Tag Archives: cammers

AEE 2019: Sofia Rose

by Rich Moreland, March 2019

This interview with cam star Sofia Rose offers fascinating insights into camming and porn.

Photos are credited to Kevin Sayers.

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Too Ethnic

Born of mixed ancestries, Sofia Rose is a Southern California native who gave modeling a go in her teens.

She did have some problems, though. She couldn’t make it in the mainstream business.

“They told me I was too short and too ethnic. I probably weighed ninety-five pounds on a good day! I was very, very small. But yeah, I was too ethnic at the time.”

To build a career, Sofia moved to the Northeast and worked in corporate America.

In November 2006 the thirty-something decided to resurrect her modeling career, setting her sights on the BBW market.

Sofia sums up where her career is today.

“I am a hardcore performer. I have my own website, I shoot for everybody. I’m independent and I cam.” To secure what she calls “residual money,” Sofia says, “I sell my clips, my Snapchat. So, I have my hands in all the pots.”

Changes

Describing where she is right now, Sofia says, “My main focus is performing and I do hardcore boy/girl [and] fetish.”

But changes are on the horizon.

The BBW star is moving back to her fetish work at the expense of boy/girl shoots.

It’s a return to “glamour modeling that I used to do,” she explains, and she loves the idea, particularly its practicality. “I’m getting older [and] I want to spend more time at home.”

Best of all, glamour has an appeal for her. It’s “erotic,” she insists, and is built on “artistic” photos. “Still, my clothes will be off,” she laughs. “I’m just comfortable that way. It’s actually harder to wear clothes because I’m actually trying to contain things and my boobs want to be free. So…”

Get Comfortable

Turning to my questions on camming, I want to know if a cam girl starts out as an amateur performer?

Sofia believes all cam girls begin as amateurs because they have “to get comfortable with the camera. Learn your angles and what’s the most flattering depending on what you’re trying to sell.”

But in the end, she believes, the word “amateur” is elusive in its meaning and application.

“I think the amateur term can be very subjective. I do my own content and it’s definitely not studio produced. I’m a professional performer, however it would be considered amateur shot because it looks like a home movie. Does that make it less professional [because] we made it home-style?”

I remark that for cammers, amateur means a style of shooting.

“I feel like it’s a style, yeah,” Sofia agrees. “It’s not cut perfectly and it’s very bumpy,” but that seems to be its appeal.

Trends

I ask Sofia if cam girls establish their own trends or merely follow existing ones when it comes to their content.

“Both, really,” she replies. Cammers can be trend-setters by “taking something that’s already been established and modifying it to what is unique to you.”

In Sofia’s case, it’s the plus-size community. Certain trends are important to them. She mentions Mukbangs as an example and explains what it is about.

“It’s a feeding video about eating foods that makes certain sounds. I don’t get it, but it hits my fetish audience who likes to see me overstuff myself to make me larger.

“We’re going to play into the fetish [and] make those videos that are customizable. I’ve been doing these feeding videos forever [and] it’s now like this popular trend. People pay me to eat this food!”

Porn Portal

Is camming a portal into shooting scenes?

“Absolutely,” Sofia says, but mentions that camming and shooting scenes are different.

“I think that there’s definitely some conflict between the communities, which I hate,” she responds.

“It’s a whole hierarchy of who’s better than who[m]. I feel like camming is similar to the studio-produced performing, but they aren’t the same. A cam girl walks in and is used to controlling her camera and her angle and getting her best shots. But you go into a studio and you’re relinquishing that control. And now you’re doing what you’re told within your limits and you don’t have control over all those things,” she explains.

When asked to describe a cam girl, Sofia has an insightful assessment.

“People think that camming is more innocent because there’s not contact with another person, male or female. But it isn’t necessarily.”

There’s more, she says. “Because they feel like it’s a more controlled environment, maybe it’s more innocent. It’s really not to me, it’s not any different whether I’m bringing talent to get on cam with or I’m in a studio shooting with that same talent. We’re still doing the same things, the same content, the same fluid exchanges. Everything’s happening the same way, it’s just that the camera is controlled differently.”

The Optional Fourth Leg

As for the three-legged school question, Sofia says the fourth leg is optional. In other words, combinations can change from girl to girl. They choose what works for them.

For her, choices are obvious. “I shoot, I cam, and I escort, but you’ll never find me dancing. We’re just changing which three we’re using.”

In her opinion, “it’s almost normal to escort on top of everything else. Why wouldn’t you?”

Considering that, is camming a boon for her escorting?

“Absolutely” she beams. Clients want to meet and get to know her. Once that happens, their comfort level improves and this is a benefit for her.

“It helps me,” Sofia says. “We feel good with each other. It’s way less intimidating and the nerves are way down.”

Sofia points out for a cam girl to meet one of her fans in person is an option. But keep in mind that “everybody has their limits and what makes them comfortable. Even as escorts we all do things very differently. People think I just meet random strangers and it’s not quite like that.” Background checks are part of doing business, she says with a chuckle.

Just for the curious, Sofia Rose is married and monogamous. Nevertheless, her camming and escorting is a job “and I do treat it so.”

She quickly modifies her statement to minimize the impression it’s all about business.

“The experience itself won’t feel like it’s a job. Whether I’m shooting, performing, or meeting someone privately, they never feel like it’s a job. I don’t make it feel transactional.”

In summing up her point, Sofia Rose mentions that she’s “a pretty warm person” and admits, “I think I just got fortunate with that personality [trait].”

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AEE 2019: Ela Darling

by Rich Moreland, March 2019

Ela Darling is the final installment of our series on the Star Factory clients we interviewed at the 2019 Adult Entertainment Expo.

Formerly educated and politically active, Ela is not typical of adult stars.

Photos are credited to Kevin Sayers.

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Ela Darling and I go back a few years. It’s a delight to interview her again.

We begin our discussion with VR. Apropos, I might add, because this statuesque model is an able promoter of VR in the adult business.

She is the chief marketing officer for PVR Fun, an adult headset company.

“It’s incredibly good, very lightweight, really good tech,” Ela says of the product. “I would say it even outperforms some of the more mainstream standalone headsets.”

This University of Texas grad has been involved with VR for five years. “As you know, I created the first ever live broadcasting platform in virtual reality and I’m the world’s first VR cam girl,” she says.

Personally, Ela is branching out in the VR world. She’s learning code and building robots for her new company, Gonzo VR (nothing to do with porn, by the way), that she named after her dog.

“VR is basically my life. I’m held hostage to my house by VR robots and I escape the world through my PVR Iris,” she says with amusement.

A Librarian First

Ela Darling received her masters in library science from the University of Illinois, the gold standard for that profession.

“I was a librarian before I made the obvious transition to pornography,” she says matter-of-factly.

If that isn’t an interesting combination of talents, try this: Ela is political and acts on her beliefs. She took her  APAC (Adult Performer Advocacy Committee) resume — she was on the board of directors and served a term as president — and reached into California politics.

The Texas native ran for the position of Democratic Assembly District Delegate in her home area.

“I was second runner up, which for someone who does porn, I think is pretty cool,” she says. “It was great running with some awesome progressives and getting to know some of the people in my community without [being] laughed right out of the house.”

Chalk one up for porn star activism.

Knowing how outspoken Ela is on political issues, I ask her to reflect on the #MeToo movement and the adult industry.

She begins,

“Adult film performers are feeling more emboldened to speak up about their experiences on set with people who are abusive and act in ways that are unacceptable.”

That is no mean feat, she implies.

“We still see people who come out and share their experiences being ignored. Some of that has to do with the fact that they are adult film performers. We’re a very marginalized group and people still have this idea that if we fuck on camera, what were you expecting?

“But there are boundaries in any sexual experience and establishing and respecting those boundaries is paramount, especially in a professional workplace.”

Ela continues. The public doesn’t understand that if a porn model claims she been abused on set, it isn’t easy to go to the police.

“The first thing they do is question your personal decisions. They start to look for any reason not to believe you and that goes twice as much if you’re a sex worker.”

Not only that, but pressure to stay silent comes from within the industry.

“We have this fear that if we speak up, we’re gonna be blacklisted. No one’s going to hire us again.”

Despite the barriers present, Ela is encouraged.

“People are sharing their experiences more, [but] I don’t know that they’re being granted the credence they deserve. It’s a very complicated discussion to have.”

From her end, Ela is there for victims who come forward. “I support anyone who is experiencing something like that and I will always be here to hear them and listen.”

Tolerance

We change the subject to camming. Does she?

Sort of, Ela says, but it is more like “live broadcasts” that are not always involved with adult entertainment. What’s more, she’s busy with it throughout the day.

“I’ve got a twenty-four-hour livestream from my living room. I’m talking to people who are driving around in my little VR car.”

Does she think the cam girl is becoming the new porn girl?

“It’s really insightful to say that cam girls are the new amateur porn because that’s basically what it is,” she says. Live broadcasting is their trademark, but only a portion of their business.

“Most of them also make clips. That is amateur porn. And, with the diminishing taboo with camming, we’re seeing a lot more people enter that space than we ever have seen before.”

To put things in perspective, Ela offers a short back story.

“Maybe fifteen years ago, most of the cam performers primarily were porn performers. Because if you’re already in porn, it’s not that big of a jump.”

On the other hand, it was challenging if sex work was not your thing back then.

Today is different. The public sees camming as “a light, exotic thing to do and more people are doing it all over the country. That’s awesome because that drives acceptance and tolerance,” she says.

Ela sees an increased fairness in the industry today because cammers and porn models are more alike than different.

“Both porn and cam performers have a lot more control and ownership over their careers and their brands and for what they do. So, they’re becoming a lot more similar than people imagine it to be,” she concludes.

Only One Part of the Picture

However, we can’t lose sight of market forces when it comes to porn models turning to camming, though one influence is not necessarily more  important than the others. It’s cumulative.

“I wouldn’t say that the growth of camming is driving porn performers to cam,” Ela contends. There are other factors, she believes, like “decreasing sales in porn, fewer work opportunities, rates either stagnating or decreasing.”

Of course, she adds, other money-making opportunities like “producing clips” and “feature dancing” are part of the total picture.

“The porn star of today is not just someone who goes to set, fucks, collects a check and goes home — the way that it was in the golden days. The porn star today does pretty much a little bit of everything. They go to set and shoot, they also shoot their own stuff. They cam because it makes sense. It does increase your brand, your reach [and] your fan base. It drives more people to buy your clips and your scenes and whatever wears you might be selling.

“I would say that camming has become one part of the very diverse job that is being an adult film performer.”

Legs Everywhere

We next talk about the modern porn girl. Some circumstances are updated, others not so much.

“These days, you have the ability to work a lot more. Your work and your financial opportunities aren’t at the whim of someone hiring you. You have more control so you can decide ‘I’m not shooting for a studio today, I’m gonna use this time to create something that I can make money off of forever.’”

On the other hand, “When you’re a sex worker, the rest of the world always sees you as a sex worker. You always have the same weight of discrimination and marginalization,” Ela says.

I bring up the three-legged stool analogy and Ela suggests the modern performer is like a centipede with legs everywhere.

Beyond shooting scenes, feature dancing, and escorting, all choices available to any porn girl, Ela asserts, they have other responsibilities.

“They do porn, they do clips, they do camming, they do production for their friends, they do production for themselves, they do editing, they do every aspect of the business, every job that there is.

“They learn to do it themselves so that they can create their own content and own it and maximize their profits off of it.”

Often performers do all of this without agents, perhaps the most telling change in the profession today.

Of course, stigmas remain, she insists, and brings up escorting as the longstanding example. But a girl in the business today builds her own choices, especially in producing their own content. They “own it and maximize their profits off of it.”

So, the cammer is the new porn girl?

“The new cam girl and porn girl are growing to be one and the same,” Ela Darling concludes.

And don’t forget, she’s an entrepreneur.

That’s the new porn industry that is growing around us everyday.

 

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AEE 2019: Alexis Fawx, Part Two

by Rich Moreland, February 2019

This is the second installment of our interview with MILF porn superstar Alexis Fawx.

Once again we thank Star Factory for Alexis’ time.

All photos are credited to Kevin Sayers.

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Variety

How does Alexis feel about cam talent? Is camming a prep for shooting scenes for studio paychecks?

She starts us off with a little personal history. She cammed early on in her career and wanted to get back into it.

“I was working with Bang Bros, so I took a break from shooting all the time and went into camming full-time.” That gave Alexis the opportunity to go to massage school to supplement her education.

She’s never regretted the move.

“Camming’s great, honestly. If you have the extra time [and] want to make some extra money, you can hop online and start making that money from home. It’s so simple.”

Is the cam girl going to become the new porn girl?

“I think what you’re gonna find is the cam girl is gonna dip into shooting because it is gonna help make her name more [recognizable].” Alexis asserts. “I think it’s a good way to get your name out there.”

The popular MILF model talks about her personal situation.

My “private Snapchats and Only Fans,” Alexis says, represent “the wide range of my hustle as a performer, I could make money in so many directions I don’t even have to step my foot on set anymore [and] I love being on set, so don’t get me wrong.”

She brings up what most cam girls will tell you, it’s all about content.

“We’re producing our own content. We’re producing our own Only Fans, our Snapchats, ManyVids and stuff like that.” Alexis reminds us that “all the different cam sites” are available to every girl.

“It’s all related. If you are a performer or a cam girl or anything like that, you should definitely be cross-referencing everything. Having that variety is great.”

Producer and Performer

On the other hand, Alexis warns against putting all those proverbial eggs into one basket, particularly when it comes to social media, a cammer’s life blood. Citing Instagram as an example, Alexis points out that they can block you “and poof it’s gone, you lost your business. You’re off the face of the earth.”

Like any good money manager, Alexis insists on diversification when it comes to online offerings.

Incidentally, making it all work is to a girl’s advantage.

“Doing camming is teaching you how to be a producer [and] that makes you an even better performer.”

Of course, cam girls are communicating with the fans directly and in Alexis’s view, this has benefits for the studios.

“I always tell the producers and directors, look for the cam models, because they’re used to dirty talking and looking into the camera and pretending they’re getting a response back. They’re used to improvisation by themselves.”

The Amateur Stuff

I mention that camming and homemade porn seem to be inseparable. Alexis believes this is a good thing.

“Homemade porn is on the comeback now with private Snapchats and Only Fans. I sit at my house and do content all day. I get online and ask my fans what do you guys wanna see?”

For the most part, she works alone.

That is empowering, actually, and not difficult.

“You just do a bunch of those little videos, you throw it up there. You’re making money left and right.”

In the end, it comes down to the basics. “When you think of it, we’re all shooting our own content,” she says.

If that is true, then is the cam girl an updated version of amateur porn.

Alexis lights up with certainty at the question.

“Yeah! Way more because people are doing boy-girls and girl-girls. What amateur porn does is it gives the average person [the fan] a connection. And so, if people can connect, you can have a sale.”

Finally, I ask about the three-legged-stool of porn and is camming the fourth leg?

Alexis thinks so . . .

“You have shoots, escorting, feature dancing, [and] camming.”

Then she expands the possibilities by including “our private sites and our producing” into the income mix.

And don’t forget to think about convenience . . .

“I mean even some cam sites now are mobile, or can stream from your phone. If you can be mobile, you’re gonna be in everyone’s hand.”

“So, I think you probably have about five legs [on that stool].”

She’s nailed it, I think, and concludes with a positive note that defines the personality of Alexis Fawx.

“Rather than just looking at myself as a pornographer, I look at myself as a brand, a business. I mean turn your passions into businesses [that work] for you.”

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