2009/2014, Then/Now

This first pic (click to enlarge it) was taken in 2006, only six weeks after leaving my last boyfriend. I was 30 years old, weighed 120 pounds, and had 7-8% body fat. I was starving. I guess you can see that though. From 2002 until 2009 I was stuck at this weight, because of the malnutrition, stress, and unhappiness I was experiencing (often from my own bad and/or naïve choices). I will explain all that in the next few paragraphs. The only good that came from that time is that I somehow survived it without killing anyone (including myself) and without declaring bankruptcy. This pic was for a theatrical production, hence the dramatic hair and makeup.

Five years ago (nearly to the day today), I did my first porn scene. I figured it would be a good idea to take stock and see some then/now pics and to reflect on how much everything has evolved in that time. I will share a few of the pics I submitted in March/April 2009 to get the job to do the scene in mid-April 2009, as well as a couple stills from that first solo project. Then I’ll share some pics I took five minutes ago…

In this first collage from 2009 (click it to enlarge) I was 32 years old, weighed 130 pounds, and had 8% body fat. I was still dancing 40 – 60 hours per week at that point. I was bulking up a tad somehow doing P90X, but my diet, although improved, was still terrible. I didn’t have time to make food (because I was working part time jobs during the week while dancing in Charlotte on week nights, then driving all over the South to dance  in clubs on the weekends), so I often got by on protein shakes. I ended up in the hospital three separate times from 2007 – 2009 for exhaustion and malnutrition. I remember driving all over Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Florida, and DC to perform. I was JAMMING in all the clubs, and in retrospect I don’t know how I had so much explosive, endless energy while running on food and sleep deprivation fueled by intense anxiety. While performing, I was generally having a fabulous time spinning, twirling, falling, and flipping. But I was also still burdened with the fraud debt I had gotten from my last boyfriend. At that point I was living with two female roommates (who were awesome people, by the way), and trying to figure out how not to grind myself into dust from all the dancing, driving, skipped meals, and financial duress. My heart was closed. I was afraid of people and love.

This was during the peak of the Great Recession, and the clubs were faltering. Lots of desperate people who were freshly jobless saturated an already crowded dance scene, and the tipping patrons had been decimated. Those were some pretty bleak times. Not to mention I was still contending with a combination of anorexia and dysmorphic disorder. I really don’t miss that chaotic argument inside my head. From any moment to another I was in danger of gaining or losing weight. It was a labyrinthine, psychotic morass. But my family was still intact at least. Grampa was still alive; Mom, Gramma, and my sister were getting along very well; my uncles were nowhere to be seen; and Dad hadn’t yet had his multiple strokes. I had just come up with the idea that would evolve into my website (an idea which grew immediately out of my unsatisfactory experience with these first two porn scenes). It was such a creatively dynamic time. From 2010 – 2012 I did about 20 more scenes for other houses before shifting gears to shoot about 80 for my own company (nearly 10 of which I was in). I focused on escorting and fitness in 2013.

It is 2014, and now I am 37 years old, I weigh 165 pounds, and I am at 12% body fat. I took the pics in this second collage today, only a short while ago (click the tumbnail to the right to enlarge it). I had gone through a process of trying to gain mass from 2010 until 2012 that left me with an unseemly amount of body fat. I cannot look at pics/footage of myself from this time frame – I looked (to me) like a shapeless mass of lard. I had successfully evicted the anorexic voice, but the dysmorphic one remains. That’s an improvement, but there is still internal work for me to do. I spent the entirety of 2013 trying to lean down by religiously performing High Intensity Interval Training. My aerobic capacity improved, and my body fat went down, but there came a point where I simply couldn’t get any leaner. I learned it was because of the mass gaining eating schedule I was on: Six meals spread throughout the day is great for gaining weight, but terrible for losing body fat. At the end of 2013 I kept working out hard, started an intermittent fasting eating schedule, and had cool sculpting performed (I don’t recommend it: After four months it is reversing itself, and the additional leanness I achieved was expensive, subtle, and temporary. I am utterly disappointed.).

Putting on weight quickly like what I did from 2010 – 2012 is called doing a dirty bulk, wherein you eat a great deal (and often) to gain mass while lifting heavier weights, but much of the new mass isn’t lean, and has to be shed later to reveal the muscle gains. I was a wreck in some ways: I had purposefully tapered nearly all the dancing out of my life, because I was terrified I would burn off all my muscle gains from the crazy amount of cardio I was doing (plus I was having a lot of arguments with my dance partner, I was exhausted from working so much to pay off the fraud debt, and I was getting bitter about being the person who had to pay for everything for the dance company). So I went without my primary form of creative expression in order to focus on fitness. So be it. No regrets. I am interested in doing one-man shows again. If I continue dancing/performing at all, it will be by myself again.

At any rate, I got my own apartment, which is lovely. I am very happy, and I am still friends with my former roommates (who both have husbands and kids now). I paid off my fraud debt, and got Lasik surgery. I paid off one car and then traded it in (after driving the poor creature to death) for a new one. I have savings. My financial situation is much improved (and so is the general economic situation for many people around the country). But my family has fallen apart. Grampa passed away, my uncles showed up to undermine the relationship between Mom and Gramma (who now do not speak to each other… EVER), and my sister and Gramma are estranged once again. Dad has had multiple strokes, and although he is much better than he was initially, he will never regain his full capacities. So improvement, stability, and growth in one part of my life is offset by chaos where once there was a smidge of order. But all of that is outside my ability to control or alter, so I have to do what I can for me (which is generally to just stay out of all of it). I married myself, and decided that if the opportunity for love presented itself, I wouldn’t reject it automatically on general principle. Dating has been a disappointment, but my vows to myself helped me to guiltlessly make the choices that were best for me.

My site occupied most of my energy and attention from Summer 2011 until Winter 2013. It was magic. I got to work with some brilliant friends/collaborators/sponsors, some enchanting models, and some delightful experiments in gay adult video. We made some really stunning work, and I am very proud of it. I wish the world could have seen it; however, I never could figure out how to effectively deliver the material to an audience. I overestimated how motivated audiences were to pay for what we made, and I underestimated how ridiculously complex the porn machine is in the background. I am trying not to be discouraged that yet another one of my gorgeous babies has been stillborn. My ideas are so… fucking genius. Sorry, I’m not going to be humble in this: I’m smart, and I have amazing ideas. I don’t always do well with delivery, but the idea, the execution, and the purpose will be flawless… I wish I had connected with some individual/organization/group that could have helped with insight about getting our art (and our scenes at my site were exquisite little gems) presented better. But the scenes still exist, so perhaps one day they will find a life and an audience? I think they were far too far ahead of their time, to be frank. We were so disruptive on so many levels that I don’t think people knew what to do with us. We were a round peg that could not fit in a square hole.

Today I submitted pics to do scenes again (click the thumbnail at left to enlarge it). That is why I am posting this entry today: It’s rather like a cycle that has come back around to its beginning. This time I am not looking to go into porn to escape from financial duress, to make the world better, or to learn how it all works. Honestly, I couldn’t give less of a shit anymore. Today I just want to update the image of myself that is floating around on the intrawebzes. I am financially comfortable. I don’t care about saving anyone from their self-destructive behavior. I don’t care about exploitation in the industry. I know how it works, both in front of and behind the cameras. I just want to refine my visual branding. All that other noise is no longer my concern. I did what I could do, and it didn’t amount to anything.

So, this time I go into doing scenes with realistic expectations. I’m not a porn activist anymore. I don’t care if you do bareback – if you’re that stupid and stubborn, then you kinda deserve whatever you get. Fuck off. I don’t care if you’re 18 and getting paid $100 for a scene. I don’t care anymore if the houses do this, that, or the other. I have to look out for myself this time. I won’t give complex interviews or answer provocative questions. No one cares. It turns out that it is just porn after all. I’m just a model (if anyone wants to work with me – I may have burned too many bridges the first time around). You’re just someone who wants to cum for free in 30 seconds. Whatever.

For better or worse, I am more concerned now about doing the most I can with the time remaining to me in this career (I estimate I have another 5-7 years in me, 10 if I feel like stretching it that far). I am more interested in buying a 5- to 20-acre plot of land in/near the Blue Ridge Mountains, commissioning a tiny house, living off the grid, and finding peace in self-sufficiency away from the expectations of anonymous people. I’m getting very tired very quickly of everything I do having to revolve around what I look like. I am concerned about my own future stability, evolution, and transition. In 2009 I was still an idealist who wanted everything he did to have meaning that would improve everything for everyone everywhere. Now I care only for my clients, my friends, my family, and myself. I know that’s selfish, and for the first time in my life I’m completely okay with that. Perhaps if I’d looked out for myself better over these years I could have avoided many of the pitfalls and problems I encountered (or in many instances created for myself).

So I’ll say it one last time, and then I’m done: Do only the porn that uses condoms, make all your choices from empowerment not desperation, stick to your values, and ALWAYS remember gratitude.

Author: Devon Hunter

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  1. You were beautiful and are beautiful. Your thighs could crush my skull. I’m glad you are finding peace in yourself. The work is always ongoing.

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  2. Thank you. Yes, it is a journey that ends only when you do.

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  3. Thanks for sharing. I’ve been looking forward to a post like this one. Yours is a story of strength and survival, and of course that there are many tragedies and events going on under the surface that we never know about. I’m sorry to hear that you went through so much financially, in your career, and with your family. To me this honesty is what sets you apart from the tons of other performers out there. There’s a light that shines inside all of us. Never let anyone put it out, least of all yourself 🙂

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  4. Hey Max – finally accepting some compassion from myself for myself is what writing this helped me do. I have never done such a thorough analysis of then/now, and what I realize in retrospect is that there was nothing wrong with my appearance in 2009 (but that was impossible to see at the time). I have commented in entries before that I need time/distance to see myself. This entry shines a light on that: It has taken five years for me to realize I was okay back then. I don’t want it to take that long to realize I’m okay now. My appearance in 09 was a slimmer version of me, my appearance now is a buffer version of me, but ultimately both are just fine. My build now is my goal, for the most part. I don’t want to get bigger, and the prospect of getting leaner without steroids is looking less likely. So… time to finally go into maintenance mode and be content for a change.

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  5. Thank you for sharing this reflection, it’s inspirational.
    The world is a cold place, it’s nice that you are focusing on yourself and on your loved ones, because random people on line just want whatever they can get from you and won’t care about your wellbeing. Also I’m glad you are stating how flawless the Antheros project was! This has given me hope for the future, a future in which adult performers will be seen at through a more organic, human, realistic perspective, as opossed as the plastic shallow ideas that reign the industry. And yes, you have to play their game, but placing your gains above anything else.

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  6. Hi Devon, I hope this message brings a smile to you, because I think you sell yourself short when you express a (natural, I guess…) current burnout about your previous idealism. Because, like porn, the Internet lives forever — I just happened upon your 2008-9 blogs today, and found them absolutely marvelous. Your writing is so insightful, and in many ways timeless. Your desire to make the world a better place is undiminished because the texts live on. You can take comfort from your early-found wisdom as long as you live, because you’ve lived more experiences in an average year than most people have in a lifetime. And take it from me, a former hottie in his 60s now: There’s still fun to be had! You can embrace gardening, Broadway, having sex only once a week and being a mentor to poor young waifs with no clue. It’s all more fun than you’d think! Don’t go completely off the grid, you’re still the most interesting person in the room. Thanks for your heartfelt wisdom, and enjoy! Bruce in (where else…) Palm Springs

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  7. Devon –
    1. The clips someone shared with me from Anteros Media were really beautiful and visually stunning. Kudos

    2. After reading your entrys above it makes me like you even more than I did before as a human being. Only good fortune to whatever you set out to do. Wish I lived closer. You sound like the type of person I’d want have as a friend.
    Mega kudos to you.

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    • Thank you, AJ! I am always happy to get warm words of support… xoxoxo

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