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The NSFW future of OnlyFans, where celebs, influencers, and sex workers post side by side

Vex Ashley began working as a cam girl to pay her way through art school. Whatever reservations she had about being a “little weird goth kid” doing porn melted away as she met other performers online who also had a more alternative approach to mainstream adult content.

“I thought that to do porn, you had to fit a very rigid stereotype,” Ashley says. “I never was interested in fitting into that mold.”

Ashley wanted to infuse porn with a higher level of aesthetics and concepts, using it as a medium to explore ideas rather than purely for viewing pleasure. And if ever there was a tenet of the creator economy, it’s that niche interests can always find an audience.

Ashley uploaded experimental videos to Tumblr and quickly gained a following that she took to Patreon in 2014 to better monetize her art and support her production company, Four Chambers. At the height of her success on Patreon, Ashley had more than 3,000 subscribers and was pulling in around $25,000 per month. But after the platform changed its policies in 2018, she effectively lost it all.

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