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Mentoring the Musenerd

The one role I never anticipated having in my life is that of a Mentor. I’ve never been a parent so the obligation didn’t seem to ever be slated for me. That. of course, changed when I took on my young apprentice/muse, Dirk. And then I realized something strange: it’s not a role assigned to you. It’s one you fall into because of age, experience and acquired wisdom – knowledge gained by living a normal periled life and surviving it.
I can remember – (way back when) – I was his age, and the trauma I felt when things went wrong. In the disastrous blinding heat of the moment you think you’ll never survive; nothing will ever be right again, and all is ruined. That’s, of course, until a few years later when something similar happens again and you calm your heartbeat, take a deep breath and realize… yep…been here, done that…made it through. Mentoring can only be done by those of us who have “made it through”. And that’s how we can help those younger than us when they hit the same turbulence.
The extraordinary thing I learned about mentoring is that it is another lesson for us. A retrospective lesson. At least it has been for me.
I’m still a very flawed individual in spite of having made it through many calamities. I find I still have the same impetuous “young” temper, impatience and intolerance for things that defy what I’d like to have in my life. But NOW, I have the realization that I can step back and teach myself new lessons: like patience, acceptance and perseverance. To never give up; never give in.
When my life came apart a few years ago I had to start over. That’s a hard lesson. To not have money; to give up things.. to do without other things; to reduce your lifestyle to the basics because of the drastic transition.  At first, I was angry as hell. I like nice things like everyone. The American way is designed to make us keep wanting nice things. We want to add to our life…not subtract from it. And the more I subtracted,(and it was A LOT), the more inwardly bitter I became.
Luckily I had a friend, a trainer who was a Buddhist. And though I’m not religious in the least I do believe every religion has something valuable to teach us. And what my young Buddhist friend taught me was to believe that every challenge was a test; every roadblock was a guide to the path we were actually supposed to be on.
I could no longer afford to go to restaurants. I was overweight anyway and a diet was in order. I had to give up Netflix and trips to the movie theater. It was time to buckle down and write those books I’d been putting off for years. I no longer had a home – traveling broadened my abilities to tell stories; be self-sufficient, even become fearless in approaching situations I was unaccustomed to. I could no longer afford the luxury of relaxing with the wine I enjoyed – exercise was a substitute to burn off the excess energy…and get back in shape. Being poor made me richer in the things that would round out my character and help me complete the things I’d always wanted to do. I have twelve books to show for that. I’m in the best shape I’ve been in for over fifteen years. For every single thing I had given up I’d been pushed in another direction… and it made me a better person. I can swear to that – honestly.
I don’t think I could have been as effective a mentor as I am right now at this very moment if I hadn’t sacrificed so much. Now I can actually say with complete conviction… be patient…it will all work out.. if it doesn’t work out…move in another direction. Don’t get upset; don’t complain and trust that you have what it takes to make it through… that’s what will make you a better person…

Wanna see MORE HOT GUYS?

Thanks to every one pledging their contributions to our Patreon for the next photo shoots… This has been a process.. But a necessary one. Since I haven’t been able to do as many shoots as I used to without a permanent residence I’ve been living mainly on my writers income..which as most of you writers know in the past few months continues to diminish. I kept hoping to make enough to start up the photography again…but no go… and Dirk had been hoping for the two of us to work together…and possibly get a studio/apartment by the time he was out of school. No go again. On top of that his mom gave him an ulitimatum that if we didn’t have anything going, he would have to take the job with a studio his Grandmama lined up for him in Houston. (Yes.. he went into a panic.) So we decided to try the Patreon thingie… we figured if we didn’t ask for much, but just enough so we could get the shoots kickstarted again..we had a chance… so that’s the deal…. If you’d like to help you can contribute as little or as much as you like… every bit helps us closer to the goal… we’d like to be able to start shooting again next month… smoochers…


063abecause we’re new to the Patreon site we didn’t word it clearly enough to let folks know that when we ask for contributions it will only be toward the ONE Photo/Art Project we are working toward (at a time) and NOT a recurring monthly billing like some of the art students and Youtubers do… so you can contribute without getting caught in the same cycle. Also… because we are NOT working toward goals of making this our income like them…you can contribute as little as a dollar or as much as whatever… with more people adding just a little bit at a time… we can still get to our goal and start shooting again… So please join us… we want to make this work.. smoochers..

The main reason Dirk and I started the Patreon fund to finance our shoots is because we want to do something different… MORE intense… MORE passionate… More graphically engaging with the shoots. We want to be able to pay the guys a bit (we’re all poor) and feed them and provide them with a few beers and maybe a pizza for their hard work…

But We’re looking to do something to push past the barriers of what we’ve done. I want to let the guys be themselves in these erotic settings… to be able to fully express themselves and make that passion sizzle thru the photo so that it almost burns your screen up. We want to try new things… maybe a bit of cosplay… graphic story telling….

I’ve wanted to do a graphic story of a young, sweet-faced and innocent looking. almost sad hustler being picked up off the street by a man whose initial intention was simply to engage in some wild. quick sex… to show how from the sex something else happens… they fall for each other… hard… and when the hustler goes to leave… just as he walks out the door… he pulls him back for a kiss that isn’t bought… it’s real…

I want to solicit your suggestions for shoots… authors have vivid imaginations and we can provide the beautiful bodies to make those visions come to life. I really want to push the envelope with the new stuff… classy…but hot AND a tad more graphic…

I’d like to be able to do one or two shoots a month if we can get the financing for that. We’re not asking people for life savings, but with so many friends who enjoy my work, if you gave us what you’d spend on a Starbucks or a meal at Rally’s… the cumulative effect would get us there quite easily…

We’ve got so many great plans.. but we need to get the ball rolling… if ya wanna help… here’s the place…

we love ya and thank ya and hope to give ya some really hawt and wonderful stuff..

The Patreon Friends donation site:  https://www.patreon.com/DanSkinnerArt