Dylan Ryan interview
One niche of the porn industry that has gained more visibility, recognition, and respect in recent years is queer porn. Among the handful of recognizable names of this genre, Dylan Ryan is one of them. She transcends this type of porn and no doubt likes to reinvent herself. Dylan takes "...pride...on being a chameleon..." From movies like her first one Champion to Superfreak and her many appearances in The Crash Pad series, her transformation can easily be seen and admired. Any director and studio would create superb buzz if Dylan Ryan is in their movie. More importantly, her appearance and performance would make that film better and noteworthy. The first time that I saw her on screen in the Champion, I knew that she was special. I am glad that others will begin to learn more about one of the best adult stars in the business from reading Dylan's very insightful and honest interview. You would not expect anything less from the Madonna of Queer Porn.
Hi Dylan, you get better and better. For those fans who are not aware of you, how long have you been in the industry, what have been your most pleasurable moments so far? What has been your least pleasurable?
Thank you! It's nice to hear that my improvement is perceptible. It's fun trying to push myself in this industry and work to keep improving. I really love what I do so that makes it easy!
To answer your question, I have been in the industry for about five years now. I starred in my first film the summer of 2004 so I am approaching six years. The best moments by far have been working in projects directed and produced by my friends; Shine Louise Houston, Courtney Trouble and Madison Young. They make wonderful films that are realistic and hot. They also cast talent that I love to work with like Jiz Lee and Aiden Starr. Working with and for people I adore makes the job really easy and means that I feel understood and supported to be able to show up and do a really hot scene in whichever way I want.
Some of my least pleasurable experiences have been in situations where I was critically judged based on my look. Porn can be very aesthetically focused and though that is changing everyday and the industry is becoming more inclusive of a variety of bodies, sometimes it can be challenging to deal with people who are overly critical and not have it get you down.
How did you get into the adult industry?
I got into the industry through what I have heard called, "the gateway drug of sexwork"; stripping. I was working at a peep show in San Francisco called The Lusty Lady and working at Good Vibrations, a sex toy retailer also in San Francisco. The Lusty Lady is totally nude so working there, I quickly became comfortable with my body and performing nude in front of people. When a colleague of mine at Good Vibes, Shine Louise Houston asked me to take a role in her first ever porn film, The Crash Pad, I was intrigued and told her that I would be interested. My experience in that first film was great and opened my mind to a new realm of performance through being in porn...the rest, as they say, is history.
It's no doubt that when you appear on screen, you command so much attention with your sexiness and persona. Your incredible work in the Crash Pad series episodes and the movie Champion are great examples of this fact. What does it mean to you that you transcend the queer porn audience and have made fans who usually do not follow this genre?
It is very meaningful for me because I make porn that I'm proud of that I always hope will appeal to all people, not just queer audiences. It is especially exciting when a person who is not already familiar with my work or the genre tells me that they loved a scene or a movie that I was in. I think that some of the tenents of queer porn; authenticity, raw sexuality, different bodies, taboo sex acts- these are things that I am wanting for people to see and experience, have impact them and possibly change their understanding of their sexuality, queer sexuality and what "hot sex" is and can be. When that happens, I feel like my work has been a success and it motivates me to keep working and making porn that I think is hot because that seems to speak to people.
Going back to the queer porn arena, I have noticed that the sex scenes tend to be more real and genuine compared to regular porn scenes. Would you mind comparing these two types of films so that the readers can get a better understanding of what queer porn is all about? Why do you think that queer porn is gaining in popularity?
I hate to over generalize about either genre, mainstream and queer so instead i'll relay the feedback I have gotten that is comparable to what you have said. What I have heard/ been told about people's experiences with porn is that a lot of the porn content they have watched seems "contrived" or "fake", meaning that they felt that there was a lack of authenticity in the bulk of porn that was out there. To me that connoted a lack of real enjoyment, pleasure and connection between the performers with one another and the performers with the sex that they were having. Sometimes I would watch porn and find myself wondering if the model was really enjoying herself and feel like the noises that were being made and the positions were a series of set-ups that they were running through rather than positions that they wanted to be in to get more pleasure and enjoy one another more. That being said, I have seen mainstream porn that is super hot and very authentic, it is my feeling however that sometimes porn can be a little soulless and the comments from fans and critics seemed to follow that thought. I feel like queer porn has commanded so much attention because so much of it has soul and raw soul at that. People really started to take notice of the energy between the performers, the unique positions, the interesting sex acts like fisting and the more penetrative and involved style of oral sex. To members of the queer community, what was hot is that this is the way some queer people actually fuck. Oral, for instance is not a long distance tip of the tongue act as much as it more often is a full-on connected activity with full face to pussy contact. When queer porn actually showed that, it seemed like people had an aha! moment of recognition with not only sex that they identified with and thought was hot but sex that felt really authentic in its portrayal. I think that that is the main reason that queer porn is gaining in popularity, the fact that it shows sex that is authentic with people who are into what they are doing and into sharing that with the world.
You have remarkable sexual chemistry with both men and women. What traits of a woman do you admire most? What makes a woman sexy? What traits of a man do you admire most? What makes a man sexy?
I am attracted to all kinds of people, not just people who identify as male or female and I really find sexiness in all people. As for women, I simply adore women and women's bodies. I think skin and eyes and breasts and legs, really I think women are just spectacularly beautiful and sensual and amazing. A woman's sexiness is really unique to her so it's impossible to say what specifically makes a woman sexy, it depends on the woman. For me, its the essence of that woman; is she tough? sexual? gentle? funny? All these traits translate into different kinds of sexual energy and inform different kinds of sex. As for men, I feel similarly about man's bodies though I feel like there is a different kind of sensuousness with men and a different kind of aggression that I am attracted to. The main reason I enjoy doing scenes with people of all different genders is no different than why I enjoy doing scenes with different people- I learn new things about myself from each scene, have a different sexual chemistry with each person, connect differently with each person. Each scene is something new and exciting and always, holds the possibility of being the hottest scene I've ever done.
Personally, I consider you the Madonna of Queer Porn because you seem to like to reinvent yourself. Am I right or did I just ask a stupid question and totally get it all wrong? How would you describe yourself when it comes to your queer porn persona?
I love that! What an incredible compliment! I really resonate with that because I pride myself on being a chameleon and doing scenes that explore all different parts of my sexuality, my gender, my kink and my identity as a performer. I think porn is a great atmosphere for personal exploration and I constantly learn about myself through that reinvention. It's funny that you should ask how I would describe my porn persona because lately I have been struggling to specifically define myself and have found it very challenging. I think when I really try to overly define, I realize that that in of itself is my definition; lack of one. I am a queer porn star who is alternative, has sex with men, does kink, fetish, bdsm and really loves what she does. Lately I have been toying with the idea of adopting a "porn superhero" persona... ala Clark Kent... one thing on this day but then transformed and flying to the rescue to make hot porn. I have been using the slogan "Changing the world one porn at a time" because I like to think I'm having a small impact on how people make, consume and understand porn.
What was the biggest surprise for you about the adult industry when you started?
I think I expected it to me more cut-throat than it has been, at least in my experience. I have met some wonderful, kind, generous people in this business. There is definitely that side to the porn industry but I think I have had exceptional luck avoiding it and creating relationships with wonderful, supportive people.
Are there any industry people (actors, actresses, directors, etc.) who you have not had the opportunity to work with yet and want to very badly and why? What would be your dream scene?
I have a long list. =) Belladonna, Nina Hartley, Tristan Taormino, Sasha Grey, John Stagliano, Rocko Siffredi, Joanna Angel, Eon McKai (come back Eon!), the list goes on an on. I am such an admirer of all these people and the work they have done. I have watched their movies, gotten off to their movies, aspired to perform like they have. I respect them as moguls, porn intellectuals, amazing business people and strong people who really love what they do. I would be honored to work with any and all of them. And my dream scene? Let's just say that even though she is taking a break from performing, I have been waiting to fuck Belladonna for a long, long time.
What are your hobbies and interests?
I love reading and writing, I am a voracious bookworm. =) I have been super into yoga for the last little while and as a student, I spend a lot of time working on my thesis and plotting my future educational goals. Oh and I love food. I love to eat!
What is your favorite thing about being an adult performer?
My favorite thing is getting paid to do something I love doing. Somedays can be rough but most days I come off set thinking, "I can't believe I get paid for this!" I consider myself lucky.
Are there any web sites or future projects that you would like to promote? What are you currently working on film wise?
My website will be launching the end of March, www.dylanryanx.com so stay tuned. You can also follow me at @thedylanryan on Twitter and my fan page on facebook Film wise, I am headed to L.A. the end of March to shoot a bunch of different content so my fans and followers will be able to see much more of me soon. xoxo
Interview by Apache Warrior