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Rachel: NC artist // Natural Hair Style Icon

Avatar • Aug 13, 2009

Hey guys,
I originally posted this on April 30, 2009… but since we’ve been talking about big chops/versatility/‘it’s just hair’ I thought this would be an appropriate interview to re-post. Rachel is, by far, been the most diverse chick I’ve profiled on BGLH. She’s done everything from back length locks to a big chop to wigs.
A second set of her photos (originally posted on May 2) has also been re-posted.
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So I started profiling Rachel in the previous post. She’s a North Carolina based artist whose work is really powerful.
She’s worn her hair in a TON of different ways over the past 17 years — from backlength locs to a bald head. I asked her to share her photos and her philosophy.

RACHEL: I’ve been natural for about 17 years. I always thought perms were lame… I didn’t wanna look like that. L says~no offense to permies! but I had to relay Rachel’s thoughts!
There’s no philosophy behind me changing my hair..I guess it’s just a reflection of my attitude about life in general..Most women are afraid to look different, scared of what others will think if they go against the grain. I’d hate to live that like that..I think that’s pretty miserable.

L says~I asked Rachel for a timeline of her various styles…
Timeline???.…That’s almost impossible…Most of the pictures you see were taken in the last few years, with the exception of the locs, that was in 2000, I had them for about 8 years.
Right now i’m wearing a Mohawk with the bangs flat ironed..I plan to shave it all off really soon..

What my hair means to me?…It’s all mine and I’m gonna do whatever the hell I wanna do to it, I dont need long hair, or straight hair to be beautiful, I don’t need it at all.

On art…
I’ve been an artist all my life, whether it’s painting, singing, sewing, decorating or cooking..everything is art to me.
I sell my art through my website Rachelstewart.net and also on http://www.redbubble.com/people/auset1. I have a studio in downtown Raleigh (North Carolina) called The antfarm studios that I have shows and sell from. I also do commissions and I’m currently part of an abstract art exhibition at the Capital Bank Plaza building…I also have a payment plan, with my paypal account clients can make payments on pieces and I ship it to them when it’s paid up..I think art shoud be accesible to everyone, most folks dont have thousands of dollars to pay for art just laying around..so I let them make payments they can afford..Why not make it easy for folks to enjoy art in thier hime, not just a museum or gallery.

Folks ask me to describe my aesthetic..I don’t even know what that means…It’s not that deep. I just like to paint, I keep painting till it looks good then I stop… L says~A bit more of Rachel’s art coming tomorrow. The heavens didn’t open up and I didn’t meditate with incense and poetry (which I hate) …I just like to paint.…













more photos of Rachel’s hair and her art coming real soon!

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Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

Wow. Awesome looks. Of course, she’s just really beautiful.

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

I’ve seen her before on facebook, she is gorgeous with or without her hair!

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

Oh my gosh! She looks a lot like Salt from Salt n Pepa! I love her hair and it is awesome that she isn’t afraid of change or what anyone else thinks!

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

I love her variety in hairstyles — she looks gorgeous

jenteel
jenteel
11 years ago

get em rach!

Most women are afraid to look different, scared of what others will think if they go against the grain. I’d hate to live that like that..she said a mouthful right there — that’s how i think…

i love to see black artists doing their thing. especially when they have a powerful message to put out…

Tam and Sam
Tam and Sam
11 years ago

wow, she’s more than dope.

karibbee
karibbee
11 years ago

each of those styles looks great on her — especially love the kiddie pic

yours truly
yours truly
11 years ago

beautiful woman with some gorgeous hair. she really does resemble salt from Salt n’ Pepa and I love her life philosophy too.

G
G
11 years ago

I Love her versatility. Loving the puff in her childhood pic.

Rebekka Pierre
Rebekka Pierre
11 years ago

From one artist to another, word word word word!

Ebony Intuition
Ebony Intuition
11 years ago

I like her style.

AGrlCanMAC
AGrlCanMAC
11 years ago

She rocks it all and I luv her take on hair. Most women are afraid to look different, scared of what others will think if they go against the grain. I’d hate to live that like that.. I couldn’t agree more!

Black girl with long hair
Black girl with long hair
11 years ago

um… those locs are so dope, they make me want to piss my pants.

just thought i’d share.

Midori Hirohata
Midori Hirohata
11 years ago

I love Rachel. She is my real life inspiration and she put me onto Cantu Shea butter!

Miss Malorie
Miss Malorie
11 years ago

Wow… gorgeous and amazing hair! And such versatility… I’m lovin’ it!

I haven’t personally met a lot of women who could rock all these different styles with the confidence that oozes off of Rachel… but I hope to meet plenty!! 🙂

Foxy not-so Brown
Foxy not-so Brown
11 years ago

thank you to everyone…i’m floored by these comments..im glad I can inspire my sisters to say screw you lame chicks who cant even look the way you want…you are a work of art…when i get old I wanna remember the things I DID DO..not regret the shit I didnt do.
shave it, fry it. dye it, wear 5 different colors and act like its nothing.
join me on ..http://targetqueen.blogspot.com/

love ya’ll…this has made my day!!!

aulelia
aulelia
11 years ago

That baby picture is absolutely gorgeous!

I love the photo of her in her Afro when she is wearing that grey top. Amazing!

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

im in luv.…u go girl 🙂

Lita
Lita
11 years ago

you have literally picked all my online nappy-idols. very happy about this, she is so great 😀

Nikki
Nikki
11 years ago

the flyness cannot be contained, dayuuuummmmmm.…

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

I STILL feel as though it is the girls who obviously grew up being told that they were fine all their lives that posses that kind of philosophy.

I just want to see one dark skinned girl with characteristic african features say the same thing…then maybe i will be able too.

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

I just don’t like how ppl make it seem as though you are such bad/ weak person if you can’t just go and cut your hair off all willy nillie or care what other think becuz the truth is some women grow up never being told that they are beautiful and have constantly been picked on and looked over by men. some women have to tell themselves that they are beautiful and buildup their self confidence on their own. her philosophy is great and everyone should try to reach that level but i feel that no one should judge the… Read more »

Foxy not-so Brown
Foxy not-so Brown
11 years ago

STILL feel as though it is the girls who obviously grew up being told that they were fine all their lives that posses that kind of philosophy. I just want to see one dark skinned girl with characteristic african features say the same thing…then maybe i will be able too. ..to that I say I wasnt told i was FINE all my life, i hate you assume that, I WAS told to be myself and be confident and i was surrounded by women who paved thier own way in life and didnt conform.that has nothing to do with “fineness”..you have never… Read more »

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

@ foxy lol i see that you have characteristic african features but they are deemed exoctic by soceity on you because of your light skin. if a dark skinned girl had those same features she would be called all types of monkey and Ni*** and go back to africa and ugly. and I am glad that you were surrounded by such positive and powerful women but i was simply stating or what i meant to say was that everyone one does not enjoy that luxury. that some of these same women who cannot let go of their hair have been called… Read more »

Foxy not-so Brown
Foxy not-so Brown
11 years ago

like i said..PERMS are lame.. to destroy what you naturally have? yes…perms are lame..Im all for wearing your hair in any style..I have flat ironed my hair..im not againt versatility.My problem is women being ashamed of their hair..If you perm outta shame and self hate…thats lame.its 2009..we gotta break those shackles ourselves..not wait for the media to suddenly appreciate us..if we dont embrace our beauty Nobody WILL. We cannot expect men and society to Love our hair and our features if we dont, we get mad when men dont like our hair but guess what?..we RAISE them to not like… Read more »

broadbandette
broadbandette
11 years ago

Great feature to do again! I’ve been enjoying the targetqueen blogspot for a minute now. Many of you have already said it, but I’ll say it again. Rachel is beyond dope and it’s all about personal style, they way she carries herself, her insane encylopedic knowledge of 80s R&B music, AND that gorgeous natural hair. Period. Love it! Keep it up and keep it real, girl! I will definitely hit you up with a commission in the future.

Anne
Anne
8 years ago

Listen Ladies if women are fighting you over skin colour LISTEN Skin colour nothing! Its all about beauty and confidence and your Beautiful/ Confident full stop! if you were dark and had the same face and confidence they would still fight you remember that!
Ive never seen a very unatractive light skin woman being faught over and you never will.…beauty and confidence people just like to asume its to do with being lite nooooo!

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