Mitchell's gay art. The male erotic art and drawings of Mitchell and his thoughts about the artists and images that inspire him.
Mitchell's drawings depict 'Men Being Put in Their Place' and explore fetishes such as male bondage, domination and spanking.
To my readers......
I'm playing with the mitchmen blog format to improve the display of landscape pictures and text readability. If you see a post that's wrecked, please post a comment against it so i can fix it.
Thanks for visiting Mitchell's blog (Feb 18th 2018)
Sergey is a one hit wonder - at least I'm not aware of
any other work by him although the quality of this set suggests there
ought to be others (any info on this from my readers?). I have included him
because, for me, this little set is a significant fetish work of a
fairly extreme type and it's a surprisingly rare example of the
'Cowboy captured by Indians' scenario.
The whole series consists of
10 pictures and I have included a selection below with links to the remainder at the appropriate point in the article.
The opening scene shows the dramatic capture of the
Cowboy who appears to be wearing revealing skin tight trousers. His rearing horse is nicely drawn although it seems
a bit odd for an Indian to use a lassoo. The style conveys a real
flavour of Western Comic Strip action, despite a slightly disjointed
The young cowboy is roughly tied up and simultaneously
stripped of his pants. The subjugation of the struggling victim
always has an erotic kick for me andI must say, I like
background desert landscape
Visually it's a bit confusing and
there's some improbable body contortions here. Foot fetishists
can just make out the left-hand Indian's boot planted firmly on the
Cowboy's shoulder blades, contributing to his anguished expression.
Another is using his foot to grind the exposed ass, while clearly
contemplating other possibilities. This boot action and the faces in some
of the pictures are reminiscent of Etienne's early work
There appears to be an enhanced contrast applied to these pictures (presumably to clarify the image, post scanning).
The result is not subtle but it certainly brings out Sergey's
sophisticated technique for highlighting musculature.
Another fine action image, enhanced by the wildly expressive depiction of the horse, which seems to share the Cowboy's yearning to escape. The compact, V-shaped composition subtly underlines this shared predicament. In between the arms of the 'V' sits the almost demonic, brutal captor/master, who is depicted with immense strength and power (note the foot again). The bodies all shimmer with gleaming sweat,
although I suspect the originals may have been more delicately
shaded. This effect certainly brings out the brutal tugging
of the rope (in case you didn't notice).
Back at camp the cowboy is restrained between posts for
torture with cactus needles (including a graphic piercing scene) and
is then used for target practice by the bowmen.
St Sebastian in a stetson!
As you can see, the scan quality of this sequence is rather poor. The restraining
posts with their zig-zag decoration are inspired by Tom of Finland's 'Jack in the
Jungle' (below). Inevitably, the static restraint method drains the drama
somewhat and to be fair, Tom's version is no more successful.
Tom of Finland - Post scene from Jack in the Jungle II
It's interesting how themes sometimes recur within
individual letters of my A-Z and this series culminates in another fiery scene to set alongside those of Sean and Saj previously
reviewed. Sergey's flames are suggested rather than accurately depicted. In traditional comic book fashion he exaggerates his 'hero in danger' moment by creating an amazing inferno from what was the modest pile of wood in the previous
picture. No doubt relief is at hand.
Sergey's pictures are littered with wayward perspectives
and imprecise anatomy but he's clearly an artist of some
accomplishment and his imagery generates plenty of excitement. It's a
shame that no other work by him seems to be available to us.
(Article updated Nov 2015)
For other images of this type visit Pax's 'At The Stake' group
For previous articles in this series click on the A-Z label below
Sepp of Vienna's work features the rough and sleazy
culture of skinheads and bears and yet, paradoxically, his images are
highly polished and neat with an air-brushed, shiny-skinned, sensual
style that echoes traditional 'glamour' imagery.
Sepp - Waders
Much of Sepp's work (like this group of 'waders')
appears to be formally posed portraiture of fetish boys. There's a
parallel here to Tom of Finland's later work, but Sepp's boys clearly
don't take themselves as seriously as those leather men and closer
inspection reveals these three men are being very naughty indeed.
Pause to dwell on the liquid swirling around their waders! We are
presented with the ingredients here to imagine a filthy scenario for
ourselves, which is very much in the traditions of male eroticism.
Sepp - Eat
This picture is more overtly erotic with chunky figures,
a hint of rubber fetish and a Marine's hat to set the imagination
running. The wristwatch is an intriguing detail but I can't decipher
the Gothic tattoo (Siut?). It's a daring subject in a way and
captures a certain intensity, but doesn't exactly draw the viewer in.
Sadly the proliferation of mainstream porn tends to devalue
straightforward images like this but you have to admire the way Sepp
executes the tricky perspective with aplomb.
Sepp - Leaky
Here we have fetish-a-plenty - uniforms, torn vests,
sodden jockstraps and forced submission. It's a memorable image and
yet the spark of sexiness is somehow rather fleeting. It somehow
lacks life but I can't pin down whether it's the relaxed, smiling, self-conscious pose
of the 'M' or the neat, crisp finish that's responsible.
It's interesting that Sepp and Sean should come up next
to each other in my A-Z, since they represent opposite extremes in
artistic terms. Sepp's images are sensual, immaculately drawn and
technically correct and the men he depicts are believable and
attractive. Sean's work is much more erratic in quality with lapses
into cartoonery and hit and miss perspectives. Sean relies on his
subject matter for the erotic impact more than the style. However
there's a life and excitement in his work, a spontaneity, that is
missing, or perhaps masked in Sepp's. I would happily hang Sepp's
drawings on my wall but I would prefer to commune with Sean's
pictures in a more private place!
Sepp protects his copyright and his work is scarce on
the web. He has a website, Sepp
of Vienna, which has a large gallery but the images are very
For previous articles in this series, click on the A-Z label below
For many years I only knew Sean's work through his
gang-bang, comic strips which appeared in the Meatmen collections of
the 90's. These youthful sexual romps didn't hit many of my buttons
and they wouldn't qualify for this survey either, despite the
occasional bondage references. Then I discovered his specialist
fetish work (particularly for Bound and Gagged Magazine) and this
completely changed my opinion of him as an artist.
I have a great liking for straight forward, simple,
bondage imagery and this is an excellent example. Technically, I
think it's one of Sean's best pictures, with no obvious flaws in the
anatomy or the perspective (which is typically ambitious). This hairy
man and his buddy tied up and sweating make a great, sexy subject.
Sean has a great feel for the apprehension, fear and excitement which
characterise the authentic bondage experience. Sean's detailing is
meticulous. The long hair and unshaven, muscular bodies of these
characters suggest they are real men, rough and tough. Untamed bikers
perhaps, but about to be challenged by a far different, equally
uncompromising, approach to manhood. Note the curious, ghostly
appearance of the biker's cock. I love too the incongruous, classy
flourishes of the scrunched up sheet, which they are sitting on. This
picture is full of confident style.
This image is quite well known and in a modern context
perhaps looks a little tired, maybe too staged, but Sean has worked
hard here on the atmospherics and story-telling. Notice how he has
shifted the captive to one side, partly out of the frame, so he does
not obscure the shiny motorcycle, which is so lovingly detailed you
can almost smell the leather and the engine oil. This gives the
picture a strange, off-balance appearance but the dual focus suggests
the biker is equally interested in both his machine and men's asses.
The man tied over the motorcycle is as well built as the
bike, judging by his powerfully-shaped, muscular legs. His shaved
undercarriage suggests he is not a novice. Just as well. This
unnatural position would probably be described in the manner of the
shipping forecast as being 'moderately uncomfortable, becoming
increasingly painful'. However, he may not have to wait that long for
The placing of the biker on the far side of the picture
is another oddity, it does not immediately suggest dominance, in fact
he doesn't look that intimidating but we and the captive can both
watch, excited, as slowly and deliberately, he draws his thick belt
out through the loops of his jeans, preparatory to addressing those
hairless, totally unmarked, virgin-white buttocks and thighs. The
wheel-marks in the dirt floor provide a wry commentary on the
This spectacular image is not a 'snuff' picture, but an
initiation in which the 'victim' suffers nothing much worse than a
severe fright and singed pubes (see footnote*). The arching, agonised
body pose of the captive is a great image in it's own right, but the
addition of the roaring flames make it truly memorable. You might
like to compare this image with Saj's
Human Torch . There's a notable similarity in the 'erotic pose',
but the treatment of the fire is quite different. Sean emphasises
flames rather than burning. The on-lookers in this picture are
similar characters to those who populate his sex romps and for me,
they seem ill at ease and out of place in this more serious and
sinister tale. The text calls for thrilled delight rather than shock
and astonishment, but perhaps Sean thought that might create too
cruel an image.
*This is an illustration for the story CT Hospitality by
'Rob'. In the story this unwitting initiate, having witnessed some
(apparently) cruel punishments is tied up himself and smeared with a
'fire' ointment which, on ignition, flares spectacularly, but
briefly. Unknown to him it also forms a protective barrier preventing
burning of the skin, but I wouldn't advise anyone to try it at home!
This scene looks like an initiation too. The morning
after the night before finds a nice-looking, buffed-up cowboy,
lassoed and detained for further examination by his mature hook-up.
Who'd have thought that this cuddly, bearded gent would have such
designs? The image strikes a nice balance between incongruous humour
and a nastier edge for those who want to see it (there's a lot more
wax left in his assortment of candles)! The curious, industrial-like
setting is a world away from bikers and dungeons, but still suitably
rough-edged and isolated. Sean's detailing is a delight, even down
to the iron brackets on the bed end and the discarded top sheet lying
crumpled on the floor.
Most of these drawings were produced to accompany
stories written by other people and without the text it's sometimes
hard to be sure of their real meaning or to tell how much they
reflect Sean's own personality. I haven't uncovered the real story
behind this image, but it looks like a group of hunky, young workmen
have stumbled over an S&M operating theatre complete with
patient, ready to go. The leader's opportunist, tit-tweaking shocks
his companions, (another 'innocents abroad' scenario) but the array
of nasty instruments on hand and the contorted expression on the
patient's face reveal the missing 'medics' to be engaged in a far
The cold, hygienic, metal surface of the trolley is all
part of the 'scene', as intimidating to the captive as the dankest,
darkest dungeon. Sean embellishes the idea by showing the victim's
reflection in the shiny metal surface. It's an example of his
interest in materials and textures and can be seen seen also in the
clothing here and the sheets and flames in previous pictures.
Sean's not the first artist to show a captive with
medical face mask (see my
A-Z entry on 'Rex' for example) but by using this unusual angle
he creates a uniquely powerful impression of the face being trapped
within the plastic cup and despite the comic-style rendering it
implies a desperately dangerous experiment. Sean's drawing style
often veers between cartoonery and semi-realism in these
extreme-fetish pictures so you are not sure just how serious it's
meant to be. I cannot say whether this apparent 'pulling of punches'
reflects publishing codes or Sean's own sensibilities.
Time and again in Sean's fetishistic work he doesn't
simply portray sexual activity, but there also seems to be an attempt
to capture something more - a sense of sex as something dark and
mysterious, reeking of danger. He sometimes suggests it indirectly,
by showing shocked bystanders or wide eyed captives, clearly out of
their depth but unable to escape from the painful intentions of
knowing, calculating partners. In this image the threatened cruelty
reaches out to shock us directly. Again, I don't know the underlying
story - is it real threat or just a test? - but we can draw
conclusions from the intimidating way Sean chose to portray it. Even
the cartoon-y rendering of the struggling victim's face (again)
doesn't quite dehumanise him enough to totally defuse the horror. The
sadistic 'M' wielding the hot iron runs counter to stereotype, he
would be a hot ticket in most gay venues while the youth of his
assistant is equally surprising and hard to reconcile with the
action. It's a stark and surprising contrast to the romping orgies
and fun sex that characterise Sean's Meatmen comic strips and a world
away from Tom of Finland's work, for example.
I could not leave Sean without a spanking picture, it's
a subject that he has visited often and this picture is a good
example, It comes from the comic story 'Biff' and the drawing style
is typical of the slightly disappointing,'commercial' side of Sean.
Somehow the figures and the faces are not quite right, there's a
slight skewing effect (which is often a result of drawing with the
paper angled away from the line of vision). The whole thing has a
casual, cartoon-y feel. Even so, there is a tremendous sense of
energy in the picture, this is one hell of a whupping and you don't
need the hand marks to know it! Sean's spanking images often depict
positions where landing a telling blow is physically impossible and
this is no exception, but they are always energetic and fierce, so
much so that you can't help thinking that the artist himself is
emotionally involved in the scene. Look at the faces and you will see
malice and anger and suffering pouring out of the picture. You can
enjoy the erotic pleasure of revenge or pity as you will, but you
might also ponder: whose anger and whose suffering is really captured
here? And why does it speak to us so powerfully?
Sean's work is so extensive that making a truly
representative selection would require more time than I am able to
give it, so I have made a selection of interesting, quality pieces
with some that are perhaps less well known. Despite technical
limitations he has a distinctive, characteristic style and in the
best pictures there's a dramatic tension and erotic charge that is
quite astonishing. At times, his challenging imagery puts him
alongside the likes of Martin of Holland as tormentor of our
consciences and darkest desires. Occasionally there's even a sense of
glimpsing the artist's innermost self.
Although Sean is no longer with us, his friends have set
up a website 'Sean – The
Artist' and placed an archive of his work there. The sketches and
annotations on familiar drawings give an interesting insight into the
creative and publishing process. They also tell you a great deal
about the man himself, his life and attitudes. Sean had catholic
tastes (when it came to selecting subjects for images anyway) and if
you are interested in the more challenging outposts of fetish and sex
you will find examples here. However, I strongly advise anyone
downloading the archive to check it's contents carefully and make
sure that you really want to keep all
the 'oddments' on your computer.
For earlier posts in this series, click on the A-Z label below