For the past 16 years, The Everything to Do with Sex Show has taken over a packed convention center in Toronto. Over the weekend, "North America's largest consumer romance show" brings with it hundreds of booths featuring everything from swingers clubs to adult film stars, cam girls, and sex toy distributors with bins full of discount dildos and novelty penis pasta. There are burlesque performers, latex fetish wear fashion shows, and blowjob workshops, as well as a bar where people can buy watered-down caesars as they watch a gimp in a Mexican wrestling mask get his nipples zapped with a cattle prod.
Events like these are usually photographed in a paparazzi, in-your-face style. But I wanted to do the opposite and connect with the people who are participating on both sides: the fans and the people working there.
Instead of digitally snapping away without asking permission, I documented the show using traditional portraiture. I wanted the portraits to seem intimate without being intrusive or explicit, compared to most of the photos you would see from such a sexually charged atmosphere.
The project shows the diversity of people who are interested in "sex" and "romance" across age, gender, and race.