Maddies favourite

In an average week, Madeleine Holden receives upwards of 100-200 dick pics.

Which is fantastic, because Maddie is the creator of Critique My Dick Pic, a popular website where she instructs “senders” of all genders how to take thoughtful and artistic erotic photographs! A lawyer by trade, Maddie has a flair for writing and art criticism that makes Critique My Dick Pic entertaining, arousing, and occasionally even heartwarming. Her critiques are gentle and constructive. She assigns letter grades for submissions, and encourages senders to keep upping their game:

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Maddie was kind enough to grant me some insight into her mission, and I was blown away by her thoughtful responses to my questions!  Read on to learn more about Critique My Dick Pic, what a "log" is, and how to take the best possible dick pic.

Warning: Very NSFW photos ahead.

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Towel 6.30.15"this is an excellent and very carefully composed dick pic, sender. you are perfectly centered and bathed in natural light, and your use of a towel to bring movement, anonymity and subtlety to the shot is really clever. the two different light sources are bringing various degrees of warmth to your picture, and your use of focus is expert. the whole thing is expertly enacted and i have nothing to gripe about. very well done. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets an A+."

1. Describe the moment when you decided, "I want strangers to send me their penises."

It didn't pan out exactly like that! One morning in September 2013, I woke up to a very good dick pic. It was sent to me by someone I was seeing at the time, so, unlike most dick pics, it was welcome. It was also creative and high-quality. It struck me that it shouldn't be as unusual as it was to receive a dick pic that wasn't unsolicited and horrible, and I decided that the world needed a public service to explain to men (and other people who take dick pics) how to take an excellent shot and to impart some dick pic sharing etiquette.

perfect thighs 10.1.13"sender, your dick pic is literally flawless. how is the lighting so velvety? how are your thighs as commanding as your cock? how did you perfectly calculate the amount of clothing to include? your bed in the background looks tussled & inviting - how did you leave nothing unconsidered? i would go on a date with you off the strength of this dick pic. i would give you free legal advice off the strength of this dick pic. i would frame this dick pic. thank you, truly, for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets a resounding A+."

2. Have you ever received an unsolicited dick pic? What do you think of unsolicited dick pics?

Roughly 95% of the dick pics I received before I started Critique My Dick Pic were unsolicited. This is one of the problems with dick pic sharing that I was most keen to remedy: the idea that it's remotely appropriate to thrust a picture of your dick at someone who hasn't consented to seeing it. I speak often about the importance of respecting the recipient of your picture and obtaining consent in all spheres of sexual activity, including within the world of nude photo sharing.

Trans cock nail polish 1.10.15"this is a well-crafted dick pic, sender. in terms of photographic quality, you’ve absolutely nailed it: there’s a strong focus on the grip of your hand, while the rest of you fades to a blur. the lighting is excellent and you’ve put visible effort into the framing and tone. it would have been nicer to see slightly more of your non-dick parts and the angle is a little confronting, but overall you’ve taken a really good dick pic. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets an A-."

3. Would you consider yourself "sex positive" and what does that mean to you?

I certainly consider myself sex positive, but more than that, I consider myself a person who strives to remedy unfairness. I look around and see things like size shaming, body negativity, the neglect of the female gaze and the sidelining of women's consent, and I think, "this is BULLSHIT." In its own way, Critique My Dick Pic is a rebellion against each of those things. I refuse to shame senders for their bodies and penis size. I take a deliberately inclusive and positive approach to my reviewing, and explicitly solicit submissions from underrepresented groups such people of colour and trans people. I have created a space where women's agency and desire matters. That, to me, is what sex positivity needs to be built upon.

Strap on dick pic 6.23.15"this is a well-crafted and playful dick pic, sender. it’s always refreshing to see a dick pic with a strap-on and pair of boobs in it, but you’re by no means coasting on the novelty factor alone. you’re striking a deliberate, flirty pose which is set off by your stripy socks and the natural sunlight. the framing is expertly done and while there’s a wee bit too much glare in the upper third, which is hard on the eye, that’s about the only thing that could be described as hard on the eye here. overall, the tone of your dick pic is light, sleek and fun. nicely done, sender! thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets an A-."

4. Can you explain what a "log" is?

A log is a bird's-eye-view shot of your dick, with your dick taking up the entire frame and with little to no surrounding detail. It's a bottom-of-the-barrel dick pic, and the most common type. The starting point for most men when they take a dick pic is to try to exaggerate the size of their penises, and The Log is the unfortunate outcome of this obsession with size. I'm constantly trying to get senders to compose more interesting and thoughtful shots and "logs" always receive poor grades.

Log 5.22.15"this is what i like to call the log, in that it’s a bird’s eye view, close up shot of your dick, with your dick taking up most of the frame and with little other surrounding detail. logs make for pretty boring dick pics, sender. the over-the-sink pose is also quite common in the dick pic world, but i can’t personally see the appeal: it’s sterile, and a strange place for your dick to be. overall, your dick pic is lacking because it doesn’t contain any visible effort to be erotic, and there’s very little interaction going on here; either between you and your dick, or you and the camera. it’s falling flat, sender, so please peruse the A grade submissions and give it another go; you’ve definitely got a better dick pic in you than this. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets a D."

5. Has the overall quality of dick pics you receive increased, in your opinion?

I think men are starting to think more carefully about their pictures. I still receive a dispiriting number of logs, but I do receive repeat submissions from people who have seen the light and realized that their earlier efforts were sub-par, and overall I have noticed an increase in quality.

Glasses Dick Pic 2.5.15"the set up here is interesting: there’s an out-of-focus pair of glasses in the foreground, and there’s you in the background, enjoying yourself. i like the fact that your jeans look freshly ripped off, and it’s a bonus that the lower half of your face made it into the shot. it’s a bit cluttered and wants for a more definite focal point, but overall you’ve taken a creative and moody shot. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets a B+."

6. What do you hope your "senders" will take away from having their dicks critiqued?

I hope they will put more consideration into the person at the receiving end of their picture. As the vast majority of dick pic senders are men, I want them to realise that they can be sexual, too; that women enjoy doing the gazing and not just being gazed at. I want them to broaden their ideas of what is erotic, and to help them move beyond the limited idea that the only kinds of dicks that women want to see are huge, aggressive and in-your-face.

feminine masculine"this is a novel, creative and interesting dick pic, sender. you have used lighting expertly in this dick pic and the shadows and highlights are a strong feature of your picture. the pop of colour is also a plus and the gender-nonconformity you’ve expressed makes your picture stand out. i always find myself harping on about this, but i think your picture would be improved by featuring your hands in it; a delicate touch could really accentuate your chosen theme. overall, though, it’s a well-composed and creative picture. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets a B+."

7. What is your favorite submission you've ever received?

This one still stands out in my mind:

maddies favourite submission"okay dude, you sent me a whole series of dick pics and that annoys me and is against the rules, except i can’t find it in my heart to be truly mad because all of your dick pics are so, so good. sure: you can’t actually see your dick in any of the pictures; they’re outline dick pics but the thing about outline dick pics is that they're really frickin’ hot. they’re subtle and suggestive and you’ve crafted them to be as enticing as possible. this is the kind of submission that sends me pacing around my room and makes me lose my normal professional composure as the internet’s most beloved dick pic critic, so well done on that. thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pics get a collective A+."

8. What advice would you give to someone who wants to take a share-worthy sexy photo?

Zoom out and include some non-dick body parts. Consider the setting, and make sure the background is free of clutter and mess. Make sure you're sending your dick pic to someone who wants to see it. Go beyond simply trying to maximize the size of your penis. Be subtle and enticing. Pay attention to the lighting and framing, and strike an interesting, natural-looking pose. Act in good faith and don't be scared to be vulnerable, and, for the love of God, don't include inanimate objects (bottles, lighters) for scale in your picture!

Submission from Italy 3.23.16"oh my goodness, sender! this is wonderful! this is a high-effort dick pic with every facet carefully planned out, from the colour scheme to the pose, and the lighting to the framing. the shadow effect is very clever: in over two years of reviewing dick pics, i’ve never seen it done quite like this before. the way you’ve captured the outline of your face glancing down at your member is particularly striking, and the tangelo walls imbue your picture with a warm glow. it’s refreshing, playful and meticulously crafted, sender. well done! thank you for submitting to critique my dick pic. your dick pic gets an A+."

Thank you, Maddie, for sharing your thoughts with us, and thanks for making the world a better place to send and receive dick pics!  Be sure to visit Critique My Dick Pic for more stunning photographs and thoughtful critiques! 

Published April 10, 2016 

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Meghan Sara is a tour guide for Ghosts, Murders and Mayhem Walking Tours.  She is open-minded about everything, but intolerant to gluten.  She blogs at meghansara.com, is a regular contributor to Femnasty, and tweets her feelings @MeghanSaraK.
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