Friday, March 2, 2012

Style Maven: Rihanna

To develop your own style, a good way of doing so is to choose a person you admire a great deal and emulate them. While many people would call this "copying", have you ever fathomed that "fashion" is all about the art of copying: copying a feeling, and attitude, a look, or an aura. Its not so much about "copying", but it's about gaining inspiration. For example, anyone who knows Dwight can guess who his "Style Maven" is. Take a look below at this video I pulled from my archives of a video we did casually on a beautiful day. We were so inspired by the scenery we had to film this for it was just so appropriate for the song. See if you can't guess who Dwight personally looks to stylistically.  

Click through to confirm your answer (wink)....

If you guessed Rihanna, you would be correct!
If anyone knows Dwight, aka @Ken_Dutchess, and if you weren't able to tell from his music videos, you would definitely say his style is "Rihannaish". If you remember my birthday post, Another Year of Style,where I brought up the subject of  personality types and how we are all closely related to one of the 16 personality types outlined in the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) , I would be absolutely dumbfounded if Rihanna and Dwight didn't come up identical, personality-wise. Dwight admires Rihanna for her "I don't give a (insert bad word here)" attitude, and sexy allure. He really understands her actions in life and why she is does the things she does, even though the media tries so hard to judge and belittle her life decisions. As I have observed, the reason he can understand her moves in life is that because of their personality types, they are understanding life in a similar way, psychologically. That is why Dwight looks up to Rihanna stylistically. He knows that by emulating the same spice and expressing his self in a similar fashion to Rihanna that he can hold on to his confidence throughout the day knowing that there is someone in the world who is like him that has made up pretty well in life, and is where he envisions his self being in the future.

[All photos courtesy of Zimbio]
The paparazzi can always catch Rihanna in a festive,
original, and eye catching ensemble of cloths 
I think this is why a lot of girls can relate to Rihanna, and why our younger generation ,compared to the older generations, can understand and support her through Twitter, social media, and contribute to her sales success. They want to find out how Rihanna is going to handle the situation in front of her, and want to see how she will express herself because the way she does it is so sassy, strong, and womanly, and on a lot of occasions, very sexually explicit. In my fashion, her provocativeness is almost a play on how sexually obsessed our species is, and that she has complete control over her body, sexual appetite, and sexual mindset. You can tell through her tweets that even though she is so sexual, her head rest on a sound and aware shoulder. To be able to be so bold with your lady goods, you must have that aire of awareness that you know the negative consequences of your actions, and that you are prepared to fight against those that try to disturb your peace of mind. In my fashion, the price one pays for pursuing any profession or calling is an intimate knowledge of it's ugly side, and this is the lesson I think is the best message we can take away from Rihanna's style. With this in mind, she can navigate through life comfortably, and securely, and with strength knowing the follies she will have to encounter. I think Rihanna knows what she is doing. To pursue a music career in this day and age, you have to be very calculating, and we can see that through her fashion, album timeline, and style that she is very calculating in that regard, but in a way that is true to herself, using sex as a mocking gesture against the ignorance of those who don't understand her.

Rihanna is often caught scantily clad, showing
off her toned body, and beautiful skin.
The reason I feel this way about Rihanna and have such a knowledge of what I feel is going on in her mind is because I have lived with Dwight for 3+ years of my life, and have come to understand his thought pattern (or at least a large part of what I think I know). Not only have I come to recognize his thought pattern, but I have a birds eye view of how the world sees him, and so, I can compare how he really feels about himself and his place in the world, and how it comes off to the world. Interestingly enough, the rest of the world comes up with crazy assumptions about him and what he does with his life, even though he plainly puts the truth out there for the world to see. Its very similar to what I can imagine Rihanna goes though in the industry, as well as any other pretty girl that gets a lot of attention in daily life.

Rihanna's red carpet looks are always
modern, simple, chic, elegant, and sexy
Rihanna has consistently shown that she will come with a bang, whether you accept it or not. Take her hair for instance. Even if Rihanna was not a superstar, and wore her hair the way she has been these past few years, we would still be able to spot her out of a crowd and gawk for a second at her beauty. As of this moment when I check Twitter, she has 14,242,016 followers @rihanna, and when she tweets, what she says is written in stone, for everyone pays attention to what she has to say with her snooty, provocative, and outrageous remarks about the world around her. Even though she gets so much media flack about what she does, what she's wearing (or not wearing), not to mention the elusive Chris Brown incident, people are still drawn to this good girl, gone bad (pun intended) and support her music, making her on of the most successful artist out at this moment in time.

Her performances prove to be very successful year after year,
especially in regards to her wardrobe
Rihanna has become a sensation in the US being that she is from Barbados and brings an island feel to her music while still being chic and edgy enough for our fast-paced 21st century modern girl. It's so fun to listen to songs like "Rude Boy", "Umbrella", "Only Girl", and "Umbrella" with "With We Found Love", and "Disturbia" being her biggest hits, selling 4Xs platinum [source]. On top of being girly and upbeat, there is a mixture of hard rock edge and sexy seductress that captivates us all. She is the personification of "look, but don't touch". It's funny, because when I think of Rihanna  I can't help but remember the words of Jersey Shore bombshell, JWoww.

In the beginning, Rihanna was known as the new, beautifully-cute, girly, 
island artist with a melodic accent
In my fashion, the Good Girl, Gone Bad era began
Rihanna's dissension into worldwide fashion obsession
It's not so much that Dwight wants to "be" Rihanna, or agrees with all of her actions, but one can appreciate her point of view of life and how she feels on her journey. As a women, Rihanna represents living your life for what you want it to be. She does the exact opposite of what is expected of a women (i.e. being so revealing, saying derogatory remarks), yet it's done in a womanly fashion that evokes the power and conviction of a person, of a women, that knows why she's doing what she's doing. Rihanna knows what she stands for and brings a whole new meaning to the term, "Mean Girl", although, as we can all remember, Rihanna's image was not always the way she is now, which shows that there is always room for progression and development into the person we want to be.

Rihanna's dark Rated R album matched her edgy
blond Mohawk and rebellious style
Her breakout with red hair solidified Rihanna's "hair chameleon" status,
and was a statement proclaiming for fans to, "Live out LOUD!" 
The hot thing about Rihanna is that her style stems from her hair, which I think is perfect for her as a female music artist. She defines her presence in the industry with a bold statement that stems from her hair. When we hear she is coming out with a new album, followers anticipate her next "hair move". What innovative hairstyle has she chosen to define her album, to define herself. Her hair is like a subliminal billboard that eschews not only what her album is about, but about how she feels about life. She has become the best celebrity of our generation to have such a splash with her hair in the public as a aspect of her personality for every hairstyle is a story of her life. Because she uses her hair as such a statement, we can tell that she has a strong and bold personality, and is lots of fun, because to wear the styles she does, you have to be all those qualities in order for the effect of your actions to be taken seriously. So if you ever have doubts about yourself, think of Rihanna. As long as you can feel good about how your hair looks, there is your fail safe for that confidence you will need during the day.

Now, sporting blond hair for her album Talk That Talk, Rihanna's
style vibe is very "Chic-Madonna-Euro-Trash-Like" 
In my fashion, what we can all take away from Rihanna is that in regards to fashion, if you want to explore who you are and have fun with your look, don't be hesitant to change your hairstyle. Changing your hair has the ability to really make you want to explore a new side of you. On a deeper level, although you may proudly hail the words of India Arie, the way you choose to display your hair does say something about how you view life. If you want to gain respect, and have have control over your life, your fear of what other people think of you must be dismantled. Changing your hair is simply one jumping off point towards self-empowerment.

Dare 2 be Different #D2BD
U mad?
As far as her debacle with the media and Chris Brown, I think the message she sends to people who allow themselves to be influenced by Rihanna's antics should take away that we are all on a journey called life, and as a women, she is smart and strong enough to make her own decisions and accept the consequences of her actions. In my fashion, there is no reason for her to be put under scrutiny against her character, or who she is as an artist for we have no say so over her life and her decisions as far as the happiness of where she wants to go on her journey. I support her and wish her the best in her strife towards what will make her happy. Lets stay positive, #MEDIA.

I will leave you with this ethereal performance of Rihanna's at the 2012 BRIT Awards to remember to how she is definitely becoming a style icon of this generation!

For even more insight into Rihanna's style and personality, view this video about, the
Making of "We Found Love". Its a good look into her stylistic aesthetic.

No comments:

Post a Comment