May 15th, 2013

“Why did you photograph Sasha Grey. Isn’t she a porn star?”

I’m getting asked this question by some bewildered friends who are a little shocked I agreed to this assignment from ELLE UK.

Yes, she is that girl, the one who did the most hardcore, mind-boggling porno. You have the right person, it’s THAT Sasha Grey. But, besides being that girl in the porn industry, she’s a person. And most importantly to me, she’s a woman- somebody’s daughter, a being on the planet who wants to change the direction of her life and we ALL deserve that right.

I’d been connected with Sasha a few years ago by a mutual friend who thought we would have lots to talk about, but it was only now, in January of this year, that we got to meet in person.

I wanted to see who this woman was; what makes someone choose hardcore porn as a career, and who does that? Sasha does. Or did, anyway. She says it was an empowered choice, and I haven’t lived her life; so who am I to argue otherwise? I know my opinion couldn’t be more different than hers, but that doesn’t allow me to judge or dismiss her reality. No one has the right to tell you what you feel is wrong and that includes me.

My aim was to have an authentic experience of Sasha, sit with her, listen to her and photograph who I saw.

conversation-sasha-2

These pictures are who Sasha Grey is to me: she is sweet, gentle and playful, and I believe I got to see who Sasha is without the label of “PORN STAR” clouding my vision.

Can you try to look at Sasha without a label? I’m curious to know…

Images by @amandadecadenet, styling by @sorayadayani in the latest issue of ELLE UK.

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