Lela Gwenn had a dream: cosplay as some of her favorite heroes, and then get tied up and photographed by Sandman Slim author Richard Kadrey. The model and writer raised over $4000 on Kickstarter to make it happen, and here's your first look at the results, exclusively on io9.
Warning: Some photos probably NSFW.
The NerdBondageProjekt let people vote on which characters Lela Gwenn would dress as (and get tied up as), and people donated $4,688, more than the $4,250 goal. As a result, Gwenn dressed up as four characters: Harley Quinn, Catwoman, Death (from the Sandman comics), and Leelo from The Fifth Element. Her makeup was done by Teresa Song. Scroll down for more photos of the NerdBondageProjekt.
We've featured Richard Kadrey's weird fetish photography before, but this is the first time we've seen him do cosplay stuff.
Here's what Gwenn tells us about the inspiration behind this project:
Why were you willing to fly all the way across the country just to do this photoshoot?
Have you seen Richard's work? He's sorta amazing.
Where did the idea for this photoshoot come from? Did you think of it primarily as cosplay or fetish photography?
I'm a kinky nerd. Nerd bondage is me combining my favorite things. The bondage in this shoot is pretty mellow so it's primarily cosplay.
I know you let people who contributed to the Indiegogo campaign vote on heroes that you could have cosplayed as. How many heroes were in the running, and how close did it come? And what was it about these particular heroes that seemed to resonate with you or the voters?
There were 18 heroes on the original survey. The top 8 were really close — Death & Kaylee Frye were neck and neck up to the last minute. Catwoman was a huge favorite from the start, though. Something about bondage & Catwoman just goes together.
If people had contributed a little more to your Indiegogo campaign, you would have cosplayed as a genderswapped Doctor in bondage. Which Doctor? And were you sad this didn't happen?
I desperately wanted to do the 4th Doctor — tied up with a ridiculously long colorful scarf. Maybe next time. *sigh*
Is it weird to celebrate these powerful heroes by showing them in bondage? What is it about Catwoman and Leelo that you're celebrating here?
It's funny— heroes end up tied up all the time! It's a fine tradition in comic book tradition! But if you look at the photos, I don't pull the Damsel in Distress routine. Mostly, I'm having a great time or working on getting myself untied.
With the Leeloo I had a hard time figuring and actual tie that worked for her. There's a vulnerability to the character... but it's backed up with a whole lotta bad ass. We went with making the "bandage" outfit out of white rope and bondage tape.
We've written before about how the line between cosplay and fetish is actually pretty blurry — what's fun, for you, about exploring that line?
Cosplay is this weird little world of people that go out of their way to be weird. Fetish is a weird little world of people who get off on weird things These are my two weird little worlds and I love them.
But as far as the blurred line goes — in costume a person is free to be whatever the character allows. All inhibitions are right out the window. For a lot of people that is as close as they will ever get to the kind of freedom that kinksters are seeking.
If you could be one superhero or famous comic character, who would you want to be?
Storm. She's was a beautiful balance of punk rock goddess, level headed teacher and oh yeah... LIGHTNING.
And here are some more photos, exclusively premiering at io9: