KINK IN THE LINE :: Interview with Anka, photographer and fetishist (NSFW)

Interview with Anka, photographer and fetishist
Interview with Anka, photographer and fetishist
I came across Anka on Fetlife. Her profile was very open and she seemed very passionate about her life. As she describes herself, in her own words -

The Anka is a legendary bird from Arabian mythology. Much like the phoenix, it would burn to ashes and be reborn about every 1700 years. It was named for the white ring of feathers around its neck and lived in the mountains that people believed marked the edge of the world. It had a wing span as long as five elephants, and could pick up an entire elephant in its talons. As the story goes, the Anka was territorial and deadly. But if you appeased it, it would take you to places you had never dreamed of.

She's an incredible photographer, so I was happy when she agreed to be interviewed.

First of all, thank you Anka for taking some time out today to speak with us.
Thank you for having me.

You specialize in a certain type of photography ... Boudoir, is that correct?
Yep, I do a variety of genres but boudoir is one that I do the most.

For those not familiar, what would you consider boudoir?
I would say boudoir photography is portraiture that contains heavy themes of sexuality, eroticism, and other more "adult" forms of beauty. It's not quite just a portrait, and it's also not just "nude photography". I could photograph someone nude as a study in the body or for some other artistic purpose and I wouldn't quite call it boudoir.

When people book a boudoir shoot it's usually to either take sexy photos to give to a partner or spouse, to use them for their portfolio if they're a sex worker or burlesque dancer or something of that nature, or just to have the experience for themselves and see themselves in a new light. Seeing yourself as a powerful and alluring person like that can be really empowering.

Yes, I'd consider burlesque to be the dancing equivalent of boudoir, I think. So how long have you been doing photography and what got you started moving in this direction?
Well, the more endearing story I tell people is that my mom gave me a disposable camera to bring to camp when I was 10 and I've been a photographer ever since, ha. But really, I've had a camera in my hands since before junior high and it's always been my favorite way to express myself and show how I see the world. It didn't really hit me until college that I might want to pursue photography as more than something I do for fun, so I started getting paid gigs around junior year and then started up a business officially when I was about a year out of school.

Well, you have a gift truly. I'm grateful that you decided to share it with the world.
Thank you! The world has been very encouraging. 🙂

Speaking of gifts, let's talk about fetishes. You are pretty active in the fetish community there in Michigan? Yes?
I would say I'm reasonably active, yep. I've been to events around the state, taught a few classes, and hosted a few get-togethers over the years.

Please, tell us about the classes and events that you've been a part of.
Alrighty, get ready for a list. 🙂

The first time I ever taught, it was at a munch that used to run every month called The Educational Munch. A munch by the way, for your readers, is just a colloquial term for when people interested in BDSM get together to socialize or learn together, as opposed to a play party where the goal is to actually do BDSM activities.

I love the word munch!
Ha, I know right! I think they call it that because there's usually food involved.
They're often at restaurants.

But anyway, I was dating someone at the time who had introduced me to what is now one of my bigger fetishes, Erotic Hypnosis. It's a fascinating field.

Yes, it seems very fascinating!
So anyway, we did a class together called "Erotic Hypnosis 101" and it was really fun teaching a new topic to people.
We did a few of those at different munches and around the state, and we eventually created our own munch called GrHype which stood for Grand Rapids Hypnosis Enthusiasts.

He was more the brainchild than I was, but I liked helping out. We've broken up since, but he's still teaching it when he can.

I watched a video where you were put under hypnosis over chat. Is that pretty common?

Extremely common, especially in the internet age.

I really had no idea it was even possible.
Most don't! I didn't, when I first discovered it I was pretty sure I couldn't be hypnotized because somebody had tried once and it didn't "work". I've since learned how to be very wrong, haha.

But yeah, all it takes is any form of communication. Well, a lot more than that actually, but it can be done through any form of communication ... or at least I imagine so.

Well, music is a big trancer for me. So, that is where the name Hypnobunny comes from?
So, in the rope bondage community, they have a term for a rope bottom who just likes to get tied up a lot, "rope bunny". It's kind of going out of fashion now because it's a little sexist and exclusionary, but, still, some people like identifying as a rope bunny. So I thought, well, if there can be rope bunnies, why not a hypnobunny? And a handle was born.
I just wanted to get hypnotized a lot and learn as much as I could about it : )

I think it's fascinating. I had a friend in Chicago who trained to be a hypnotist's assistant and she let us sit in on a few sessions. It's really about the power of suggestion and being open to it.
Indeed it is.

So, I read that you have taught rope classes as well. Any suspension stuff?
Ah, clarification. I haven't taught rope, I don't really know much about it, but I did use to host a rope-tying practice space. It was strictly practice, no education, just a spot for people to socialize and experiment and work on their knots.

OK, have you tried suspension? Either rope or hook?
I've never done by hook (if you mean the piercing kind) but I do really enjoy being suspended by rope, especially upside down. It's an incredibly strange feeling and I've never felt anything like it.

I got booked to DJ a piercing suspension session once. I've always wanted to try it. One day maybe. Perhaps, I'll start with rope.
Nice. Yeah start with rope, a lot of it is just getting your mind to calm down about the fact that you're off the ground and being held up by a strange thing, so it takes some mental work.

As far as BDSM goes, do you consider yourself a submissive, a domme or a little of both?
I like to say I'm a submissive with developing toppy tendencies. So, a little of both.

Hahaha, I like that - toppy!
Ha, yeah!

You've also done some adult stuff online, correct? Cams and videos, yes?
Correct. I've dabbled in doing cam shows and I have an online store where I sell photos and videos of myself.
It's something I'm working on growing, I really enjoy doing online sex work.

You are very positive about your sexual outlook. Do you think the world, in general, has become healthier when it comes to kink and sex?
I would say absolutely. With the internet, we've been able to share personal experiences so broadly and often that more people are realizing they're not alone, especially in their sexuality, so it's becoming less stigmatized and more normal.

I would agree.
I'm not sure about the whole world in general, but I think that's what's going on here at least.
I met a woman at a party recently who had been organizing BDSM play parties since the early 90's.
Back then you had to buy a dirty magazine, then find the right ad in the dirty magazine, then call the number, get interviewed, and be accepted if you wanted to go to a kink party. Now you can find them online, and they range from full-on play parties to social munches at sports bars.
I was glad to see she was still out and participating in the scene. 🙂

Well, you are never too old to have a good sex life. I hear you cook a mean curry. You know, food is the gateway to the heart?
I'm originally from the south so, preaching to the choir!

Oh snap!
What would you tell someone who was kink curious but had no idea what it was all about?
I'd say educate yourself. Maybe reading this interview is your starting point. Go to fetlife.com and find munches near you and try and meet some people; see if there's anyone near you who is interested in mentoring, or just answering a few questions. There are books on it out there too, go browse your local Barnes & Noble in the Romance section (but avoid the fiction section, ha :)

There's definitely a learning curve you have to go through in order to really know how to do kink in a way that's safe and fun for everyone, so remember that it's ok not to know everything and just keep at it.

Barnes & "Noble" ... nice!
Haha yeah, that's how I found fetlife! I was bored and wandered in there one day, picked up a book on BDSM and read it in the Starbucks. It pointed me to Fetlife, and I was at my first munch four days after : )


50 Shades of Grey? Loved or hated it?

Oof, very much a love-hate relationship. Kinksters love to hate it because it's a terrible example of what BDSM is like in real life, the communication between them two is awful and he does a lot of things that would be considered abusive in real life. It's only ok in the book because books are a magical place where the guy you have the hots for automatically knows everything you like without you having to tell him, and therefore he never has to ask, so he never does. Guessing games like that don't go over nearly as well in real life.

In my experience no, they don't.

So, it's awful. But I think its popularity actually did a lot of people a lot of good. Reading that book was how I discovered I wasn't alone, and it got me on this path. So, I owe it a lot. As with any interest, don't just read one thing and stop there and think you know all that you need to X) keep learning!

Kink is the most fun when you feel safe enough to truly let go. That should always be the goal.



FESTLIFE :: Electric Forest Documentary by a Nonsense Man & Space Dragon (review)

Electric Forest Documentary by a Nonsense Man & Space Dragon A Nonsense Man
Electric Forest Documentary by a Nonsense Man & Space Dragon A Nonsense Man
I just wanted to share today an excellent Electric Forest documentary by my friend Zachary aka a Nonsense Man. I visited Electric Forest in 2008, and I was blown away. My friend Zach created a documentary, in which he explains the magic of Electric Forest. The highlights are an interview with Dixon's Violin - an incredible live violin act and a wedding at the festival. One of the other highlights is an impromptu Nonsense Man video. Zach's got talent and a real skill at sharing that experience. He loves to stare at pretty hoola hooping girls and who doesn't. Beyond that, he captures the magic which is Electric Forest ... and the fact that he's not an undercover police officer.

-No Boats


DOG DAY :: N'to - The Hound

N'to - The Hound
N'to - The Hound
It should be no secret that N'to is one of my favorite producers today. His music can only be described as minimal house / tech / whatever with a hint of French Touch. At least that is the feeling I get when I hear it.

The Hound is a dark and stormy night ... but that dog has the scent. He's closing in, as you run into the void trying to evade him. It's inevitable, you can't escape from the Hound.

-No Boats


RIOT ACT :: Nihilist Cheerleader - Riot, Right? (Album Review)

Nihilist Cheerleader - Riot, Right?
Nihilist Cheerleader - Riot, Right?
Album reviews are typically out of the norm here at Barrel-dEM, but when one of my favorite bands released their new album - Riot, Right? I knew I had to. I've been a fan of Nihilist Cheerleader since I saw them back in 2016 in Atlanta. I had the pleasure of interviewing lead singer Flynne Collins at the time.

The band is from Athens, GA and they've been touring the southeast for a few years, so make sure you check them out in a town near you.

Their newest album is simply a pleasure to listen to again and again. It contains the perfect combination of politics, angst, sex, memorable melodies and punk rock. The track Drenched In is one of my favorites. The opening guitars are reminiscent of New Order creating a pleasing sound before the chorus breaks down into a crunchier sound. The lyrics seem to tell the story of loss and regret - repeating never look back.

Who's Gonna Hear You is another great track. The tempo is stepped up on this one compared to Drenched In. Basically, it's a song about moving forward, stop throwing a pity party and take charge of your life.

The song Miss You Forever is another stand out track. Like many of their songs, there are tempo changes throughout. A lost relationship is the main theme here.

Finally, & She Takes It, the last song on the album is a wonderful feminist anthem. It's a perfect closing song to an incredible album.

Pick it up from Bandcamp below. - No Boats



SkyBlew - Nefelibata
SkyBlew - Nefelibata
I hear it all the time ... Hip Hop is dead. Trap killed it. Without digging it's easy to accept - with artists like Lil Xan, and all those face tattoo mumble rappers who aren't worth mentioning. Post Malone at least tries to pay homage to the past. But if you just dig beneath the surface, you will find artists like Skyblew. This guy is positive like Raury, walking tall like Camp Lo and doesn't need autotune to sound good. His production is on point.

Skyblew is a bit of a mystery. He grew up in Alabama but currently resides in Chapel Hill, NC. Not much else is known about him other than his influences are Common, A Tribe Called Quest, Lupe Fiasco, Nujabes, 2Pac, De La Soul, Scapegoat Wax, Blue Scholars, New Radicals, Common Market, Michael Jackson, Arrested Development, Sade, and Amy Winehouse. He's the kind of artist that get's me excited to hear everything he's put out.


ECSTATIC DANCE :: Brian Eno & Laraaji - The Dance #2

Brian Eno & Laraaji - The Dance #2
Brian Eno & Laraaji - The Dance #2
This song brings me incredible joy. Played primarily on the dulcimer by Laraaji, The Dance #2 is from the album Ambient 3: Day of Radiance. The album was produced by Brian Eno with Laraaji playing instruments. It's the third in Brian Eno's Ambient series which includes Music for Airports (highly-recommended).

This one is equally great for quiet meditation or crank it for some overpowering chords and energy.


BASE :: Public Enemy - Night of the Living Baseheads

Public Enemy - Night of the Living Baseheads
Public Enemy - Night of the Living Baseheads
OMG, yes Public Enemy ... keeping it real. For those who don't know, there was a group that sprang up in the late 80's - they were everything controversial, had the best samples, and bridled the passion of the black struggle. Public Enemy had it all, a leader in Chuck D who was the messenger and delivered a message from the heart that people could believe in, a hype man - Flavor Flav who kept it fun and knew what his role was and a production crew - who knew how to sample and create the freshest jams time and time again.

Public Enemy as a group wore many hats but always stayed true to their cause. They were one of the first who collaborated with Heavy Metal bands like Anthrax to remake their songs. They had internal strife, with Flavor Flav and Professor Griff, about Flavor's drug use and antics. Professor Griff went on to say anti-Semitic things in accordance with his Nation of Islam stance and was distanced from the group.

Nevertheless, Public Enemy prevailed. They were inducted into Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame. They still continue to produce music to this day.

Public Enemy never had to shy away from controversy, they embraced it, but at their core they wanted to make hype music to hype people up.