I swear. It takes me longer and longer every year to report back from the AVN convention because I run out of things to write about since the smorgasbord of raunch becomes mundane. Of course the second I post the photos on Flickr, the usual questions pop up like identifying the girls. You know because the masses need a new face to jerk off to and ironically they need a name to do so. Maybe I should be only photographing people I know or that everyone knows so that I don’t have to worry about labeling the photos.
The third year at the Hard Rock, I think security and the attendees have gotten it down pat. I didn’t really have any issues wading through crowd going where I wanted to go, knowing by intuition which doors were entrances and exits even though they were unmarked. Security was fine with the occasional flashing from the girls as long as a crowd didn’t build. I was rewarded with random boobs, bush, vaginas, and bungholes whenever I indicated that I was familiar with a girl’s work, especially from the newbies.
Some random observations:
Riley Reid was easily the most popular girl at the convention. Her outfits, interactions with her fans, and the essays she would write for her signings led to some extremely long lines. Ron Jeremy was again the most popular guy.
I spent a couple of hours at a strip club with Lexi Belle, Veronica Rodriguez, Missy Martinez, and several other LA Direct girls. It wasn’t as much fun as it sounded. I’m just not a fan of the strip club environment with the sleazy patrons and their eager hustlers. Veronica and her personal crew eventually rescued me from the club.
I’m not sure why, but Jayden Lee ended up naked in my room. I’m not bragging. I was just in the “accept now, question later” mode.
I was Katie St. Ives‘s designated hand slapper. She was wearing barely any fabric. Of course, several attendees considered that an invitation to grope her while she tried to wade through the crowd. So my job was to grope her before anybody else could.
The Awards was easier to shoot this year. Numerous friends won. The crowd was not as drunk. Red carpet was organized. That whole week was just a well oiled machine.
I watched the Broncos-Patriots game briefly with Holly Michaels. She was wondering who I was rooting for. I was perplexed that she would care since she was a Cardinals fan but she did… I actually didn’t care about the two teams since I figured they were going to get their asses kicked anyway in the Super Bowl by the Niners or Hawks.
Went to the first Exxxotica Ft. Lauderdale after it had moved from nearby Miami. Did it as a spur of the moment thing only telling my closest colleagues of pending plans. Okay, twittering them is still somewhat public. As for the show, the weekend was overtaken by storms and the dreary weather probably tempered attendance. Yet I didn’t see much difference between attendance compared to when the show was in Miami.
I was delighted to see Remy Lecroix and she is the main reason for my spur of the moment decision to go.
Her booth, Bangbros, was easily the most popular of the convention. Ron Jeremy was the most popular porn star as people lined up to see him. He looked much frailer than in recent years but that is understandable considering his recent heart issues.
Meeting Farrah Abraham of MTV’s Teen Mom was somewhat surreal. When I asked to take her photo, she had to get her manager’s clearance since I was media. Except the manager was not around, so I only got random candid shots of her. Other girls signing around her commented she was standoffish towards them. I’ve never watched either of her MTV shows so I don’t know if that was just her normal personality or she was disgusted by her surroundings.
Met a new yet familiar webcam model named Bridgette who was one of the most beautiful girls at the show. At first I thought it was because she looked a cross between Jana Jordan and Franziska Facella, but later on I realised she was a popular glamour model that my friends have shot.
Well despite last year proclaiming that I needed to take a break from going to the Venus show, I went to Berlin anyway because I wanted to see my European friends. Besides my best German friend, Malte, said he couldn’t afford going to America for the AVN show.
This year’s show was run by new organisers, and I appreciated the efforts they went to try to accommodate the attendees. When there were long lines for people to pick up their badges, staff met people in the lines with temporary badges (1 day) so they that could get into the show right away. They could pick up their 4 day badges later.
The show shrunk for the fourth consecutive year where I only spent most of my time between four booths.: my host booth (UKAP), Girlfriend Films’, Pierre Woodman’s, and Salma de Nora’s. The international presence was very low with fewer American, Czech, and Hungarian girls compared to previous years.
I followed these three Spanish girls around so much. I ended helping them network with my friends. My friends even joked that I had stalked those Spanish girls so much that they were now following me. That’s why we ended up calling it “Stalk”holm Syndrome. I don’t think they have done any American productions yet but they liked to exhibit themselves. If you asked nicely, they treated you nicely. Thank you, girls.
I made a quick stop in Chicago to visit Exxxotica this weekend. It was well attended show, especially on Friday and Saturday, and is much busier than my experiences with the Exxxoticas in Miami and Los Angeles. Again, the Ladies Free Friday promotion helped bring out the people after work. Girlfriends and wives were accompanying their men, and groups of women shopping were seen throughout the convention that day. Every porn star I talked to indicated that business was good and people were eagerly buying their merchandise.
The stage shows were stronger this year with Belladonna doing her aeriel silk show on the main stage this year and Stoya doing her aeriel ring show. Both performers have immensely improved from the previous year with their technique, strength, and tricks.
Another year another AVN convention. Except this time it was at new venue, the Hard Rock Hotel, that seemed more appropriate and receptive to hosting porn stars. The physical layout was at first confusing with multiple halls around the hotel. The number of exhibitors seemed to be about the same, the number of people that attended seemed to be about the same, but the physical space shrank making this the most cramped porn convention I’ve ever been to. Thursday was especially bad when they let the fans in even though they would not open up the fan hall until Friday.
Due to the crowds I was much more selective this year in choosing who to shoot concentrating on people that I like or people that I found attractive, which are sometimes mutually exclusive. I also didn’t bother with anyone where I couldn’t get through the hordes of crowds like the girls at the Wicked booth. The most popular people this year seemed to be the celebrities, Bree Olson and Ron Jeremy, and Jynx Maze was the most popular besides those two.
I decided to shoot my first AVN Awards since 2009. I was asked to do it as a favour for another photographer and I would only agree if I didn’t have to do the red carpet. So I was given ability to roam around and pull random people that I liked to set up one or two shots instead of doing the usual pornorazzi machine gun fire. Pictures seemed to come out better that way. I was happy to see Bobbi Starr, one of my favourite people, win Female Performer of the Year and was pleased to see Brooklyn Lee win Best New Starlet since she was so nice and sweet to her fans upon meeting them for the first time at the convention.
So of course the reason I go to these events year after year is to be able to see my friends again. Whether it’s my crew at IAFD, Mark Spiegler and the Spieglergirls, or the guys of adultdvdtalk.com, I always have a great time with them especially with the social lubricant known as alcohol.
Some highlights (or lowlights depending on your perspective):
Bonding with Ela Darling and being introduced to the concept of wizard rock.
Arguing with my friend, Malte, that it’s classier to put Missy Rhodes on top of the toilet rather than on the toilet seat.
Crashing this awesome penthouse suite because the bartender there thought Malte would make a good gay guy for one of her friends. #takeonefortheteam