Jaz is a non-binary ceramic artist living and studying in Toronto, who share with us a year later, their journey since our Lorette photoshoot.
Photography by Rhoderick Lising
L: Bonjour Jaz, how are you? I would love to know your reflection post photoshoot, a year later. What memories do you have from that day?
J: I felt like family when I arrived. Everything was comfortable, warm, and welcoming. I liked that the agenda was clear and there was plenty of productive and proactive communication. I appreciated the fact that music was played and that both of you were flexible and open to the development and evolution of the photoshoot.
I remember feeling the warmth of the sun on my skin and feeling that my whole body was probably glowing in the sun. I remember feeling powerful, sensual, and free.
L: How do you connect with yourself?
J: I connect with myself by engaging in mindful activities that I find challenging. I make art, read and write literature, study, rock climb. and make love. I try to say yes to what feels good, and to allow myself to feel totally safe in those choices and activities when possible. I also connect with myself by connecting with nature. When I am feeling low or disconnected, I take my beautiful dog and walk in the woods. Nature is medicine and by mindfully walking though it, I recharge my battery and rekindle that deep and abiding respect for mother nature. Lastly I continue to connect with myself by spending time with close friends who act as a kind of mirror. They reflect my truth back to me when I am being too critical of myself, or when I internalize the negative messages that so constantly assault femme bodies and femme presenting persons.
L: Since I moved the Canada, I’ve learn so much about the LGBTQ2 community. Unfortunately growing up in France as a straight white girl in the early 90s it's not something we’ve talked about anywhere, at school or within the familial circle, nor something that was exposed to in my environment, it was most certainly very hidden, unfortunately...
I want to keep learning though the community experiences, journeys and different temoignage. If you would like to share your journey, or something that means a lot to you, the way you feel and the way you move through life and experiences with your identity as you choose to define it. Therefore my question would be: How do you identify and what message do you hope to impart to other people who identify like you through this work?
J: I identify as a non binary queer person. I have identified this way for most of my life, however, as of late my presentation is much more “feminine” than it has been. This is what is used most often when people refuse to learn or practice my pronouns. “But you’re so pretty”, “But you look so feminine”, “It would be easier if you had short hair”.
It is vital to separate femininity from gender, masculinity from sex.
I want to demonstrate that a Trans identity is valid regardless of where you are in your Trans journey. That your identity is not informed by your presentation. That you are valid, and that it is okay to demand that validation from this world obsessed with rules and binary functions.
L: Is lingerie important to you? if so why?
J: Lingerie is a way I connect with important parts of myself. It is beautiful and luxurious and can make me feel extremely powerful and sensual. I like to have the option of taking off my briefs and sliding in to a finely made pair of panties.
L: Looking back a year later from our photoshoot, is anything you can take away from that day? A post-photoshoot reflection or feeling?
J: Looking back, the only thing I would have changed, a lesson that I took away, was that I wish I had shared my pronouns before beginning. I think that would have enabled me to feel even more at ease than I already did. Despite my reluctance to share that on the day of the photoshoot, I feel that the experience was empowering and lovely above all else.
Every photoshoot with our Lorette Girls is a teaching moment for us and we are beyond thankful for these experiences. Each takeaway from our sessions enables us to improve design, with a full view of what femininity represents for all of us.
- the Lorette team
Jaz is a size 32DD in other brands and wears the Mystical bodysuit in size 1.