In life it’s important to see reflections of yourself doing something so you can feel like ‘Hey, I’m not the only one out there’. You don’t realise how powerful images and representations are, it’s not about being a narcissist or vein, it’s about feeling included like a real person.
The following extract is taken from an interview I recently listened to on Black Girl’s Talking. One of the hosts talks about her Tumblr called ‘Bicycles & Melanin’, a new blog which showcases pictures of black women on bikes. She talks about her love for bike riding, but feels that the image of a person riding a bike, being carefree and looking happy is an image stereotypically linked to only white women.
Black Girls Talking:
‘I’m getting more and more into biking and I don’t know it’s kinda just like a fitness thing and I was able to bike around for like two months this year because I live in Arizona and it’s very, very hot, but in like December and January you can ride your bike around and it’s just nice, and it’s airy and you see things. I was like you know what ‘there’s not enough pictures of black girls on bicycles and if there are pictures of black girls on bicycles there like hyper-sexualised because they’re taken by men who just want to see a fat black girl’s ass on a bike, and it’s totally like a weirdly posed picture, like no one can ride a bike wearing those hoochy cutters like let’s be real!’ So that was like every photo I was seeing and now it’s really hard to find photos where its just like a black girl riding her little bike, with the basket on it and you know…So when I see them I reblog them onto the blog ‘Bicycles and Melanin’ . What I want to do with the blog eventually is, I want to get a nice camera and go out on bike rides and find other black girls and talk to them about their style, why they like bike riding, what bike riding means to them and the culture behind it. I don’t want to get too into the agro of bikes, I just want to see what other black women are thinking when they decided that biking was a good choice for them.’
Speaking of Bicycles & Melanin, how incredibly SKOOL are these photo’s…Who knew biking and style could be a match made on Earth?
(Cover photo & featured images via Bicycles & Melanin)