Lux Aeterna Girl – Untitled (2014)

(I’m not 100% on the source for this. The original post appears to be a now defunct Tumblr named luxaeternagirl; thus I have credited it as such. If that’s incorrect, please let me know and I will edit the attribution.)

This isn’t a good image–not even close. The camera is off-center a foot and panned right about 15 degrees to attempt to compensate. I understand that after cars, bathrooms are some of the most difficult places to shoot due to them almost always being small and cramped but the two shadows in the upper left and right alone with the angle of the tub edge in the lower right corner is really effing distracting.

What I will say is that given what is probably a single incandescent overhead fixture, the skin tone here is very much on point. It has that natural peach tonality that you get from remembering the rule of thumb w/r/t skin tone: Red > Blue > Green.

The rendering of the skin is super important here–by getting it right, it makes the fact that both participants skin is flushed red more discernible. The edge of the left partner is obvious along the outside of the ears; while the partner on the right has reddening ears, faces and neck. It might almost be sunburn but with the pale complexion in tandem with body language, it seems more likely that she’s just extremely aroused.

And that is what distinguishes these images: chemistry. There is no questioning the primacy of their physical desire for one another. The partner on the right in the top image is doing the hesitant if-I-so-much-as-feel-your-skin-I-will-lose-any-trace-of-self-control; the way the partner on the left is leaning in, in an effort to draw the other out. The response in the second image doesn’t give in so much as beg for defenses to be laid to waste, to earn the victory by no other means except total surrender.

To me–chemistry like this is what is missing from 95% of erotic work. And it’s a shame, really… because were effort expended on facilitating it–less artful work (much like this) would shine in spite of it’s technical shortcomings because it would present a record of physical desire it would also simultaneously illustrate something true about the psychology of physical desire.

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