Tommy Defendi by Kent Taylor
From Bruno Bond’s Heretic
(Available This Friday)
Kent Taylor, Raging Stallion & Falcon Studios’ VP/Chief Photographer, took home the trophy for Best Still Photographer at the Grabby Awards this year. One of the key members of our studio team, he is the Vice President in charge of Art and Photography. Kent is one of the guys who creates the look and feel of our studio brands. He was also one of the co-founders of Raging Stallion Studios from many years ago. Most of the photography you see when looking at our website, our DVD covers, and even in this E-zine, are shot by Kent. We took this opportunity to sit down with him and talk about his career as an iconic erotic photographer.
HUNT: You were an accomplished photographer before you came to work in porn. Tell us about your photography career and how you got into porn.
Kent Taylor (KT): San Francisco has always been good to me and my commercial photography career! I have photographed for many publications, theater companies, and even a few celebrities here and there. I was in the right place, at the right time and was referred to Hot House Studios. They were looking for a new freelance photographer for upcoming shoots. It was during the first “dot com” boom and their photographer had taken a job as a Pet Portraitist for a website that featured cute animals. After meeting with Steven Scarborough, I was asked to do my first adult shoot. I packed up my equipment and went to work on the shoot. 18-hour days, hardly any breaks, food when you had time…. I loved it! I was hooked.
HUNT: You were one of the basic founders of Raging Stallion Studios. What were those early years like? Was it scary giving up an established career to join a start up?
KT: It was scary walking into a new unknown venture, while shifting away from my own business that I had worked so hard to build. I have continued to take commercial jobs when my schedule allows. The beginning years of Raging Stallion were very challenging. The actual filming part was amazing, creative and always fun. The business end was the tricky part. I knew we would figure it out. With Chris Ward in the captains chair, that we did. And once it started to work, it rolled and became bigger and bigger every year. Right up to today!
HUNT: The industry today is very, very different from what it was ten years ago. What has changes, and what do you see for the future?
KT: I think the biggest difference is the transition of delivery. Much like the music industry, when CDs stopped being a viable income, the same is happening with DVDs. But unlike the music industry, that shifted the income to concert revenue, the porn industry has not figured out how to fill NY Stadium to watch a few guys have sex on a stage. So now the industry is working on creating many points of revenue, rather than one major source of income.
HUNT: Over the years you have shot some iconic images–some of the best erotic photography out there. A photo shoot is collaboration between the model and the photographer–tell us about the “Kent Taylor” approach to a shoot. What do you yourself bring to the shoot that helps in getting the results you are famous for?
KT: The most important part to me is that the performers feel comfortable. Then, and only then, can you make images that are about the raw naked power of a performer. I believe if they are uncomfortable, it comes through. Once we are there, it is about light, angles and the very best way to portray the man standing in front of me.
HUNT: Who are some of the favorite guys you have photographed? Any problem guys you want to discuss?
KT: Favorites? Not for the reasons you may think. I love working with men who are confident and who understand their bodies.
HUNT: You have been published in magazines and books all over the world. Do you think your eye and your camera have had an impact on gay culture and our collective perception of what is hot and what is not?
KT: I never really thought about it, until I had other photographers tell me that they used my imagery as inspiration for their work. What could be more flattering? The truth is I feel blessed being allowed to be creative every single day. That alone is amazing! If someone is inspired by my work, that is far beyond my expectations!
Below is a gallery of some of Kent’s best recent work: