Picturing Fire Island, Then & Now: Vintage Photos of Insta-Hunks Through the Years
Another Labor Day Weekend, another Fire Island season that's come and gone. 😒 For those of us who haven't had the opportunity to visit Fire Island, the only way we've gotten to experience the dreamy East Coast paradise full of sun-kissed hunks is through the photos. Thankfully, there are literally decades-worth of Fire Island vintage photos. From the vivid polaroids of the 1970's and 80's to the filtered Instagram snapshots of today, Fire Island has always been properly documented in all its au naturel glory 💪🍑🍆💦☀🌈🏊🍸
“Exhibitionism is a healthy thing.” - Tom Bianchi
Back in the 1970s, Tom Bianchi was one of the first photographers to have been lured by all that Fire Island eye-candy. 😍 Tom's photos have come to define what the area signified back then, and his colorful memories captured in old-school polaroids still resonate today. It's no wonder he's considered one of the founding fathers of Father Island and his picture-perfect polaroids have also made him the original Insta-gay.
Related: Meet the Original Instagay
Over 40 years later, Tom continues to be Fire Island's most famous shutterfly, but now he's got an iPhone. The moments he is now able to capture on the modern-day island are just as striking, if not a little more overt, fleshy and provocative. Or at least enough to still pass through Instagram's notoriously-prudish censors.
Since Tom, other gay photographers have flocked to Cherry Grove and the Pines to document the pool parties, sunny days and happy endings. Brandon Onosorio's Instagram photos even led to him being cast on a gay reality show called Fire Island. Like Tom Bianchi's early photos, Brandon has brought a cheeky innocence to this paradise for pleasure-seekers with his highly editorial photography.
Alex Geana also shares similarities with Tom Bianchi but in his documentarian style, capturing Fire Island's most intimate moments as they happen. Not hyper-posed. Alex is working on a book about FI, so keep an eye out for that (among other things). 🍑