In the boot
I’ve never felt particularly at home in my skin. As a teenager I was painfully skinny – I got used to washing the sand out of my eyes. I’ve never had a hairy chest and my body had always appeared worryingly feminine, for someone with a sexual orientation that is so entirely standard issue. I have always hated all sports except for those involving noisy exhausts. Drawing, reading and writing have always appeared so much more attractive as pursuits than those that involve exercise.
I surprise myself by agreeing to pose for Anastasia. Self-acceptance at every level is vital if you want to be happy in this life, and posing has been part of this process. I’m certainly no longer God’s gift, and I’m kidding myself to think that I ever might have been. But looking around I can see that many men at 48 have bodies that have not taken the years so well – I thank my genes and my maker, and celebrate by getting naked in the park at the end of my road.
The Mercedes is very dear to me, and it only seemed right that it should be included in my portrait. This Mercedes has been a part of my life since it was new, and I was new. It is central to the memory of every childhood day out, and holidays and the boot was an obvious place to sit during many a picnic. Sitting in the boot was a return to that childhood, though I don’t quite remember ever doing it naked.