Presenting: No, I Don’t Shave

https://noidontshave.wordpress.com/2015/03/15/aami-13/

https://noidontshave.wordpress.com/2015/03/19/gwi-seok-17/

I don’t know why I’ve been holding off sharing this project I started 18 days ago but well here it is, 18 days late!

It all started when I made this piece for a feminist zine here in Ecuador:

page1It says “I love my pubic hair #Idon’tshave #natural” in Spanish and since then I wanted to bring that message to a broader audience. If you recall my daily illustration challenge back in December to draw a self-portrait every day for a month (week 1, week 2, week 3), you know that I thoroughly enjoyed that platform and structure to make something every day.

My strong feelings about pubic hair stem from the knowledge that in the West, shaved and waxed vulvas are how the majority of folks first learn about vulvas on the internet (heteronormative porn).  Even before I knew of the vast quantities of bald vulvas that existed on the internet, I felt pressured to do something about my “hair down there” from partners that I had.

In any case, the last time I felt disappointed by the internet’s representation in something I cared about (gay and Asian folks), I made a website: asiangayandproud.wordpress.com

But this time, I wanted to turn this gap in representation intnewo a daily art project. One unshaved vulva* a day. I started on March 2nd, and have done 18 drawings so far:  https://noidontshave.wordpress.com/

I reached out to a handful of friends by email in the beginning to ask for submissions (a photo of their unshaved vagina and a story about pubic hair) but in the past week I’ve received over ten submissions from folks I didn’t know at all. Ultimately I want to make a zine out of the 31 that I draw.


 

Support my work by purchasing my other zines  & posters (on queer art/activism, gender nonconforming child birth and chest feeding, yoga and meditation, and more!) here:

> > > Miyuki’s Zines < < <

You can also check them out for free first here


I’ve been really enjoying the variety of stories and vulvas (color, shape, texture, size, etc.) and it has been extremely affirming to me (click on any of the images below to enlarge). In 18 days the project has already attracted 7,000 visitors from all over the world (Bahrain, Mauritius, India, South Africa, Turkey, Australia, Ecuador, and many many more!)

In any case, you can follow the project by visiting: https://noidontshave.wordpress.com/ and clicking on the upper right hand corner to find the Follow the Blog by email button. You can also follow it by following my instagram feed: instagram.com/heymiyuki

13 more drawings to go!

That’s it for now!

Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 10.25.14 AM

P.S. If you feel moved to submit, I have five more spots left. Just send me an email at queer scribe at gmail dot com with a photo and a story!

*This project isn’t just for cisgender women. Gender is never as simple as black & white and neither is this project! Gender non-conforming, genderqueer, and trans folks are encouraged to submit photos and stories! I call my genitalia “vagina” so that’s the term I’ve been using but if you’re trans (or a cis-woman) and don’t refer to your genitalia as “vagina”, you are also welcome to the project! And to clarify, if you’re a trans woman who refers to their genitalia as a vagina, you also belong here 🙂 On the note of language though, here’s an interesting article a friend shared with me on the difference between vagina and vulva.

 

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About Miyuki Baker

Miyuki is a resident of the place where circles overlap. As a queer, nomadic, multi-racial/lingual female mixed-media artist activist and healer, she uses common or discarded objects, personal anecdotes, public spaces and performance to make accessible art that brings non-mainstream identities and ideas into maximum visibility. After graduating from Swarthmore College in 2012, she traveled for 14 months as a Watson Fellow to fifteen countries documenting the intersections of art and activism in queer/trans communities in blog posts and self-published magazines while making performance art. The eight magazines Miyuki created on this trip (queerscribe.com) and their strong media following exemplify her illustration/graphic design, storytelling and people skills. Her work has been featured in several magazines such as Hyphen, Broken Pencil and Knik, blogs and radio shows, well-known for their interactive and eye-catching mixed media approach to activism that utilizes both online media and on-site performance and workshops. This fall she will begin the PhD program at UC Berkeley in Performance Studies. You can follow her travels at heymiyuki.wordpress.com and email her at heymiyuki@gmail.com

7 comments

  1. FINALLY, someone younger than I celebrating pubic hair! Because I don’t look at professional, non-queer porn, I didn’t even realize so many people in the US were removing their hair until a few years ago when I read a sex column by a young Smith College student in the campus newspaper that contained the line, “There’s no excuse for free bush!” I felt old and “out of it” until I mentioned it to the guy I was dating, who was older than I and grew up in the hippie era; he also found it bizarre, and sad that everyone had stopped going “natural” with all their hair.
    This also reminds me that the “Vagina Monologues” could’ve been called the “Vulva Monologues,” to be more anatomically accurate! THANK YOU for doing this project!

    • Thank you So much for your affirmation of the project and for sharing your own experiences! Funny how just a generation difference can mean we have such contrasting notions on the same topic.
      ❤ much love!

  2. I read through all the testimonials. How do you get so many people to Open up so much? Because they are more about a sense of self, identity, gender perception than simply about pubic hair. Amazing illustrations too.

    • I never replied to your question! You know I think I was just honest about why this project meant so much to me and then everyone showed up 🙂 I think this topic is something everyone can relate to 🙂

  3. You know, I read somewhere a while ago how social scientists have found that there is a tectonic shift in sexual experiences and expectations, directly as a result of change in sexual interactions evolving because of the rise of porn as an industry and growing free access to it via the Internet. They even found links with forming perceptions about gender and race – the easy white woman, the hard to have middle eastern woman, the docile small pussy child like oriental woman, the secret knowing ultra bendy south Asian woman so on and so forth. I wish I had saved the link

  4. tovis88

    So wonderful!

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