Slate Features Adult Photog Barbara Nitke's '80's Porn Biz Book

May 7, 2013 11:15 AM PST

NEW YORK — Photographer Barbara Nitke’s book featuring photos taken on more than 300 sets of adult films in the ‘80’s is the subject of a feature on

Calling the business her “alma mater,” Nitke’s book “American Ecstasy,” captures some choice moments from porn's “Golden Age,” shooting stills for classics like the sequel to“The Devil in Miss Jones,” and later, some of director Henri Pachard’s films.

“It’s hard to imagine now, but back then there was no Internet, no video cassette players, no DVDs.People went out to downtown movie theaters to watch porn movies, We shot them on 35 mm film with big cameras and fairly big crews,” Nitke told Slate.

The photographer said that back in the day people in adult felt they were part of the indie film world and that porn would one day be considered mainstream.

Slate also briefly chronicled Nitke’s adult career that began with a break from husband and producer Herb Nitke that allowed her to shoot some of the most notable stars of the decade including legends like Nina Harley, Ron Jeremy, Vanessa del Rio, Sharon Mitchell and Sharon Kane, along with Siobhan Hunter, Jeanna Fine, Damian Cashmere, Tasha Voux, and many more. Directors included Henri Pachard, Candida Royalle, Lasse Braun and others.

Getting her book published and into the big chains however wasn’t so easy because of the explicit images it contained. But after 25 years, a Kickstarter campaign raised more than $30,000 to make it happen.

The first 132-page edition has a print run of 1,500 copies and includes 68 color plates.

Although Nitke didn’t turn her back on porn, her more recent celbrity subjects are of the mainstream ilk including actress Mischa Barton and Mikhail Baryshnikov.

The book can purchased online here, on Amazon or at the St. Marks Bookshop in New York.

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