Workshops

Workshops are presented by a diverse group of national, international, regional and local presenters.

Below is a partial list of the approved workshops. More will be posted as we receive and approve them.

(click titles to open for presenter bios and full class descriptions)

Master Skip

Because M/s relationships are arguably more intentional in their construct than their “vanilla” counterparts, having advance knowledge of where you and your Master/slave stand on the fundamental, practical and ethical issues facing your relationship should be a given. Yet how many of us, when confronted with challenging situations and circumstances, have been shocked to discover that not only were we ignorant of our Master’s or slave’s POV on a particular matter, we didn’t know how we ourselves felt until we were in the thick of it? Avoiding such potentially damaging surprises is just one of the many benefits of a personal code, and in this highly-interactive presentation Master Skip will explore the necessity and value of a personal code for both Masters and slaves, offer some tips on how to craft such a code, and then provide both time and opportunity for you to begin the crafting process for yourself.

slave Rick

Join slave Rick, a collared slave for more than 23 years and a licensed psychotherapist (www.KinkTherapistLosAngeles.com), for a heartfelt sharing of some of the wisdom he has gleaned as a result of his esoteric journey from role to Soul. Many of his life lessons will no doubt resonate with your own experience, so come join the sacred circle and contribute to the discussion.

slave Rick

Although every Master/slave relationship has at least a few characteristics in common, there is no one “right way” to be Master and slave. The models for such relationships are as varied as the individuals who comprise them.

In the monastic model, which is the model that most strongly resonates with the presenter and his Master, there are striking parallels between the Master/slave relationship and that of the disciple and his/her Guru. For some, these similarities make the path of slavery much more than sexual pleasure or fantasy fulfillment. When approached from this consciousness, slavery is nothing less than a sacred path to union with the Divine.

Join slave Rick, lifelong spiritual seeker and licensed psychotherapist within the BDSM community, and discover how the longing of your loins may hold the potential for leading you Home (www.KinkTherapistLosAngeles).

Master Skip & slave Rick

According to the “10,000 hour rule,” it takes 10,000 hours of intense, correct practice to achieve mastery of complex skills and material. While this rule has been challenged over the years, it still provides a useful frame of reference when one is attempting to achieve proficiency, if not expertise, in any endeavor. So how might it beneficially apply to us? What would 10,000 hours translate to in the context of a Master/slave relationship, and what would be the criteria for intense and correct practice? What might be missing when it comes to this theory?

In this brand-new presentation Master Skip and slave Rick will share their insights regarding this intriguing idea and examine its practicality for M/s practitioners, novices and veterans alike.

Hardy Haberman

How do you maintain your kink life when living most days in a vanilla world? This workshop will be an open discussion of what constitutes an authentic life. Set aside your preconceived ideas and your roles and come prepared to share and expand your consciousness.

Hardy Haberman

Can a person be Christian and into BDSM? Can you have a spiritual experience in the Dungeon? Where do religion, tradition and faith fit into your play life?

This workshop will be an open discussion exploring the connections between the spirit and the flesh. Come with an open mind and heart and be prepared to share in the discussion.

Master Jim & slave marsha

When you think of “service” in a Master/slave relationship, what comes to mind? A “high leather dinner?” Your home as Downton Abby, complete with a butler? Your slave as personal valet, available at a moment’s notice? 

Service is integral in maintaining a M/s dynamic. But not all service tasks are “equal” in impact – service can be “big” but add little value to the overall relationship, or “small” in scope but huge in impact. As our lives become busier and the demands of the outside world increase, consider the concept of “tiny service” – how to find the little acts of service that make big differences. Join Master Jim and slave marsha as they share how and why the concept of “tiny service” became important to them, how to assess the impact of a task on your relationship, and some ideas for finding the “tiny service” that’s right for you.

Master Jim & slave marsha

How many M/s relationships do you know of that have endured five years? Ten years? Twenty? Sometimes it feels like these relationships are about as strong and long lasting as a house of cards. But why? 

Join Master Jim and slave marsha -- who have sustained their own M/s relationship for over 25 years -- as they explore the reasons why Master/slave relationships can be so fragile, the factors that influence the strength of these relationships, and why they seem to often end so poorly. And then listen as they surprisingly suggest that the very fragility of M/s relationships may be part of what makes them so worth pursuing. 

Raven Kaldera & slaveboy Joshua

It seems like so many written models of M/s feature the angry master continually punishing the disobedient slave, while the flow of information is deliberately choked off. This class is for people who aren’t interested in a power dynamic that’s one long series of takedowns, but becomes a smoothly-running system where both parties work together to achieve goals … and the s-types are encouraged to be honorable adults responsible for keeping their promises.

We’ll concentrate on seeing the power dynamic as a Team rather than as adversaries, and discuss methods of useful conflict resolution that reinforce the power dynamic rather than putting it aside.

Raven Kaldera

People hear the word “objectification” and immediately tend to think of masters who don’t care about their mistreated slaves. For some of us, however, objectification not only adds a lot of heat to the relationship, it’s a way to reinforce the power dynamic in small ways on a daily basis. Some may hate it, but those of us who love it know its power, and we know it can be used in a healthy way.

We’ll discuss how to do that, and how “being your master’s thing” can support the dynamic and be a source of comfort as well.

Sir DaddyDaun & slavegirl J

There are a million and one beautiful ways a Master slave relationship can function and look. Boiled down to the bare bones, this dynamic can often be described like this: Master says do and the slave does. What happens when the Master absolutely does not like to outright say “Go do”? Or when the slave responds “Yes but…” How can these two core personality types do the M/s dance?

For International Master and slave 2017 Sir DaddyDaun and slavegirl j it has been years of ongoing learning, talking and aligning of wills that has kept the dynamic going strong. Join T/them as T/they share the raw, often funny, tales of a passive Master and a stubborn slave.

Sir DaddyDaun & slavegirl J

International Master and slave 2017 Sir DaddyDaun and slavegirl j know what it’s like to look at a new relationship or contract with rose colored glasses, feeling sure that it will go the distance. Who needs to worry about it ending when it will never end?? The reality is that it might, and beyond that, knowing the process for how things are meant to end helps assuage fears when triggers are tripped or miscommunications pop up.

Being a responsible adult in these relationships encourages the planning of the death of O/our partners, so why not also the deaths of O/our dynamics? Join T/them as T/they share how T/they wrote T/their contract from the end to the beginning.

Sir DaddyDaun & slavegirl J

Sir DaddyDaun and slavegirl j have spent the last 7+ years traveling together in a space that's about the size of the average home bathroom. There are no doors to slam when angry, no separate spaces to be in T/their own feelings. Despite sharing the good, bad and ugly, the common perception is what T/they have is #couplegoals. The truth is through being a new couple, titleholding, health crisis and your average partner squabble, T/they have both done each other damage. T/they know it’s all a part of being human but dang if it doesn’t feel like you are the only one hurting this way.

Join T/them in a vulnerable conversation and be reminded you have not failed, only stumbled.

slave raven

Sometimes we get stuck trying to get a different outcome from the same efforts. In our relationships we can get stuck with inflexible thinking. Looking at these times through a new lens we may notice that we need to change our approach if we want to get a different response. When what we have always done isnt working we can look at it from a new angle and restart the movement.

Ms DDom

How do rules and protocol play out, specifically in Master/slave dynamics, when you are enamored by what you see others doing? How do you monitor that "frenzy" and manage who you are, your partner(s) are, and your dynamic means to you. Pick and chose rules and protocols ala carte style. It is not all or nothing, it's some here and there while leaving the rest.

Come prepare to draft out your “ala carte menu” of rules and protocols.

Ms DDom & CreamDream

As history is rife with turbulent examples of direct racial discrimination, this class will show current examples of how racism has become demurer to the point of invisibility in the community. How does vanilla racial issues pour into the M/s community? We will discuss personal racial experiences and the ideas that people hold. This class is to endarken everyone to make a difference on an individual and social level regarding racial awareness in the M/s community.

Master David

Is your slave one of the many who possess the A type personality? Are they leaders, outgoing, or constantly on the go? Do you feel like there times that they need to be held back for their own good? If so, please join Master David as he shares his experiences in learning how to work with a slave whom is a leader in the vanilla world. He will dive into what worked for him, and give you tips and tricks for putting their natural skills and tendencies to use.

The goal is for you to leave with ideas on how to work with their skills, instead of against them, and to support your slave as they find themselves through their surrender.

Master David

As a Master have you fought the notion that you must be a foundation of strength but still be able to work through your own feelings? Have you built walls to protect the soft mushy insides in an effort to show your strength? If any of these things resonate with you then come spend some time with Master David, International Master 2019, as we dive into these topics.

This class will cover finding strength through vulnerability and how this builds trust in the dynamics that we thrive in, finding strength in the areas that make us feel weak, building trust through transparency, and creating a strong foundation to build on. Come ready to tackle some of the concepts that make finding self-mastery so important.

Sir Edgar & slave raven

So many of U/us have survived abuse, whether childhood, relationship or within O/our dynamics. How do you begin to navigate the waters of entering into an M/s relationship after an abusive one? W/we will discuss the obstacles, the victories, and what W/we have experienced first hand into entering a new dynamic after an abusive one.

Master Beast & slave echo

Master Beast and echo will dive into the importance of mindset and how we often fall into self-sabotage, justification, and gathering allies when in conflict, and how understanding our thought process, defense mechanisms and survival techniques we have picked up along the way are stopping us from living our truest and happiest lives. Using some tools from The Arbinger Institute along with others they have gathered along the way.

Master Beast and echo will share their past experiences and how these techniques have changed not only their dynamic but their lives, and offer you a new perspective and some valuable tools.

Brad Sagarin & Nwachi Tofar

In this presentation, we take a tour through past research on Master/slave relationships (including studies supported by the Master/slave Conference) and share a new model of Power Exchange/Authority Transfer. We suggest that M/s and other types of AT relationships can be distinguished based on seven dimensions (time, domain, depth, consent, autonomy, alignment, and focus), and that these dimensions will more accurately characterize the relationships than will the labels applied to the relationships. We outline potential benefits (non-attachment, reduced conflict, drive toward higher construal, transparency, role clarity, and the decoupling of fair and equal) and costs (potential for abuse, the two-year wall, rigidity and boundaries, fragility, exhaustion, and social sanction) of Master/slave and other types of Authority Transfer relationships.

Finally, we explore the connections between Master/slave and spirituality and ask for your thoughts on where M/s research should go.

Brad Sagarin & Hannah Tarleton

Sadism has a pretty bad rap. The word conjures images of Joffrey Baratheon and Hannibal Lecter, and historically, sadistic impulses could lead to a diagnosis of “sadistic sadism disorder.”

Recently, psychologists have reconsidered sadism, defining “everyday sadism” as a personality trait that we all possess to some degree. But even here, the usual example of an everyday sadist is an Internet troll. Last year, the Science of BDSM Research Team published a study that examined the nature of BDSM sadism and how it differs from other types of sadism. In this workshop, we take a tour through past perspectives on sadism, from the assumption that sadistic impulses are universally pathological to the recognition that some situations provoke sadistic feelings in many of us.

We’ll then share the results of our research, including the personality profiles of BDSM sadists and non-sadistic tops and the key characteristic that differentiates prosocial sadists: the necessity of consent.

Brad Sagarin & Hannah Tarleton

If BDSM practitioners agree on one thing, it is the fundamental importance of consent. Consent is the common theme that connects “Safe, Sane, and Consensual” to “Risk Aware Consensual Kink”. When researchers have polled BDSM practitioners, they nearly universally name consent as the critical factor that differentiates BDSM from abuse. But consent is complex, particularly in the context of Master/slave relationships and among practitioners who practice consensual non-consent. In this workshop, we explore research on consent including the factors that encourage and inhibit the use of safewords, the implications of altered states of consciousness (from subspace to hypnokink to drugs and alcohol) on the ability to provide ongoing consent, and the distinct ways that consent operates in long-term relationships and in pickup play.

Please join us for what we anticipate will be a lively discussion on the complex nature of consent.

 

Sir Guy

Many times, when we discuss M/s relationships we fail to address health concerns and how they can affect our relationships.  This is particularly true when these issues present themselves in an existing relationship, and adjustments must be made, but they are things that must also be addressed when starting a relationship with someone with physical or mental health issues.  Can one have a successful M/s relationship when a partner suffers from a chronic illness?  How do we navigate the ups and downs?  How do we deal with ongoing bouts of depression or increased debilitation from illness on either side of the slash?  What can one do to prepare those in the household, on either side of the slash for the difficulties? 

Sir Guy, who suffers from a chronic illness will lead the discussion of this difficult and very real topic honestly and openly.

Sir Guy

There are many times when people who are good leaders find out that they may not be good managers.  Can someone with good leadership skills but not so great management skills utilize those skills to structure a successful M/s relationship?  What is the difference?  What skills are needed and how do you develop them?  How can you adjust to address the needs of a slave who thrives under more management than you are used to? 

Sir Guy shares his journey and discusses a topic that is not often discussed.

slave bren

In Preparing and Protecting the Property, hosted by slave bren, you will discover core obligations you have to make yourself ready and able to serve a worthy Master or Dominant.

This class will cover: Health, Skills, Psychology, Education, Finances, Self awareness, as well as explore possible pitfalls, challenges, baggage. By readying yourself for a life in the M/s or D/s lifestyle, you will be promoting a confident outlook and strengthening yourself in both mind and body.

Learn the key tools to knowing yourself better, healing yourself, and being open to new possibilities. Stand strong in your slavery or submission and learn the ways of making sure you are in control of your life before giving that authority over to another. A strong well educated slave is one to be admired and respected, be all you can be for yourself and the one you one day wish to serve.

slave bren

What happens when everything is going along and then illness or tragedy strikes, stripping the M/s relationship of its' core functions?  

How does a Master cope with an ill slave, how does a slave maintain their balance when called into service for a sick or incapacitated Master?

Master George and slave bren have lived through this scenario and will offer their insights into how to manage such life altering events, sharing how both sides of the slash are affected, and how to build a bridge to cross over unforgiving turbulent life changes.

Ignacio Rivera

How does oppression play into our kink? As a person of color in the kink world, can we leave out some of our identities at the door? Are poor people apart of play parties/ kink world? Are people with disabilities seen as sexual beings? Why? Why not?  Do kinksters operate in a vacuum? Is it possible to be kinky and not political? How can we respect one another and continue to navigate within the kink sphere?

Ignacio Rivera

Interested in a trans person, gender queer person or gender non-conforming person? Wanna have fun and be respectful? Wanna experience "non-traditional" sex and desire that is not based on stereotypes? Well, this is the workshop for you. Open to all sexual orientations and genders.

Brad Sagarin 

My grandfather, Dr. Edward Sagarin, was a sociologist and criminologist at City University of New York. A few years after his death, my sister discovered a family secret: Grandpa was gay and had written a foundational book of the gay rights movement, The Homosexual in America: A Subjective Approach under the pseudonym Donald Webster Cory.

In this workshop, I'll share our story of secrets revealed and the rediscovery of my grandfather.

tomo

A powerful person may be influential, independent, straightforward, and assertive. We will examine power, how it can be a tool in our service, and look at the misconceptions that one with a strong will cannot surrender it. Discover how to serve and submit while embracing the power that is within you.

Whether you are powerful and struggle with the concept of combining power and slavery or you seek to find your own internal power, join us as we look at many sides of this issue. This class is limited to those who identify as slave/submissive to create safe open space.

Justin Tanis

How can we effectively use our dynamics to improve our physical wellbeing? In this
interactive workshop, we’ll discuss body-positive ways to increase healthy eating and
activity. Because, let’s face it, these can be painful subjects for some people and our
dynamics offer some unique challenges. What do you do when you want to serve a
gourmet meal to a Master trying to lose weight and all of your recipes include tons of
butter? Or encourage or require a sub to exercise without body-shaming? This
workshop will include practical tips that have worked for us and we’ll even throw in
some great recipes!

Justin Tanis

The conference theme is on diversity, but that means many things to many people. This
workshop will explore diversity in the M/s, D/s communities, including topics such as
race, disability, gender identity and sexual orientation. We’ll spend time thinking
together about how our differences strengthen us and how and why increasing our
welcome is important. This workshop is primarily aimed for those who are new to
explorations of diversity—bring your perspectives and questions—as we welcome each
other to the journey. We will provide resources for further exploration.

Henry James

In this class we will explore how to turn mundane tasks into intimate rituals.  These rituals could be one-time opportunities for connection or part of a larger D/s dynamic.  My creating “bookends” of ritualized start and stop, you create specialized moments in time between the participants.  Come explore how to create these rituals.  We will use multiple live examples during the class.

Master Toni

Master Toni will share a very concrete identity exercise she has used in the university for over thirty years to demonstrate that while each individual may have a variety of identities they recognize and everyone in the room may appear to be engaged in the same process, not everyone is having the same experience.

This is a very participatory workshop, and you may choose to share your personal experiences, or just listen. 

Master Toni

Master Toni will share her chapter about Women-Women M/s Relationships from her book, Women in Leather: Shaping Our Own Identity (interviews with Mistress Mir & Vi, Master Khiki & jez, and her slave alicia) and begin a discussion about how women might "do M/s" similarly or differently than other gender identities.

Our conversation will address all sexual and gender constructs as they relate to M/s relationships. 

The Goddess Indigo

Few would argue that we are still in a male-dominated culture. A female-led dynamic can seem counterintuitive and contrary to societal norms. Can we take a female dominant seriously when potential partners are inundated with images of a stereotypical Fem-Dom that is a sex-kitten clad in latex-wearing thigh-high stiletto heels? 

How can we construct, sustain, and even thrive in female-led relationships when so much around us points in the opposite direction? Rather than following masculine archetypes and management styles that might not provide long-term sustainability, we must forge our own path. We will discuss leadership styles that can enhance and energize your dynamic, ways to utilize misconceptions and myths to your benefit and even how to incorporate “traditional values” in establishing and maintaining healthy, flourishing dynamics.

Dr. Bob Rubel

In our world, we’re told that there are Tops and bottoms, Dominants and submissives, Masters and slaves, and Owners and property and so forth. While some fit pretty easily into those roles, others do not. While it can to be helpful to name your relationship structure, some find that popular role definitions aren’t serving their needs. In this class we explore ways of blending a bit of D/s and a bit of M/s and perhaps a bit of DD/lg to enhance/enrich the possibilities in your relationship. After all, what we do is about our relationship first and SM second, right?

(Oh, and we’ll be discussing various ways of interacting between the D-type and the s-type, including working with dominant slaves such as Dr. Bob.)

Sir S'ango

Negotiating your dynamic upfront isn't always an easy process. Want to learn how to prioritize your need and wants? Let's talk about it. Your dynamic isn't always going to be rainbows and butterflies. How do you talk through the hard stuff and not risk losing your relationship? Let's talk about that too.

This session will help individuals on both sides of the slash effectively communicate needs and wants in the negotiating process of the relationship. This session will also give you tools you can use in communicating effectively throughout your dynamic.

slave bren

“Keeping the Train on the Rails”
What makes a Master/slave relationship successful?

There are many classes on Protocols and Rituals, but this one covers the basics and then dives far deeper. In this class, we illustrate why protocols and rituals in the M/s dynamic is not just a way to micromanage, but a way in which to help the relationship blossom into something much greater and of deeper value than role playing. Protocols and rituals are the landmarks along the M/s journey, the pulse-checking that daily reinforces the relationship and serves to remind each member of their position, their obligations, and their integrity.

This is not the typical “Protocols” class; this is how to make your M/s relationship into true 24/7 by finding the heart of the M/s relationship, and building its foundation in bedrock.

slave lori & slave carrie

When you hear the word abuse most people immediately think of physical or sexual abuse. There are many more types of abuse such as emotional, psychological, verbal, mental, financial, and spiritual. Covert abuse isn’t always easily identifiable because it is not very obvious and hard to describe. Our lifestyle lends very strongly to the possibility that this insidious kind of abuse can occur.

Come learn some of the flags and signs, and ways to remove yourself from this type of abuse and situation.

Efrain John Gonzalez

My Photographic  show of photos from my archive, showing the underground fetish world and its different cultures.  A historical archive of photos taken over 40 years in the world of bondage, leather, and fetish. A photographic record of my life in the underground cultures.

miss wendy & Sir James

You’ve heard the slave serves the Master and the Master serves the relationship.  What happens when the slave can’t serve? Are they still a slave? Is there still a relationship? What about the Master? In this discussion, we look at how both roles and the assumptions of their duties and responsibilities get turned on their head when a slave is incapacitated.

Lady O

Self-care is important to maintain a healthy relationship with yourself as it produces positive feelings and boosts your confidence and self-esteem. Self-care is necessary to remind yourself and others that you and your needs are important too. Learning how to establish a healthy work-life balance, stress management, and better health are vitally important for a positive outlook in your life.  

Master Fire

Masters face a unique challenge when it comes to finding worth and legitimacy in the Ms community. Some camps insist that a Master’s worth is self-proclaimed while other camps insist a Master has no meaningful value unless the community declares its approval.

In this workshop, Master Fire shares her personal journey of self-discovery, how both camps influenced it and how she found balance, in hopes that her journey helps others wrestling with similar conflicts.

Master Taíno

Our Kinky life is a long journey. Sometimes when we think we have it all figured out, our life’s journey presents us with unexpected changes and opportunities to grow and to evolve.
Using his own life experience of more than three decades active in the community, Master Taíno will address why it is healthy and good to evolve, to welcome change in our lives, to think differently, to deal with new challenges, to improve our relationships, and ultimately, to figure out and enjoy the journey as age brings new realities.

Master Wrath Daddy

This class is about overcoming your hang-ups and fetishizing your personal taboos. Whether it's a toy that scares you, a relationship dynamic you've always wanted to try, but just seems too "crazy", or a fetish that you find as interesting as you do disturbing, we will explore ways to get you over whatever obstacles are holding you back from being as kinky as you want to be.

koneko & Master Wrath Daddy

Sacred Space: How do you create it? What purpose does it serve? Who is required to be there? Does it end or go away? Come explore the beauty of creating sacred space in the most intimate of moments, the most profane, and the most public. 

Master J

Can insight and self-awareness build higher levels of spiritu- ality? Come and experience exercises that may lead to more self-awareness. Spirituality does not have to take you off the deep end. Spirituality can make you a more complete well- rounded person.

slave Jenna

For Subs/Slaves ONLY

We are super slaves and can do EVERYTHING! If we are honest with ourselves, we can't do everything but we need to be better on saying no and setting boundaries with the people in our life. We stress ourselves out with piling all the things on our plate and then wonder why we are stressed and tired!

Let's talk about how to say no and how we can do better for ourselves!

Master Dante, slave Gaia, slave Sarah & Coco

House Amor is a full-time, 24/7, four member, M/s household. With each of our interpersonal relationships having unique dynamics, meeting individual needs, maintaining harmony, and continuing development requires heavy lifting on everyone’s part. That said, there are unique challenges for anyone on the left side of the slash with multiple individuals on the right side of it.

Master Dante will share how he’s managed to make it all work, presenting detailed tools and techniques developed along the way. He’ll candidly discuss mistakes made large and small, lessons learned, and functional principles that have helped his M/s family survive and thrive. You’ll also learn directly from those in his care about their experiences, challenges, and invaluable insights which can benefit anyone considering, or already in, a multi-member M/s household. 

Master Kaddan

We will look at how technology has changed the way people get information about power exchange dynamics, and specifically the platform of Second Life.  We will look at how Second Life is an old idea with a new spin, and why people use it to connect with other like-minded people.  We will show a short video of a Second Life discussion, to visually show the platform and how education and discussions happen on it.   We will then compare the online-offline process of creating and executing a power exchange dynamic.  We will then discuss transitioning the online to offline and how it can be done and the little differences that may happen in doing so.  We will then conclude with speaking to the use of these online tools and platforms to share knowledge and create a larger, stronger community.

Uncle Abdul

Ahh, the sight of healthy, fit individuals engaged in a truly committed M/s or D/s dynamic is a sight to behold and ad- mire. But wait! Is being healthy and fit a prerequisite for a successful and committed M/s or D/s dynamic? This is an audi- ence participatory workshop facilitated by Unc’ where we’ll be able to discuss, exchange views, share experiences, and, perhaps, garner some new ideas and perspectives on how M/s and D/s dynamics can work, grow, and thrive if one or both of those in the dynamic are physically and/or mentally challenged. Having your slave kneel by your side is great when they’re young, but as you grow old together and it’s hard to kneel, what then? A dynamic can still be just as re- warding and fulfilling once you transcend such obstacles be- cause the core beings of each other are still together.

Let’s discuss ways in which this can be accomplished in this work- shop. Be prepared to expand your horizons.

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