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sexts into short films

This director is turning your sexts into short films

For just £55 the most intimate messages in your inbox could make their way onto the small screen

For most of us, our private sexts lives wish to remain just that – private. While sexts can be sexy funny, embarrassing – and possibly all three at once – rarely can they be called art. However after releasing the on-screen potential hidden away in her iMessage inbox, Eileen Yaghoobian set her sights on converting our dirtiest thoughts into trashy, surreal short films that wouldn’t seem out of place as scenes in a John Waters movie.

Using your seedy messages as the base for constructing surreal, trashy, under-six-minute scripts, Yaghoobian’s work isn’t a simple recreation. Instead, she uses the sexts as a jumping off point to explore our increasingly evolving intricacies of language and tech in relation to our modern sexual identities. Yaghoobian’s inbox is open to anyone, and for £55 you’ll receive an up-to-six-minute short film depicting your wildest sexting fantasies. Below we caught up with the filmmaker to find out more on what she’s learnt about lust in the digital age.

What fascinates you about the world of sexting?

Eileen Yaghoobian: Sexting is the ultimate confessional, because sexual fantasies are pleasurable, visceral, dangerous, fun, raw, and authentic and represent risqué thoughts you don't dare to say aloud but can in public. The only reason people regret sexting is because shaming culture breeds guilt – it’s that feeling you get from a morally abject thought that is hardly ever acted upon that compels people to sext all the time.  What I love about sexting myself is that you have to be really creative. Sexts are the perfect inspiration, they are current, contemporary, and filled with creativity, tension, real drama and humour. Most importantly, they are authentic and raw. Sexts don’t create sexual dynamics, they reveal them.

How did the idea come about for Send Me Your Sexts?

Eileen Yaghoobian:  My personal fascination with sexting got me talking and sharing my sexts with my friends, conversation led to “It would be funny to see this come to life!” The idea came to me in a public space on a crowded street sharing my sexts with my friend – its unexplored territory. The material is hilarious, you can’t make this stuff up and it’s infinite what you can do with the messages. I like the idea of combining the world of sex with the world if indie. It’s a wonderful experience to see your sexts come to life. I want other people to experience it and have the opportunity to because my service is affordable.

Why did you choose film as the medium to translate the sexts into?

Eileen Yaghoobian: Film is the best way to watch your sexts in action. The retro look and feel of the videos makes it look campy and kinda porny and something that doesn’t take itself seriously which parallels the sexting experience. Unforgettable funny characters originate from the performances of the repetitive graphic sexual language. A sort of dark, awkward humour is inevitable as we take something that people do not dare to express directly, and make them express it directly.  It's like we're removing the distance created by the technology, showing how far human desire goes if it's not restrained by a certain embarrassment or self-censorship.

How do you think sexuality has evolved with modern technology?

Eileen Yaghoobian: The way you express your desires changes with technology. You can be vulnerable to scrutiny because of the language you use or the platform you use. I’ve discovered that by bringing digital intimacy to life, modern sexuality reveals both our fantasies and the reality of our intent and desires. Even if you know who you're sexting with you're kind of hiding. The way you express your desires changes with tech. And you can be vulnerable to scrutiny because of the language you use or the platform you use or the way you use the language with technology.

You can also gain a lot of confidence using the communication practices of the digital era to express your sexuality and move past your inhibitions. Some people love dirty talk and are good at it, and some love to be a tease and suck at talk. But the tech part of sexting gives people the freedom to be the dirty talking self they never thought they could be in real life – and that’s the part that interests me.  

“All girls grow up with the fairytale narrative that the knight in shining armour will save the damsel in distress. But if he doesn't come, that doesn't mean she can't text him”– Eileen Yaghoobian

Has the easy accessibility of technology and these tools made us more open or closed about sex?

Eileen Yaghoobian: Just as technology has made it easier to break up by ghosting (ignoring all communications), it’s also easy to have a sexting life that really doesn’t exist. Technology is both hyper-visible and invisible. Our engagement with sexual messages and images lives within the ambiguity between fantasy and reality. It’s all about who you share your sexuality with and what they do with it.

Everyone sexts and wants privacy, but at the same time, they want to share their secret. We get off on being private in public and we get off on sharing our sexual experiences at the same time. We use technology to exchange our collection of digital intimacy with friends and strangers like we’re trading baseball cards.

There’s a lot of downsides to online sexual communication, such as the leaking of nudes – do you think these tech advances are ultimately a good or bad thing?

Eileen Yaghoobian: Sexting is for sharing and unfortunately sometimes stealing. I think speed has a lot to do with it. Your dick pic can be sent to everyone and can be instantly globally scrutinised because of technology, and the internet can judge you. You can easily send multiple pictures that take no time and you send them without thinking because that’s what you do with your phone and you can be drunk or whatever state emotionally and it’s easy to send and not think. Regret is easy with tech. All girls grow up with the fairytale narrative that the knight in shining armour will save the damsel in distress. But if he doesn't come, that doesn't mean she can't text him.

Find out more about Send Me Your Sexts here