To my readers......


Thanks for visiting mitchmen, home of Mitchell's Gay Art

The Caps and Collars/ Flat Cap Gang story at Google Groups has been on a break since January, I am working on it and hope to resume shortly. (see Group News for link)

Message updated 14th July 2024

Wednesday 30 April 2008

Mitchell's A to Z of Fetish Art - Axel (revised 2015)


 Axel is an accomplished artist and his best fetish pictures are full of atmosphere and menace. There's a manic energy about this picture that is quite at variance with the calm that normally prevails in the barber shop and this immediately suggests all is not as it should be. The dishy, young barber with muscle stuffed T-shirt, exposed midriff and wasp-like waist flaunts his allure but the array of equipment bizarrely strapped to his thigh and the strangely glowing cable tangled untidily round his leg make us wonder about that slogan on his chest and about his intentions with the up-raised, glinting razor. None of this is visible to the unsuspecting customer/victim but he squirms in his seat as though something unexpected has just occurred, a closer shave than requested. It's like the moment of truth in a gory horror movie. The over-sized hands and boots flavour the participants with a clumsy masculinity that is quite endearing.

Axel - Pipe 24

 Axel often uses imagery of masks and pipes in underground dripping cellars which is very erotic and evocative especially when contrasted with a naked captive like this.There's more symbolism of weirdness, control and helplessness in this picture but it's quite different to the previous one, a threat of sleaze and filth replacing incipient violence. Axel's palette is a unexpectedly colourful for the surroundings here and it's confusing at times in these complex detailed pictures which have to be studied closely to unravel what is happening.
  Axel - Dogboys 

Axel has also completed a notable series of 'Dogboy' images set in the slightly more organised world of leather. The 'master' in the background here seems rather more representative of that scene than the exceptionally beautiful and well groomed boys do. Their enforced suiting up and degradation to beastliness, performing sleazily for the amusement of their 'owner' seems full of psychological meaning which I couldn't attempt to unravel. I'm not a dog owner but imagine this scene has a very special meaning to someone who is.

  The last example is another barber image but I have chosen it for no reason other than the fact that I like it. The combination of vulnerability, danger and sensuality is very powerful. The seated man's  backward arching body is very sexy, not least with a razor poised across his throat. You can almost feel the cold leather seat touching his buttocks, reminding him of his nudity... ready for that paddle he seems to be holding. It's shape follows his bulge of excitement but not quite obscuring it. Rarely can the eroticism of the jockstrap garment have been so well captured as here.

I've not found a site for Axel's work yet (advice welcome).
 (article revised Dec 2015 with more images)
 click on the A-Z label for more pictures in this series
or use the artist index or search options (top right)

Tuesday 29 April 2008

Mitchell's A to Z of Fetish Art - A.Jay (Ajay) (revised 2018)

Ajay (Al Shapiro) is best known for his 1960's & 70's Harry Chess* Comic Strips, in which the eponymous hero together with his FUGG* sidekicks, Mickey Muscle and Rancid Agnew, investigate mysteries, erotic happenings and strange disappearances.
*There's a good round-up of acronyms and characters in the wiki article on Harry Chess

Harry Chess and The Python

They invariably end up in improbable, sexy situations, get captured by the bad guys and are subjected to sexual abuse, highly inventive tortures and near-death experiences. Harry Chess himself often bears the brunt of these imaginings. In the true B-movie tradition, his demise in the frame above is intended to be the result of his friends arriving and opening the door, but he manages to eject the gun barrel (unaided !) just in time. According to the Leather Archives Blog the Harry Chess (Hairy Chest) persona was originally inspired by Ajay's own hairy torso.

from Bang Kock Wong

Being a cool, gay hero, Harry finds time to appreciate the manly side of his opponents. His regular catch phrase involves variations on the theme 'Be still my beating heart'. It's an expression with classical origins (not surprisingly), but was more recently transformed into unforgettable, high camp by Gilbert and Sullivan in 'HMS Pinafore'

Ralph:   Josephine, I am a British sailor, and I love you!
Josephine: Sir, this audacity! 
(Aside.) Oh, my heart, my beating heart!

 There are plenty of humorous allusions to Ajay's Jewish background running through these adventures too (recheck that catch phrase if you didn't notice the connection first time). The frames are also littered (literally) with irrelevant, comical one-liners written on notices and scraps of paper.

from Bang Kock Wong

In dealing with these tricky situations Harry reveals qualities not usually associated with being gay, certainly not in the 60's. Thus he does not allow sexual attraction to distract him from his mission and is man enough to put a bigger bully in his place - and with his arms tied behind his back too! He also manages to look sexy doing it and underlies his cool-ness and gay-ness with camp quips. It's all nonsense of course and very James Bond, but nevertheless it projects an amazingly positive image of gayness and of what gays can be in a period which is just a few years on from the homosexual witch-hunts of the 1950's. In the UK at this time Frankie Howerd and Kenneth Williams (of 'Carry On' fame) were still seen  as typical representatives of the homosexual community and 'Are You Being Served?' was still seven years in the future.
from Bang Kock Wong

Equally gratifyingly, those villains who fail to defeat Chess and his friends suffer terrible retribution from their master. This isn't totally surprising, 'Goldfinger' and 'Thunderball' were released at the same time and displayed similar morality - and I might add a comparable degree of political incorrectness. Despite the humour, Ajay's brand of sexual sadism surprises, even today.

from Bang Kock Wong
At times, the strips are surprisingly explicit for their time, not just in terms of showing male anatomy but sexual practices too. Fisting is cunningly disguised here as an imaginary technique for racking a victim or tearing him limb from limb. Open expression and sharing of such forbidden, dark things (fisting that is!) and celebration of all things anal (of which we've already seen other examples) contributed to make the flowering of gay sexual liberation in the 60's more complete and real.
This is us and we're not ashamed, Ajay is saying.

Harry's dramatic spread-eagle in this scene distracts attention from his two friends Mickey and Rancid, who are tied up and watching helplessly (but appreciatively) from the bottom corner.
It's an easily missed but rather sexy detail.

from The Curse of Kalua Blewa
This sexy detail is rather more obvious! While Harry here is being 'milked' along with with Rancid  his laid-back sidekick, Mickey Muscle takes one for the team in the background. It's a fate that often befalls him due to his muscular, gymnastics-honed body and appealing boyish looks which villains find irresistable.

from 'The Daredevil Doll' (click to expand)
Mickey's character is as well developed as Harry's in the series. He's not just cute on the outside, he's also a lot cuter inside than his usual monosyllabic dialogue (Gee!) suggests. In this example Mickey attracts the attentions of a fellow gym user while casing the joint under the pretext of working out. At first his verbal resistance is readily quelled by a forceful approach and an intimate touch, it seems.....
(Do you recognise a current issue here? Twas ever Weinstein). 

from 'The Daredevil Doll' (click to expand)

However, like Harry, Mickey shows he is focused enough
and strong enough to put the would-be seducer in his place.

He then comes up with an inspired method of saving his friends from the notorious 'Cincinnati Ball Torture', (an ingenious, slow-roasting combination of tethering chains and red hot coals).
"I'll give them a dusting of salt, later on" the villain had promised. Well I'm not going there!

from Villy Vatson (click to expand)
Mickey comes to the rescue again in Villy Vatson, 
drawing on his gymnastic training this time to rescue Harry from the drop into the man grinder, 
one of Ajay's less subtle termination procedures. 
For some reason I find these naked buddy escapes and rescues far more erotic that naked wrestling!

from Bang Kock Wong

The third member of the band, Rancid Agnew, features less prominently in the adventures, though he does get his share of danger, torture and abuse, as illustrated here when he joins his friends adrift in the sea and tethered to a live mine (whose phallic qualities suddenly become apparent).

Rancid's contribution is usually limited to pithy comments such as Cool!, Right On! suggesting an excessive interest in plant products. His name (and possibly the passive persona too) is probably a swipe at Spiro Agnew , a highly conservative politician who was Vice President under Richard Nixon. He was highly critical of anti-Vietnam War and civil right protesters in the 60's. Like Nixon he was brought down by the Watergate scandal in 1973.

The Harry Chess comic strips are full of allusions to events and personalities of their era, which of course is part of their raison d'etre, appealing to the interests and values of it's audience. In doing so it succeeds (possibly unintentionally) in asserting a gay, cultural identity which is much more than it's sexual practices and has a political dimension prepared to push back against oppressive ideas. We can scarcely imagine how heart-warming this was for gay men outside the big cities who still felt isolated and alone. Inevitably this aspect of Ajay's work is becoming more impenetrable as time goes by. For now at least you can usually find the names mentioned in them via the Internet.

from Villy Vatson
This scene (and the preceding one) gives some idea of Ajay's wider artistic capability for conjuring up atmosphere and drama without using words. The watery tunnel with it's bats and lurking sea creature is full of Freudian symbolism and the friends wade into the darkness totally naked and defenceless.
This would make a great film!

In Part 2 I will explore the sensual qualities of Ajay's work.

for other A-Z articles click on the label below or search using the artist index page or the search facilities in bloggers navigation bar or top right sidebar

This article was completely rewritten in Jan 2018
(ref 860)

Monday 28 April 2008

Mitchell's A to Z of Fetish Art - Adam (revised 2015)

Adam's drawing style is quite sensual and his characters have handsome, youthful faces and chunky bodies which I find quite pleasing. I’d hesitate to describe him as a fetish artist but S&M scenes occur quite regularly in his work. As you can see in the example above, it’s not exactly tame stuff and there’s no ambiguity about the sexual component either. However, the attackers’ boyish smiles suggest it’s intended as boisterous fun and experimentation, an initiation rather than intense sadism. 

This drawing has a similar theme, the young novice eager to learn the ropes from a more experienced and older man. It’s a common desire during early manhood and a subject much in vogue of late in porn circles but they don’t capture anything like the sense of a young man’s awkwardness, excitement and inexperience that you can see in Adam’s picture. Notice how the youth gazes longingly (and seductively) into the eyes of his (seriously sexy) instructor, leaning back towards him, seeming to resist the pull of invisible ties around his wrists, as though seeking an encouraging final embrace before his test begins. The two figures seem to be physically very close to each, creating a sense of intimacy and sexual desire that is surprisingly powerful. I imagine Adam got very hot drawing this!

This drawing has a simplicity and cleanness which is quite different to the rough sketching of the first example. It’s less dramatic on that account, but it suits the subject, where the focus is the excitement and anticipation inside the head of the youth. I tend to think of this simpler, elegant style as being earlier, but there’s nothing immature about the technique, the outstretched pointing arm for example is beautifully drawn although there does seem to be some miscalculation on limb sizes.

The unsubtle placing of the nightstick is an example of hidden eroticism which is an unexpected element in an obvious portrayal of sexual fetish. Jack Bozzi is normally placed in the 70’s, when gay liberation began to take hold. These pictures are a glimpse into a bizarre, transitional world of heterosexual censorship where portraying erotic, leather fetish and domination is acceptable, but sexual display or interaction is not. 


This muscular two on one is rather more intimidating and aggressive than the usual spanking scene and also has its ambiguities. Is this a hand spanking or a belting – or both? The foreground figure is beautiful creation and as well as brandishing a belt, he is also positioned to take advantage of that enticing ass, although this composition doesn’t have the same sense of intimacy as other Adam pictures here. The artist has settled instead for placing his right hand in a place which is so unsubtle and unhidden that you can only conclude that the publishing restrictions were tumbling down at this stage.


Another cross-generational image that is exceptionally well drawn with bodies, clothing and faces, that are not only lifelike but erotically appealing. I think this is a beautiful picture, particularly in the portrayal of the awkward younger man. The lines of his limbs are an artistic lesson in erotic muscle contours. The flailing pose is extremely contrived but erotic in its own right and successfully conveys a (disguised) humiliating and probably painful position in another man’s grip. The hidden erotic subterfuge in this picture is not confined to this ingredient. At first sight he seems to be naked but closer inspection it seems he is wearing swimming trunks or underwear. The glare of poor reproduction is partly responsible but the waistline of his trunks clearly disappears as it crosses his buttocks suggesting a deliberately ambiguous intention. Notice the positioning of the young man’s right knee too.

In this picture the characters lean into each other, suggesting an intimate proximity and appear to be almost embracing just as in my second example. It’s a surprisingly erotic effect.


There’s a fair degree of contrivance in this cowboy bondage picture too with the familiar ingredients of mentor and young apprentice working out with limbs subtly entwined to suggest something slightly more connected than just sex. A tree placed between open legs is a basic Freudian device (see also Tom of Finland’s pictures) but ball rubbing on rough bark seems a highly inventive twist. With erections like these and bound up genitalia, the need to disguise the strategically-placed phallic stump cum stalagmite is another puzzle.  

My last example returns to Adam’s more familiar, sketchy style with a kidnapping/punishment subject. Although unpolished, these pictures are no less interesting as erotica, substituting drama and movement for visual sensuality.

In a general male art survey Adam would be in my top echelon. However, this selection shows that his fetish credentials are not to be sniffed at either. His handsome, boyish faces and jovial participants don’t quite ring true but were a necessary cloak in less tolerant times. The compensation is the glorious inventiveness of ideas spawned to circumvent the restrictions.

Article Revised Feb 2015

 For other articles in this series click on the A-Z label below or search by artist name.

Wednesday 23 April 2008

The Lost Patrol - Shipping Out

This is a picture from Mitchell's Series called 'The Lost Patrol'.
A GI Jungle Patrol is captured, stripped and abused.

The Patrol were taken captive that night, surprised as they slept.
Their sentries were overpowered before they could raise the alarm. 
The sleepy GI's were dragged from their tents and assembled together.
They were forced to strip down to just their helmets, boots and jockstraps.

Next they were handcuffed, hands in front, and loaded onto a truck for shipment.
On the vehicle they had to sit astride a single, long bench running lengthwise.
They had to shuffle closer and closer together as more of their comrades joined them
So many of them had been taken that eventually contact became inevitable.

Then the vehicle set off, bumping over the rough terrain.
The prisoners were jostled together, clinging to each other to keep their balance.
Their sweaty bodies became more and more closely fitted together
Thighs brushed against buttocks in front, jock pouches pressed between cheeks.

As their long journey continued through the humid jungle,
the discomfort of the prisoners grew steadily more acute.
This is not a complete series as yet but I have plans to develop it.
The jungle setting plays an important role in the way the story develops.

Since posting this I have added the narrative above
I have also drawn more pictures, (example here)
but the final story has yet to see the light of day! 
Mitchell Jul 2019

Monday 21 April 2008

Update on Mitchell's latest stuff - Electro Chair detail

Now that the Randy Erector story is finally underway at 'mitchmen' I have resumed work on the S&M Clinic series. I got distracted by the rhyming narrative for the Randy Erector and by various domestic distractions but the break has given me fresh ideas.

I am adding quite a lot of new material to the S&M Clinic story to fill out the original ideas which is why it is taking time to get ready. But I see this project as quite a major one so I want it to be right. It's giving me the opportunity to incorporate a lot of erotic images of men I have been saving for just such an opportunity. In the story various innocent men suffer various sexy discomforts. A typical set of Mitchell pictures in other words! The illustration shows a detail from one of the pictures - arms secured the poor guy tries to work out what's next.

Mitchell S&M Clinic - Electro Dept (detail)

I also sketched out an idea for a picture for the second part of the Cactus Kid story this weekend. Part of the Kids campaign to avenge his years of torture - a group of Graingers cowboys are surprised by the Kid as they herd the cattle on the range (You can see original Cactus Kid Story at Mitchell's group for erotic fetish art - 'mitchmen' at Yahoo).

Friday 18 April 2008

Mitchell's 'Randy Erector' flyer

My new series starts tomorrow at the Yahoo group - see side bar for link

"The Ballad of the Randy Erector"
is a cautionary tale of excessive lust and unsuspected desires

Monday 14 April 2008

Mitchell's 'Press Gang' - Inspected in an alleyway

This is a picture from my Press Gang story published las December.
A group of builders are abducted by the Press Gang to work on HMS Dominator.
The full story is available as a PDF at mitchmen (Yahoo Group)

This picture is an example of how I put my series together.

It originally existed as a figure study only - just two figures and no background except for a symbolic port hole (suggesting the civilian had been abducted by the sailor and taken to his ship).
The moustache and hair of the builder are a clue to the age of the original picture!
I deleted the port hole and added the background of alley and lorry to suit the 'Press Gang' story line in effect moving the picture timeframe from 'after abduction' to 'before abduction'.

This is one of my own favourite stories. The basic scenario has been with me for many years and I was pleased how the final story came out. Visit mitchmen at Yahoo if you haven't seen it yet!

Sunday 13 April 2008

Evolution of a mitchmen picture

This picture illustrates the way I refine my pictures once the image is defined. The face in this image is a detail of the workman from the Building Site Incident story which I'm publishing soon. The original face I drew was quite latin in type but I didn't want the rather pouty mouth. Experimenting with the smile produced the second image - more anglo saxon and very cheeky. Still not right. I then went for the serious mouth in the third image which tidied up to produce the final version. This evolution shows how quite small changes to mouth and eyes can produce dramatically different results in facial appearance.

Following on the theme of my last post I now have the problem of numbering these images. They are basically the same picture and the paper version which now exists is version 4. But I want to keep all the variants for posterity. Looks like more suffixes are called for!

Friday 11 April 2008

Mitchell's Picture Numbering - Engine Room Captive Navy Recruit

As I anticipated would happen, domestic commitments have slowed progess on my 'S&M Clinic' story but I am pleased with what I have so far.

The interim work designed to fill the gap is nearly ready and will go out in the next week. The working title is 'Building Site Incident' but I will give it a more punchy name for publication. As I've mentioned before this is a 'story board' format. The original drawings have several frames on one page but I will publish the frames separately or in pairs.

This has given me a little numbering problem - do I label each frame separately? I normally give each of my pictures a separate number for identification. One of the benefits of this was supposed to be a count of pictures completed. Unfortunately over the years exceptions have arisen; for example pictures forming part of a set have sometimes been given the same number with a suffix e.g M337a, M337b. Unfortunately this scheme was upset when I allocated other pictures to the set which already had their own catalogue numbers!
More recently the ability to scan and store pictures electronically has given me the ability to amend the master picture to produce a slightly different one and these have also been given suffixes e.g. M690.2 (see illustration). The end result of this is that I now have only a general idea how many pictures I have! I reckon it's in the region of 1000 of which 118 have been published so far. This includes a number of early pictures which are probably not good enough to publish.

For now I've decided to number the pieces of paper making up story boards not the individual frames. More about numbering in my next post.

Tuesday 8 April 2008

Nudity and sex in Mitchell's 'art' - Cactus Kid Caught With a Nugget

I discovered this weekend that someone has created a link to this blog and labelled it as 'porn'.

I was a bit surprised. While my work includes sexual elements I wouldn't characterise it in this way. Many of my pictures don't even have nudity or sex in them and are no more erotic than the average boys comic book! Like the example below.

I'm not offended to be labelled in this way just surprised. I don't have too many illusions about the artistic quality of my work, it's meant to be entertainment not 'Art' but the porn label seems a pretty crude description. I try and keep this blog low key to maximise accessibilty. More exciting stuff is at my Yahoo! group (see sidebar for link)

The sexual act doesn't always feature in my pictures because I think the build up to it is often more interesting. There are so many explicit photo's available and so many talented photographers that I doubt I could add an original image. There doesn't seem any point in trying to.

For the same reason I usually let my characters keep some clothing on. I grew up in a time when nudity was not publishable so that's probably got something to do with it. However, I do feel that with a nude figure, whilst it can be beautiful and sexy, has no identity. The viewer can't connect with what is happening in the picture. Whereas if the figure is wearing something, all sorts of fantasies can be sparked and the viewer starts interacting with the image, not just passively viewing it.

I hope viewers get involved with my characters - it's what they were created for - to be carried off into the viewers mind and there take part in some erotic adventure. If only they could report back to me what had happened to them!

Sunday 6 April 2008

"Building site incident" by Mitchell

I've been looking through my unfinished sketches for material that might fill the gaps in the S&M Clinic story and I came across a little story board depicting a building site incident. Sometimes these unfinished items cry out to be set free! Then this picture popped up in my mailbox. He might have stepped right out of the picture story. Seems like an omen so I'm tidying up the drawings for publication to bridge the gap before the next S&M story goes out.

It's a fairly straight forward boy meets man story with a bit of bondage thrown in for spice. It's drawn in a comic format 6 frames to a page but I may split the pictures to create a narrative. The individual frames of course are less complex than my normal pictures. I'll be interested in the reaction they get.

I have a number of other stories in storyboard, comic format which will probably never get drawn as full size pictures as there are too many frames. These include a freestanding Neighbourhood Police Story and another on the S&M Clinic theme. Both follow a single character through their respective experiences with these organisations. I'm hoping these will go out towards the end of the year.

'Building Site Incident' will be published at mitchmen (yahoo group) in the next week or so.

Friday 4 April 2008

Neighbourhood Police Story- latest (Jailbird detail)

The first part of Mitchell's Neighbourhood Police Story is now available as a PDF showing the original text combined with Mitchell's Artwork. The PDF is available in the files area of 'mitchmen' at Yahoo!

For those who missed it the story tells how Commissioner Hardman decides to tackle the law and order issues in Mitchville by instituting the '4S' policy:- Stop, Strip, Search and Secure. The Cops eagerly hit the street to implement the new tactics capturing and stripping known troublemakers and villains ready for transfer to the Jail. As the operation progresses however there are indications that the Cops have their own erotic ideas about the direction the operation should take.

This story resumes at 'mitchmen' later in the year and I shall probably rerun Part 1 as a prelude to the next installment.

In the next part of the series the thugs - stripped and tied up - start to find out what they are in for at the Mitchville jail

I've attached a little taster for you.

Wednesday 2 April 2008

Scene setting for the new 'mitchmen' story - S&M clinic

I have now found a bit of space to get properly started on S&M Clinic - the opening picture is virtually complete and joins half a dozen others forming the core scenes. I've still not settled on the exact format of the story yet - it will essentially be open ended and there are lots of ways to assemble the scenes together.

The background to the story is as follows:-

The town fathers have decided in their wisdom that some menfolk are not looking after their health properly. A pilot project has been approved for selected men who live in the town to undergo a medical screening. Checks will be made on various aspects of the men's health and lifestyle and remedial action identified. If the pilot project is successful the process will be extended and repeated annually.

In order not to place a strain on public health resources the screening process has been contracted out to a private clinic. The successful bid was made by the Sporting and Military Clinic (known in the trade as 'The S&M Clinic'). This Clinic has specialised for many years in dealing with men from organisations who rely on high levels of fitness and health - they have health maintenance contracts with Rugby and Soccer clubs and local Army and Naval units for example. Naturally with this sort of clientele they are noted for their 'no-nonsense' approach. This appealed to the town authorities who are anxious to focus the new initiative on the sort of men who are normally reluctant to deal with these matters. The Clinic clinched the contract by offering to supplement the health checks with on-the-spot remedial actions.

Any day now letters will start arriving in 'male rich' households setting appointment times for their attendance for examinations the like of which they probably will not have experienced before...................

Watch this space for further announcements about Mitchell's 'S&M Clinic'