“I dress how I feel and I feel deeply and often.” This is a quote that I have held very close to my heart ever since discovering it on tumblr by an unknown author. For me clothing has never been something that I just had to put on to meet society’s standards but something that was an outlet of artistic expression. Through clothing I was suddenly able to find empowerment, fantasy, escapism and realism all at the same time. My passion for cloth goes deeper than frivolous and trivial materialism, it is a way for me to discover and express myself; a way for me to give a tangible representation to intangible things.
This past week I took photos of a friend in one of my classes and as we chatted and shot she told me about how she felt like there was a certain fluidity to my photos, something ethereal. As I was photographing her she said even then I looked like a fairy. Within that very same day I was tagged in a post on facebook by another friend linking me and a select number of other people to an article about nymphs. At the end of this day it was brought up once again about how I reminded someone of a nymph or fairy of some sort. This is not the first time I have received this sort of reference but it was the first time it had been brought up so consistently in one day and consequently has influenced my attitude since then.
My outfits have been littered with chiffon and vintage lace, floral wreaths and warm soothing colors. To say the least I have been using clothing as my outlet of emotional expression since I can't quite rightly go running through the hallways emulating my nymph inspired being, no matter how badly I want to. Although I have been infusing fluid and ethereal inspiring materials into my outfits as of late I also have noticed that from time to time I will throw in a pleather skirt, heavy metal necklace or structured jacket. It's interesting how clothing can be used as a way to express the unique and individual you and also be used to do the complete opposite.
I feel like at the end of the day my core really is this nymph/fairy like being. Maybe it's from my North Carolinian located child-hood and affinity with nature or my obsession with hopelessly romantical and mystical movies/photos/art/books/etc. Maybe it's all of the above or none of it but whatever it is I feel more at one with my outfits when I am dressing in this whimsical way versus the structured bad-ass I want to be. Dressing whimsical and nymph-like can make me feel vulnerable and not as strong as I know I am, thus the need to adorn myself in layers like chain mail and fake-leather. These materials can infuse a new sense of being into me and make me feel like I am expressing to the world how I wish to be. Impenetrable. Empowered. Bitchy in a "I have my shit together and don't have time for yours" kind of way. Like I could never in a million years be taken advantage of.
On a side note if you didn't notice two of my photos from this post were accepted by Photo Vogue, wo ho! Anyhow check by tomorrow as I will be displaying my next series of photos about how clothing can be used to create false personas.