February 7th, 2011

me: art

16/52: filipina, german, english, irish

16/52: filipina, german, english, irish

I love being mixed race. I like having a genetic as well as experiential link to cultures in different parts of the globe. I wish that the only difference it made to anyone else was to inspire benign curiosity. I wish that it didn’t create assumptions about my intelligence or my abilities...or my immigration status.

I’m still learning to like the way I look. It doesn’t fit traditional, monoethnic standards of Asian or white beauty and it never will. I don’t have perfect almond-shaped eyes or cheekbones that can cut glass. I didn’t inherit the delicate Asian thinness of my father or the long-necked European elegance of my mother. I have long thin hands and feet. The rest of me is quite muscular. My face is topped by a cloud of dark-brown hair that grows greyer daily. My face is also balanced exactly halfway between my parents. Freckles from my mother. Lips from my father. Eyelashes from my mother. Eyes from my father. Nose that appears to have been forged from a blend of my mother’s little pointy number and my father’s flat wide schnozz. Every time I think I’ve got it all figured out, I age a bit more and it changes on me. And forget trying to find makeup that matches my skin tone. Two weeks in the sun and I turn a completely different colour.

I babble. This image was inspired by all the wonderful portraits in Part Asian, 100% Hapa by Kip Fulbeck. The lovely anthrokeight sent me the book as a present. When I opened it, I cried. Every time I re-read it, I cry. I don’t fully understand why it affects me deeply to see photos of other mixed-race people other than it makes me feel that I’m not alone.