Photographing Bob Jackson and Chuck Steury


PHOTOGRAPHING BOB JACKSON AND CHUCK STEURY

On a summer day in 1962 I had a brief opportunity to photograph Bob and Chuck in a short session at my Berkeley home. They were a pair of hustlers traveling mostly together around the country being photographed by many of the leading photographers of the era including AMG, Avery Willard, Bruce of LA, Champion, Kriss of Canada, J. Brian, Pat MiloPlato, Tyro and others.

Bob Jackson and Chuck Sturey photos by Champion

Chuck and Bob were sent to me by a new friend, Al McDuffie, who ran a physique studio alternatively called California Models/Acme/Pacific Films. Al worked out of his apartment in San Francisco and I know he also photographed the two, but I have never seen any of the photos.

At the time I was a starving student at SF State and could barely afford the $20 modeling fee, which was very reasonable for that period. The drawback was that 20 bucks only bought me two hours of modeling time.

Bob Jackson, photo by Kriss of Canada

To say that I was an amateur at the time is an understatement, as the only physique photography I had done were of myself and my cousin. Isn’t this how everyone starts? I picked the guys up at Al’s and was put on a tight time schedule, two hours traveling time and two hours for the shoot. Seems they had an evening client This alone would be nerve racking and added to my inexperience, made this a nervous experience at best.

Bob Jackson and Chuck Sturey, photo by Champion

During the trip to Berkeley Bob and Chuck told me of their background and what they were about. Basically a couple of friendly hustlers.

Chuck Sturey, photo by Champion

The session actually went fairly smoothly. Bob couldn’t get it up and Chuck couldn’t get it down. In these days nudes were illegal, but it was commonly known that they were about to become legal. This meant most sessions would be divided into posing strap, soft nudes and hard nudes. So it was disappointing not to get hard shots of Bob or soft of Chuck. I was kind of hoping Chuck would blow Bob, but apparently not with someone around with a camera.

Chuck Sturey, photo by Pat Milo

Given the time restraints there was very little sexual interaction among any of us. Clearly I wasn’t paying for sex of any kind, so I wasn’t going to get it. Actually Bob seemed very shy about this sort of thing and obviously Chuck was ready to go. Even after we oiled Bob up, he just couldn’t get it up. Both guys seemed relaxed and friendly, so I’m not sure what the problem was.

Bob Jackson, photo by Plato

When the two hours were up, I had three rolls of 36 exposures, one of each guy and one duos. I thought all was well and I would have some good pictures. The trip back was uneventful.

In the early sixties you had to develope any pictures with nudes yourself. I had learned how to develope Kodak etrachrome successfully, but it was a long and tricky process. It was very disappointing when all three rolls did not develop. My guess is that my shutter malfunctioned. All that I have of Bob and Chuck are fond memories.

See video of Bob and Chuck together at TimInVermont.com

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