Cheers, Creative Enthusiasts,

Many people often ask me: Why the purple hair? I get compliments or even just comments quite often about my dark purple tresses. Why did I choose that color? That’s pretty easy. 

In one word: Prince.

In a longer explanation: hey at my current age, I have been going grey for many years now. If I have to dye my hair (and I do “have to” as I am not going to age gracefully – I’m going to kick and scream along the way), I might as well have some fun when I cover up the greys in my aging mane. Purple is super fun! Maybe in my 60s, I’ll reverse it to all white hair with one purple streak. Who knows?! Have some fun, people!

But all joking aside, many know that purple is my favorite color. It has been for many many years. And I can thank Prince for that. Prince (and Madonna) were the first two creative and innovative artists to help me develop my own sense of style, if you want to call it that. Many joke around that I need to throw out all of my 80s clothes that I still hold onto which apparently are no longer “stylish” – but hey! I like wearing costumes and vintage is even cooler! While Madonna taught me to embrace fun, lacy things and adorn my hair with girly decorations if I so choose, Prince taught me to fall in love with the glorious color purple and to rock an outfit, even if it makes a bold statement. 

Prince Nelson Rogers – an artist who masterfully blended R&B, pop, funk, jazz and rock – was such a positive influence on my life and someone that I have always admired. In a world of conformists, Prince helped show us all what it means to be innovative, courageous, march to the beat of your own drum, and not compromise on artistic integrity, no matter what the cost. And yet with that type of “just-watch-me-and-my-purple-clad-arse” attitude, he catapulted himself to major success and stardom so that he could continue to do it his way in style at every turn. I loved that he showed us that men could wear frilly, white, pretty shirts in the modern age and still be masculine and attractive – as well as in that tiny, densely-packed-with-awesome frame of his. Thus he also proved to this 5’1” framed gal that great fantastic things can certainly still come in small packages. Thank you, Prince for helping me believe in myself, my own creativity, and rock my short stature despite myself. 

One of my favorite places to listen to his mind-blowing and innovative music was the basement of my childhood home where I could really focus alone if I wished. I would study the album covers, lyric sheets, his logos, artwork and symbols and revel in the artistry of the images, his beautiful words, and his perfectly coifed hair and purple-adorned ensembles. I’d sit in a 70’s style creaky wooden chair with red plastic-covered cushions, put the huge cumbersome (yet comfortable) white and black headphones around my ears (and entire head it seemed), sit inches from the stereo with the big-ass headphone plug shoved into the receiver, have the Purple Rain album spinning on the turntable with lyric sheet in hand, and soak into and memorize every single word. I’m there right now. Nice! Wow do I look dorky with my braces, shaved head with teased top coif and a “tail” popular back then. THAT’S where I learned that it was OK to look different and revel in my uniqueness!

Prince, I want to thank you and tell you how grateful I am that you helped shape my formative years, giving me permission to experiment, be creative, find my own passion like you found yours, and rock da haus, yo! You inspired millions, showed us what excellence and dedication to your craft looks like, and taught us all to never ever give up. Rest in peace, genius. Find that purple banana. And of course, if the elevator tries to bring you down, go crazy and punch a higher floor! Love you, miss you, and I honor you with my whole heart. 

To your creative endeavors!
Onward and upward.

Cathy Broadwell
Giant Leaps Creative LLC