ANY ARTIST, OR SOMEONE WHO HAS THEIR OWN VISION IN THIS WORLD, ONE THAT IS ACCEPTED AND MADE PUBLIC, SHOULD EXPECT TO BE EXPLOITED. IT'S JUST A FACT. THERE ARE THOSE WHO DREAM, AND THOSE WHO TACK THEMSELVES ONTO THE DREAMERS, AND GO ALONG FOR THE RIDE. YOU DECIDE WHO YOU ARE, AND FACE THAT PERSON, EVERY TIME YOU LOOK IN THE MIRROR. - Joe Oppedisano, photographer
As mentioned in our editors letter on March 7, today we bring you Joe Oppedisano as you never saw or heard him before. With no limitations, Joe talks about his life, his work, his successes and disappointments. Today Joe Oppedisano treats us on some homemade lemonade, in his open letter to the world, and some of his latest work featuring his partner Chris... censored this time...
"I had just released Testosterone, which was an accident. It was a book of my work as a photographer that made me very public in the world of homo-erotica.It was an incredible ride. Bruno Gmuender, my publisher, really made me push myself, and in turn, I pushed them, to show them, and prove my theory, that a photo does not have to be in your face nudity, to be considered a turn on. I like my viewer to use their brain, when you look at one of my photos, I want you to imagine you are in the situation, you are there, and if you see a hot man in a suit, imagine what lies underneath."
"My second book, Uncensored, published by 10percent.com, Provocateur, was in response to a blog post I saw where someone said I was a one trick pony, I had one style, and, to quote them "he is old and should die".I've learned to read very few blog posts about myself, and also learned to not believe half of anything I read about anything anymore.Uncensored was shot to look and feel like you were reading Italian Vogue, only the photo shoots were of men, and the shoot had gotten out of hand. Instead of the dark, grittiness of Testosterone, Uncensored is high gloss, retouched, and sparkles. I think of it like it's a comic book, almost unreal-reality."
"My background was as a fashion editor. I worked my ass off from the age of 18, got a job at a magazine at 20, and by 24 had worked for Vanity Fair, W, WWD, L'Uomo Vogue, Vogue, etc. . At 30, I picked up a camera, and changed careers, becoming a fashion photographer. By 32, I had shot my first underwear campaign, and was off and running. By 38 I had my first book published. By 41, I had a documentary dvd, Knockout out, and was ready to publish my second book. The last thing I am is a one trick pony. If anything, I'm a fighter, and growing up from the age of 17 alone in New York City, I've seen and done pretty much everything. So, Uncensored is, in a way, an autobiography of my sexual exploits."
"I was a hooker, did porn, all while working as a fashion stylist. I had hit rock bottom, was wiped out, and felt like the most jaded queen I knew...which is saying a LOT. I started smoking crystal meth, and it became a daily habit. One I still struggle with daily, but, I can say, honestly, that I am now clean, and have no intention of destroying myself and going down that road again. I owe it to not me, but my friends, my two ex's, and my family...and myself. It's hard, when you succeed early on in life, to try and understand why me, and live up to your own, and everyone else's expectations. So, instead, I decided to escape by sitting home, doing drugs, and having sex with anyone on Manhunt. But I'm back."
"I moved out of New York City, my home of 25 years, and moved upstate, where I have rediscovered myself, and my past, as a country boy. In the time I've had to relearn who I was, I fell in love, and as expected, he's as insane as I am. This fall, when all of my contracts with all of my publishers ran up, I decided, not to feel exploited by anyone ever again. I started my own business, and starting this summer, you will see a whole new Joe Oppedisano. More optimistic, with a sense of humor, and showing the real me, what I really am about. I've gotten kicked off Facebook so many times, I decided to start writing a blog, I needed a place to vent, and as a writer, photographer and drug addict, I started jouncensored.blogspot.com, the thoughts of a mad man."
"My boyfriend, Chris and I started a web site, which will be launched in April, called mydaddyNme.com Being an exhibitionist, and knowing my work and history, you can imagine the content...just get ready...it's insane! I am also printing t-shirts of some of my more classic photographs, and have decided to do create a series of books, paperback, so less expensive, but fewer printed editions, so collectable, called Fairytales, which should be out by summer, and incorporate my love of story telling, fashion and porn. Kind of Disney meets Tom of Finland."
"So, basically, the moral of my story, and my advice to everyone is, everything happens for a reason. Life is not fair, and you must fight for what you want. The old saying, "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade", is my new motto. So, I'm gonna go squeeze the bitter lemons I have left, and hopefully, you'll be drinking some sweet lemonade, a la Oppedisano very soon. Thank you, everyone who has supported me and keeps me motivated". - Joe -B-
JOE OPPEDISANO | BEAUTIFULMAG