Erotic photography and being a Perv

Let’s start from the beginning, as long as I can remember I’ve always been sexually curious and adventurous but along the way I closed that part of me off. I’m not exactly sure why, but I think it is a combination where I developed low self-esteem because I was overweight, had quite a lack of attention from girls that made me shy. In your teenage years you don’t really talk openly about stuff like that so I bottled it all up thinking I was the only one. 

It took me a very long time to feel comfortable being a sexual being again, to able to let out the pervert in me. I had closed that part of me so good that for me to even start that recovery had to be initiated by an outside force, by someone else. Once I did start to recover it was like waking up from a very long sleep. I have a huge part of my life where I not only were in deep depression but in total apathy also because of how deeply I had repressed my sexuality. So when I woke up from my slumber and had my sexual reawakening I also started to want things from life, wanted to do things. It started to become apparent that my sexuality was linked with every part of me, the thing that tied everything together, it was the source of my will, creativity, motivation and ambition.

A result was that I no longer wanted to just isolate myself, I wanted to explore the world and see whats out there, I wanted to experience things. Me wanting to explore and live in the world more I bought a camera, with no initial ambitious but nonetheless I took quite a liking to photography, Though, it wasn’t until I started to photograph women, especially with who I also could express my sexual side with, it was then that I knew it was it for me. I was a photographer and it would be my life. The pleasure that I get from nice company is also what inspires my creativity, so in a sense they are very much tied together, so why not embrace it fully? So for me to develop an ambition within photography that somehow directly involved sex and women was just inevitable and from what I’ve come to realise it is also the only way for me to create something that is from deep within me, genuinely me, and it is then that I have the potential to actually create something good. 

I tried to be a “proper” photographer for the longest time, trying to do it by the “book” and that meant to once again suppress my sexual side because I didn’t want to be “that” guy. Of course my photography was rubbish since it lacked any hint of anything genuine or any “soul”. I tried to be professional instead of a photographer. All changed when I did an internship in Paris 2015, I wrote in my notebook and asked myself: “What would I photograph if I could photograph anything I wanted?”. It is probably obvious to everyone what I wrote but to this day I’m surprised why it like such a big deal to “rediscover” that part of me. 

It was then that I feel that I actually got ambitious for real, I knew then what I had to do and that I have to become great. No more playing around not daring to dream big. It’s not even important if I actually do create something good or not, but I have to try, may it cost whatever it costs. The first cost was simple, I realised that since I was free, being single and childless that I  had a chance to really go for it. So I have given up on ever having a family or even a relationship, at least one that didn’t directly somehow connect and help with my creative ambitions. So no longer would I have to spend so much energy on wanting to find someone that would “complete” me. Accepting that I have huge hole in me and leaning to live with it to chase something more important was very liberating. 

Simply, I want a horny and creative life, it excites me. It allows me to explore in ways I probably wouldn’t have otherwise. I want to express the core of me in its simplicity, the drive that makes me curious about the world and I want to find that spark out there in others. Photography is a tool to see what I really want to see and enables me to do what I really want to do, and I would argue that is one of the most important aspects of photography. It should be apparent now that I don’t have overly “sanitised” ambitions or goals with my photography, but that doesn’t mean it is in any way less ambitious in all its glorious dirtyness. I want it to be messy as I am and as inappropriately open as I can be.

I’ve given myself ten years to come to a point where my photography could be considered to be genuinely something good even if it is in a genre not accepted.  And once I’ve come to the point some of my photos are considered genuinely good, I then have another ten years to become great.(if I manage to live that long.)

Introduction and why Paris?

Where do I even start to explain my whole route to this point? How did I end up homeless, or a vagabond as I like to call it, in Paris with an economy so messed up it will take decades to sort it out? How did manage to end up in a densely populated cities yet still be very isolated and sex-/loveless man? I kind of need to go into all the messed up and unhealthy parts of me for it all to really make any sense, so all the trigger warnings for all future has been stated as of now. I will start with a quick intro and go into more depth at a later date.

The biggest factor is probably my depression that is cause of so much, but that in turn is also caused by many other factors. In short, being fat and unloved has lead to depression that led to isolation that led to a hole inside that I tried to fill with gadgets, I also developed an overactive sexdrive and as common with depression I had a constant steam of suicidal thoughts. So when all that culminated in me being overly in debt because of all the gadgets, totally broke, stuck in a small town and being sexually frustrated with no hope in sight of improvement, I kind of came to a point where I felt I was days away from actual suicide. So in one last attempt to find any kind of will to live I sold everything I owned, jumped on a plane to Paris to chase my dreams!

As I should have expected, it wouldn’t go amazingly well starting a whole new life in a totally new country and culture. Finding work and learning to speak the language turned out to be harder than I thought. Also my depression and asocial tendencies didn’t magically disappear. So after not finding work or any kind of income I ended up on the streets and it has been hard and I don’t know how I would have managed without the generosity of strangers or people I know. Despite the hardship it really does feel like the right decision to come here and I am again totally confidant in my passion and ambition of pursuing photography as far as I can take it. 

So why did take such a huge step and why Paris? Paris has been historically quite an erotic city and where much of photographic history takes place so it started to make sense that it would be the city where I would try to combine the two things that interest me the most, sex and photography. Also for many of the photographers I admire, they had their pilgrimage to Paris at some point in their career. But that isn’t quite the whole picture.

The simplest way to describe my biggest attraction is that when I was here back in 2015 for an internship I felt a calmness that I haven’t really felt anywhere else, something I wasn’t even looking for in life. I’ve tried to figure it out and I think I’m calm here because I know I can take it easy knowing there is adventure around most corners and I just have to take a step to start the process of finding it. It’s being secure that there will always be potential out there for all kinds of things and that I just have to find it. I have always felt restless in towns and cities that I’ve lived in, all have been smallish and you pretty much knew all that was possible. Maybe I just needed a bigger city or a different culture, but Paris was where I felt a sense of peace and I fell in love with the city. 

After I came back home to Finland from Paris 2015, I started to become more and more honest with myself. With things like that I missed the boat on love, starting a family and all that I thought I wanted and then I realised I had nothing holding me back, no one that needed me to stay anywhere, so I made the decision to give up on love and ever having a family and just concentrate on a life where I still could find enjoyment, even if it means that brief sexual encounters will be the only way I feel connection and intimacy. Paris with its suburbs have more people than the entire country of Sweden, so odds seem little better for a life like that. 

I felt such relief and freedom after making the decision and I knew moving to Paris was absolutely something I had to do.