Now, this is just going to jump out at you. You’ve built up the confidence and wrestled down fear, one more victorious time and now your heart searches for that next step. That next thing that’s going to feed your creative fire, burning a path of adventure to your destined greatness. “What is it?”, you ask? Passion. That’s what you’re looking for. We all have the ability to be carried and transformed by it’s power. The best part is that sometimes we find that power residing within a person who unexpectedly and unknowingly crosses our path for reasons that only make sense to us individually. A person with passion that drips with a vocanic flare, bringing awareness to your undeniable talent. An artist that has helped illuminate this path for me is Actor, Performer and Fashion Enthusiast; Te’ Minor.
September 3, 2019-
Running out the house in a hurry after checking my laptop bag an excessive amount of times to ensure I have everything for the meeting scheduled. Although at this point, I had done a lot of work with creating the previous series, this would be my first actual interview for The Black Sunflower. Months of building and planning but here I was getting those “first day jitters” that come with starting a new position. Curious to see how this would go, my mind fought between nervousness and excitement while a bit of self doubt wanted to sneak it’s way in there as well. Those feelings quickly changed once the meeting began with Te’ Minor.
We greet with a handshake that quickly turns into a casual hug with some light laughter, always a calming ice breaker. I sat in awe of this unique artist as he answered the questions, my anxiety fading with the conversation unfolding effortlessly. While revealing his own aspirations in his acting career, I felt a pull of inspiration with each piece of himself that he shared. For a decade, Te’ has worked as a noted Actor, Singer, Performer and what he emphasized most; Storyteller. Both agreeing with the significance of the art of storytelling, it was natual to share a few stories amongst each other. Like any great Storyteller, I was drawn in by many things with Te’. Listening to him speak was enough to tell how beautiful his vocal range is and immediately created a longing to hear it. From the small whisper of notes to monumental bellows of sound, I even began to imagine what songs his voice would and I’m sure he has dominated before.
What struck me most was his hunger and passion to continually motivate himself through the years, including his clear, attention to detail fashion experience as Sales Manager for the men’s dresswear at Dillards. Realizing that he’s a man with many talents, I became curious of not only how he juggled his time but also what projects were up next for this Kansas City, KS artist. Although I can’t share the details on a few of his upcoming performances quite yet, let’s say his eagerness to showcase himself once more and my excitement to watch his success continue to unfold was beyond obvious. This includes over the past few months where I’ve had the pleasure to witness Te’ expanding his creative pallete with a particular galactic/cosmic themed make-up series.
With each new photo posted, I fell deeper in love with this aesthetic. The captivating shades of blue blending and fading into Te’s brown skin calls out the vastness of our being. The shape and placement of the each look sings of it’s intention, forcing you to focus on individualization while having the universe staring back at you. One could say that it’s a mask of sorts but it’s really an outwardly expression of who he really is, all the magic and mystery displayed confidently-with the eyes holding the spot of the fire in this intergalactic sky.
Te’s make-up series shares a lot of depth and overall freedom in style and concept. It encourages introspection to keep moving and/or looking forward in the life I am building for myself. It’s an important reminder that stepping out on faith isn’t a one-time thing, it’s gradual and hopefully, just as exponential as the universe. It begs you to take a better look at the Black people of Kansas City. The world may not know our names yet, but there is no doubt that we are amongst the stars. I’m looking forward to seeing many other portriats using this concept with style pairing, as his passion has shown through time and time again with any creative outlet he chooses to take. Te’, thank you for sharing your passion and assisting me with shaping my own with The Black Sunflower.
Who inspires you?
“All the young Black and brown boys and girls, people who don’t have a voice. I want to step up for those that don’t have that. Want to do more and do better“. -Te’ Minor
Written by Michelle Hill
See you next Sunday for our next Kansas City Artist Review: Kiki Uchawi