So I’ve been listening to Beyoncé’s latest album The Lion King: The Giftand have been loving the African beats. I love the international undertone of the album as the music takes me somewhere outside of the U.S. I was reminded of this photo shoot I did some time ago. I guess you can say I have jungle fever. Anyway, what’s your favorite song on the album and have you seen the movie yet?
As I take in Beyoncé’s new project Lemonade, I find myself enjoying time in the South as well. South Florida may be tropical but if you really know it, it’s the “dirty South.” Lemonade speaks to me in that it is all about the plight of the black woman working and living in an unjust society. Love, marriage, babies it covers everything about womanhood- especially that of a black woman.
There’s nothing like the South to get you thinking about our nation’s history, the culture and the segregation. Although I’ve been frying conch fritters, I’ve been eating just as many collard greens. And with this new album, I’m just that much more proud to be from the South.
Speaking of hot sauce, and I mean in reference to Beyoncé’s new powerful video Formation, I make some mean hot wings. And, well it’s Superbowl time. I’m still kind of a sore loser as my Patriots didn’t make the cut but I’m excited at the prospect of Cam Newton winning to shut down the nay-sayers. Anyway, Happy Superbowl Sunday y’all! I never really use a recipe for hot wings (always eye-ball it) but this is a good estimate and yes, people always LOVE my wings!
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 chicken wings
vegetable oil for frying
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup hot sauce
black pepper to taste
pinch of garlic powder
Melt a lot of hot sauce with real unsalted butter in a small pot. Mix flour with salt, pepper, paprika and a pinch of garlic powder. Dredge the wings in buttermilk (if you have time, you can marinate them overnight in buttermilk) and then cover them in the flour mix. Fry in hot vegetable oil turning them to brown lightly on both sides. Drain them on a paper towel to soak up the extra oil. And then put the wings inside of the small pot with butter and hot sauce. Place on a plate and serve with blue cheese dressing and celery. Yummy! Enjoy.
I have a confession to make. When I first learned how to sketch fashion models and various fabrics, I remember being repeatedly chastised for drawing too wide of a nose and hips. It was like I had to re-learn the human body outside of my own shape or what I thought most people look like. Now, hey, fashion language is fashion language. And, fashion rules are ‘rules.’ Right? At this point, there’s just a few books being used to teach sketching, and an entire segment of our population is being ignored.
I’m not just talking about plus-size folks. I’m talking about anyone above a sample size. Anyone who isn’t at least five feet eight inches tall and skinny. And the largest segment, anyone who isn’t fair-skinned. It was funny that in class I naturally drew some color on my models while many others reached for the light pink marker only. Nothing wrong with that in class, but isn’t there something wrong with that in real life?
As Fashion Week (or month) approaches, we will all wait with bated breath to see the new Spring 2014 Collections, but we will also wait to see if anyone used a different marker for their models. That is, will we see any African-Americans or just plain non-white models on the runway? Recently, designers have missed the mark. And as the rich and famous (i.e. Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Kelly, Beyoncé) continue to be a muse and advertisement for designers, what does it really say that they can be photographed in the merchandise but no model on the runway can look like them?
Now you may care less and really this is not about my personal feelings. This is business. The world does not all look the same. I have admittedly not done my statistical research but from what I know, non-white women buy and enjoy high-end fashion as well. So why not break up the monotony of those fashion sketch models and moreover real-life models on the runway and represent the true diversity of the world?
According to the New York Times, fashion model Iman will be organizing a social media campaign at the beginning of New York Fashion Week to bring attention to the lack of diversity on the runways in the past several years. She contends that something is “terribly wrong.” Her experience in the 1980s and 1990s was that designers would routinely hire black models and now they barely hire one.
Whatever happens, I just hope that designers and the industry can wake up and see that huge business opportunities are being missed by completely ignoring of an entire group of people.