• Industry spotlight

    Shine Louise Houston’s newest porn adventure

    Between the adult industry and the queer community, Shine Louise Houston is household name. She has been creating erotic queer cinema for almost a decade with Pink & White Productions, and is known as the mastermind behind The Crash Pad, a long running porn series about a secretive San Francisco apartment where queer folks go to have spectacular sex. Her other films, including SNAPSHOT, have all won numerous accolades, as well as a quite a bit of attention. Along the way, Houston has always kept focus on what matters to her: representing queer communities and queer communities of color. Houston’s latest project, Chemistry Eases the Pain, is a “not-so-typical queer…

  • Community,  Industry spotlight,  Interviews,  Musings

    Behind the curtain at Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show

    If you’re a follower of She Bop, you’ve probably noticed we have some very creative and talented folks on our staff. One of those people is our Education Coordinator, Amory Jane, and she has a popular new sex-themed stage show. It’s called Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show, and the next one is coming up this Friday, April 21st. We spoke with her about the origins of Whoopee!, what audience members can expect, and why the community needs a show like this one. What exactly is Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show?  Whoopee! is a once-a-month live stage show that I started in December of 2016. The theme is that all acts are sex-positive, body-positive, or about human sexuality. From the comedy…

  • Industry spotlight

    Industry Spotlight: Candida Royalle

    Candida Royalle

    While I never knew Ms. Royalle personally, in many ways, I owe my career to her. I got my start in the adult industry by making films that asked for an approachable, authentic, pornographic performance that would appeal to women and couples — a niche that may have never existed had it not been for Royalle’s influential work. —Siousxie Q Art and entrepreneurship were in Candida Royalle’s blood. Born in Brooklyn in the fall of 1950, she grew up performing and training in dance, art, and music. The daughter of a professional jazz drummer, she was active in the women’s moment and attended prestigious schools such as Parsons School of Design.…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    When dildos came out of the closet

    In the 1970s, dildos were a point of contention in the feminist movement. A 1974 issue of Lesbian Tide warned: “anyone admitting to using a dildo today would probably be verbally castigated for enjoying ‘phallic’ pleasure.” Some activists thought dildos were too reminiscent of the patriarchy. Others felt that since dildos specifically didn’t require men, using them could actually be a subversive act. The debate was more about what the dildo represented than precisely how it looked, but looks mattered too. Hyper-realistic vein-ridden dildos were the order of the day, and they tended to emit a strong chemical scent. It would still be a long time before the harms of plasticizers such as phthalates would…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    From velcro to veterans: the history of Sportsheets

    Sportsheets International began quietly, as a small business operating out of founder Tom Stewart’s garage. It was 1993, and Stewart had already spent years teaching himself to sew. He had a vision, one that had been sparked years earlier as he watched David Letterman, decked out in a velcro suit, jump on a trampoline and stick himself to a wall. What if you could stick your sex partner to a wall? The result of this inspiration was the company’s flagship product — a soft velcro bed sheet called the Sportsheet. With the accompanying anchor pads and cuffs, users could strap their partners down anywhere on the bed. The following year, Stewart…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    Thrills and mundanities on a queer porn set

    What goes on behind the scenes of a queer feminist porn shoot? According to Anna Pulley, writing for Alternet, performers ogle cat photos, knit scarves in the colors of the bisexual flag, and shoot the breeze about fisting censorship and breast milk pumping. The kitchen is well-stocked with coffee, fruit, and chips, and Feminist Porn Awards line the walls. Scenes for queer porn site Crash Pad Series are shot in an unassuming neighborhood in San Francisco by filmmaker and director Shine Louise Houston, production assistant Jiz Lee, videographer Alexa Shae, and photographer Tristan Crane. The room is equipped with a “voyeur cam,” which allows members of the site to watch the scene…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    A peek inside Crave’s vibrator factory

    Crave Duets in the factory

    Have you ever wondered what goes on in a vibrator factory? A writer from Gizmodo recently visited the factory of Crave, a small luxury sex toy company based in San Francisco. They are perhaps most known for the Duet and Solo, swanky USB-rechargeable clitoral vibes, but they also make high-end accessories such as nipple tassels, cuffs, and nipple vibrators. Crave is one of the only vibrator companies that manufactures and assembles their toys in the US. They make almost all their components on-site. Without the need to acquire prototypes from an overseas facility, they are able to tweak their designs with much more specificity than other companies: . . . each stage…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    Erika Lust turns anonymous fantasies into reality

    We are longtime fans of erotic film director Erika Lust, and her latest endeavor, XConfessions, is just the cherry on top of why we love her. Originally launched three years ago as a place for users to share their anonymous sex fantasies and stories, XConfessions is getting even steamier. Now, Erika Lust is handpicking her favorite confessions and turning them into hot short films! XConfessions has over 20,000 registered members and 250 confessions, of which 8 have already been filmed. In “Hold Me So Tight it Hurts,” a woman experiments with rope bondage. In “Let’s Make a Porno,” Lust helped a real-life couple achieve their dream of being filmed. “I Believe in Happy Endings”…

  • Industry spotlight

    Industry Spotlight: Carlos Batts

    Carlos Batts (photo by Coagula Art Journal)

    Is 20-odd years enough to make a lasting impact with art? In the case of Carlos Batts, the answer is absolutely yes. Since he was 16, he had the name of his company all mapped out: C. Batts FLY. At Franklin High School in Reisterstown, Maryland, he ran with the goth kids, devoured horror movies, sported death metal band T-shirts, and cultivated an early love for photography. Working a part-time job on the weekends, it took Batts weeks to save enough money to buy his first camera, a Pentax K1000, which he lugged to punk shows to take pictures from the pit. Soon he was shooting album covers. Batts had…

  • Industry spotlight

    Industry Spotlight: Joanna Angel

    Joanna Angel, photo by Brad Dececco

    Raised an Orthodox Jew in northern New Jersey, Joanna Angel was a shy wallflower with a rebellious streak. In ninth grade, she pierced her bellybutton and started attending punk shows and political protests. She dyed her hair pink. She got her first tattoo on her 18th birthday — a theater mask with the words “so it goes” underneath. As a college student at Rutgers University, her aspirations for her future changed with the wind. She was interested in human rights and philanthropy. She interned at a few magazines (including Nerve) and considered becoming a journalist or poet. Sometimes she fantasized about traveling the world. But in her last year of college,…