Editing You: Finding Your Trans Self in Fan Video

Some time ago, I discussed a topic that was an important part of my process of self-discovery. That topic was fan-made gender transformation videos. Now I have some for you.

The idea is simple: Find existing footage, with whatever form and origin is handy. Use video-editing software (which comes pre-packaged with most desktop operating systems) to cut, rearrange, and combine it. Make a new story out of old parts, about someone who looks like a cis man finding a way to become the woman she always wanted to be. Use subtitles and text interludes as needed to make the parts hold together.

It’s a simple formula, used to lovely effect on numerous YouTube channels and dedicated sites. The results can be pornographic, sensual, aesthetic, cute, funny, exciting, and everything in between. Some are brief meditations on femme beauty, others are the realization of sexual fantasies, and some are both at once. Some of the narratives involve being tricked or coerced into changing one’s body, a narrative that can be useful for people not yet fully aware of their own desires. All of them are stories that can resonate profoundly with transgender women still finding themselves…and this form is much more accessible than purpose-made video.

What I didn’t discuss was that, here and there during and after finding myself, I tried my hand at making these videos. My tools were the YTD Video Downloader (which extracts video from YouTube and other hosting sites) and Windows Movie Maker, two tools that cost exactly nothing. Installing and updating YTD requires some tech-savvy cleverness due to deceptive dialogs that will install browser menus and other nuisances if not maneuvered correctly, but once installed is very friendly to use.

So I used to address my incessant fantasizing about a more feminine body and presentation by video-editing myself into one, or weave stories about other folks attaining their desired magical transformation. My stories got a little more sophisticated, and less reliant on language that implied that the pre-transformed person was male, once I recognized why I needed them so much. So…here are the two most recent ones.

This first one is more traditional, if that term has any meaning in such a niche genre. Herein, an apparent teenage boy goes “in” and a cute teenage girl comes “out,” with a small dose of humor (and most of the non-objectionable content in the abomination that was Adam Sandler’s “Click,” honestly). This is the kind of video I would obsess over and download or bookmark in dozens of iterations—bored or discontent “boy” goes in, self-assured femme goddess comes out. The image that stuck this one in my head came from the trailer to “Click,” and percolated in my brain for the past ten years.

The second one takes a more narrative approach, imagining an alternate version of Mad Max: Fury Road where the connection between Max Rockatansky and Imperator Furiosa is more…personal. This one I made as a gift for The Orbit’s own Dori Mooneyham, in association with a Facebook challenge about making art for one’s friends in 2017. I noticed that there are virtually no examples of this kind of video where the woman isn’t femme, so I fixed this error.

If you know someone who is thinking about, or might be thinking about, whether they’re transfeminine, show them these videos and others like them. Their feelings about stories like these might help them figure out what they want, and convince them to find it…especially if they’re later a bit uncomfortable about the for-cis-men forced-feminization content that’s out there.

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Editing You: Finding Your Trans Self in Fan Video

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