Bede (Brianna) Baker
HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY?
Female pronouns, generally at this current state. That being said, I associate femininity, and feminine clothes as something I lean into when I feel like it. This can vary from day to day, month to month, and year to year. As I child I felt like a boy, and wanted to be a boy, and thought I was meant to be a boy. This was most clear to me when i was four, and told my mother I wanted to cut my hair short. I already dressed rather androgynous, but never felt at peace with my long hair, or the dresses my mother would buy for special occasions. I had and have no answers as to why, and I don’t try to over analyze it, just as I didn’t then. As I got older (around 6th grade), the kids in school weren’t really keen to whatever the fuck was going on with Bede Baker, and I was continually having to put up with bullying. Was I gay? Did I want a “sex change”? Was I actually a boy? I knew that they didn’t understand someone who didn’t fit into the box. It wasn’t something I could change, because any sign of femininity also sent the kids into a spiral. I moved to a new school in seventh grade, and over that summer I grew my hair and my mom bought me new clothes from JCPenny’s. I liked to idea of putting on a costume and figured the rest out as I grew up. Now, I just am. A mix. “You’re born naked, and the rest is drag.” -RuPaul
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?
It fluctuates. I think my resting phase is gender neutral. I like simple pieces, with little color. Black, grey, white, and army green are my jams. I look at Katherine Hepburn throughout her life, and in the movie On Golden Pond, and I think she is my style Icon.
THOUGHTS ON GENDER NEUTRAL CLOTHING?
Been doing it for sometime, and it is like armor for my soul. While I like dressing all these different parts, I think gender neutral clothing is when I feel my soul is aligned with the armor I put on my body. I feel powerful. I feel powerful in a dress, heels and red lipstick, too. So, I guess I like to play dress up, and I like to feel aligned.
HOW WAS THE SHOOT?
I am an awkward person and an awkward model. If I’m playing a character (I do comedy), I don’t feel strange taking pictures or acting in front of a camera. If it is just me, being me, I sometimes feel fake, or like I’m trying to project some persona, and I feel weird. On this shoot I met so many wonderful people, and while I don’t know what my photos look like, the shoot was the SHIT and I felt so full of life. It filled my cup and I made new friends. What more could I ask for? Other than learning how to just stand and pose...
ANY RECENT THOUGHTS ON GENDER / IDENTITY / RELATIONSHIP / DEEP EMOTIONAL PROCESSES U FEEL LIKE TALKING ABOUT?
Gender is such a construct. So unbelievably constructed and linked to sex at birth. I always felt incredibly at peace with myself and my identity, but so much so that I don’t really have many explanations. For me to be balanced, i I am both masculine and feminine. They are ying and yang to the soul. For some, their outward appearance will need to be one way in order to align with their balance. For others, the outer shell feels less important. It’s person to person. Only the individual can know, but in order to know, I believe that one needs to peel away the deep layers of socialization that are apart of us all. It’s a journey, and I’m still on mine.
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