Saturday, April 30, 2011

Kaelah's Corner (Apr 2011):
Healthy Severity

A while ago when I wrote about the topic of trust from the bottom as well as the top perspective, an interesting discussion developed in the comment section about trust, especially in combination with more severe scenes and health problems. Annapurna shared his experience with serious health problems that occurred unexpectedly after a more severe session and how this had affected his play with his wife.

The discussion reminded me of the severe 50 strokes caning which I had experienced with Ludwig back in December 2009. At that time I was still struggling with severe scenes in videos, Ludwig's fondness for severity and the severe canings which he had administered as a top, especially at Mood Pictures. I finally decided that I needed to have an informed opinion about how such a caning felt. I wanted to be reassured that one could be okay after such a scene and I wanted to be able to join in the discussions about severity which popped up from time to time and in which Ludwig was often attacked for having participated in a Mood Pictures shoot. To my mind, the only way to form such an informed opinion was to take a Mood-style 50 strokes caning myself.

There were additional reasons that led to my final decision to try it for real. First of all, Ludwig had shared this special part of his kink with others but not with me. I had told him that I wasn't into that level of severity and he didn't want to force me to do anything I wasn't comfortable with. But being his girlfriend I wanted to share this special experience with my mate at least once. Secondly, I had always been quite jealous when I had read Ludwig's film reviews and his reports about his shoots in which he had expressed his admiration for the women who were brave enough to take the challenge of playing that hard. I wanted him to be proud of me and I wanted to do one scene on video with and for him, one that would be at least as sexy from his point of view as the ones he had written about. But this wasn't only about Ludwig, it was about me as well. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do such a severe scene and I wanted to live in the knowledge that I had tried it at least once.

The main problem was that I put myself under extreme pressure. This was supposed to be a once-in-a-lifetime event (I was quite sure that I wouldn't ever want to repeat the experience again) and everything had to be just perfect on the first and only attempt. But I knew myself well enough already to be quite sure that I wouldn't be able to deal with the cold caning the way I wanted to. And I was aware that my mindset wasn't a very positive one, despite of having embedded the scene into an experimental setting which I liked very much. The caning was simply connected with too many fears and negative images in my head. In conclusion, this wasn't so much about actually wanting to try a severe scene, it was much more about getting it over with in order to be able to tick off that  box and go on with other things.

You can read here how the scene unfolded if you like. It wasn't as bad as I had feared, but when I looked back at the experience during that recent discussion with Annapurna, it became clear to me that I still had regrets about the scene. First of all, the experience of hyperventilating during the first set of 25 strokes was a very scary one. So, every time I watched the scene on video, the negative feelings which I had had during the first half of the caning came back to my mind. Secondly, hyperventilating isn't a reaction which I (or Ludwig) find sexy, so I had the feeling of having screwed up and of not having created the sexy scene I had been longing for. The main regret I had, though, was my impression that I hadn't taken enough care of my health and hadn't respected my own limits the way I should have.

On the other hand, there were several positive aspects about the scene as well. I had proven to myself that I could do such a scene and go through it without safewording. Even though the experience of hyperventilating during the first half of the caning had scared me, I had found out that my body was able to recover very quickly from the experience. The second half of the caning had even been exactly the way I had dreamt of, there had been no panicking and I had been able to show only the restrained reactions which I like the most. I even found that part sexy on video! The experience also helped me to have an informed opinion when the discussion about severe scenes flared up again only a short time after I had done the scene because Mood Pictures had been raided by the police. Last but not least, the aftercare which Ludwig and I had applied had proven to be very effective. Most of the marks had faded after only two weeks and the last remaining shadows on my skin were gone after four to six months.

Still, the regrets remained. Suddenly, when I discussed the topic of health and severity with Annapurna, an idea formed in my mind: I wanted to do it again! A bit more than one year after the scene, I felt much more relaxed about severe spankings and I had the feeling of knowing myself, my needs and my reactions much better than I did back in 2009. The pressure of doing a severe scene in order to share something special with Ludwig had diminished. What we shared together in our relationship was so special and precious that no film scene or film-making experience could threaten it and I knew that Ludwig was absolutely serious when he said that I didn't have to prove anything to him.

But that old task was still open. And this time I wanted to do it for myself! I wanted to do MY dream scenario, a severe scene which I would find sexy. Plus, I wanted to do it my way. I had recently read about some very severe scenes which for example Emma Jane and Leia-Ann had done and I had come to realise that I would have to do my scene differently than they did theirs. As far as I know most of the spankees who do severe scenes love the feeling of surviving. They don't expect to feel good during the scene, but they know that they will fly afterwards. That approach doesn't work for me. I have to feel like I can cope with the spanking during the scene, otherwise I don't feel good about the scene afterwards, either. A friend put it beautifully, making me smile when we talked about the topic. She shook her head and said something along the lines of: “You know, you are even stranger than most of us, you really want to enjoy such a severe caning!” Yep, strange but true...

So, a plan formed in my mind. There was that consensual, empowering and very aesthetical scenario which I had dreamt about and this scenario could easily be connected with a severe caning. I decided that I wanted to bring this scene to life, on camera, and with my trusted mate Ludwig on the administering end of the cane. There would be two major goals which I wanted to achieve: 1) Creating a scene that I would find sexy as a viewer and 2) taking good care of myself during the whole process.

The former meant that I had to find someone who was willing to shoot a consensual martial-arts scenario with Ludwig and me and that the action scene had to be shot in a way that allowed me to only show the restrained kind of reactions which I like very much in combination with severe scenes. The latter meant that I needed someone who could provide me with a safe environment, who would accept my limits, who would be willing to provide the aftercare I needed and who would grant me the one thing which I had decided was the most important condition in order to avoid any form of panic during the action scene: enough breaks between smaller sets of strokes. Luckily, Ludwig was already in the process of planning a shoot with the producer who fulfilled all these requirements – Pandora Blake!

So, I discussed my thoughts with Ludwig and wrote Pandora about them. I told her about my idea and the beautiful images that were on my mind, but I also openly mentioned my limits to her and the things which I needed in order to make this a good experience. Luckily, Pandora liked the idea! And since ethic porn for her is not just a marketing slogan, but something she really believes in, she took my concerns seriously and was very fond of the idea of doing a severe scene which was planned by the spankee and was connected with the desire to make this a positive and healthy experience. The plan was to do a severe 30 strokes caning with an option to increase the number of strokes, but no pressure to do so.

And that is exactly what we did! Actually, I did increase the number of strokes to 50 strokes in total. It was an absolutely positive and wonderful experience! I felt safe the whole time and there were no negative images on my mind. It was challenging and painful, but I always had the feeling of playing within my personal limits. I never panicked during the caning and I took the breaks which I needed. And while I haven't seen any of the results yet, I'm quite sure that this time I made that special once-in-a-lifetime video scene which I already wanted to create in 2009.

With that in mind, the regrets which were connected with that previous scene have also started to fade. Because now, even the negative experiences which I made in 2009 have finally led to something overall positive. Without that 50 strokes caning I wouldn't have been able to do that second severe scene the way I did. My first experience showed me that I could do it, that I could even find the result erotic and that I didn't have to be afraid about any lasting marks. It also showed me what I needed to make it work for me and what I should avoid. Since I had a chance to learn from my mistakes for my second try, there is no reason to bemoan them any more.

Funnily, two thoughts about the new scene keep me thinking, though: The cane we used this time was obviously a bit lighter than the one from the last scene (the old one is broken, so we had to get a new one). I don't think that it hurt any less, but it didn't draw any blood (since my bottom is a bit rounder than those of many of the Mood Pictures girls, I don't bleed that easily, anyway). So, there is a little voice in my mind that asks: Can a caning without any blood count as a very severe caning?

In addition to that I strangely feel a bit like a cheater because of the breaks which I took. I mean, I don't in any way pretend that I did the scene in one shot. There will even be a behind-the-scenes report on Pandora's site that shows the breaks! I know that I needed the breaks for my health and I know that the strokes didn't hurt any less just because they mostly came in sets of six (except for the fact that my body had some more time to get used to the pain at the beginning). It is also no secret that most of the severe scenes are filmed with breaks. But Rita Goord, one of the women whom Ludwig caned at Mood Pictures, had taken all 50 strokes in one take.

I know that my natural reactions (which are also the reactions that I desire in combination with a severe scene) are more restrained than Rita's and I know about the risk of hyperventilating that results from my teeth-gritting reactions. So, when I look at it from a rational point of view I'm sure that I have done exactly the right thing: A hard scene that suited my personal fantasies and limits and therefore not only led to a beautiful result (at least according to my personal taste) which was captured on video but also to a good and healthy experience for me. It is something I'm very proud of and it is also a kinky approach which I want to stand for. But even though I know that worrying about that question is bullshit, there is still that little voice inside me asking whether people will call me a cheater because I wouldn't have been able to go through the scene the way I did without having taken those healthy breaks...


Ursus Lewis said...

Congratulations to that experience. You don't have to feel like a cheater. You took the caning. Period.

There might be people who criticize this or that and think they know things better, but who cares? You did this for you and only for you. You did it the way, you knew, it would be the best.

You should be very proud, you did it this way. Knowing the own limits is not cheating nor weak. In my opinion it's a strength.

Rich Person said...

After the first stroke, you're no cheater.


simon said...

the only thing missing from that caning it could of been a school simon.

sixofthebest said...

I love the caning you took Kaelah. That photo is perfection. And every naughty woman's bare bottom, should look like this, once in lifetime.

Underling said...

My God, Kaelah - four to six months? I love having marks and I never want them to fade, but I don't think I've ever seen a trace last more than about three or four weeks after a caning. Now I think I like it hard - certainly the people I've played with have said so - but I guess I've never experienced anything approaching 'Mood Pictures' severity.

You mention bleeding - I'm not really a fan, either as a recipient or an observer. It's not that I'm squeamish - it just seems aesthetically wrong somehow, at least in the domestic-style scenarios that most appeal to me. I guess my ideal 'punishment' is one that's super severe and hurts like hell, but still doesn't break the skin. Maybe that's a tall order, but I'd have thought paddles, straps and hairbrushes ought to achieve it.

By the way, is that your bottom in the photo, or is it Pandora's? Either way it's a beaut! ;)

doclash said...

(Part 1) - Congratulations, Kaelah, on achieving your goal in a way that suited you. OK, so there were some pauses during your ordeal, but this is not a problem – you still took all the strokes and no doubt felt all the pain of every one of them (perhaps even more so as a result of the pauses, so that you did not get the “numb bum” relief reported by many spankees who undergo non-stop punishments).

Don't dwell on the notion that lack of bleeding detracts in any way from the severity of your caning; in fact this could be considered a good thing. While occasional flecks of blood are acceptable and almost inevitable, the vogue for severe beatings, with blood flowing freely, could be a bad thing from various points of view. First, it poses a health risk, and a significantly greater one than one might think. Not only is there a greatly increased risk of severe nerve damage, infection and permanent scarring of the “victim”, but there is also an increased risk to everyone involved, which, in the case of film production, for example, means the spanker, the crew and anyone else in the vicinity, and indeed anyone with regular access to the room or studio in question.

One potential problem is the blood aerosol effect, in that a cane or other instrument moving at high speed “splashes” the blood and causes atomization, producing very fine blood droplets which can hang in the air and be carried considerable distances, taking with themselves any infection which the “victim” may happen to be carrying (hepatitis B/C and HIV/AIDS immediately spring to mind, but there are many others). The blood readily contaminates room surfaces, including walls and furniture. The potential for inhalation of the airborne droplets poses at least a theoretical risk of infection to everyone in the vicinity. The non-aerosol larger droplets of blood and blood films on instruments also pose a (possibly greater) risk to those closely involved. The risk here is blood contact infection due to percutaneous injuries and, to a lesser extent, mucous membrane and skin contact. In fact, if bloody spankings were an industrial, laboratory or clinical process, health and safety legislation would probably insist that they were carried out in a laminar flow safety cabinet and that those closely involved wore eye protection, vinyl gloves and respiratory protective equipment! (Now, now, calm down those of you who are getting excited at that thought ... ). :-)

Of course, these risks are minimized if health histories are known and everyone involved is healthy. There is thus probably less of a risk for those in long term relationships, but more of a risk in casual encounters where health histories may be unknown and possibly the last thing on anyone's mind at the time.

Another problem with very bloody spankings is that they “cross a line” in the eyes of the general public and the authorities (and even, as you well know, in the eyes of some people who are already quite deeply involved in the spanking scene). I am fairly sure an average person (whatever that may be!) is much more likely to react with revulsion to a very bloody spanking than to one which, although very severe, leaves the skin basically intact. Part of this is is cultural and part of it results from the fact that humans are likely programmed to be concerned at human blood loss, especially their own or that of someone with whom they can identify.

(to be continued ... )

doclash said...

(Part 2) - You mention the police raid on Mood Pictures, and this is probably a good example of the authorities taking the view that Mood has gone too far (whether they have or not). There certainly appears to be a lot of blood in some of Mood's feature films, but even if one looks at just the castings, there are some which appear severe but fine and some which appear ridiculously over the top, especially considering the “victims” are said to be (and presumably often are) ordinary vanilla girls taking part just for the money or out of curiosity. No doubt these girls are given, from the outset, some idea of what they are letting themselves in for, but I suspect some of them would not be so “up for it” if they were aware of just how lacerated their bottom and thighs might end up. There are various instances where the number of strokes appears significantly to exceed the “limit” of 50. Also, I suspect that because of the “numb bum” effect mentioned earlier, some candidates will only find out afterwards just how badly cut they are from their flaying. Looking at one of the “Jennifers” for example, even Jessica Lee (Kyra) comments on how bad the result looks and apologizes, after thrashing harder and harder even when it should have been obvious to her from the amount of blood on the cane that quite severe damage was being done. It is little wonder that when Mood clips find their way onto sites such as spankingtube, etc, they are usually removed very quickly as being too severe.

Regrettably this is the sort of thing which, even if the activities are entirely consensual and the “victims” are perfectly willing to risk long-term or even permanent scarring, plays into the hands of those who would wish to ban practically all forms of kinky play, especially those involving any form of what is seen as violence. In any judicial trial situation, I suspect that members of a jury are much more likely to have an adverse reaction to evidential videos showing a lot of blood than to those showing merely nasty red welts and bruising.

Incidentally, you may remember that a little while ago, in your blog, there was discussion as to whether Kyra simply could not aim strokes properly or was acting sadistically in her placement of strokes. You said Ludwig thought probably the former; but looking at some of the videos, it would appear that she is in fact perfectly capable of reasonably good accuracy and seems actually to quite carefully “aim” some of those nastier strokes. I leave you to draw you own conclusion. Of course, many people would still like to see a video where Kyra, Betty and Sonja cane each other in the same way as they do the casting candidates. I'm sure this would raise their standing tremendously.

Talking of Mood Pictures, the situation seems a little confusing at the moment. Max Lomp has recently indicated ( that there won't be any Mood Pictures feature films, yet both the Mood Pictures and Mood Castings sites seem to be regularly updated with what appears to be new (or certainly newish) material. Is Mood going to crash and burn then arise Phoenix-like under a new banner, perhaps? Maybe Ludwig knows, or can find out?

Anyway, after that rambling rant, congratulations once more on you own “bloodless” achievement! Here's to your next one!

Ludwig said...

@ doclash: Some of the harder Mood Pictures / Elite Pain videos are too hard even for my taste. The amount of damage, particularly in light of the casual inaccuracy with which it is applied, just doesn't work for me on an erotic level anymore. I don't mind a bit of blood, and it can in fact be very erotic, but when it literally starts "flowing", the turn-on quickly becomes a turn-off.

This really is an aesthetic judgment, not a moral one. Whether such extremely hard CP videos are morally acceptable depends, in my view, on the medical risks involved and on the likelihood of permanent damage. This is a complicated matter and you probably won't find a consensus on how big or small the risks are even among medical experts.

I am not a medical expert myself (may I ask if you are, and if so, in what capacity?). But from everything I do know as a layman, some of the points you mention strike me as exaggerated. For instance, is there a verified case of HIV infection through the inhalation of airborne droplets of blood? That seems to me to be a very "theoretical" risk indeed.

There are, of course, risks when you play at such a severe level. I don't want to dismiss them, but I think we should not exaggerate them, either. I don't wear eye protection, vinyl gloves or respiratory protective equipment when I administer a severe caning. I simply pay a good deal of attention to basic cleanliness and safety. I make sure that implements aren't lying around on the floor or other dirty sufaces, I clean and disinfect implements before I use them, and I disinfect the marks on the spankee's bottom afterwards (in the Mood shoot, that was done by someone else).

Of course, I also try very hard to hit the proper target! You are right about some Mood tops being woefully inaccurate with a cane, Jessica Lee (Kyra) in particular. I have been critical of this on various occasions - in movie reviews, in my behind-the-scenes report about my own shoot, in private conversation with one of the producers.

At the end of the day, we all have to decide for ourselves which risks we want to take and which ones we don't want to take. I have taken canings as hard as the hardest ones I have dished out, and I survived with no ill effects. I am very picky about the tops, though. I would not let Jessica Lee cane me, for instance, because she doesn't display the accuracy or care I demand from a top.

The risk of permanent scarring is, in my estimate, very low for the canings we are talking about here. I have taken Mood-style canings, Kaelah has taken them, we know quite a few people who have taken them, including model friends like Adele Haze or Niki Flynn. No one retained any permanent scars. The canes used by Mood or used by myself in private play simply don't have the mass (unlike the large canes used in judicial CP in Singapore, which do, in fact, cause permanent scarring).

Regarding the situation with Mood Pictures in general, I have been planning to do an update about that for a while. I plan to finally do it this month. So, keep your eyes open if you are interested in that subject.

doclash said...

Ludwig, I hope you understand that at least some of my comments were somewhat tongue-in-cheek, and that the idea of getting gloved, gowned and masked for a spanking session was a joke and a bit of a jibe at the over-zealous actions of some people involved in health and safety practice.

Nevertheless, it would be unwise to be entirely dismissive of the potential risks from human blood (and other body fluids), even if some risks are perhaps theoretical. When I have time, I will try to get back to you on some of the points you raise as a "layman" to quote your own word.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kaelah,

Congratulations on yet another personal best in your exploration of canning! The strokes on your bottom are perfect and have a gorgeous, horizontal symmetry. Ludwig is quite masterful in his attention and application of the cane. Others should take notice of his efforts and, of course, your courage and fortitude are beyond reproach.

Can canning be severe without blood? Yes, of course! Blood alone does not prove severity; it’s a matter of pain and your reaction to it that counts for more. By your own admission you don’t bleed easily, and that’s all to the good, for the resulting stripes on your bottom carry a greater esthetic value as a result of your naturally healthy constitution.

Sometimes taking breaks makes the scene more difficult, for it adds to the overall time of the event, and when the strokes come in quick succession, the pain receptors in our bottoms may stop firing, making the canning (or spanking) seem a little less severe. The breaks also give the top some rest as well, so each subsequent set of six strokes are done with equal intensity because arm fatigue does not become an important factor.

Actually, relaxing into the pain is probably more effective than bracing against a series of predetermined strokes, or hyperventilating, which is a very natural fear reaction. Being totally relaxed, letting go, and accepting the projectile with no resistance seems to reduce the sensation of pain somewhat, but it doesn’t suppress the natural reflex of the body as the cane bites into the flesh. While too much reaction by the bottom can be tedious, allowing the body’s natural reflex has its own evocative value, and it gives the top some satisfaction too, for it tells him that his attention has at least some effect.

Perhaps for your next and last milestone could be to take all 50 strokes without a break? You may find the pain to be no worse and your healing time would be about the same.

Regardless of your future plans, you have shown to all who may have even a passing interest that you are capable of absorbing the best canning available anywhere.

Respecting Mistress said...

Kaelah, 50 strokes are still 50 strokes. Your feeling of pride is justified. I remember my first Judicial-type caning how elated I was despite the incredible level of pain compared to anything I'sd previous experienced. This was before my relationship with Mistress and my punishment at the hands of Lady Pandora, a professional disciplinarian. I think what made it special was the trust I knew I could put in the Lady so while it was a very scary thing to contemplate befroehand and I was very, very nervous, I was able to relax in the session, knowing great care would be taken -something you obviously could do with Ludwig. I think any severe caning is almost certain to cause some grazing but like others have commented here, I'm not too keen on blood flowing freely and the damage associated with that. But in answer to your question, of course you can have a severe caning without ripping the buttocks to shreds! For that reason I worry about the Mood films (the limited number I have seen) but it's not so much the blood, it's the terrible lack of accuracy in where the strokes are placed. As for your caning, I must commend Ludwig on his accuracy and thank you for the image. It's lovely. But like Annapurna said, if you did wish to continue this journey, 50 strokes with no break would be a good target. But that's easy for me to say when it's you the one suffering! Why is it we like to set ourselves such goals when we know the pain it will bring?

Ludwig said...

@ doclash: I understood that your remark about eye protection, vinyl gloves and respiratory protective equipment was obviously tongue-in-cheek and I repeated it in the same manner. I took your other remarks, including the one about risk of infection through the inhalation of airborne blood droplets, to be serious, however.

Rest assured, I am far from being "dismissive" of the potential risks of human blood. These risks do of course exist and they should be taken seriously. I was merely saying that, in my estimate, the risk from airborne droplets is very low on the list compared to others.

But, as I said, I am not a medical expert and I am always thankful for comments from people who have had formal education on the subject.

Kaelah said...

@ Ursus & Rich:
Thanks a lot! :-) My rational part definitely agrees with you and my emotional part is in the process of catching up... ;-)

@ Simon:
I've already made two school scenes with Pandora, so it was time for something different. But maybe you'll like the scene nonetheless. Martial arts teachers and students aren't so different from school teachers and schoolgirls. I assume you will miss the school uniform, though... ;-)

@ Sixofthebest:
Glad you like the picture. :-) And I would like to add: Every naughty men's bottom should look like that once in a while as well! ;-)

@ Underling:
The picture shows my bottom after the caning! Pandora kindly sent me some screenshots for my post.

Don't worry, I'm not talking about really strong marks that last for months! But there are indeed grey shadows that last for quite a long time on my skin after a severe caning. And I've heard from others who have made similar experiences as well. Maybe this is also a characteristic of the cane. I tend to have more extreme marks from paddles and alike (after my first-ever spanking experience my whole bottom was black and blue the next day from the paddle Ludwig used), although they hurt far less than the cane. But then, these marks heal more quickly than the cane marks. I wished I would mark more severely directly after the spanking, like many others do, but don't have these nasty marks the next day and heal more quickly afterwards (others seem to heal faster than I do). Well, but that's how it is...

I have to admit that I don't like the marks which are produced by paddles and other blunt implements that much because to me they look somehow too „raw“. Accurate cane marks are more elegant from my aesthetical point of view. But I don't like cane marks that go along with blood that is running down the skin either! What I meant when I was talking about drawing blood were mere little cuts that leave a few small spots of blood on the cane. Just to show that the caning had been right at the most extreme limit that I personally still find aesthetically okay.

Kaelah said...

@ doclash:
Thanks for sharing your thoughts and I would be interested in hearing more about the health aspects, especially in case you have a medical background! As I already wrote in my reply to Underling, I don't like caning marks that go along with blood running down the skin. The most extreme form of marks which I like from an aesthetical point of view are little scratches on the surface of the skin that leave some little spot of blood on the cane. If you look at the picture from the severe scene which I did in December 2009, you can see that the marks aren't so much different from the new ones (the room was a bit darker, so the marks look darker as well, but I think there wasn't a big difference to the new ones).

I have to admit that I don't know that much about the medical risks of more extreme forms of play, though. As Ludwig wrote, we know a few people who did canings that led to bleeding and none of them has any lasting scars as far as we know. I am for example very careful with my legs (they are a no spanking area for me) and with the side of my hips because I have very weak skin there including scars from merely gaining and loosing a bit of weight. I don't like the idea of being spanked on the legs either, that's why I have never tried it. So, I can't tell you whether there really would be any danger of lasting marks. I know that one of the girls from Mood even asked Ludwig to cane her legs as well and it seems like she didn't have any problems with lasting marks. My assumption is that the canes which are used for example at Mood and Lupus are too light to leave lasting marks. But I'm not 100 per cent sure whether there might be a risk in case there are too many strokes on the same spot or there is too much bleeding...

I'm careful about the „crossing the line in the eyes of the general public and authorities“ argument, though. Because, let's face it, every form of SM crosses the line for many people. Consequently, strictly following that approach would mean to stay away from every form of CP. Of course you are right that some extreme forms of play might fall under certain law restrictions in some countries which means that especially producers should be careful about them because there are always people who think that it is good PR to fight those "filthy" SM people.

Kaelah said...

@ Annapurna & Respecting Mistress:

Thanks a lot for your comments! :-) I won't go for the 50 strokes without a break option, though. Because as I explained in my post, given my physical condition and my natural reactions (with which I feel good, I wouldn't like to change my way of reacting just in order to go through with a severe caning) there is no chance of doing that without dizziness and/or hyperventilating. During the new scene my blood pressure also got quite low at the beginning like it did back in 2009 and I nearly had to safeword. The reason why I didn't panic was the knowledge that I could safeword any time I wanted and that there would be a break after the next two strokes, anyway. I used the following break to lie down and get my blood pressure back to normal. Without that break the caning would once again have been a negative experience. And that's not what I'm up for. I know that I want to go to my personal limits from time to time because I have that "brave girl" kink. But in real life I've sometimes taken it too far and that always resulted in health problems. I definitely want to avoid that in my kinky play. Finding the right balance is difficult, but I think I have found it.

Of course I do spankings without scheduled breaks as well (that's the norm in my private play), but then they have to start lighter (in case of cold canings) or with a warm-up. And of course in private play there usually aren't 50 strokes without any talk in between and with only a few seconds between each stroke. So, there are some natural smaller breaks. That was for example the case in the scene which Ludwig and I did in private a short time before my first completely severe caning experience in 2009.

But the extremely severe cold canings which I only do on very special occasions don't work for me without breaks, especially because they are captured on film as well and aren't comparable to private play that comes out of just being in the right mood for a certain scene. Being in front of a camera, trying to produce a beautiful result and dealing with very severe strokes that come in a quite rapid succession right from the beginning is something that I can't physically and mentally take without breaks. Maybe I'll do a non-stop caning on camera one time, but then there will most probably be a warm-up or at least the caning will have to start lighter and have a gradual build-up.

Indy said...

Kaelah, thanks for this very interesting post! Like you, I would want to enjoy a severe caning rather than just to get through it. I guess that means I'm even stranger that most spankos, too! I knew we had important things in common! ;-)

I also don't like the feeling of panic that comes over me during a scene in which I'm not sure I can take the beating, even if I actually can. That takes me back to the fear I had of breaking the rules as a child, not fear of punishment, but fear of being bad in any way. Breaks would be a big help, as would a trusted top, reassuring me firmly that I can take it-- and I will!

Kaelah said...

Indy, it's good to know that I'm not the only strange pervert out there! ;-) And I can absolutely relate to that feeling of fear that comes up if one doesn't know whether one manages to take a spanking. For me it's the fear of not only letting myself down, but the others involved as well. Having a trusted top really helps a lot!

In case of that very severe scene it was also vital for me to know that neither Ludwig nor Pandora would have been utterly disappointed even if I had had to ask them to reduce the severity of the strokes a bit for any reason. Ludwig showed a lot of empathy, anyway! When I told him that I might increase the number of strokes to forty or fifty in case it all goes very well, he was very sure that I would definitely do it. But he didn't tell me anything about his assumption, knowing that this could already have put me under pressure. :-)

Pandora Blake said...

Kaelah, I want to thank you again for the trust in me that you demonstrated in making this amazing film with you, and again in this post. It is really quite gratifying and I remain delighted that this shoot was such a positive experience for all concerned. I'm thrilled with the footage and very much looking forward to getting a chance to edit it!

It's also something of a relief to me that over the course of this comments conversation you've said that you have no interest in repeating this kind of scene without any breaks, and that you do understand that taking them was the right decision. I sympathise with your anxiety about not being seen to be "brave" enough, but really, there is no need for it! Everyone's physiology is different and it's not a question of "bravery". Your mind and heart are courageous enough to endure a severe scene but your physical health would suffer as a result and you would not enjoy it. Having the wisdom to understand that and not put yourself through a frustrating, fruitless and potentially damaging experience simply shows good sense. It does not mean you are any less courageous - it simply means you aren't badass to the extent of being stupid. Which is something to be proud of in my opinion.

As it happens, even if you had wanted to insist on going straight through without a break, I wouldn't have been able to oblige you, simply because I would have needed to make cuts in the film to get the different camera angles I wanted. As someone who's done both the single take style of shooting where you enact a roleplay scene in front of a camera without any pauses, and the more traditional method of film-making where multiple different shots are filmed in tiny bursts with lots of pauses in between, I can say that the latter is definitely harder, both in terms of acting and in terms of bottoming. It's harder to maintain your character, and harder to stay in a headspace where you accept the pain, when you have to keep stopping and restarting. Plunging in and going straight through is easier and more like playing a scene in private; the other method requires much more professionalism, in my opinion :)

Kaelah said...

@ Pandora:
Thank you so much for your kind comment! :-) I was very glad that we needed to take breaks in order to change the camera position, anyway, because otherwise I might have been tempted to take fewer breaks than I did, which might have made the experience a less positive one. I think you also raised a very interesting point: It seems to me that for some people (the ones who can go into a deep headspace) it is much easier to do such a scene without a / many break(s), whereas others (like me) prefer to have breaks in order to be able to process the pain.

Anonymous said...

If you really want do draw (some) blood: just cane smarter, not harder. ;-)
Watching most of the later Lupus movies (before they began to make coital films), you may see that the impact of the cane is often not perpendicular to the skin's surface but in a more or less steeper angle. The result is a grazing effect which puts more stress onto the skin. You will get cuts with some droplets of blood much more easily this way than if you would swing the cane much faster.

Children: don't try this at home!

Ludwig said...

@ Anonymous: The canes they use at Lupus Pictures are significantly heavier in weight than the one we used in this shoot for Pandora's site. I swung a Lupus cane in my shoot with them, so I was able to assess the difference first-hand. I believe the weight of the cane has more to do with why blood is drawn more easily in the Lupus films. In any case, I would advise against intentionally hitting the bottom at an angle like you suggest. The stress it puts on the skin increases the risk of permanent damage, and I also prefer "straight", full-on strokes from an aesthetic point of view.

Also, how easily blood is drawn depends strongly on bodily characteristics of the spankee - skin type, body type and the like. People who are very skinny (which applies to many of the Lupus models) mark -and bleed - more easily than people with rounder bottoms.

Kaelah and I have drawn blood in another severe caning we did, which will be published as a free video once I have finally had time to edit it all. You can see the droplets of blood on the cane in the insert on this photo. So it is quite possible even with a lighter cane than the ones they use at Lupus, and even with a spankee who isn't borderline bulimic, and with straight strokes instead of grazing ones.

We didn't draw blood at the Dreams of Spanking shoot, but I don't see that as a blemish on the scene at all. It was certainly a proper severe caning even so, and it was a very nice scene in terms of atmosphere, story and filming. I'm as much of a cane marks fetishist as there is, but even for me, cane marks aren't the sole criterion for how good a scene is - that would be sad!

Kaelah said...

@ Anonymous:
Thank you for sharing your observations! What you write confirms my suspicion that whether blood is drawn or not during a caning doesn't tell all that much about the severity of a scene. I think the problem is that many caners aren't really accurate which sometimes causes cuts which weren't even intended. I am not so much into drawing blood, anyway, I was just worried that some people might assume that the scene wasn't hard enough because it lacked bloody spots. Like Ludwig, I definitely prefer accurate, straight strokes. Using a slightly heavier cane like we did for our first severe caning is okay for me, but not a really heavy one which might cause deep tissue damage.