Ev'Yan Whitney
Ev'Yan Whitney

Ev'Yan Whitney

What Services / Products Does Your Business Provide?

I do one-on-one sessions with women and femme-identified folks who want to step out of sexual shame and begin a journey of erotic empowerment and body acceptance. I also teach classes (both digitally and in person); one that teaches women how to get in touch with their sensual bodies via a daily sensuality practice, and another that helps them use sensual self-portraiture as a method of radical self-love and creating sex-positive, body-positive community.

How Long Have You Been In Business?

Seven years.

Why Did You Start Your Business?

I didn't initially go out wanting to start a business. My intention was to create a digital space where I could process in real time what was coming up for me as I unshamed and healed my sexuality and the relationship I had with my body. Writing has always been a medium for me to explore and know myself, so I created my blog Sex Love Liberation as a way for me to chronicle my sexual liberation journey. After I went public with a few articles, I started getting inquiries from people who wanted to go to a workshop of mine or who wanted to work with me one-on-one, which I thought was strange because I didn't see myself as someone was enough of an expert to do that kind of work. It took about three years before I started to really consider making what I do an actual business, and I've never looked back since.

What Has Been The Toughest Part About Being In Business For Yourself?

So many things! I'm a Virgo and while that can be a huge blessing in terms of having a business, my need for things to be perfect has often gotten in the way of me being able to create the kind of content I want to create or start projects I'm excited about. Another thing that's been challenging has been being able to hold healthy boundaries between me and my clients because as an empath it's in my nature to take on people's challenges as though they are my own. Remembering that their hardships and struggles don't belong to me and doing things after emotionally taxing sessions that pour back into myself is super important.

What Was Your Dream Job As A Kid And Why?

I used to want to be a singer, a dancer, and an actress (in that order) for the longest time, probably because I grew up in the 90s watching women like Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, and Brandy and I wanted to be like them. I actually did pursue an acting and modeling career a few times in my life, but it never quite took off. I didn't want to be in the entertainment industry.

What’s Your Greatest Professional Achievement? 

When I landed my first full-paying client was pretty special. But honestly, it feels like a massive achievement any time I can put money into my bank account from my business. I have so much gratitude for the abundance I collect in exchange for doing this work.

What Woman Inspires You And Why?

Is it a cop-out to say that I inspire me? Because I really really do. I often stand in awe of myself and the fact that I show up consistently every day to do the work that I do, particularly in a world that seeks to destroy, stifle, shrink, and silent me. The fact that I keep going despite those obstacles as a queer Black woman with a mental illness living in the whitest city in America (Portland, Oregon) is a huge accomplishment, one that I don't take lightly. However, if naming myself is a cop out, I will say that Beyoncé has been a huge inspiration for me when it comes to running my business. Her work ethic, her attention to detail, her commitment to her work and the folks who engage in it—it's literally awe-inspiring. And she's also a Virgo, so. :)

What Will Be The Biggest Challenge For The Generation Of Black Women Behind You?

Continuing to be seen and heard, continuing to show up and say that their lives and desires and dreams and agency matters. We've come very far, but we have a long way to go.

Where Can We Find You And Your Business?