In the fourth of our Role Models series, I talk to Fanta Celah, artist and creative force.
Tell me about yourself.
I am a fine artist of 16 years. I’ve done jewelry for 12 years, henna tattoos for 15 and have been a jazz vocalist for soca. Basically I get healing energy from all different forms of art to heal the world with the art I produce. My work has been shown in Europe, London, Senegal and Dakar. I appear at mostly art festivals, one at Lake Meadows here in Chicago this summer and the Ethnic festival in Evanston.
What inspires your art?
It comes naturally. My father was an artist and passed it down to me. Nature, sunsets, being out in nature also inspires, and I like to share this with the world. The heavens and the earth are different beautiful things.
Loc’d since: I have been wearing locs for 13 years. I’ve worn a natural for all my life, and I came to a point of being tired of doing the twisting and untwisting of braids. I had an afro at first. I started with 6 inches, then I let it loc. I enjoyed it.
How have locs impacted you?
It takes you out of the box. You have more creative self-expression. It takes a lot of courage to wear locs. The public is looking at you all the time. It makes you a stronger person, and it builds self-esteem. My locs have been perceived well by every race and every culture. Your hair is such a force, it is memorable, and no one forgets who I am.
My loc claim to fame:
My “cosmic crown” style (pictured above). I designed it three years ago. I have eight major locs. One day I came to an epiphany I thought to myself, why don’t you just bind them together? So I did, forming spirals (and securing them with jewelry and accessories.
My locs are formed with the freeform method. I started using a natural Indian bar soap. At first I didn’t use any oils as my locs were forming. I wanted my hair to be coarse. Now I wash with a tea tree oil shampoo and conditioner. For oils, I use olive oil and grapeseed oil. I worry about buildup, so I use fresh lemon juice to clarify and to strip excess oils away. I also use castor oil to revive a really dry scalp.
Special Announcement: Get the new Loc’d Life Magazine, directly from hpMagCloud (more venues to follow!). This time around, instead of a digital copy, get a hard copy mailed directly to you from hpMagCloud. Yes, the price is higher this time, but there’s more pages (40), all on locs, a lot of features, and you get a hard copy. We have a full article on our Role Models series, how to do the Ledisi style, men’s styles featuring Christian Fields Style Bar in Chicago, exercise and nutrition tips (a recipe!), and more. You don’t want to miss out. (We also posted Volume 1, if you didn’t get a copy previously, or would like to get a hard copy!) Click below to order yours now!