Saturday, June 30, 2007
I'm going to re-edit the videos before posting to Multiply in order to smooth out the breaks in action. My camera video function only runs for three minutes at a time so I have to get resourceful to hook them to run them longer than that. Also on the wish list? A hi-def digital video camera!
Thursday, June 28, 2007
Leading British latex fashion label Libidex yesterday unveiled a new sheet latex manufacturing company called Radical Rubber.
The new London-based company is specifically geared to the needs of the latex clothing industry, offering sheet latex of fashion-grade quality to fetish fashion designers and makers all over the world.
“We believe a change in the latex sheeting supply market is long overdue”, say Libidex directors Simon Rose and Nigel Walker. “We hope that Radical Rubber will serve to bring about that change.”
Libidex is handling the marketing and distribution of Radical Rubber, and its directors reportedly worked closely with the rubber industry to develop a product that matched the quality and specification of other manufacturers’ latex sheeting, and that would appeal to fashion designers.
The partners tell us the firm has developed a brand new range of colours that will be available alongside standard colours in a variety of thicknesses. They promise their product will be competitively priced, with fast delivery and a “customer-friendly service” tailored to the needs of the fashion industry.
“Latex sheet manufacturers are generally not fashion designers, and don’t always respond to the needs of that market”, explains Nigel Walker. “As fashion designers ourselves, we wanted to create a latex sheet manufacturer whose products were produced specifically for our market, and would listen to ideas and suggestions from designers. That is why we helped to create Radical Rubber.”
Another motive for the genesis of the new manufacturer was the creation of more choice in the market and to stimulate innovation, says Simon Rose.
“Radical Rubber gives makers an alternative, fresh source of supply, which will make the market more exciting and more secure. It was never a very good thing for so many of us to be so dependent on one supplier. Also, we think competition will stimulate creativity, and help designers find inspiration for new collections.
“We already have an exciting new range of colours, which we’re sure will be a treat for latex lovers — things like our Metallic Fuchsia, Smoky Black and Electric colours are very attractive for latex design. We already have plans to extend our palette and are looking at some quite advanced effects using latex.”
Radical Rubber has been two years in the making, we’re told, with “extensive laboratory and practical tests” to ensure that qualities such as its finish, adhesion, tensile strength, modulus (stretchiness) and durability “matches or exceeds” other products on the market. In these health and safety-conscious days, it’s good to hear also that the latex is treated to remove proteins that can cause allergic reactions, and that it conforms to standard medical testing requirements.
The new range of sheeting is produced using a high capacity industrial process which, claim the principals, “is more than capable of supplying the entire global latex fashion industry”.
Radical Rubber has its distribution centre in London, where it also has a trade counter and welcomes personal callers. There is no minimum order (though orders below 5sqm per colour will attract a surcharge), and the firm assures us it is happy to supply everyone from the largest manufacturers to small one-person designers, hobbyists and students.The company will have its own dedicated stand at this year’s Xpo at London’s Barbican Centre on October 5-6.
Should my journey begin here? The bf and I have been talking about what it would take to dive into creating, marketing and retailing rubber fashions. I should really start looking seriously at rubber fashion design for men. I read in the latest Instigator magazine that JT's Stockroom has recently bought Syren Fashions and are planning to target the male rubberist market. I sense there is a critical mass starting in rubber fashion for men....
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
The boyfriend and I did make it to Mr. S Leathers on Monday and I made a couple of purchases I am so excited about. Andre and Richard were very friendly and helpful in dealing with my indecisions but I think I ended up with an outfit to be proud of. It is being made as we speak and I can't wait for it to show up!
I ordered a pewter sleeveless catsuit with front zip. Originally I was going to go with a neck entry but changed my mind at the last minute figuring that if there was any outfit I was going to be wearing out it would be this one so I wanted something a little easier to don and doff when nature calls over the course of an evening. The front zip only goes as far down as the navel. I did not want crotch entry as I have no reason to have it opened in public and in my mind, not having any black zipper to distract from the bulge in front and back will look hotter than if it was there!
I also at the last minute ordered a pewter garrison cap with black piping. I have this vision that with my black club jacket this ensemble will have a military appearance. I asked Andre to see if he could put some leftover tailings of pewter from the sheet the suit is cut from so that I might be able to create some epaulettes with pewter piping and black rubber straps to attach to the jacket for a more formalized look.
Unfortunately, I didn't find any boots that I liked. I figured leather boots were something I could buy in a non-fetish shop at a more reasonable price (I may be proven wrong here), and if there's anywhere to shop for boots it would be Montreal, where I'll be in a couple of weeks. So now, my big question is: what type of boots would look best with a military-style rubber outfit? Should I go with a motorcycle-type/cop boot with smooth leather up the shaft with no holes, or should I stick to a mid-shin or higher classic holed boot like Doc Martens, Grinders or Gripfasts? If any of you care to comment, I would appreciate any input.
One thing I did learn at Mr. S was that there is very, very little gay rubberman porn out there that focuses on the rubber fetish/bondage/breathplay aspects as opposed to having scenes devolve rapidly into fucking or fisting with actors that aren't truly passionate rubbermen. I think there is a growing niche that needs to be filled, so to speak....
I also picked up an anatomical mask and some wrist-length black latex gloves, extra polish and silicone lube, and "Skin Tight" by Tim Brough at Mr. S, and the latest Instigator magazine issue #14 at a Castro shop (the encapsulated rubberman on the cover drove me over the edge!), both of which have led to some stimulating reading over the past few days!
I am so excited to get this ensemble together for a photo shoot and some nights out in Montreal with Latxboy! So many ideas on how I'm going to put everything together....
For now, I'll have to wait until (hopefully) next week for the shipment to arrive so I can prepare it for a night out in Montreal -- and Calgary!
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
My gang of friends, the boyfriend and I are heading down there for Pride weekend. It is destined to be a week of frivolity, naughtiness and laughter.
I'm definitely going to swing by Mr. S's retail store to look around and hopefully buy some rubber. I have my eye on this or this, but it will depend on the colors and sizing. I'm sort of drawn to pewter these days, but I'm still in the market for a transparent suit. With the Canadian dollar being as strong as it is right now, this could end up being a very fun shopping trip!
Monday, June 18, 2007
The international Rubber Flag was designed by Peter Tolos and Scott Moats in 1994 as a means to identifying like-minded rubberists.
The design reflects the sensory, sensual, and mental passion for rubber: Black - our lust for the look and feel for shiny black rubber. Red - our blood passion for rubber and rubberists. Yellow - our drive for intense rubber play and fantasies. The chevron represents the kink enjoyed by many rubberists.
The International Rubber Flag design is owned by Peter Tolos but released for public use following his death in 1999. For more information, contact fetish author Tim Brough at www.TimBrough.com
Photo at Calgary Pride parade courtesy of the Collector.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
What Defines a Leatherman?
By Kevin Alderson, PhD, R.Psych.
Gay leather culture gets itself noticed. It is conspicuous, blatantly sexual, and clearly not attempting to pass as heterosexual or be respectably homosexual.
My first impressions of leathermen came from raunchy masturbations while lusting over Tom of Finland and Etienne drawings. The presentation of large muscles and unrealistically huge genitals made me salivate more than I care to admit (crap, I think I just admitted it). Anyway, what I learned then has stuck in my mind ever since: symbols of leather and leather culture "accentuate hypermasculine forms of sexuality."
I vividly remember the first time I actually saw leathermen at a gay bar. It was back in 1993, the year I came out. I was both awed and afraid at the same time while conjuring up fantasies of what these men do sexually, which I assumed was to whip the living crap out of each other until the top had fully realized his pleasures - or until the bottom passed out from the pain. What were your first thoughts when you saw guys in leather? What are your thoughts now?
Truth is, the actual scene is nothing compared to what we might envision it to look like. Leathermen are part of an established subculture within the gay male community who eroticize leather garb or symbols. Collectively, they form a leather social network or community and they practice leathersex. Let's look at each component of this definition.
For many leathermen, leather acts as a sexual fetish - the smell, texture, color and firt are a turn on. This is dissimilar to the reasons drag queens dress in women's clothing, but similar to the motives that transvestites have for cross dressing (transvestites are heterosexual males who enjoy cross-dressing as a fetish). Leather is not a fetish for all leathermen, however, and it means more than this for the vast majority. For most leathermen, their dress and affiliation with the leather community is also about enjoying varying degrees of sadomasochism (SM). That is the part of leather culture that is least understood. Social scientists have not helped much either: "all the large survey studies of sexual behavior have ignored SM behavior almost completely."
According to one article, it is easier to describe what SM is not. "It does not entail violence and it is not non-consensual." In fact, the common adage used within the leather community is "safe, sane, and consensual." SM generally consists of five components, but all of them do not need to be present at the same time:
1. "The appearance of dominance and submission; the appearance of rule by one partner over the other.
2. Role playing
3. Consensuality, that is, voluntary agreement to enter into the interaction.
4. Mutual definition, i.e., a shared understanding that the activities constitute SM or some similar term.
5. A sexual context, though the concept that SM is always sexual is not shared by all participants."
At the core of SM is creating power differentials via role-playing within a sexual encounter or within a relationship. Some individuals live out a SM script on a full-time basis within their relationship. Although both systems that provide diagnostic criteria for mental problems (DSM in North America and ICD-10 throughout most of the world) list SM as a mental illness, studies do not suggest that SM practitioners suffer from a mental disorder. On the contrary, SM practitioners appear to be emotionally and psychologically well balanced, accepting of their sexual orientation and socially well adjusted. As is common practice in psychiatric diagnostic systems, practices that are not understood are often seen as mental disordeers instead of extreme variations of unusual behavior, or simply viewed as harmless "kink". The leather community is not small, and obviously if individuals wer maliciously hurting each other, we would hear about it!
SM is about recreation and mutual enjoyment, often performed in a scripted roleplay. Leather roleplays have safeguards built into them, including code words for when the action is getting too intense or not intense enough. A simple system, for example, is for the bottom to say "red" to stop the scene, "yellow" to cool it, and "green" to intensify the action in that scene. The top has the responsibility to respect the boundaries (which they do) and to be of service to the bottom. SM sex is about mutual respect, caring, and compassion. I don't want to suggest, however that SM is not also about pain for many sadomasochists, but it is pain that is eroticized and that is enjoyed to the level of the bottom's pain-pleasure threshold.
Research has shown that there are some differences between how gay and straight men emjoy SM. Gay men prefer leather outfits, anal intercourse, wrestling, dildos, rimming, special equipment, and uniform scenes. Straight men, on the other hand, are more into being masked and blindfolded, gagged, verbally humiliated, and whipped with a cane. They prefer to wear rubber outfits, straightjackets, or to cross dress. They are also into vaginal intercourse. Overall gay men prefer hypermasculinity and straight men prefer humiliation.
Only about 5 percent of individuals who enjoy SM do so exclusively. There are no studies that inform us as to how many engage in SM behavior, but two experts in this field suggest that it may be about 10 percent of the general population.
Findings form a qualitative study revealed that the core idea oassicated with the leather community was its use of "signifiers of heightened masculinity to fortify itself against sexist and heterosexist stigma from both heterosexual and gay cultures - that as gay men they are effeminate and therefore weak." Other finds of lesser import were about the following:
1. Communicating sexual roles in an expedient manner. Although the "master" and "slave" persona exist within the leather community, these terms are more commonly associated with SM in general. The terms "daddy" and "boy" are strongly rooted in leathersex.
2. Marginalization in both gay and straight communities leading to greater freedom.
3. Belonging to a "brotherhood".
4. Celebrating closeness between men while emphasizing trust and loyalty.
5. Exchange of power in scripted sexual roles.
6. Embracing or incorporating masculinity into a gay identity.
Another aspect of the leather subculture is that it is a community unto itself and organized. As many informants of one study reported, the leather community has many official leaders, they take care of their members, and they organize many AIDS fundraisers. The Folsom Street Fair held in San Francisco, for example, is an event that draws 400,000 people per year to celebrate their interest in and support of Leather and SM interests.
Some writers view an interest in the leather culture as the final stage in a gay man's progression in his search for something new. This search for something new centres on developing interests in "more radical forms of sexual activity." Anecdotally, this appears to be true given that the average age of patrons in a Stockholm leather bar is about 40, and my observations of leather bar patrons in Calgary, Montreal, and Berlin would suggest similar findings.
It is easy to fear something you have not experienced. I am reminded of the words of one of my interviewees in Beyond Coming Out: "Leather relationships are like any relationship: there are many things that need to be negotiated and agreed upon. We still have to go through the relationship dynamics of being in love and settling in and making the adjustment to live together. My friends in the leather community live normal lives like everybody else." (Glenn, age 46).
Please view original article for references.
I found this article very interesting. I wanted to put gay rubber fetishism in perspective of the findings of Dr. Alderson's research, and although I found many similarities between leathermen and rubbermen, there are some striking differences in the symbolism of the fetishes.
I don't think hypermasculinity is a defining characteristic of gay rubber fetishism for most. It is for me personally, since I prefer the look of a well-muscled man in form-fitting skintight rubber (and there are many other gay rubbermen who agree). For most rubbermen I don't think this is a priority. For many it is inclusion in a BDSM scene, more heavy on the bondage and discipline (rubber restraint, rubber breathplay, hogsacks, vacuum beds, straightjackets) than the sado-masochism idea that defines leather fetishism. Some rubbermen are into pain/pleasure thresholds and experimentation, many others are not. For many gay men into rubber fetishism, their role definitions would be similar to the description of hetero-SM interests: bondage and humiliation of a slave by a master/mistress, most likely stemming from a need to play a role opposite or remarkably different from those played out by the players in their normal, day to day lives.
For many white straight men, this would be a release of their normal power role to play a subservient role, particularly giving dominance to the women they are playing with, who in their normal lives tend to play the submissive role. This is testament to the very huge following of female rubber fetishism for many straight men online and in video.
This is a similar idea for many gay men into this scene. In the gay rubber scene, there is also the dominant/submissive role, but for others the power structure devolves even more exclusively into helplessness, and play scenes of extended immobilization, restraint, abduction, even simulated torture and rape scenes.
For many gay rubbermen, the simple fetishism of the material, much the same as leathermen, is a fundamental fulfillment provided by the fetish. The male figure in an otherworldly rubber skin is considerably bizarre and perverted and completely flies in the face of contemporary sexual roles and expectations. It is tight, shiny, impermable, but also thin and stretchy. For many rubbermen, a primary definition of rubber fetishism is the ability to temporarily, but completely remove oneself from his environment. By enclosing yourself in a rubber sheath or some type, you have effectively removed yourself from your immediate environment, but requiring breathing/feeding/drinking/waste evacuation connections to the environment over the long term.
Also I think for some it is also an extremely visual fetish that goes even further than leather in its perverted and bizarre pseudo-humanoid (vs. hypermasculine) nature, the 'alternate skin' which many gay rubbermen find attractive about the fetish. Many gay rubbermen are not surprisingly also into gas masks (often as integral a part to a rubber scene as the rubber itself), scuba diving, SCBA apparati within contained environments such as hazmat suits, water submersion, inflatable/deflatable, and breathplay scenes. Many gay rubber fetishists begin their interest in rubber from an affinity to scuba diving (breathing from a system dependent upon 'machinery' and self-contained), wetsuits (environmental control) and submersion (in a medium different from our natural one).
Similar to this are those men who have evolved their rubber fetishism further into more specialized puppy play (animal transformation) and cyborg/android/robot reprogramming/assimilation (humanoid transformation) fetishes.
Mummification/immobilization and bondage scenes including hogsack immobilization, vacuum beds, and balloon bondage add to a need for tactile stimulation which for many rubbermen is sexual in nature. Power differential occurs with a bondage scene where the slave player has been rendered helpless while bound or vacuumized while the master plays a monitoring and touching/tactile role. In more intense breath control scenes, the master also controls air supply, temperatures, and session length, which is a step of control giving even further beyond the BDSM most fetishists would associate with.
All in all, the reasons why we are all fetishized by leather and rubber are as varied as the people that practice these fetishes. It is most important to play safely and respectably and to realize that we're all fundamentally kinky beings! Some of us are better at accepting it than others and therefore much more comfortable with our sexual and fetish experimentation.
Friday, June 15, 2007
An Activist in the Spotlight
Progessive Activists are your front line against the forces of evil. Without them, people would be restrained by heteronormative values, tied up by racism, and whipped by sadistic capitalists. There is much evil out there, and many cover their eyes. Hurtful words can be spoken, so some are silent. But not activists!
Activists care. Even with their access to the certainty of scientific consensus, even activists can struggle with moral issues. One can be tempted to not clean out the jam jar, to not remove the label, and to not sort glass garbage by size and color. This shows that activists are really just Everyday-Canadians. So, comrades, I enjoin you to check out this site (*) and look into the normal, everyday cares and concerns of an activist.
Activist #1, Fenris Badwulf
June 1st, 2007 at 10:30 pm
Calgary rubberman - you ass!
June 1st, 2007 at 10:48 pm
Y’know, we need concentration camps and death squads that go about at night looking for people like the rubber/latex crowd. Where’s Heinrich Himmler, when we really need him?
Rubber should be used in tires and hockey pucks, latex in condoms. People who wish to wear these items on their body should be vulcanized, (the process, not offered citizenship on Mr. Spock’s planet).
We need normalcy, like Howie Meeker, and George Stroumbouloupous, not strange folk going about looking like a B-movie character.
Fenris Badwulf Says:
June 1st, 2007 at 11:30 pm
Too late, dmorris. Your right wing agenda of squeezing everyone into a tight, restrictive mold and forcing them to think alike will never come true. The dark ages are over (except for racism and sexism, which still require funding) so you can go back to whatever inadequately furnished dungeon you inhabit, you big meanie.
Personally, there is nothing like a rubber body suit, accessorized with a gasmask and combat boots, to make a bold statement of rejection of invisible white privilege. This is exactly what our students in our most vulnerable schools should be seeing everyday. They deserve it. And you should pay for it. Get out your wallet.
June 2nd, 2007 at 9:40 am
What happens when this guy farts?
Fenris Badwulf Says:
June 2nd, 2007 at 4:33 pm
prison love musk?
June 3rd, 2007 at 11:37 pm
Okay then…. that was weird…
June 15th, 2007 at 11:08 am
Hello everyone — I hope the same ‘etiquette’ applies as here with anyone else on the Internet…If you don’t like what you’ve stumbled upon, please move on. Are hostile reactions really necessary?
There are as many opinions and lifestyles out there as there are websites. There are lots of people that appreciate things you may not find acceptable or conventional. If you don’t understand it or it goes against your principles - please - express yourself, but stop with the threats. They’re very unbecoming.
One thing is for certain, with my physique I would not look good in a latex full body suit. Looks like fishnet stockings again tonight. Sigh...
Reg | Homepage | 06.01.07 - 11:50 pm | #
A psychiatrist would have a field day with him.
Mark | 06.02.07 - 12:47 am | #
Mark, the textbooks were changed decades ago. Keep your opinions to yourself or you will find yourself in re-education camp, with sensitivity training thrown in.
Fenris Badwulf | Homepage | 06.02.07 - 1:26 am | #
I already took them courses last Winter Solstice, Lord Badwulf.
Mark | Homepage | 06.02.07 - 4:04 am | #
Hmmmm. Let me guess: the instructor collected money for the course 'workbook', then never used it. The instructor then spent most of the time talking about themselves and their struggle with addiction and how hard it is to be a homeless sex trade worker in Toronto. Anyone who complained was discovered to be a) racist, b) sexist, c) war criminal.
Mark, you should be advancing your agenda by taking courses at the Fenris Badwulf School of Telemarketing Excellence. As you can see in the post above, we have new instructors, none of whom have struggled with addiction nor inadequate social spending in Toronto.
Fenris Badwulf | Homepage | 06.02.07 - 7:34 am | #
What's with the hostility of some of the commenters? Why the suggestion that fetishists like me should be exterminated? I don't get it. Is it because we're doing something intolerable, while if they did some checking out of the links from this blog, they would realize just how many people are into it? Is it maybe because they're secretly jealous? Hmmm. I wonder.
Fortunately, it appears that where ever there is a hostile comment referring to me or my fetish, there is another that supports my freedom to do what I want. And those people should be commended for their tolerance and open mind! What we do is completely harmless to everyone....except maybe to those rubber plantation workers in Malaysia that are tapping the latex for my suits at pennies a day. And the wildlife, vegetation and indigenous populations that were uprooted in order to raze the jungle to make room for the rubber tree plantation....okay, so there are a few people affected. Everything has consequences, right?
Regardless, I guess negative attention is better than no attention at all! *wink*
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
I'm fully aware that even though I might think I spend a ridiculous amount of time, energy and money pursuing a strange sexual fetish, there are many more out there that out-time, out-energy, and out-money me on this and other fetishes. Sometimes I think that I've gone overboard, then realize there are others that out-do me anyday. But of course with a group as small as the gay skintight rubbermen of world, my extreme should probably be perceived as such since, by sheer numbers, there really aren't that many more out-doing me! And saying that, I've probably been in contact at some point or other with all the really hard-core guys anyways.
Or am I wrong? My the volume of pics and profiles online, I feel that there must be thousands upon thousands of hot rubbermen all over the world, but of course typically in the bigger cities. I think going to a truly large fetish event would probably help me out in this department. I think attending IML and MIR next year would be a great step in the evolution of my fetish. Attempting to bring it out in Calgary is not going to lead anywhere.
I guess if I had more free time it wouldn't be so much of an issue. I'm too extroverted to spend more time at home than I already do, or at least feel less guilty about it.
I've been finding it very hard to motivate myself to work out this week. The weather has been less than stellar. But even despite the fact there was no rain falling from the sky after work today, I still didn't head out on the bike, or go to the gym, or even put on the running shoes. I put on the rubber instead, after a lengthy session on the Internet! What am I turning into???
A fellow rubberist from Montreal, Latxboy is currently in town and wants to meet. I'm very intrigued despite what I know the boyfriend would say about it. I just long to meet other hot rubbermen so bad sometimes that the urges are hard to resist.
Eric and I have talked quite a bit and he sounds like a very down to earth guy who has an open relationship with his long-time boyfriend in Montreal. He has told me that he brought some rubber clothes with him. I'd really like to meet him to see what he is like, what his interests are, what sort of 'trouble' he's been into (including a review of the IML weekend). I hope he gets in touch with me again before the weekend! If not, I have asked him and his boyfriend to meet me in Montreal for a night out or two.
I try to justify in my head that there are lots of hot, manly, gay rubbermen out there, but I think I'm honestly just deluding myself. We're a small community, and outside the major metropolitan areas, very spread out and relatively unique, thus alone. We're all in constant search to fulfill our basest human urges -- to connect with someone. For rubberists this is just as strong if not stronger because of the sexual/fetishist aspect of our interests.
Saturday, June 2, 2007
Yesterday I wanted to make a first attempt at a video in full sunlight, mostly because I was curious about the lighting and shine reflecting off the black rubber. Because it was a Friday mid-day I was feeling a bit paranoid about doing any shooting too far above the ledge on the roof for fear that someone in some of the office buildings not too far away might see. Because of that, the angle of the tripod was really low. It is a fair video, but I know for the next one, I'm going to run the camera higher and simply focus on the action area from a higher angle. I think the shine of the rubber will come out better contrasted only against the backdrop, which will probably be the blanket again. I'm also completely obsessed with what this sort of shot in full sunlight will look like with a transparent fullsuit!
It was a very hot day, and now I know what all the expert rubberists were saying about rubber in heat! It's very challenging!