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In Conversation With: Nicole Wright

Nicole is a graphics design student from Nottingham. For one of her projects, she decided to interview Femme and so we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to sit down and interview her too! We talked about feminism of course, art, over thinking and more. Enjoy!

Art by Nicole. Find Nicole on Instagram @nicolewdesign

Nicole and I have been friends for as long as I can remember. She is older than me by a year or two - something I was always very aware about as a thirteen year old. Nicole was always very open to talking about her sex life, boys, girls and the like. She would tell me about drinking and smoking and gaming; all things that I was yet to experience, and all things which at the time made me not only nervous but secretly thrilled and eager to be older myself!

Now, both of us in our 20s sit in a beer garden and drink together, with an equal amount of experiences and stories to tell each other. Nicole has purple hair this time, and tattoos everywhere. She is unapologetically herself; something that hasn't changed through adolescence. She is currently studying graphics design at Derby University, and won the award for Nottingham's Young Creatives as Graphic Designer of the year. Khaya: So, when do you feel the most empowered as a female?

Nicole: I think through self expression. I'm someone who has lots of tattoos, I hope to be covered in tattoos at some point. I like collecting things like that to remind me of experiences. I also dye my hair, which I find fun... It's a ball ache, but I find it fun. Um, through dressing up, even when I don't have to. Even if it's just one day where you want to paint your nails. Like, recently I had a really down day and I was like, "right, you're not going to cry today! You've cried like 4 out of 7 days this week, on the 5th you're not going to do that anymore! You're going to paint your nails, do your hair. You're not going anywhere." The furthest I went was to my kitchen, but, I felt better, and I think that's what it's all about. Whatever it is that makes you feel better as a woman. Some people don't find empowerment through makeup or tattoos.

Khaya: Okay, so would you say that makeup and tattoos and self expression is actually helpful in empowerment because if you had to have that all taken away from you; if you weren't aloud to dye your hair or get tattoos, would you feel a lot different?

Nicole: Yes. As bad as it sounds, yes. I mean, there's been a lot of debate around that for years. How women feel when they wear makeup... but for me personally, that is something that makes me feel better. It makes me feel powerful. I know for some women, they don't wear makeup. That's their choice. I think that's the thing, it's about your choice.

Khaya: Definitely

Nicole: If it was taken away... I don't know. You have to find different ways to make yourself feel better, even if it's something silly like singing really loud, like Emma stone. Do you know what I mean? Like, singing pocket full of sunshine at the top of your lungs.

*Khaya sings pocket full of sunshine*

Khaya: Okay, well my next question is, do you ever feel a pressure to keep up an image from social media, and if so how do you deal with it?

Nicole: See, yes and no. Sometimes I look at my Instagram account and I'll be like, shit, I've not posted a picture in a month, but I'm still using Instagram. And I'm like, do I really care what these people think? Some people, yes. Some people no. I don't know.

Khaya: Do you find you compare yourself to people that you follow?

Nicole: Yep. Yeah. I think that's something that has been going on for years though, before we even had social media. We had air brushing in magazines. Things like Vogue, where we're seeing all of these powerful women but we're not seeing them - we're seeing the tailored version that society wants us to see.

To hear the rest of the conversation, click on the link below to listen!

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