Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Sharmin! My pronouns are she/her. I’m Bangladeshi, born in South Africa, raised in Australia, mentally somewhere in the milky way. I’m a registered midwife and a budding jeweller. I love coconut rice and curry, comical looking dogs, and I’m always ready for a boogie!
Could you describe your artistic influences?
Tetsuya Nomura and Hayao Miyazaki’s art styles and visions have always been a huge influence on me growing up. I've always admired their ability to take different elements of something rather ordinary to create something other-wordly.
More recently however, South East Asian creators on Instagram like Simran Randhawa, Chawntell, and Heleena have been hugely instrumental in decolonising my artistic expression. And I find myself also reconnecting with my identity as a Bangladeshi girl raised in Australia—especially in cultures that don’t necessarily accept me because of my mixed western-Bangladeshi upbringing.
What’s inspiring you these days?
I’ve been really inspired by fairies lately! I’ve grown up reading tales about fairies, and recently I've been feeling connected with my young, imaginative, bewildered self. I’ve just recently had my Ammu tattoo’d as my guardian fairy by the wonderful Christina Pereira.
Tell us a little bit about this shoot, what was the concept behind it?
The name and design of the earrings immediately reminded me of the sun tarot card! The tarot card meaning for the sun reads:
“A large, bright sun shines in the sky, representing the source of all life on Earth. Underneath, four sunflowers grow tall [...] In the foreground, a young, naked child is sitting on top of a calm white horse. The child represents the joy of being connected with your inner spirit, and his nakedness is a sign he has nothing to hide and has all the innocence and purity of childhood.”
I wore these earrings out for the first time on an afternoon picnic. With the sun setting and basking me in the light of golden hour, I really did feel like I was within the tarot card, and I just knew I had to recreate it!
Tells us a little bit about the styling.
While I know there’s a naked child in the original sun tarot card, with Instagram’s whack no-nudity policies, I thought I’d instead embody how I felt wearing the earrings, which is a lavish, glowy, sun goddess! I’m wearing my Ammu’s beautiful saree from the 80’s and her gold bangles. The sunflowers are from the original tarot card in the edit, but wanted to add my own Australian influence so I included a native bottlebrush plant in my hand!
What’s feminism to you?
To me feminism is the ultimate freedom movement for the people. It’s the fight for intersectional equality and distribution of equity; accepting people as they are and providing each and every one equal rights, regardless of gender identity and racial background.
The need for intersectional feminism highlights the ongoing systemic and multifactorial inequality many of us are facing right now through everyday aspects of our life. It's not just about cis-women's rights and receiving equal pay, but also about fighting for trans right, disability rights, sexuality rights, mens rights, and so on! Overall, the movement benefits us all and works towards creating a more fair and functional society.
What can we expect from you in the future?
Growth, healing, and blossoming! 2020 was a tough year full of uncertainty, but I’m ready to bring on 2021 and make the best out of the unknown! I’m hoping to start my own creative business and put my artistic expression out there into the world, finally! Hope to see you there!
Concept and model: Sharmin. Follow her here.