendees over the year prior with attendees coming from 26 countries and all 50 states." http://www.PalmSpringsLeatherPride.org

Northwest Gay for Play Weekend
Come join us in Portland, Oregon for a weekend fueled by the exploration of fetish, play and fun. April 27-29 is Northwest Gay for Play Weekend. A weekend for men who play with men and those who want to build community with them. The diversity celebrated at this weekend makes a welcoming home for fetishists across a wide range of gear and play. Northwest Gay for Play Weekend 2018 features three days full of play opportunities; a fabulous Meet and Greet to kick the weekend off. Saturday features play workshops and a contest for three fetish titles: Butch Player NW, Femme Player NW, and Bootblack NW will happen Saturday night. To wrap up, there is a Big Gay Brunch on Sunday that combines delicious breakfast food with even more play. https://nwgayforplay.com/

Avatar - Needle Play
Avatar Club los angeles has invited Doc Duhon to present a “hands-on” training session on needle and piercing play on Wednesday, March 28 at 8:30 PM. The session will include preliminary consent and piercing scene involvement, cleanliness, safety, materials and equipment, scene preparation, the bottom's piercing site considerations, piercing techniques, piercing play styles and possibilities, post-scene care for the bottom, and clean-up. MCC United Church of Christ in the Valley, 5730 Cahuenga Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601. https://avatarla.org/

Leather Archives & Museum displays inkedKenny

Next Up in the Guest Artist Gallery, January 26 - June 7, MEN as seen through the lens of inkedKenny. inkedKenny's photography is fantastic; dark, sexy, stylish and with an artistic sophistication which appears prodigiously to transcend this relative newcomers tenure behind the lens. By looking within himself, he found his passion and discovered a new way to look. at (and artistically present) the world; through the lens of a camera. With his natural talent and a sharp intrinsic eye, inkedKenny learned by doing and found a new calling in the process. His journey shows how your world can be when you open your eyes to the possibilities around you. http://www.leatherarchives.org/events/

Movie night with SAN-PAH
SAN-PAH (San Diego Pups And Handlers) will hold a movie and bar night on Wednesday, April 4 at 7 PM. The movie will be Isle of Dogs at the Landmark's Hillcrest Cinemas, 3965 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92103 followed by a bar night at the San Diego Eagle, Pup’s night out at the movies. Wear your SAN-PAH shirt, gear or anything else pup-related for the pre-movie group photo at 7:15. After the movie we’ll head over to the Eagle for Pup Night. https://www.facebook.com/events/710265129362602/

GearUp Men's Weekend
GearUp Weekend will be held July 12-15 at Saratoga Springs in Lake County, CA and registration opens on January 31. GearUp Weekend is an annual retreat where the next generation of kinky/kink-curious guys and Leathermen can socialize with, learn from, and play with other men of all ages in a safe and friendly environment. Our goal is to create a sex-positive community that welcomes all men, including trans men, of all ages (21-plus) and levels of experience. In addition to the annual retreat, GearUp hosts play parties and other events throughout the year. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/gearup-mens-weekend-2018-registration-36327651985

Fuk U(niversity)

Females Uniting Kink - Club FUK and FUK U will present FUK University Flogging and Spanking Class at Sanctuary LAX Studios on Saturday, April 7 at 6 PM. Females Uniting Kink (F.U.K.) is a female dominant group, membership is open to all gender orientations which plays the first Saturday of each month. This group is for female identified Dominants, switches and submissives. Those who identify as male must be submissive. Sanctuary LAX Studios, 10914 South La Cienega Blvd., Lennox, CA 90304. https://www.facebook.com/events/777497145794473/ and/or http://2a7.3db.myftpupload.com/

Join the NCSF!
Please join our coalition and support our work! Please tell us your story! NCSF's Narrative Project is collecting your stories about being outed or discriminated against as well as consent violations you'd like to tell us about. The NCSF's American Law Institute project is fighting to make consent a defense to BDSM and to give anonymity for victims of assault in a BDSM context. Plus, the NCSF provides resources and referrals to kink aware professionals on request on a daily basis through our Incident Reporting and Response program. We are fighting for your rights! Why don't you join us now" https://nationalcoalitionforsexualfreedom.wildapricot.org/

Leather Heart Foundation launches General Assistance Applications
Over the last year the Leather Heart Foundation (LHF) has gone through structural changes and reorganization internally to bring all of the fetish communities LHF serves a strong foundation for those facing financial hardships. LHF is the only non-profit group of its kind - by the community, for the community. Recently, LHF opened applications to the Disaster Relief Fund for individuals affected by the devastating wildfires and hurricanes. Today, LHF is announcing the reopening of regular applications for support due to financial hardship. Members of the various fetish communities including, but not limited to, the Leather/BDSMKink/Rubber communities may apply at http://www.leatherheart.org

Golden Gate Guards - Springtime in Yosemite
Registration for Springtime in Yosemite is now open. Join the Golden Gate Guards for an exciting weekend of fun in the Sierras in Yosemite May 18-20. The weather and waterfalls are going to be spectacular this year. This is a great run for beginners to experienced motorcycle riders. Springtime in Yosemite will be at the View Lodge in El Portal, CA which has nice rooms and most have balcony with an enchanting close-up view of the rapidly-flowing Merced River. Depending on interest, there will be an optional Sunday brunch at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel formerly known as the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite which is a separate expense. Registration is open at http://www.ggguards.org/events/yosemite.htm

Walk the Walk
Joe Mannetti will present Walk the Walk at the The Stonewall Inn on Saturday, March 24 at 7 PM. A fundraiser benefiting AIDS Walk New York and the programs and outreach provided by GMHC (Gay Men's Health Crisis) supporting individuals living with HIV/AIDS. Admission is $10. Raffle prizes. The Stonewall Inn, 53 Christopher Street, New York, NY 10014. https://www.facebook.com/events/1610376255678285/

Leather Archives new exhibit at CLAW
Leather Archives & Museum will be unveiling a new exhibit at CLAW 2018 (Cleveland Leather Awareness Weekend) entitled The LA&M Virtual Docent an interactive video exhibit highlighting exhibits, collections, and interviews from the Leather Archives & Museum, April 26-29. This exhibit made possible by a generous grant from CLAW. The Leather Archives & Museum Road Show appears at major Leather/Kink events around the country throughout the year. http://www.leatherarchives.org/events/

Shiner's viewing at IMsBB IMsL
IMsLBB Weekend 2018 is the 20th Anniversary of the International Ms Bootblack competition. Join us as we celebrate all things Bootblack. Friday, April 20, as part of the IMsLBB weekend will be the west coast premiere of the movie Shiners. The film is written and directed by Stacey Tenenbaum and lets you meet the men and women who make their living cleaning our shoes. IMsBB 2007 Ms V has secured the rights to show this new film and will talk about bringing this labor of love to IMsBB IMsL weekend. Find out more about the film and IMsLBB weekend at https://imslbb.org

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Writer Guidelines

How you can include your information on Dave Rhodes' Hump Day - Writer Guidelines
If you come up with a date and basic information on a new event, please send us the date and a short detail or two. This is designed for the web site and less so for print, so there is no 45 days-in-advance deadline. If your event is happening on November 15, make sure I have it by Monday afternoon, November 6.

Things to send:
1. Short article of about 75-90 words.

2. Photo or two. Landscape preferred. Must be a jpg. Taken with cellphone is fine. Please supply photo credit.

3. Link to a working site. Web site is preferential, Facebook still works.

4. Five "W's" - Who, what, when, why and where. All are important.

5. Please be concise. In news, verbosity is not a virtue; it is an editor's nightmare.

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Past Dave Rhodes' Hump Day blogs

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/2006-dave-rhodes-hump-day-march-14-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/2004-dave-rhodes-hump-day-march-7-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1990-dave-rhodes-hump-day-february-28-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1989-dave-rhodes-hump-day-february-21-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1988-dave-rhodes-hump-day-february-14-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1987-dave-rhodes-hump-day-february-7-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1986-dave-rhodes-hump-day-january-31-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1983-dave-rhodes-hump-day-january-25-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1981-dave-rhodes-hump-day-january-10-2018

https://www.theleatherjournal.com/op-ed/item/1980-dave-rhodes-hump-day-january-3-2018

Published in Regional Leather
Saturday, 07 March 2015 22:35

IMsL 2015 Contestant: Q

Q Tip Wilson IMsL 2015Name: Q
Current Title: N/A
City, State: Oakland, CA

Regular community events that you produce or participate (limit 3)
Queer Sphere
Dark Odyssey
International Ms Leather

Favorite Leather item in Q's arsenal of bar/fetish wear:
My Minx Licorice harness from Aslan Leather!

TLJ-VT: Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so please tell me about your Sponsor (feel free to include a copy of their logo and a url to their website) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.
IMsL Contestant Q: Dark Odyssey was created in 2003 as a wholly unique experience, built to bring together sexuality, spirituality, education, and play in a fun, supportive, non-judgmental environment where fantasy becomes reality. Since that time, Dark Odyssey has become the home of top-notch play spaces, creative amenities, and inspiring events where people can have truly immersive experiences. I’ve worked had the pleasure of working on both the east and west coasts with Dark Odyssey in a variety of capacities...from bootblack coordinator, to workshop facilitator, to performer, to stunt fist.

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
Sunday, 08 March 2015 06:36

IMsL 2015 Contestant: Summer Rae Banks

summerbanksLJName: Summer Rae Banks
Current Title: Ms Texas Leather 2014
City, State: Denton, TX

Regular community events that you produce or participate (limit 3)
Dallas girls of Leather presents: Dungeon in the Woods (Fire and spiders and girls, Oh my!)

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear
So they aren’t technically mine, but my Daddy’s chaps fit me like a glove and make my ass look amazing. I love that they fit both of us. We’re the scissorhood of the traveling chaps!


TLJ-VT: Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about your Sponsor (feel free to include a copy of their logo and a url to their website) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.
IMsL Contestant Summer: Texas Leather Productions produces the Mr. and Ms. Texas Leather contests. Jeffrey Payne is the executive producer and is also the owner of the Dallas Eagle and founder of the Sharon St. Cyr fund. Texas Leather titleholders have gone on to win regional and international titles. Thanks to their support I had a freaking ball during my year as Ms. Texas Leather and I’m so proud to be representing them on the IMsL stage.
Texasleatherproductions.com

Published in International Leather

Sanctuary Leather 2014 Derek Paul Shae Flanagan By Dave RhodesDerek Paul was named Mr. Sanctuary Leather 2014 and Shae Flanagan was chosen to be Ms Sanctuary Leather, the first in history, at Sanctuary LAX in Lennox, CA on Saturday night, November 2.
The emcee, Sir Gabriel, sparkled as he led the women contestants through an International Ms Leather (IMsL) format including staged fantasy and lone contestant Derek through the International Mr. Leather (IML) format.
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The judging panel included head judge Dr. Lawrence Burden of Avatar Club los angeles, Genesis from Sanctuary Studios LAX, Sir Ian from Avatar and Mr. Sanctuary Leather 2011 Michael Sol.
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Since he will be competing in the Mr. los angeles Leather 2014 contest in March Derek Paul was inducted into the los angeles Band of Brothers after the victory photo shoot.
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The dungeon was open for play all evening.

Sanctuary Leather photo Gallery

Published in Local Leather
Friday, 19 April 2013 00:44

Favorite IMsL 2013 Seduction Photo

If you are at IMsL 2013 and missed seduction...why?

If you are not at IMsL 2013 YOU MISSED SEDUCTION....Why?

Quickly...The more I get to know my community, the more I get to know amazing, selfless, talented and courageous women and men.  This mornings winner for FAVORITE PHOTO FROM SEDUCTION (not the best or most technically correct...but favorite).

 

fav seduction photo

Dear readers I give you Ultra discovers Dick in a box.   Off to coffee.

Published in International Leather
Sunday, 08 March 2015 06:34

IMsL 2015 Contestant: Selogadi Mampane

SelogadiNgwanangwatoMampaneName: Selogadi Ngwanangwato Mampane
Current Title: Ms SA Leather 2015
City, State: Tshwane, Gauteng, South Africa

Regular community events that you produce or participate (limit 3)
Gala Youth Exchange

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear
My dyke boots

TLJ-VT: Is your run in April sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization? If so Please tell me about your Sponsor (feel free to include a copy of their logo and a url to their website) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.
IMsL Contestant Selogadi: I am being sponsored by South Africa Leather, which is being led by Jaco Lourens.

My club recently opened up its doors to womyn. Previously, the community only invited in cisgendered men, most of whom were White. In 2014, Jaco led a road to opening up the community to anyone who identifies with Leather, regardless of their gender. Whilst SA Leather lost many members, it creates a foundation for a more open and accessible Leather organization.

I joined SA Leather in 2014 and was able to be part of the first competition open to womyn! I haven’t looked back since.

Published in International Leather
Wednesday, 03 April 2013 05:00

IMsL XXVII 2013 Contestant Minion

international-ms-leather-contestant-2013-minon

VT: Is your contestant run sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization?  Please tell me about your Sponsor(feel free to include a copy of their logo and a url to their website) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.

M: My Imsl run is sponsored by Pittsburgh Leather Pride, Inc. PLP was organized to educate the local community about the rich Leather history of the city of Pittsburgh and to choose representatives to add to the legacy of extraordinary leather leaders who's roots reside in our city. PLP organizes the Pittsburgh Leather Pride Weekend every September to showcase the full expression of the LGBTQ community through leather and fetish venues. The weekend is designed also for fellowship and camaraderie.
 

VT: Power Exchange or SM?

M: Both.

VT: In 100 words or less, tell me about your answer to number 2.

M:I definitely consider myself more a power exchange participant than as an S/M player. While I am a sexual masochist, play and pain are aspects of my life that I can go for long periods without before I miss it. However, my need to serve and to feel owned and dominated are constant. The major appeal for me in play is the chance to feel tangibly within my partner's power. During the rare instances where I Top, the feeling of my partner letting go and trusting me to take care of them is thrilling. 

VT: Tell me in your own words how you feel about Service.  

M: Service, for me, begins and ends with my Master. Though it is said that a submissive is a reflection and representative of their Owner, this goes a step further for me. How well I've served, whether at home or in the community, is determined entirely by my Master's satisfaction and failure of service is decided by his displeasure. At the end of the day, I serve for his pleasure more than anyone else's.

My service to my Master is in thanks for owning me and trying to make me a better person. My service to my community is in gratitude for the community that helped bring us together and help me learn new ways to serve and discover new aspects of myself that I will bring home to my Master. My service begins and ends with my Master and I wouldn't have it any other way!

VT: How does your body react to the scent of worn leather?

M: My body becomes a puddle of Minion-goo!!  I remember a friend's birthday where another guest and friend of mine wore an ankle-length leather coat with a leather belt tie. I spent most of the evening 'casually' following around behind him hoping to catch the scent of his coat in the bar. Later, when we went out to dinner, he finally handed me his belt tie, in sympathy. I spent the rest of the evening intermittently smelling it. That is my strongest overall memory of that party!!

The basics:
Name: Minion
City, State: Pittsburgh, PA

VT: Regular community events that you regularly participate in?

M: Three Rivers Leather Club Meetings; MAsT-Pittsburgh Meetings;

M: (my favorite leather?) My leather cuff. It's my favorite because it was my first gifted piece of leather. It was given to me by my big Sister Doc, American Leatherwoman 2012.

VT: 100 words about what you will with the IMsL Title.

M:Recently, I’ve realized that I’m in a unique position of flux, being new enough to vividly remember the awe-inspiring scope of our community while also realizing how far I’ve come from that place of fear and self-doubt. This perspective has helped me in bringing together potential students with compassionate potential teachers and mentors. This is a trend I would like to continue on a larger scale as International Miss Leather. The chance to bring together knowledgeable insight and experienced with fresh eyes and abundant energy is the driving force behind my run and a dream I hold dear.

Published in International Leather

IMSL Contestant slavegirl marionName: slavegirl marion

Current Title: Oklahoma Ms Leather 2015

City, State: Muskogee, Oklahoma

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

Regular community events that you produce or participate 1. Oklahoma Ms Leather contest - planning committee member beginning this year; 2. Oklahoma Mr Leather contest - planning committee member since 2012; and 3. Kink Weekend OKC - volunteer and planning committee member since 2013.

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear: The boots I purchased last year from the IMsL contestant silent auction. I later learned that they had been IMsL 2015, Sarge’s boot camp boots. These boots pair well with the Leather skirt gifted to me by a dear friend.

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

I have three great sponsors: Xpressions Tulsa LC – Tulsa’s Premiere dungeon, play space, and meeting place, where I have been a volunteer staff member for more than six years; the Tulsa Eagle – the best gay & Leather bar in the Bible belt, my favorite hangout; and the Rose Rock girls of Leather – this great group of people are the producers of the Oklahoma Ms Leather title. The RRgoL participate in an assortment of charity fundraisers; perform various forms of service as a group, and individually, throughout the Leather, kink, BDSM, and vanilla communities.

 

Published in International Leather

IMSbb Contestant AngelName: Angel

Current Title: Southwest Bootblack 2014

City, State: Norman, Oklahoma

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

I regularly participate in Southwest Leather Conference, Beyond Vanilla, and International Leather Sir and boy/ International Community Bootblack.

Favorite Leather item in your arsenal of bar/fetish wear: My favorite Leather are my Harley Harness Boots.

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

HardPink Sisterhood and The Dallas Eagle

 

Published in International Leather
Saturday, 05 April 2014 05:39

Meet The Contestants IMsL 2014: Flossie

VT-TLJ: Is your contestant run sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization?
F: I am being sponsored by SouthEast LeatherFest https://secure.seleatherfest.com - Bulldog Custom Leathers http://www.bulldogcustomleathers.com and Columbia Leather Order.

VT-TLJ: Tell me about your favorite charity.
F: I support many charities one of my favorites has to be Harriet Hancock LGBT Center. It was one of the first LGBT support centers in the southeast starting in 1993. The center offers many programs to the community including Youth Out Loud, which gives youth 12-19 years of age a safe place to go for resources and LGBTQ Interpersonal Violence Task Force, which offers assistance to those in abusive relationships.  http://lgbtcentersc.org/

Published in International Leather

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
Sunday, 31 March 2013 03:00

IMsL XXVII 2013 Contestant Christy Ford

christy-ford-imsl-2013-contestant

VT: Is your contestant run sponsored by an Event, bar, club, organization?  Please tell me about your Sponsor(feel free to include a copy of their logo and a url to their website) and your involvement with them in 100 words or less.

CF: Alameda County Leather Corps (ACLC) is a non-profit organization that promotes educational and charitable activities through social interaction among people with an interest in leather, Levi’s, uniforms, and latex. The club is composed mostly of residents from San Francisco’s East and South Bays. ACLC was founded in 1993 as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) leather corps, and has since donated in excess of $300,000 to charities serving Alameda County. We are proud to state that 100% of the net receipts, raised at our events, go directly to the chosen charities. ACLC’s website is:  http://www.acleather.org/

VT: Power Exchange or SM?

CF:

VT: In 100 words or less, tell me about your answer to number 2.

CF: My preferences, in regards to kink actives, are not confined to limited landscapes. My strength of will is matched by my innate character of fairness. I enjoy drawing people into my world, where they will belong. Being especially sensual and erotic, I enjoy sharing fantasies and indulging fetishes. My keep my sphere safe, in which I explore my deepest, darkest, and most secret desires within S&M, B&D, and Fetish. I am a sadistic top who teaches and tortures partners, to shape them to my perfection. My partners serve and suffer pain, by my stinging touch. 

VT: Tell me in your own words how you feel about Service.  

CF: I believe in selfless service to the leather community, which I demonstrate when I participate or produce an event and it benefits our leather/bdsm/fetish community, and I view service by all as a vital part of the camaraderie process. We all provide some type of service, whether we think of it as service or not, and I believe there is nothing sexier than when service is offered and provided out of a genuine and deep desire to help and be of service to others.

VT: How does your body react to the scent of worn leather?

CF: The scent of worn leather makes me genuinely a little hot and bothered. My reaction is similar to when I smell a good cigar or pipe tobacco, which is also a strong attraction of mine. Words that come to my mind when I think of the smell include: sexy, powerful and raw. Adding piss play into the mix of worn leather pants totally gets my attention every time!

The basics:
Name: Christy Ford
City, State: San Ramon, CA

I am a co-chair of ACLC’s Education Program, which is held the fourth Monday of the month at the Lighthouse Community Center in Hayward, California.

This year I produced Santa Slave Auction, a yearly event through ACLC where we auction off local community members for charity.

I am a co-producer of Lucky in Leather, a yearly event that raises funds for Tri-City Health Center, California.

CF: (my favorite leather?) My favorite leathers are my cargo pants; I just love all the pockets. I use them to carry around everything from lube to my lipstick.

VT: 100 words about what you will with the IMsL Title.

CF: In my title year I would like to incorporate my biggest interest into my duties, which happens to be art. Specifically, I would like to learn about other leather women’s mediums for their art, whether it be photography, acrylic or oil on canvas, or leatherwork. In my travels, I want to share, document, and highlight female artists within our sisterhood. My goal is to leave behind a living archive of 2013’s female perceptions of sexuality in the leather community. As a photographer myself, I wish to document the women who make our leather events happen, the people whom I spent time with, shared stories, and include both the well-known and unfamiliar of our community.

 

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

Survived by her life partner Margaret Begley. Meek had been suffering illness and had suffered several falls over the last few months but details surrounding her death this morning are unknown at this time.

Amy Marie was known to many as Daddy, Bare or Papa or Aunt Bare.  The nickname Bare was short for Bare Images, which was the company that Meek ran that actually held ownership of IMsL during Meeks "IMsL Gen 2".

Amy Marie "Bare" Meek with IMsBB 03 Boi Eddie Shared by a Screen Shot from High Shine by Christina Court of High Moo Productions

Perhaps best known for her IMsL/IMsBB Legacy, her title journey started in 1992 with Ms Nebraska Leather. Then in 1993 she won International Ms Leather. In 1994 she purchased IMsL from the board and ran the contest 1995-2006.  It was under her ownership that the contest grew into the weekend event style we enjoy today. It was also Meek who approached Chuck Renslow, owner of the then co-ed International Bootblack Contest, and convinced him to endorse splitting the contest in two. Creating the International Ms. Bootblack Contest in 1999.

Meek is the first of the IMsL/IMsBB Alumni to pass away. Our hearts go out to each and every reader whose life was made better by this phenomenal woman.

Meek was the first female to judge IML, however, she was so much more than a titleholder. Amy Marie has been described as trailblazer. An out and proud lesbian since the 80’s. She came out in high school amid a climate that was less than ideal or supportive.  She was also an activist. Meek was a member of the 1993 March on Washington as well as a rabid backer for the DSM-IV revisions.

Amy Marie was definitely her own person and lived life on her own terms.  She was an influence to those who sought out how to be masculine women and have pride in one's self and their community, no matter what community one’s path would take them to. An unorthodox sense of humor, Meek gave hugs that tried to heal the world.  Even when she didn’t understand or appreciate a person's view she still loved and encouraged them to follow their heart.

Unapologetic, strong, brave, and troubled, Amy Marie “Bare” Meek was a Leather Icon. Her methods of community involvement made for some legendary battles. But, one thing is for certain, Amy Marie Meek forever changed the leather landscape for all women.

 

Published in Leather Obituaries
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