Sonny McKinley: A Passion For Tenderness

Sonny McKinley knows the value of trust in intimate relationships, both on and off the camera. In her most transcendent on-screen moments, she and her scene partners revel in the beautiful cinematic, erotic possibilities of mutual trust. It’s a testament to how thoroughly she knows her sexual self, and how extensively she’s explored it. This thoughtful, expressive star delves into her personal porn philosophy in the latest SCREW pornstar interview.

SCREW: Tell us a little bit about your background. For those who may not know the story, how did you become part of the industry?

Sonny McKinley: I was someone who knew I wanted to work in adult from a young age. Even though I didn’t have a full understanding of the industry in my younger years, I had a fascination with sexual education and open dialogues about relationship and sexual health. I always wanted to learn more from reputable sources and really get to what was true and honest about sex and connection. I got my start in theater, and as I aged into myself I knew that this was the industry I was called to perform in. It always felt very true to form for me!

Talk a little bit about the pegging scene you shot for She Seduced Me. Had you experimented with pegging off camera before the shoot? What were the biggest challenges of the scene?

Yes! I’d had a variety of pegging experiences off camera before this scene, particularly on the giving end. I think one reason I enjoy topping as much as I do is because I deeply relate to the feeling of surrender you get from being in a position of powerlessness. There is something so freeing about the level of trust inherent in complete surrender; the feeling of safety. More than that, it’s the knowing that while you’re at your most vulnerable, you are wanted for being exactly that. I think we live in a society that rewards productivity, confidence, and forward movement more than anything. It can be an ecstatic feeling to be at your softest, most trusting and receptive, and to be rewarded with somebody’s presence, pleasure, and approval. I think to some extent it’s an experience everyone could benefit from.

To be honest, the scene felt effortless. Freya [Von Doom] was a wonder to work with and I was instantly enamored with her energy and experience. She’s truly beautiful inside and out. I think the part that I enjoyed most was getting to be a bottom, which I don’t perform as often on camera as I’d like.

What on-camera porn firsts are you most eager to try?

Fun! BBG, for sure. I’d love to have multiple penises to please. There’s something so appealing about more than one person at a time. I’m really excited for when that opportunity comes around. I’d also love to do more BDSM!

Imagine you were given a blank check to shoot any porn scenario you wanted, no matter how bizarre, expensive, or outlandish. What would it be?

I think a passion of mine is tenderness. I love what Bellesa Films does with their story lines and level of connection. Something I’d love to do in the future is a series of porn that focuses most on the chemistry between two performers: the eye contact, hand placement, the way their lips touch.

I had a friend once tell me they were looking for a porn with “a man with kind eyes,” and how he was disappointed he couldn’t type “kind eyes” into pornhub and get any results. I think there is a definite hunger for porn that depicts tenderness, authentic yearning: the stuff humans have written poetry about for centuries. I would love to bring that to life one day.

What was the best piece advice you received from a director (or other behind-the-camera player)?

My favorite piece of advice I’ve received was to cultivate dirty talk. I’ve been told it can really add to a scene, and take it from good to spectacular.

What’s the most heartwarming interaction you’ve ever had with a fan?

I really appreciate anyone who takes time out of their day to reach out and tell me they enjoy my work! Every compliment truly makes my day and never goes unnoticed.

In your Adult DVD Talk interview, you mentioned that you’d had around 200 sex partners prior to porn. What were you most memorable and daring sex adventures off the camera?

I experimented a lot with group sex in my teen years. I think having sex with couples and getting to pleasure multiple people at a time really opened me up to a world of possibilities I wouldn’t have considered.

What have you learned about yourself on a sexual level since entering the industry?

Cowgirl has become my favorite position. There’s something about working a cock when you’re on top that’s exhilarating and powerful.

How do you get into character when you’re playing a scene with dialogue/plot?

I think the biggest thing for me is getting out of my own head. While you’re having sex, there’s a crucial awareness of the camera, angles and light, so the people watching can get the full experience. When I’m performing dialogue, though, I try to put myself in a position where I’m not thinking about being watched and really focused on what the character is feeling and what they want.

Which social media platform do you find to be the most addicting?

Twitter! I love seeing the content my friends make and the scenes they’ve shot on my feed. I could scroll for hours.

Which platform is the most porn-friendly?

I personally use OnlyFans, but I know many performers have expanded or moved over to Fansly with good results.

Why do you think porn still holds such a stigma in many people’s eyes? Do you think we as a society can get to the point where we fully embrace our sexuality without shame?

Goodness, what a heavy hitting question. I’m really happy to be asked to share my opinion on this.

I think religion has a lot to do with it. I think there was a point in human history where cultivating a story that policed human behavior probably stopped a lot of violence and disease. Before birth control, antibiotics and paternity tests, sex had consequences we don’t experience nearly as often today. Shame and fear were very useful tactics to get people to behave in ways that mitigated those consequences.

These stories and morals have been passed down, generation after generation. When it comes to sex, we’ve been told the story “only between a man and a woman.” “Only in holy matrimony.” “Sex is primarily used for having children, and that is the right thing to do.” These beliefs were reflected in church and law. Interracial marriage was only made legal in the United States in 1967. Gay marriage legal in 2015.   It wasn’t until July 5th, 1993, that marital rape became a crime in all 50 states. Alabama passed an Anti-Obscenity law in 1998 prohibiting the sale of sex toys, and I believe 12 states, including South Carolina and Texas, still have anti-sodomy laws on the books til this day.

I think we are in a generational stage of untying those knots. People are deciding what they do and don’t believe, what does and doesn’t work for them. Sex has a variety of expressions and uses, and we’ve become accustomed to them being policed for a very long time. We are unclenching that closed fist, and it will hurt at first as the blood runs back into our fingers. I think seeing sex workers as valuable members of society, worthy partners, and competent mentors will be a learning curve for many as they unlearn years of stories about pleasure being sinful and sex being bad. To use an old cliche: Rome wasn’t built in a day. But it was built. I believe we’ll get there. My eye is on the horizon.

What’s a song you can’t stop listening to?

TX2: Sex Sells (Hard)!

What’s next for Sonny McKinley?

I currently have scenes coming out for Bang.com, House of Fyre, and WillTilexxx! I’m super proud of them, and I’d love it if fans supported these scenes by purchasing, watching and engaging on social media! Every bit helps. And as always, thank you.

— D

Featured Image: Tickling His Taint

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