Of Cameras, Crotches and Critiques

You may be familiar with the Tumblr blog called “Critique My Dick Pic“. It’s a collection of honest, artistic assessments of submitted penile portraits, and if that sort of thing intrigues you, you should go have a look.  While I might not agree with every grade given, the commentary is witty and well-written.  It never shames the submitters for their physical characteristics, or for their decision to photograph their nether regions and share the result.  The site is inclusive of all shapes, sizes, colors and body types.  It’s not only fun, it’s kind of beautiful.  And you know what?  I’m jealous.

There isn’t, to my knowledge, a comparable site where I could post a picture of my vulva and get objective feedback on the quality, lighting and composition of my photo.  Someone on Tumblr did make the attempt to start one, but it appears to have gone dormant within mere weeks of its launch.  Other websites I found were clearly dedicated to the rating of the body parts in question, not the photography.  Alarmingly, a few sites contained mostly pictures submitted by partners. In most cases, it wasn’t clear whether the subject had consented or was even aware their photo had been shared. These sites offered occasional body-positive photo commentary, but the majority of remarks fall into other categories:

  • Expressions of sexual desire – This ranged from relatively innocuous remarks on the physical attractiveness of the subject to vulgarity-strewn and explicit expression of what the commenter would like to do with the subject.  Not only is this not helpful, it can be downright scary.
  • Body shaming – The world is apparently full of folks who feel compelled to point out that the vulva in question differs from their ideal. Whether it’s clit size, labia appearance, pubic hair grooming or something else, these people are there to tell you why your nether regions fail to pass muster and what you ought to do about it.  I wish these people would fall off the face of the internet forever.
  • Slut shaming – Lastly, we have the concern trolls.  They remark that the poster must be a terrible, immoral person or a broken creature lacking self esteem, because a “normal” woman would not go snapping pictures of intimate regions and sharing them. They give “clever” advice in response to those looking for guidance, like telling one woman to send her boyfriend a picture of a cat if he wants pussy pics. Hardy-har-har…hilarious.

Why does this bother me so much?  I like sexting.  Actually, I love sexting.  I think it’s fun, and hot, and it has made my frequent business travel not just bearable, but exciting. I hate the thought that women who search the internet for sexting advice are instead being heaped with shame. An internet search for how to take a dick pic yields mostly articles with constructive suggestions on lighting, pose and composition. Change one word of that search, and it’s a different world.  You’ll get a smattering of helpful articles (yay, sex-positive bloggers!) but there is so much negativity.

I’m writing today to say to everyone out there that sexting is OK. 1 If sexting is something you and your partner(s) want to try, I am here to cheer you on.  Talk about what you’d like to try with your partner, then go for it.  If you want some advice based on my experience, I’m happy to share.

  • Get cleared for take off – Before you start sending pics, make sure your sexting partner is up for some fun.  You don’t want to drop an intimate photo as they’re showing their boss an email or letting the kids play a game on their phone.
  • Keep it simple – While sexy, carefully posed boudoir photos are lovely, for me, sexting is about spontaneity and fun.  You don’t need to pull out your best lingerie, candles and other props unless you really want to.  Get in the mood, relax, grab your camera and see what you get.  Some of my very favorite pics and videos happened rather than being planned.   Unusual angles or slightly off-center shots can add to the charm.
  • Do a background check – Things like a basket of laundry lurking in the background can lower the sexy factor.  If you notice background issues after the pic is taken, just do a quick crop before sending.
  • Boost your confidence – What makes you feel sexy?  For me, it’s little things… songs from my “Feeling Frisky” playlist, remembering great reactions to sexting sessions past, thinking of my partner’s voice when he’s all hot and bothered.  Do whatever you need to do to remind yourself of your awesomeness, then take gorgeous pictures of you in all your splendor.
  • Control your exposure – You can show as much or as little as you’re comfortable with.  Don’t want your face in the picture?  Just want to show a teasing glimpse?  Want to take a full spreadeagle shot, or a quick video with a favorite toy?  It’s up to you.  Be as cautious or as daring as you want to be.
  • Just keep clicking – Rather than trying to get that One Perfect Shot, play around and snap as you go. I think Pantophile Panic says it beautifully.  Though you might not need 100 pictures…snapping 5-10 at a time and keeping the best usually works for me.

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  • Last and most importantly… have fun! –  If you and your partner are enjoying yourselves (and each other), then it’s all good.

Sexting is a great way to play when you can’t be with your partner, or to build sexual tension for a later meeting.  If you’ve got a great sexting tip to share, leave a comment below.

  1. Providing that you are of age and not taking pictures of anything illegal, of course
  • Camryn
    May 7, 2014

    I follow that Tumblr! I find it interesting, but it never occured to me to look for a similar thing with vulvas. I’m t surprised at what you found though. Vulvas are trikier to photograph since they don’t stick out from the body and the rise of revenge porn means that many people are plain afraid to.
    I personally have a problem with sexting because of my experiences with it, so my advice is generally a super paranoid, “Be careful!”

    • Lunabelle
      May 7, 2014

      I can understand how some might not be comfortable sexting, and your caution is certainly valid. I couldn’t sext with someone I didn’t fully and absolutely trust, because I’m also paranoid. Even with an app like Snapchat, I’d still be worried about where my images might end up.

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