Committing To What Makes Your Heart Sing

Azure Antoinette is a commissioned poet, TED Speaker, GRAMMY™ Considered recording artist, entrepreneur, and arts education advocate. Forbes named her the "Maya Angelou of the millennial generation" in the highly acclaimed Most Powerful Women in the World Issue. We were fortunate enough to chat with Azure about the evolution of her style and of her career, and unsurprisingly, she left us feeling uplifted and inspired.

WHAT HAS YOUR STYLE EVOLUTION BEEN LIKE?

My style, Lord where do I begin?! I cannot be sure what was happening in the early 2000’s, but honestly - what were we all doing. Being a lesbian, it can be a tough road - style wise. We tend to do something very terrible to our hair, then vacillate between a back-up dancer for B2K or some horrendous version of the LWord characters in the early OG seasons. I did ALL OF THIS. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I started to embrace the style that has fully developed today. And thank the universe, because I don’t cringe when I see my outfits today, back in the day - Jesus be a blindfold.

IF YOUR CLOSET COULD SPEAK WHAT WOULD IT SAY TO THE WORLD?

New button down collared shirt, who dis?

Ha. My closet is a confluence of Oxford prep which I get from my mother, a retired litigator that believed a Ralph Lauren blazer, cashmere sweater and cognac penny loafers, was an appropriate outfit for a casual Saturday.
 
Then you have my avid love of sneakers - which all this technology has made a real problem.
 
Finally, I must have 5 black dresses, each unique in their own right. It has taken me time to embrace my frame, freakishly long arms that make most shirts I buy 3/4 length.
 
I like to consider myself, Handsome Femme or Urban Prep.
 
My closet says nothing definitive, other than I don’t pay attention to gender norms, what society deems appropriate and I look damn good in a 3 piece and a simple black dress.
 
In short, yea “Who Dis?”
WHAT SURPRISES YOU MOST ABOUT THE PATH YOUR CAREER HAS TAKEN?
EVERYTHING.
Me and the universe have this ongoing contest, one where I think I can make plans, and then it son’s me and says “Yea cool story bro. Have a cup of Mercury Retrograde.” I say, “some more please, thank you and also UNCLE.”
My career has been my teacher in my adult life. I am constantly telling myself to stop waiting for the storm to pass, and just DANCE.
 
I don’t listen well. My prayer is that I truly become comfortable in the present; that I stop overpromising so that I am not set to under deliver.
 
I am most surprised at my own resilience and resistance. It is a blessing and a burden. I am surrounded by power, kindness, creativity and fore thought. I want to be better, I want to excel, and I want most to restore. Be that my own faith in humanity, or blind trust in the process. Patience and I have never been close.
 
The truest surprise has been the journey. Heartbreaking and equally incredible.
IF YOU HAD A MISSION STATEMENT FOR LIFE, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

Whatever is for you, will never pass you. Stay present, unwrap that gift.

DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR FOLKS TRYING TO FIND THEIR WAY?
Forgive yourself.
Be open to change, and stay committed to what makes your heart sing.
Do not change for love, for her, for them, be you. Be open to that you changing and failing.
I would say that we can count on so little, ease your expectations; things will be more palatable this way.
 
Lastly, own it -
your mistakes, her heart, the room, your future.
You are PERFECT
You are Poetry in Motion
Go, go and chart a new constellation.
GO.

Thank you Azure for sharing with and inspiring all of us! Make sure you follow Azure on Instagram, check out her website, and support her powerful work however you can!