Sexuality, pornography and masturbation are all extremely tight-lipped subjects of taboo in many places. Restriction of openness about these topics can cause adults to feel uncomfortable, embarrassed or ashamed about their sexuality – in an attempt to debunk the social stigma surrounding human sexuality I reached out to Wesley Woods, the 2017 Grabby Awards Performer of the Year.
I imagine it’s quite a professional atmosphere when you’re first starting to shoot a scene with someone, but have you ever experienced someone not be professional on set?
WW: There are definitely a few who have certain personality traits that aren’t enjoyable to work with – I’ve witnessed temper tantrums and those I refer to as, the dick divas – who think extremely highly of themselves. I’ve learned that it’s best to not say and/or do anything to heighten the situation if things go strange on set – I’m pretty easy going and don’t try to not involve myself with on-set drama. I grew up on a ranch with my 2 brothers and we had tons of chores to accomplish throughout my childhood life – you could say we were taught a strong work ethic at a young age. I’ve carried that into my adult life and with anything I do – porn is no different. I’m grateful for the opportunity to work and think it’s pretty cool to be a fantasy for people. I think for some models it would be best if they learned to sit down and shut up – well, squat on the dick and moan!
There are lots of issues within the LGBTQ+ community. One that I’d like to discuss is the continuous perpetuation of the perfect body type that leads to an overabundance of eating disorders and steroid abuse. Do you feel gay porn contributes to that?
WW: There are many areas of entertainment/social media that contribute to the perpetuation of “the perfect body.” There are certain porns that add to this and there are certain porns that celebrate diversity – do not follow or watch people on social media who reinforce and strengthen the toxic ideals that make you feel bad about yourself, that’s the best advice I can give. I approach life with an open mind and heart – we are all fully capable of love regardless of age, weight, height – gravitate toward people who awaken your soul, not those that add to the socially problematic reminders of what you’re “suppose to be.”
What’s been your relationship with nudity and your own body and how has it progressed since you started your career?
WW: My first experience with public nudity was in the middle school locker rooms – football season. Of course it was shocking and nerve racking – not to mention I was beginning to come to terms with my sexuality and didn’t want anyone to know or find out about me! I’ve since be in many locker rooms because of the different sports I’ve played growing up – I think it made me as comfortable as one could be in their own skin – at that time in their life. Nudity is now part of my job and looking a certain way is a requirement. There’s some days I feel like I am hot snot and others where I feel like a cold booger on a paper plate. I think it’s easy to feel you aren’t enough in some capacity – I’m currently working on self care and quietening the voices in my head that say otherwise. Porn has liberated me from some of those insecurities. The body is not an achievement and the real work is done on ourselves as people.
Sex – especially gay sex – has so much stigma associated with it. Do you think gay porn helps to normalise sexuality?
WW: The stigma that you’re going to hell for having gay sex?! The stigma that you are less of a man with a penis in your butt?! The stigma that I’m somehow different, as a human, for enjoying someone of the same sex? Here’s the deal – what’s normal for me may not be normal for someone else – what’s normal for them may not be normal for another. We need to stop trying to force “normal” onto people – normal should never be the goal, I never want to be normal! Normal, whatever that is, sounds boring!
What are your thoughts on sex education (or the lack thereof) that happens in schools that tends to avoid gay sex and all its intricacies?
WW: Education as a whole is pretty outdated. There’s no need to know my timetables – there’s a device for that. Teach me adulting 101 – I’m just now finally figuring out that equation. As far as sex is concerned, I believe you have to seek it out for yourself, we are all wired differently. But, yes – it would be nice to teach children different perspectives on life, we aren’t all living the heteronormative way.
What are the positive aspects of porn that you’d like more people to know about that perhaps fans or other people don’t tend to realise?
WW: Porn allowed me to feel comfortable being a sexual being. I was raised in an environment where I was told to wait until marriage – I believe that’s what’s wrong with sex education. I’m aware some view what I do as a sin, some think it’s shameful, others think it’s cheap/dirty and some think it’s pretty radical and liberating. I’ve always been the kind of person, even as a kid, that did what I want without the worry of what people thought – porn is another outlet I use to be an anarchist of sorts.
What are your thoughts on the racial prejudice in gay porn? 4/5 scenes are white guys, there’s a distinct lack of people of colour within gay porn. What are your thoughts? Have you experienced anything like that on set?
WW: Porn is a business based on the studios members and what the members enjoy viewing. I can not speak directly to what each studio believes its viewers want to see – each site has its own shtick. What I do find odd is how few performers of color are nominated for awards throughout the plethora of gay porn award shows – along with other body types – we as an industry should be celebrating sex, of all forms.
What do you do to relax after a scene?
WW: I take a long shower while listening to music – it’s kind of symbolic for me. Lorde and Halsey have been my go-to artists the past few years.
Straight actors in gay porn have become increasingly popular but people have varying opinions about it. What do you think about gay-for-pay?
WW: If you can walk on set and perform your job, I’m not concerned with how you identify and/or who you sleep with after work. Some of my easiest work days have been with straight performers. I’m tired of peoples opinions being projected onto others for no other reason but to bring negativity. Let people be people. Let porn be porn. If there’s a dick in the butt, be happy it’s there – that person receiving it is!
Do you find the social stigma attached to being a gay porn that leaks into areas of your life that aren’t linked to your work?
WW: I’ve stopped living my life concerned how I’m viewed by others and what stigma or idea of life each individual brings with them. I talk openly about my involvement in porn – through my comedy, with friends/family and quite frankly with strangers. The people I grew up with in small town Greenville, Texas will all tell you the same thing – I’m a nice guy, I come from a great family, I care about others and I’ve never NOT been me! If people have a problem with where I’m at in my life – I don’t need them in it. It’s really that simple for anyone currently living on this rock.
Are you naturally quite hairless or is that a requirement of the job? If so, what are your feelings on body hair and all the labelling that happens within the gay community?
WW: I’m actually pretty hairy – I have chest hair, leg hair, butt hair, armpit hair, facial hair, pubic hair, arm hair… my hair color may be a lighter shade than others, but I don’t shave – I embrace my natural beauty. I don’t know and don’t care what categories others choose to put me in – I’m comfortable with all types of men because I’m comfortable with myself.
Do you find it harder to maintain interest in sex? What is your dating life like?
WW: I prefer my off-camera sex life! There’s no one there giving me commands – unless it’s the typical sex talk, in which I happily oblige! I’m currently engaged, have a phenomenal sex life and my family approves- my step-dad and him have become close and it’s hilarious, their friendship. For the record – he is not in the industry, I’m asked quite often. This lil country boy got him a tattooed, queer, radical type of man- a doctor, published author and tv host – I’ve never been happier.
I’ve heard that you treat porn very strictly as a job that pays bills. Have you always had that mentality going into it or is it something you do purposefully to keep you grounded?
WW: I’ve always had that mentality – there’s a lot that goes into making a porn and I am getting paid, that’s why I’m there. That doesn’t mean you can’t have fun at work, being a performer you need other models and directors to enjoy working with you – I can honestly say I’ve made connections for life with different people performing different jobs in the industry. The goal is to show up – happy, well rested and make sure your butt is clean!
Can you tell me a bit more about the book you’re writing with your mother? Is it autobiographical in any way?
WW: We are currently working on the illustrations of the book – my mother used to tell my brother and I a story about puberty with a penis as a superhero. We hope to be finished and published by spring 2018.
Many criticise porn for being unrealistic and setting up false expectations for young children. What side of the argument do you find yourself on as an adult actor?
WW: Porn is intended for people 18 and older – I’m not making porn for children. As far as being unrealistic, sex can happen when and where YOU decide… have fun, be respectful – unless asked otherwise and allow yourself to explore your sexual desires – with another consenting adult, or solo.
You’re also a comedian. Where does your sense of humour come from and where do you hope your career takes you – more towards comedy and away from porn or the opposite?
WW: My mom is the funniest person I know – I’m very close to her and my family. On stage my comedic style is a mix between The Blue-Collar Comedy Tour and The Queens of Comedy. I grew up in the country and growing up my closest friends were black – we would talk Moesha, Martin, Living Single and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, I idolized black comedians and still do. The future – I’m along for the “ride”. I began filming porn to pay the bills until comedy did. I didn’t plan on being so well received or all the friendships I would make along the way. I stay open-minded in all areas of life – my great-grandmother always told me, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” I’ll take it a day at a time and see what happens!
And lastly, what sage words of advice do you have for young twinks considering porn as a career? Is there anything you think they should know?
WW: I’m not familiar with the twink side of the porn world. Good luck and fuck it up?! As far as all others considering porn – if you’re able to pull your dick out and get/stay hard for 6 hours while talking about your week, with a room full of strangers and cum on command – the porn world wants you! Other than that – stay humble, you’re sucking dick for a living – not saving lives.