Or, with apologies to Cheap Trick, I Want You to Want Me.

I want you.

This isn’t really something I’ve suddenly discovered about myself as much as it is about discovering how important it is to me. I need human contact. I’m an incredibly visual person, but it turns out I’m equally as tactile. I like to touch, to feel human skin. I find I touch absent-mindedly as much or more than I do intentionally, deliberately, with forethought. It’s not necessarily about sex or romance, though it can be. It’s about contact, intimacy, saying more than I can with words.

I want you to want me.

I like being touched. I like being touched deliberately and sexually, sure, but just as much (or even more), I like being touched absent-mindedly. Surprisingly to me, I miss this sort of touch more than any other. The light fingers on the back of my neck while sitting on the couch, the feet stretched out into my lap, the fleeting hand on my waist as I’m being passed by in a tight space, the gentle stroking of my skin while lying in bed talking about nothing in particular. There is so much that’s said in that comfortable, intimate, aimless bit of connection, a second or two might fill an entire library with words and still be inadequate. It’s the most eloquent expression of affection for me, and I find its absence in my life loud, garish, and glaring.


::sigh:: How appropriate. Thanks for rubbing it in, WordPress.

I want you to want me to want you.

This bit will probably get a little complicated, so I’ll save it for later, when I’ve got a better idea of how to express it. It will probably involve lingerie.


Thanks again to my good friend Wendy for the hand job. …uh, I mean, for modeling her lovely hands for me.



To repeat the disclaimer, this is a project about re-discovery. It’s about remembering who I am, what I’m about, what I love and what I do not. Fair warning, this project will be posted here rather than at my SFW site because there will be nudity from time to time. Some of it will be of me, some not, some artistic and pretty to look at, some just raw.

I don’t intend to think of something every day and then shoot it, though I may do that sometimes, too. But sometimes I will just shoot, and then find something about myself in the frames and post about that thing, whatever it is.

All my #365SelfDiscovery posts will be filed here.

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Louis Shackleton is an intimate portraiture artist and wildlife photographer formerly based in Wilmington, NC. After 3 years of traveling the continent in his 2001 VW Passat, he's now settled in Seattle, Washington.

Head on over to the About page to read more about him and his work.

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