Last week I attended the much anticipated Butch Cordova’s clever take on the subject of calendars – Straight/Butch calendar debut signing and party to celebrate the publication of the calendar that was 2 year’s in the makin’. In Bed with Butch, Butch Cordova the WYBE/DUTV host had a brainstorm a few years back. The 2009 wall calendar, called Straight and Butch, featuring provocative photos of Butch posing with twelve different naked straight men that promises to push the artistic envelope. His subjects included friends, men who worked at stores he frequented and and men who answered his ad on Craigslist.

The 2009 wall calendar, called Straight and Butch, featuring provocative photos of Butch posing with twelve different naked straight men that promises to push the artistic envelope. “The goal was to make a bold and powerful statement,” says Cordora in his latest press release. “A social experiment if you will, about where we are in the world today in regards to tolerance, acceptance, sensitivity, sexuality, masculinity and the human condition.”

He gather a few talented photographers, Christopher Gabello (here with his wife Kristin [the cover shot above was taken by him), Tony Ward, Aaron Cobbett and Mike Ruiz.
Christopher took this photo with his subjects in the Wissahickon Creek. Gabello tells me that he shot it 200 feet away with a long lense on a ladder as to capture the entire environment.
Another Gabello shot taken on the same day, is based on the iconic shot on John Lennon’s “Double Fantasy” album cover. Shot in the bedroom of someone’s house, Gabello photographed this from above his subjects as they lay in bed. Although based on the Annie Lebowitz’s piece, it contains suttle differences that make this shot stand out and really makes it a fine art piece which should be framed and sold separately. But you can own it if you pick up this calendar at Giovanni’s Room in Philadelphia, or
Another Beatles inspired shot was this take off on Abbey Road, and although it’s been done before, the photographer Michael Itkoff takes it and delivers something a bit different, ok their nake that’s different, but also he shoots the whole scene, not just the subjects. And that cross walk, completely added with Photoshot ’cause this is Elkin’s Park and their are no streets like this. All the guys in this shot also have their own solo shots in the calendar. Michael Itkoff grew up in the suburban sprawl outside of Philadelphia, PA.; besides being his own accomplished photographer he is also the magnificient Annie Lebowitz’s assistant.

Black Gay Republican who I hope is voting for Obama, Donald Carter & local Philebrity Survivor contestant Gervase Peterson who is in the calendar about 4 times
Key Greene, Adrian Abonce, Javier Suarez, Michelle Bottalico, Zach Brady, Rocky Ciarrocchi Alba, Nino
Christine Settino, Jennifer Shreiner, Butch Cordova, Sherri Eyer, Heather Krehling, Susan Curtis and Dave Newby
Tony Borzotta, Chelsea Winters, Jamie Krass, and Melissa Grojean,
“The initial plan was to have Tony Ward” (you know Madonna’s Tony Ward, did I mention I photographed her this week) “do all 12 photos. When I met with him, he was intrigued by the whole thing. He had never heard of anything like this and felt it was a strong conceptual, bold idea. And while he’s incredibly straight, photographs the naked female body and has no desire what-so-ever to shoot male nudes, at the end of the day, all photographers want is a powerful, never been done before, in your face project to work on.”

However, as the project moved along, he felt multiple photographers would add to the juxtaposition and diversity of the photos, ending up with six photographers total. Butch and Billy Barton at Tattoo’s Mom’s
Tony Borzotta, Natalie Danner, Gervaise Peterson & Butch Cordova

Where do I buy the Straight/Butch Calendar might wonder; well you can start at Giovanni’s Bookstore, or any of the TLA Video stores and shortly it will be available on; You can find Butch on his TV program In Bed with Butch on WYBE/DUTV and his radio show. Also upcoming is a documentary on the whole shoot “Straight & Butch” which should be ready for screening next year.