Style, to me, isn’t about flowery language, ‘the moves,’ and presentation. It’s about being true to yourself. Anyone who expresses something honest is bound to touch on something universal. Great art will not reveal the artist, but rather, will serve as a mirror to reveal the spectator to herself. The same goes for clothing, conversation, loving, or any action or expression. Animalism, humanism, and a unique voice exist inside every individual. If someone taps into her true self and explores her own potential, then her honest expression and communication will naturally have its own style, and her very existence may become a symbol in the eyes of others; as she may symbolize their own potential.
What some people might call ‘style’ I would call integrity. Integrity involves honesty as well as commitment. If a person is dedicated to her craft, she can express herself more honestly in the moment. For instance, if a musician puts in her “10,000 hours” practicing, then the minute she is moved to express her deep emotions, she can go to the piano, close her eyes, press the ‘record’ button and let the song write itself through her. If she rehearses a lot, then when she’s on stage, she can let herself go and trust the music to pour through her limbs as a numinous force that moves her on its own. If someone does something with such ease that her body is a vessel through which honesty is expressed, then she probably put a lot of time into honing that skill. In this manner, style develops from within.
Wrapping something up in an attempt at ‘style’ impedes communication. A lot of music, art, conversation, loving, or day to day expression is caked in makeup, bullshit and selling-points that mask the raw humanity that could otherwise be expressed. The most beautiful outfit looks dull on a person who doesn’t breathe its colors, and an eloquent political speech is made of dust if the politician has no past actions to back up his words. People use skimpy attempts at ‘style’ to compensate for a lack of hard work and self-awareness. This is the trap of ‘aiming for style’ that people fall into, rather than simply being. If someone is brave enough to define and pursue her passion and purpose, and puts blood, sweat and tears into her life and work, then even if she is a garbage woman she will automatically collect that garbage with style. But ironically, she who is concerned with style is unlikely to have much style at all.