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Nikki Nefarious 

Photographer, performance artist

Photographer and performance artist Nikki Nefarious has found her niche in Charlotte. Three years ago, a visit to Single Cell's Purgatory opened doors for her to become a big fish in a small pond of fetish photography. "Some people find the [fetish] lifestyle, but the lifestyle found me," she says.

Nefarious works as a project manager and statistic analyst for Adult Entertainment Broadcast Network. "We always have to stress that we don't make the porn, just distribute it. It's really easy to assume."

In college, she double-majored in management and marketing and double-minored in public relations and advertising at the University of South Carolina-Columbia. "If you had told me that I was going to be working with porn and be a fetish photographer, I would have slapped you across the face. I was going to be Miss Corporate America."

You may spot Nefarious doing guerilla photo shoots around the Charlotte area. She and her partners in crime hop into her white van (appropriately named Vanna White) and drive until they find a good location for a photo op.

"I love reading. Most people are mild-mannered with a wild side. I'm the opposite -- my secret life is that I'm a big dork."

She is currently working on a Web site to showcase her photography (www.alteredaperture.com). Models from all over the country have sought her out not only for her skill as a fetish photographer, but because "I'm not some creepy guy." Nefarious specializes in Shibari -- Japanese rope bondage that involves intricate, artful knots.

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