The fortunate among you bent pervs may already know of Persephone and her work, due to passing familiarity with MistressPersephone.net, or her countless appearances in fetish magazines and BDSM videos, or perhaps, for the luckiest of you, her live performances that have toured internationally.
For the rest, this could be your first encounter with artist/Domme/producer/model/performer/fetishist/Web/Mistress Persephone.
I'm sure she'll leave a lasting impression.
AVN Online: With the advent of SickChixxx.com, why keep MistressPersephone.net?
The Mistress Persephone: Mostly because it's been online since 1996, and it has a lasting Web presence. Because I do private Domination sessions, I keep that page to link to pro Domination sites that require I keep a description of my specialties in a free format. It's also sort of a personal reminder of the person I am and what got me to this point.
AO: So why SickChixxx.com now?
TMP: I first went online in '96. I had a small AOL homepage with a few pics and short description to make friends. I expanded to Tripod, through a site designed by then-online friend Gennaro Belva, from Brooklyn; then to a site on GeoCities after Chad Savage - a brilliant Gothic artist to whom I will be eternally grateful for all of his selfless help - took it upon himself to work with me on a new design. Both of those incarnations had trouble because some fundamentalist Xian stalker was out there writing letters to the servers and getting me thrown off. Eventually, Gothic.net came to the rescue, and the rest is history.
AO: What distinguishes MistressPersephone.net from SickChixxx.com?
TMP: I used MP.net to describe a bit about my interests and adventures, and to expose people to my modeling portfolio. I really had the desire to maintain it as a free Website as long as possible as sort of an anarchist fuck you; but even I had to digress and evolve into a pay site when my host started voicing some financial trouble. I shrunk my site down significantly and for a while there was talk that I might lose my host altogether, so in a panic, I posted a plea for help on my Yahoo!Groups (groups.yahoo.com) fan club.
The person who came to my aid was Paige White, Web developer for Slave Labor Productions (www.enslaved.com), which is a network of several successful adult fetish sites. She and I had worked together as hired model - me - and photographer - her - for Enslaved.com, and we hit it off from day one.
AO: What was the idea, then, behind SickChixxx.com?
TMP: She and I discussed that it could be high time for me to move on to the next level, and because I trusted her - she's a good friend - I took her offer to partner up with me for SickChixxx.com. I had been proposed other offers before from other people when I was in my adamant anarchist stage, but I always got a sketchy vibe, and my gut instinct is usually right. I need to have creative control, full ownership of my name, and rights to images; she has no problem at all with that, so I have a magnificent time focusing on my brainchild.
AO: Your look has really evolved over - well, the time I've been aware of you, so let's say six years - while you still keep to the same basic theme.
TMP: The funny thing is, I love changing my appearance on a whim, and I have always been "into" the things I am "into." I needed a way to express myself, and since I never wanted to pursue acting, I had to sort of invent a way to be seen. I had had a few different jobs within "the system" when I figured out that, because of my major problems with authority, I could not live in a white-collar world.
I then worked at two different adult boutiques; I did phone sex for almost a year; I stripped; but even that wore thin, because I had to cover my tattoos with makeup and I hated not being able to have pride in my ink.
I was always being told that I wouldn't be successful as a model because I was pierced and tattooed, but I was not going to let that bring me down. I opted to give it my best shot. I also got into pro Domination and found I was very adept at it, and honed my skills.
Because I was always a fan of horror, exotica, glamour... I try to bring them all together in everything I do... the title "Goddess of 1000 Faces" gives me the freedom to wear wigs, dye my hair, walk around in a clown suit should it strike my fancy. I don't like to be pigeonholed. I strive for innovation.
AO: What keeps you so young and beautiful - the blood of virgins?
TMP: I had to give up my blood drinking in the '80s [laughs].
I honestly believe that living a pure and honest life - I am not talking virginity, sobriety, chastity - but that keeps me young; remaining grounded, creative, down-to-earth. When you love what you do, it shows - you maintain an inner sparkle and an outer glow. I love helping out truly talented artists and other models as well, and I believe in karma.
AO: What's the most challenging thing about your site for you?
TMP: Coming up with new challenges for myself as a model while still feeding my members material they can lust over.
I do not pander, or cater to, people's needs; [I'd rather] share my life and interests with those who desire involvement. I love working with new people whose interpretation of me might be different than my existing body of work. I like my skills to be stretched and I hope that my fans appreciate this effort on my behalf.
AO: What do you do to keep the XXX from being "status quo" on your site?
TMP: I have a very specific aesthetic inspired by the things that made me who I am: Hammer horror, Mexican wrestling films, Russ Meyer, rock operettas like Phantom of the Paradise, 1960s sleaze culture, Gerry Anderson, Benny Hill, Monty Python, Italian giallo, burlesque, fantasy art... I take the imagery that modeled my psyche and I try to bring it to life through writing, photos, videos. It's an odd mix but there's an enormous amount of erotica involved in the things that sculpted my libido and influenced my character.
Tim Polecat, my husband and art director, shares [my] aesthetic so when we produce material for the site - either of me or of one of the Baphomet Beauties I draw into the fold - we have a very good idea of how it's going to turn out. We are not the kind of people who like to see rehash, or who blend into the background. He's extremely talented and visual, and the fact that he's won a BDA for his background in music videos and TV shows his work as grade-A material. I am very proud of him and thrilled that we can share this project together.
AO: What's your ideal Domme/BDSM scenario?
TMP: I'm a sadist... I enjoy inflicting any kind of corporal punishment, play piercing, catheters, sounds, bondage...
AO: What's next for Mistress Persephone and for SickChixxx.com?
TMP: Basically the more revenue the site brings in, the higher the quality of the material. It's going to be even bigger and better with time. I won't have it any other way. I have some gorgeous models, my wardrobe keeps growing, our equipment keeps getting better and my memberships are exploding - my site is only six months young [as of Sept. 2002 -Ed. ], so 2003 is going to be a great year.
For me personally, I take it as it comes. I love performing live and making public appearances. I have lots of performances booked between now and mid-November 2003 in Las Vegas, San Francisco, Jamaica, Miami. I will be at Bondcon Las Vegas as a guest of honor-and-performer in January - the same weekend as CES - and signing and performing in March.
AO: Have you had any bad experiences since the launch of SickChixxx.com?
TMP: Can you believe that two photographers, a team, have refused me permission to use my own images out of spite after years of promising me I could use them for my own promotion? Needless to say, I have since then denounced them completely and they continue to exploit me because they know my name sells. People like that make me appreciate all the good in the world because it far outweighs the scumbags. All of the people who have let me use my pictures prove that and more than make up for it.
I have to say every single person who has given me the right to use my images on the site has been a big help to me and I thank them all. All of my models have also been a blessing, and I'll do everything in my power to promote them and help them achieve success on their own.
I'm so privileged to have worked with so many kind and generous people. The main people to thank, however, are Tim Polecat, Paige White. and the Empress of Erotica [The Empress and Persephone do live feeds for SickChixxx.com]. She has her own site, www.empressoferotica.com. Also Jerry Berg - he's the one who helped make this profile possible.
AO: What does SickChixxx.com offer that "nobody else" does?
TMP: I'm not a member of any other pay sites so I don't really know... I've heard from my members that they love that I am a real person with a definite purpose, that I update religiously, and they always rave about the high quality of the videos inside the site. I've also been told that my knowledge of pop culture and my ability to incorporate it into my work is impressive. I have multiple Webcams, so if I'm not online at the time, [a member] can jump into one of my models' worlds for awhile.
AO: Lastly, is there anything you want to share - hints that might help newbies, shameless self-promo, etc.?
TMP: Always be who you want to be, never let people tell you you can't make it because you don't fit in, and never be afraid to speak your mind. You are only as good as you say you are and believe yourself to be. You may have to endure a few blows because flocks of sheep always run from wolves, and the shepherd will always try to defend the flock.
In the end, however:
1) Bare those fangs only when necessary
2) Never attack without provocation
3) Howl when needed and most of all....
4) Exhibit your strength of will and pride, for you are one.
Remember, wolves run in packs and while you might remain a loner for awhile, eventually others of your ilk will sniff you out and the hunt will begin.