May 10, 2012
The 2012 Feminist Porn Awards have come and gone. With amazing highlights and a tremendous amount of stars, it was truly a night to remember. But it was also a lot more than that for me, and I’d like to talk a little bit about that.
Last year was my first time at the Feminist Porn Awards. Before leaving Toronto to attend school in Montreal, I was too young to attend, and in those days I didn’t have enough of a reason to justify the trek all the way back home around exams just to catch a glimpse of some of my pornographic heroes. But, 2011 was different. The Art of Blowjob was up for best website, and I was charged with representing the company. So I headed to the show with a mitt full of business cards, my never-ending fount of adoring words for everyone I met and very high expectations of what was to come…
Me and Jizz lee, one of this year's many winners.
A few good contacts, a chance to meet some of my big crushes and maybe a win. And win we did. But one thing I didn’t expect was the strong sense of community I felt in the room when I arrived at the awards show. I’d never experienced such a warm welcome. Never before had I been surrounded by so many people eager to hear why believe in feminist porn, learn about what I do and discuss my own experiences, both sexually and otherwise. It wasn’t just an issue of being cordial or friendly, but of really caring about everyone in the collective movement that is feminist porn. It was hard not to be completely swept up by the energy in the room. (But, maybe that’s exactly how feminist pornographers recruit?)
So, attending the 2012 FPAs felt very much like a homecoming. Over the past year I’ve expanded the sites I work with, met a ton of new people and began writing for a number of really awesome blogs. As a result, I feel much more established within the industry, I have the confidence of someone who knows their place and I knew that being at the even the second time around was going to be was going to be a spectacular experience. I also had a super cute date, which never hurts. I think he was the most interesting part of my evening, and I don’t just mean because he’s a hot piece (though he is). He was also attending the event for the second time, and seeing the event through the eyes of a feminist porn enthusiast, who doesn’t work in the industry, was really fascinating: especially since he had a very similar experience to mine. There I was, feeling like I had my arm candy, when two of us were actually on this delightfully level playing field.
And that’s perhaps the biggest value of the Feminist Porn Awards, and of feminist porn in general. There’s little to no hierarchy, there’s a wonderful lack of pretension, clearly seen at the FPAs. At the awards we all sit together, we all sidle on up to each other at the bar to talk or cruise, and we all get down on the dance floor at the end. Regardless of what you like, what you do or who you are, as long as you’re committed to seeing more genuine pleasure and respect in porn, you have a place and a voice within this movement: as evidenced by this year’s winners. It’s a group that is as diverse as you could hope for – featuring a wide array of sexual orientations, aesthetics, body types, kink, artistry, politics, education and even real love – representing every corner of feminist porn without seeming unduly democratic.
What I’m trying to say is that, if you’re curious about feminist porn, you should just dive in head first. You’ll definitely find something (more likely many things) that you absolutely love. You’ll find everyday people like you, who care about the things you want to see in porn and who actually endeavour to make it happen. Not only will you be inspired to support and perhaps even create porn in whatever way you can, but you’ll also find a genuine community. Then, when you have a homecoming of your own at the 2013 Feminist Porn Awards, come over and say hi to me. I’ll be by the vulva macaroons, because those things are delicious.