Paul’s Photos || SHANE

He’s 32, straight with Scorpio sun-sign. I stupidly aggravated his nervousness by giving him some random props to hold. After a few shots I took them away and just concentrated on him.

Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-2Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-1

To tell the truth, the props hadn’t been random.  They were some ears of corn (which I had him hold in one hand) and a bowl (which I had him hold in his other hand).  Lately I’d been reading about the Greek Agathodaimon.

The Agathodaimon was both a fertility figure and a kind of “guardian angel”.  They were often personified as young men. Since I’ve always had a tendency to intermix Eros and the religious, the Agathodaimon appealed to me very much.

Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-5

Oddly enough, I’d just sent a lengthy email to one of our newer cameramen (in New York), telling him that there is “good porn” and “bad porn”.  Good porn is characterized by the actual sexual and communicative needs, the drives of the men who are in front of the camera.  Bad porn happens when the pornographer’s idea or concept overrides the honest urges of the men.  Clearly, I hadn’t taken my own advise.

I asked Shane why he had come in for photos.  He told me that he was coming out of a very dark period of his life and that another man who’d posed for me told him that letting me photograph him would be a positive step, a way to embrace his new self.

Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-3

He has an extraordinary sense of intelligence and competency about him–he was a member of the America’s Cup land crew when it was held in San Francisco earlier this year.  But at the same time there was an emotional weight–a darkness–about him.  This is a man who has spent a great deal of his life wrestling with demons.

Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-7Paul Morris, Treasure Island Media, Shane-6

I finally got around to asking about his name.  “It was my grandfather’s favorite movie,” he responded. I told him it’s one of my favorites as well.  And if ever there was a film character who embodied the living battle between good and evil it was Shane.  For just a moment I thought about telling him why I’d started the shoot with props–ears of corn, an empty bowl–but decided against it.  An embodiment of the Agathodaimon stood before me, alive and real and “in the flesh”. – Paul Morris

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