David Steinberg: One of My Very First Shoots

Written by: David Steinberg

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© David Steinberg

I began taking photographs of people being sexual at home in 1999. As Cupido’s photo rep in the US I had been offering other photographers’ sexual photos to the magazine for some time, and had become curious about what was involved in producing meaningful photographs of genuine sexual activity. How is it possible to honestly photograph something as intimate as sex? Who would even agree to be photographed in this way? What is it about sex that I would want to capture on film anyway?

At the time I was writing a monthly column about sex and gender for Spectator magazine, San Francisco’s then-popular sex weekly, largely supported by classified ads from sex workers. At one gathering of Spectator staff and friends (we called our monthly dicussion groups Spectator Salons), I mentioned my desire to experiment with my own sexual photography. One couple, Dara and Vann, quickly volunteered to be my guinea pigs, resulting in an all-afternoon-and-evening shoot at their apartment tha...

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