Photographing Britain's Anonymous Craigslist Sex Parties

FYI.

This story is over 5 years old.

Travel

Photographing Britain's Anonymous Craigslist Sex Parties

Joseph Finegan has spent the past year acting as the middleman for men posting sex requests on the listings website, before going along and taking pictures at the meet-ups.
July 20, 2015, 2:00pm

All photos by the author

I started photographing strangers fucking around a year ago. I was still at college in Manchester at the time, and decided to start work on a project that involved taking pictures of people in their homes.

Going door-to-door didn't seem like the best idea, so I began looking on Craigslist, a listings site popular in the States that's full of local ads for everything from jobs and old tat that people want to sell, to appeals for someone to come round and deliver as many "hard, deep punches as my stomach can take."

Advertisement

Thing is, there was none of that on the page for my local area; the only entry with any posts was the one titled "Casual Encounters." As you may have guessed from that title, this section is for people (99.9 percent male) looking for casual sex or "NSA," as in "no strings attached." While the rest of the site for my area was barren, this page was updating itself four times an hour with at least 20 ads at a time.

One of the ads posted to Gumtree

"Give me your STDs," "Lose my anal virginity," and "Whore me out" were just a few of the adverts that caught my eye when browsing through the page. It was fascinating to see the lengths people were willing to go to to fulfill their fantasies, with requests ranging from those who wanted to be dominated or shit on, to those into "bug chasing," where men seek out other men who are HIV positive, before having sex with them to contract the disease themselves.

I began posting my own adverts offering free photo-shoots for anyone who wanted them. As a photograph of yourself was a top priority here, I included my own photograph to gain some attention, and it did just that. My email inbox was quickly inundated with responses, many of which were from men looking for a lot more than just a photograph: £300 [$468] to "hang out," a trip away, and my own sex slave were just a few of the things people offered me.

For the next six months I photographed these men in their homes and began to make a bit of a name for myself on the site. Those I met over this time varied from city professionals to builders, all of whom would say they were straight, some even married. The same men would then pose nude for the camera. Everyone I met, though slightly bizarre, were nice enough and just wanted some attention.

Advertisement

The work you see here started with an old cross-dresser who was staying in a hotel and wanted some new photographs to use to advertise herself online. When I arrived, the place was awful; she told me she stayed there for a few days every now and then to sell her body and make a bit of cash.

After the shoot she told me to stick around as she had a guy on the way and wanted some more shots with him. Next thing I knew, I was photographing a guy not much older than myself having sex with a man dressed as a woman who he'd never met before. As soon as they were done, the mood completely changed. The guy put his clothes back on and left without saying a word; it was as if what he'd been fantasizing about all this time suddenly became something he was ashamed of.

Over time, I found myself becoming the middleman for a number of Craigslist cross-dressers looking to be gang-banged. I'd reply to adverts, book their hotels and organize the guys who would be attending. It wasn't easy to begin with: most people didn't show, leaving me sat, alone, in a dingy hotel room wondering what the fuck I was doing with my life. But all that was worth it for the few times people did actually turn up, allowing me to capture the results of the words posted anonymously to this online cottaging community.

I'm a year into this project now and have managed to become a part of the community of people who live a second life online and go to great lengths to fulfill their sexual fantasies. However, I feel I still have a lot to do to do it justice.

Advertisement

Keep up with Joseph's project on his Instagram or his Tumblr, (NSFW).

See more photos below (there are plenty more on Joseph's tumblr, but we couldn't post them here because they're incredibly explicit images of people having sex):