A Private Body Painting Adventure With Assless Pants

Where​ It​ All​ Began​ For​ This​ ​Ginger​ ​Ninja

A​ ​long​ ​time​ ​ago,​ ​in​ ​a​ ​BDSM headspace​ ​far,​ ​far​ ​away,​ ​I​ ​stumbled​ ​into​ ​the​ ​Sydney​ ​kink​ ​scene​ ​so hard​ ​I​ ​gagged​ ​myself​ ​upon​ ​entry.

I​ ​would​ ​have​ ​been​ ​​21​ ​and​ ​my​ ​partner​ ​was​ ​19.​ ​I​ ​had​ ​been​ ​playing,​ ​let’s​ ​pretend,​ ​at knowing​ ​how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​a​ ​camera​ ​to​ ​make​ ​art​ ​for​ ​about​ ​a​ ​year​ ​but​ ​was​ ​not​ ​yet​ ​really working​ ​professionally​ ​as​ ​a​ ​photographer.​ ​I was very​ ​much​ ​still​ ​finding​ ​my​ ​way.​ ​Luckily​ ​for me,​ ​I​ ​had​ ​a​ ​few​ ​very​ ​useful​ ​perks​ ​up​ ​my​ ​sleeve​ ​that​ ​allowed​ ​me​ ​to​ ​thrive​ ​as​ ​a​ ​creative​ ​in a​ ​short​ ​period​ ​of​ ​time.

  • I​ ​could​ ​talk​ ​to​ ​anyone​ ​about​ ​anything.
  • I​ ​had​ ​a​ ​partner​ ​who​ ​was​ ​a​ ​makeup​ ​artist/body​ ​painter.
  • ​I​ ​had​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​free​ ​time.
  • I​ ​was​ ​very,​ ​very​ ​lucky.

So​ ​where​ ​does​ ​this​ ​lead?​ ​Down​ ​a​ ​rather​ ​well​ ​lit​ ​and​ ​friendly​ ​rabbit​ ​hole​ ​in​ ​my​ ​personal experiences.​ ​My​ ​entry​ ​into​ ​the​ ​Kink​ ​world​ ​was​ ​as​ ​a​ ​spectator.​ ​I​ ​was​ ​always​ ​“behind​ ​the rope”​ ​with​ ​people​ ​who​ ​“rig”​ ​professionally​ ​and​ ​rigorously​ ​practiced​ ​“Safe,​ ​Sane, Consensual”​ ​like​ ​a​ ​religious​ ​mantra.​ ​I​ ​could​ ​hide​ ​safely​ ​behind​ ​my​ ​camera​ ​as​ ​I​ ​realised that​ ​all​ ​the​ ​things​ ​that​ ​had​ ​been​ ​demonized​ ​by​ ​society​ ​were​ ​in​ ​fact,​ ​quite​ ​a​ ​bit​ ​of​ ​fun.


A Body Painting Adventure With Assless And Crotchless Pants

We​ ​were​ ​working​ ​with​ ​other​ ​photographers,​ ​models​ ​and​ ​creatives​ ​in​ ​Sydney​ ​when​ ​we met​ ​this​ ​couple​ ​who​ ​were​ ​aged​ ​45ish (female)​ ​and​ ​55ish (male)​ ​at​ ​a​ ​studio​ ​photo​ ​session​ ​where my​ ​partner​ ​was​ ​doing​ ​a​ ​mermaid​ ​body​ ​paint.​ ​I​ ​was​ ​assisting​ ​with​ ​lights​ ​on​ ​this​ ​one​ ​and not​ ​actually​ ​taking​ ​any​ ​photos.​ ​There​ ​was​ ​nothing​ ​sexual,​ ​sensual​ ​or​ ​provocative​ ​about this​ ​particular​ ​day​ ​whatsoever.

During​ ​the​ ​session​ ​we​ ​organised​ ​to​ ​do​ ​a​ ​large​ ​scale​ ​body​ ​paint​ ​of​ ​a​ ​Snow​ ​Leopard​ ​for the​ ​model​ ​at​ ​a​ ​later​ ​date.​ ​Specifically,​ ​they​ ​invited​ ​us​ ​to​ ​-​​ their​ house -​ ​situated​ ​in​ ​a lovely​ ​private​ ​scenic​ ​location​ ​outside​ ​of​ ​Sydney.​ ​Nothing​ ​clicked.​ ​It​ ​was​ ​just​ ​another cool​ ​job/experience.

The​ ​day​ ​came​ ​and​ ​upon​ ​arrival​ ​we​ ​were​ ​assured​ ​in​ ​a​ ​jovial​ ​state​ ​of​ ​merriment​ ​that pants​ ​were​ ​entirely​ ​optional​ ​in​ ​this​ ​household.​ ​Nothing​ ​clicked.​ ​I​ ​was​ ​young​ ​and​ ​shy​ ​and so​ ​was​ ​my​ ​partner​ ​so​ ​we​ ​kept​ ​them​ ​on!

The​ ​girls​ ​started​ ​body​ ​painting​ ​and​ ​I​ ​spent​ ​quite​ ​a​ ​bit​ ​of​ ​time​ ​speaking​ ​with​ ​the gentleman.​ ​If​ ​I​ ​hadn’t​ ​worn​ ​my​ ​best​ ​poker​ ​face​ ​that​ ​day,​ ​my​ ​eyes​ ​would​ ​have​ ​bulged from​ ​my​ ​skull​ ​as​ ​he​ ​showed​ ​me​ ​through​ ​his​ ​collection.​ ​Primarily​ ​comprised​ ​of​ ​large scale​ ​rigging​ ​apparatus​ ​that​ ​would​ ​have​ ​looked​ ​well​ ​and​ ​truly​ ​at​ ​home​ ​in​ ​a​ ​medieval torturers​ ​dungeon.​ ​As​ ​well​ ​as​ ​lots​ ​of​ ​stainless​ ​steel​ ​things​ ​that​ ​were​ ​very​ ​shiny​ ​and pointy.​ ​It​ ​still​ ​hadn’t​ ​clicked.

The​ ​paint​ ​was​ ​complete,​ ​it​ ​didn’t​ ​take​ ​too​ ​long.​ ​It​ ​was​ ​mostly​ ​white​ ​with​ ​a​ ​stencil​ ​leopard pattern​ ​after​ ​all​ ​and​ ​so​ ​off​ ​we​ ​trundled​ ​into​ ​the​ ​“jungle”​ ​that​ ​was​ ​their​ ​back​ ​yard.

He​ ​brought​ ​with​ ​his​ ​own​ ​camera​ ​and​ ​snapped​ ​a​ ​few​ ​shots​ ​for​ ​himself.​ ​I​ ​should​ ​note here​ ​that​ ​he​ ​was​ ​wearing​ ​leather​ ​chaps​ ​and​ ​a​ ​pair​ ​of​ ​running​ ​shorts​ ​over​ ​the​ ​top.​ ​No Clicking.

From​ ​this​ ​shoot​ ​in​ ​2009.

Women in Leopard Body Paint
Image: Leopard Body Paint

So​ ​it​ ​went​ ​like​ ​any​ ​shoot​ ​I​ ​had​ ​done​ ​at​ ​the​ ​time.​ ​I​ ​pretended​ ​I​ ​had​ ​a​ ​clue​ ​what​ ​I​ ​was doing​ ​and​ ​directed​ ​the​ ​model.​ ​Some​ ​of​ ​the​ ​photos​ ​were​ ​bad,​ ​most​ ​were​ ​awful.​ ​The couple​ ​were​ ​ecstatic​ ​with​ ​the​ ​results.

Then​ ​he​ ​asked​ ​if​ ​he​ ​could​ ​jump​ ​in​ ​a​ ​few​ ​of​ ​the​ ​shots.​ ​I​ ​agreed​ ​and​ ​he​ ​handed​ ​me​ ​his camera.​ ​My​ ​naive​ ​mind​ ​thought​ ​he​ ​just​ ​wanted​ ​a​ ​few​ ​simple​ ​snapshots​ ​of​ ​his​ ​partner and​ ​himself​ ​in​ ​commemoration​ ​of​ ​the​ ​event.

I​ ​was​ ​wrong.​ ​Off​ ​came​ ​the​ ​shorts.​ ​Those​ ​chaps​ ​I​ ​mentioned.


 …​ ​and​ ​…


He​ ​asked​ ​very​ ​politely​ ​if​ ​I​ ​would​ ​mind​ ​if​ ​they​ ​“interacted​ ​in​ ​a​ ​sexual​ ​way.”​ ​I​ ​checked​ ​with my​ ​partner​ ​and​ ​she​ ​was​ ​ok​ ​with​ ​it​ ​so​ ​I​ ​gave​ ​a​ ​timid​ ​nod​ ​of​ ​assurance.

​It​ ​didn’t​ ​however​ ​go​ ​any​ ​further.​ ​Right​ ​at​ ​that​ ​time​ ​his​ ​partner,​ ​the​ ​model,​ ​tripped,​ ​fell and​ ​cut​ ​her​ ​knee​ ​up​ ​quite​ ​badly​ ​and​ ​we​ ​had​ ​to​ ​retreat​ ​to​ ​safety​ ​to​ ​tend​ ​the​ ​wound.

So,​ ​it​ ​was​ ​a​ ​non-event​ ​same​ ​old​ ​shoot​ ​I​ ​was​ ​used​ ​to​ ​after​ ​all.


​something​ ​had​ ​clicked.

I​ ​had​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​to​ ​think​ ​about.​ ​Figuring​ ​out​ ​the​ ​legal​ ​side​ ​of​ ​what​ ​I​ ​might​ ​be​ ​getting​ ​myself into​ ​was​ ​then​ ​and​ ​to​ ​this​ ​day​ ​a​ ​minefield​ ​to​ ​navigate.​ ​Creating​ ​any​ ​kind​ ​of​ ​erotica​ ​or pornography​ ​in​ ​Australia​ ​is​ ​riddled​ ​with​ ​outdated​ ​legislation,​ ​​ ​blurry​ ​legalese​ ​that​ ​is​ ​also weighted​ ​down​ ​with​ ​so​ ​much​ ​censorship​ ​and​ ​expensive​ ​classification​ ​that​ ​I​ ​never​ ​have crossed​ ​into​ ​the​ ​territory.​ ​I​ ​decided​ ​to​ ​err​ ​on​ ​the​ ​side​ ​of​ ​caution​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​out​ ​of​ ​trouble and​ ​focus​ ​on​ ​other​ ​areas​ ​of​ ​the​ ​business.​ ​I​ ​have​ ​met​ ​with​ ​several​ ​lawyers​ ​and​ ​have never​ ​been​ ​able​ ​to​ ​get​ ​any​ ​cut​ ​and​ ​dry,​ ​black​ ​and​ ​white​ ​legal​ ​advice​ ​on​ ​the​ ​matter.


Why I Am Heavily Drawn To Shibari

There​ ​are​ ​many​ ​more​ ​stories​ ​for​ ​another​ ​time.​ ​Over​ ​the​ ​years,​ ​I​ ​realised​ ​I​ ​was​ ​primarily interested​ ​in​ ​the​ ​aesthetic​ ​element​ ​of​ ​the​ ​Kink​ ​world​ ​and​ ​became​ ​drawn​ ​heavily​ ​to​ ​what is​ ​known​ ​as​ ​“Shibari.” In​ ​Japan,​ ​“Shibari”​ ​simply​ ​means​ ​“to​ ​tie”.​ ​The​ ​contemporary​ ​meaning​ ​of​ ​Shibari is described as​ ​an​ ​ancient​ ​Japanese​ ​artistic​ ​form​ ​of​ ​rope​ ​bondage.

The​ ​origin​ ​of​ ​Shibari​ ​comes​ ​from​ ​Hojo-jutsu,​ ​the​ ​martial​ ​art​ ​of​ ​restraining​ ​captives.​ ​In Japan​ ​from​ ​1400​ ​to​ ​1700,​ ​while​ ​the​ ​local​ ​police​ ​and​ ​Samurai​ ​used​ ​Hojo-jutsu​ ​as​ ​a​ ​form of​ ​imprisonment​ ​and​ ​torture,​ ​the​ ​honor​ ​of​ ​these​ ​ancient​ ​Samurai​ ​warriors​ ​required​ ​them to​ ​treat​ ​their​ ​prisoners​ ​well.​ ​So,​ ​they​ ​used​ ​different​ ​techniques​ ​to​ ​tie​ ​their​ ​prisoners, showing​ ​the​ ​honor​ ​and​ ​status​ ​of​ ​their​ ​captured​ ​prisoner.

​The​ ​key​ ​elements​ ​I​ ​love​ ​are​ ​the​ ​methodical,​ ​meditative​ ​approach​ ​along​ ​with​ ​the​ ​artistic expression​ ​of​ ​sensuality​ ​and​ ​trust​ ​between​ ​the​ ​people​ ​involved.​ ​It​ ​also​ ​creates incredible​ ​visual​ ​feasts​ ​that​ ​simply​ ​cannot​ ​be​ ​found​ ​in​ ​many​ ​other​ ​mediums.

The Difference Between Synthetic And Natural Fibre Ropes

One​ ​aspect​ ​that​ ​many​ ​people​ ​would​ ​never​ ​really​ ​consider​ ​that​ ​I​ ​find​ ​very​ ​intriguing​ ​is preparing​ ​new​ ​rope. Buying​ ​and​ ​preparing​ ​rope​ ​is​ ​an​ ​art form​ ​in​ ​itself.​ ​You​ ​have​ ​to​ ​consider​ ​the​ ​differences​ ​in the​ ​tooth​ ​of​ ​the​ ​rope​ ​as​ ​well​ ​as​ ​the​ ​feel​ ​that​ ​varies​ ​drastically​ ​between​ ​synthetic​ ​and natural​ ​fibres.

Synthetic​ ​ropes​ ​have​ ​less​ ​bite​ ​in​ ​the​ ​tooth​ ​so​ ​they​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​become​ ​looser​ ​over​ ​time rather​ ​than​ ​tighter.​ ​However​ ​they​ ​are​ ​far​ ​less​ ​comfortable​ ​and​ ​much​ ​more​ ​likely​ ​to​ ​burn the​ ​person​ ​being​ ​tied.​ ​They​ ​are​ ​good​ ​for​ ​beginners​ ​as​ ​they​ ​are​ ​usually​ ​cheap​ ​and​ ​much easier​ ​to​ ​undo.​ ​It​ ​also​ ​doesn’t​ ​matter​ ​so​ ​drastically​ ​if​ ​you​ ​have​ ​to​ ​cut​ ​your​ ​subject​ ​free​ ​of cheap​ ​rope.

Natural​ ​fibre​ ​ropes​ ​are​ ​usually​ ​the​ ​preferred​ ​medium​ ​with​ ​the​ ​most​ ​popular​ ​being​ ​hemp, jute​ ​and​ ​cotton.​ ​Typically​ ​being​ ​softer​ ​to​ ​touch​ ​and​ ​with​ ​a​ ​medium​ ​tooth,​ ​cotton​ ​is​ ​less expensive​ ​but​ ​requires​ ​more​ ​prep​ ​work​ ​to​ ​make​ ​it​ ​comfortable.


To​ ​soften​ ​the​ ​feel,​ ​you​ ​boil​ ​your​ ​rope​ ​but​ ​you​ ​need​ ​to​ ​dry​ ​it​ ​under tension​ ​or​ ​it​ ​will​ ​become​ ​weak​ ​and​ ​prone​ ​to​ ​snapping​ ​under​ ​pressure.​ ​So​ ​tightly​ ​wind​ ​it around​ ​a​ ​hula​ ​hoop​ ​or​ ​a​ ​clothing​ ​rack​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​it​ ​strong.​ ​Weak​ ​rope​ ​can​ ​become​ ​very dangerous​ ​and​ ​so​ ​is​ ​definitely​ ​not​ ​a​ ​good​ ​idea​ ​if​ ​you​ ​are​ ​doing​ ​any​ ​suspension​ ​work.


You​ ​can​ ​also​ ​oil,​ ​wax,​ ​perfume​ ​and​ ​dye​ ​your​ ​rope​ ​to​ ​make​ ​it​ ​even softer​ ​to​ ​touch​ ​and​ ​smell​ ​lovely.​ ​It​ ​is​ ​very​ ​common​ ​to​ ​rub​ ​down​ ​the​ ​length​ ​of​ ​rope​ ​with your​ ​favourite​ ​mixtures​ ​and​ ​then​ ​bake​ ​it​ ​in​ ​the​ ​oven​ ​at​ ​a​ ​low​ ​temperature​ ​to​ ​make​ ​the concoction​ ​soak​ ​all​ ​the​ ​way​ ​through.

Boiling​ ​and​ ​oiling​ ​rope​ ​can​ ​take​ ​10-20​ ​hours​ ​of​ ​work​ ​for​ ​50-100​ ​meters​ ​and​ ​so​ ​it​ ​is​ ​a meditative​ ​process​ ​that​ ​is​ ​very​ ​involving.​ ​You​ ​put​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​love​ ​and​ ​consideration​ ​into your​ ​rope​ ​and​ ​that​ ​transfers​ ​to​ ​the​ ​tying​ ​​ ​process​ ​itself​ ​but​ ​I​ ​will​ ​talk​ ​about​ ​that​ ​some other​ ​time.

This​ ​shot​ ​is​ ​from​ ​2014​ ​at​ ​the​ ​now​ ​closed​ ​“Sydney​ ​Rope​ ​Dojo.”

Beautiful woman in japanese rope bondage
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On​ ​a​ ​final​ ​note,​ ​I​ ​would​ ​like​ ​to​ ​iterate​ ​that​ ​my​ ​absolute​ ​favourite​ ​part​ ​of​ ​the​ ​kink community​ ​is​ ​that​ ​it​ ​is​ ​for​ ​the​ ​most​ ​part,​ ​inclusive,​ ​non​ ​exclusionary,​ ​friendly​ ​and​ ​full​ ​of passionate,​ ​caring​ ​individuals​ ​who​ ​celebrate​ ​sexuality​ ​in​ ​all​ ​of​ ​its​ ​forms.​ ​I​ ​have​ ​met many​ ​of​ ​the​ ​most​ ​intelligent,​ ​caring​ ​well​ ​rounded​ ​people​ ​in​ ​this​ ​world​ ​and​ ​I​ ​strongly recommend​ ​checking​ ​out​ ​fetlife.com,​ ​heading​ ​to​ ​a​ ​local​ ​munch​ ​and​ ​becoming​ ​a​ ​part​ ​of the​ ​community​ ​to​ ​any​ ​and​ ​all.​ ​Just​ ​keep​ ​in​ ​mind​ ​most​ ​communities​ ​are​ ​very​ ​self-preserving​ ​and​ ​toxicity​ ​and​ ​bad​ ​behaviour​ ​is​ ​never​ ​tolerated.​ ​Just​ ​as​ ​it​ ​should​ ​be!


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JJ Maher has been a professional photographer since 2008 covering all facets from shiny glamour to wedding photographs. As he progressed in his career he began to specialize in portraits of people with particular interest in adult erotica and those living outside of the norm in society. His magnificent portfolio speaks for itself and we welcome his insight and stories of his shoots, how he meets his subjects and the interesting tales he has to tell. Oh, and he is also right into music !

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