The way we show up as ourselves is often our very first expression of creativity. Maybe it’s the clothes we chose as our favorites, color preferences, a hairdo that became our signature. For the artsiest among us, maybe it was the characters we drew or the worlds we wrote or the landscapes we photographed perfectly at golden hour.

Skillshare Originals teacher Christopher Griffin, aka Plant Kween

Increased representation at a younger age would have made me not feel so alone in my journey, wondering if I was the only one questioning my sexuality, my gender identity, and would have validated my adventure of wanting to put my own queer lil flare on how I showed up in this world , and that this was beautiful, okay, and needed.

christopher griffin, skillshare teacher

We are what and how we create – and we are shaped by the spaces and places we do our making and find our inspiration. For most if not all of us, that’s our cisnormative and heteronormative world, which makes it difficult or even dangerous for those who fall outside of the cis definition to express themselves to the fullest. When acceptance and access can be withheld, how does that impact the ability or quite simply the desire to create?

It’s our goal at Skillshare to open up avenues of creativity and free expression to all those who want to get to know that side of themselves – whether it’s a side hustle or a new career ambition. It always starts in the same place: learning and listening to those who hold the experience, whether in craft or in their own identity.

[Don’t] shy away from ways in which society may view you as being different and instead, use your unique perspective either directly or indirectly in your work. These so-called differences are actually your super powers. Existing outside of the paradigm gives you a unique perspective that is truly valuable.

Soraya zaman, skillshare teacher

This month for Pride, we want to learn, listen, and celebrate our LGBTQIA+ community members, and encourage you to learn from their massive talents, incredible stories, and generosity in sharing their craft. Explore the class list below in everything from growing your own green gurls with Plant Kween Christopher Griffin to making self care a priority with Queer Eye’s JVN to photography with Soraya Zaman.

Photograph by Soraya Zaman

We’ll also be sharing even more videos, stories, and advice from our teacher community throughout June, so keep an eye on Skillshare’s Instagram and TikTok to check out the latest.

In the spirit of learning, we want to break down a few definitions that we’ve used in this post that may be new to some:

  • Cisnormative is used as an adjective to explain our society, which gives privilege to those who are cisgender or cis.
  • Cisgender or cis means a person whose sense of gender identity corresponds to the sex they were assigned at birth. Many people are transgender or trans, or non-binary, meaning thay have a gender different from the sex they were assigned at birth.
  • LGBTQIA+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, intersex, asexual. The “+” stands for those who fall outside of that spectrum, but leaves an inclusive space for words or identities that we haven’t described yet.

If you’re interested in further reading, we recommend this piece from NPR.

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