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Cheryl Cole (Skinhead girl Art)

My name is Cheryl Cole and I’m originally from Oakland, California, U.S.A. My interest in skinheads goes back to the early 80’s when I was very much into the second wave of ska and mod sounds. I was not a skinhead then, more of a rude girl/mod/new wavey type. I also listened to R&B and oldies, I loved Prince, I loved rap, Run DMC and all that, I don’t know how you would classify me! By the late 80’s I was obsessed with music, mainly punk, metal, glam, some Oi! ska, industrial, rap, soul, anything that was good I got into it. Most of the skinheads I would see back then were hardcore skins, which I love of course but my skinhead love affair was really with the ska end of it. During the 90’s I was very disapointed with the third wave and the new punk that was coming out so I basically spent that decade listening to the music I loved from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Just a few years back I got very involved in the traditional skinhead life and now I am happy to be a part of this amazing vibrant subculture.


I did not study art at school, I had high school art class, and I tried to take a figure drawing course at community college but I hated it so I walked out. My friends and I used to draw and paint all the time, I had friends in the 80’s who were incredible graffiti artists, painters, people who drew things with a Sharpie pen that were mind bendingly good with meticulous shading done with old pens which were half way dried out. I learned techniques from those friends, and from my love of comic books. I used to sit and draw from comic books and try to paint similar to the watercolor comic art like Havok and Wolverine and Black Orchid. my friends and I used to stay up for days on end, (if you know what I mean) and just draw until we could barely see any more! Now days I am straightedge, but I do think that those crazy days of my youth and the obsessive way I drew and drew truly shaped my style and abilities. I also learned SO much from the staff at an art store I worked at for 4 years. They were all amazing artists who had gone to school and knew so many techniques and they shared that knowledge with me and encouraged me to try oils, which I love now of course! 

 I would like to show the world through my art what a beautiful and diverse scene we have, I would love it if the name skinhead made people think immediately of Jamaican Ska, dancing and good times. Unfortunately, at least here in the USA, “normal” people tend to cringe when you say the word skinhead.  Right now I live in San Diego, California. The skinhead world here is small, but very welcoming. I am fairly new to them and for the past few years, they have all been so great, I just love each and every one of them. There are a few excellent and knowledgeable DJ’s who have skinhead reggae nights around town, and we are very close to Tijuana, which has a big group of skinheads along with good shows and dos. Also we are just a few hours from Los Angeles, they have some GREAT shows up there, and lots of people doing events with amazing DJ’s and really good people. 

 I can’t think of one particular highlight to my artistic life, but I do really enjoy giving my art to my dear friends. They get so happy and there is really no feeling like it! I have had low points, where I just don’t want to paint or draw, and sometimes these low points will last for a few years. I will try to force myself to do stuff but if you are not feeling it, it will turn out bad. I’ve noticed that good positive friends who truly encourage me help immensley. Right now I am surrounded by people who truly care for me, and want to encourage me and all I want to do is paint and draw! My dry spells usually went along with stress and depression. I am currently in the process of some big changes in my life, I plan on taking big steps to forge a positive life for myself and my family, I am making an effort every day to be a good person, be a hard worker, be an honest and loyal friend. It takes effort to be positive and truly honest as much as you can, but it is worth it as you find good things around you and good people come in to your life.

I’ve given up trying to change other people, I just change myself and be what I wish other people would be.