Liam Campbell editor of gay bookazine Elska tells Gay Star News about the journey of putting together his latest issue…
‘As our fifteenth Elska edition in our fifteenth city, we finally made our way to Latin America, and to the southern hemisphere too.
‘We knew we wanted to make an issue in Latin America but we decided that our first city there should be a really gay one. So we talked to people from the region and did a bit of research, and it seemed that Bogotá is maybe the queerest city in the Latin world. It has same-sex marriage rights, anti-discrimination laws, and probably the biggest gay club in the world.
‘Elska Bogotá happens to be our most naked issue ever. When we make an Elska we ask each guy whether he wants to shoot indoors or outdoors, clothed or nude, and it just happened that almost all the guys here wanted to do nude shoots. It seems Colombians just really like taking their clothes off!
‘One thing that really stands out with the Colombian men compared with people we’ve met in other cities is that they have a flair for the dramatic. That’s why the stories they wrote for this edition are some of the most romantic and poetic we’ve ever published.
‘Interest from local guys to take part in this issue was higher than for any other Elska’
‘Something that really surprised us when shooting the issue is how safe Bogotá felt. You grow up with impressions of drug gangs and kidnappings, but it’s such a misconception based on stuff that happened before most of these guys were born.
‘One of the highlights was shooting Duv, the cover guy, in La Candelaria. This is the old colonial district of Bogotá, full of colourful and charming old Spanish buildings. When Duv showed up dressed in clothes even more colorful than the neighbourhood, we knew we had to shoot our cover here and with him.
‘Interest from local guys to take part in this issue was higher than for any other Elska. That’s why you’ll meet three more Bogotá guys in our companion e-zine, Elska Ekstra, because we just couldn’t fit them all in the print mag. However, at 168 pages, the print mag is already our biggest.
‘Hopefully we can do another Latin Elska in the future, and we’re open to suggestions of which city that should focus on.’
To see a list of where Elska Magazine is sold around the world or to order a copy online, visit elskamagazine.com.