I always say A Nasty Boy is a publication that examines otherness in people, society, and culture. On a more personal note, however, I believe my entire life has led up to A Nasty Boy. I remember growing up wondering if there were other people like me — people who thought and reasoned like I did. When I was about eight years old, my family did the thing most Nigerian families do, got ready to take family portraits. For the shoot, I remember I tinged my lips red, filled my brows with an eye pencil and dabbed a bit of my mother’s powder on. I thought I looked fantastic, and I really did. My parents didn’t ask me to wash it off, or maybe they did, but I remember being part of the portrait with the makeup on. The frame still sits in my parents’ living room as proof.
Back then, I wondered if other boys ran around their homes in heels and wrapped themselves in flowy skirts. I always wanted a platform that allowed people to be their truest selves. Now, unfortunately, I have lost a chunk of that boyishness, but I still wonder if I’d have turned out any differently had I not been forced to lose all those quirks while growing up.
I hope that A Nasty Boy is to many boys and girls across Nigeria and the world over, what home isn’t for them; a haven, where their otherness can thrive. I hope through us, they feel visible – and most importantly, affirmed.
Founder, A Nasty Boy