Tumblr For You
A guide to the best Tumblrs for lesbians.
Posted Tuesday, September 11, 2012, 03:29PM
When the blogging platform Tumblr was created, back in 2007, it encouraged people to scrapbook who they are and what they love, and introduced the notion that everyone could brand themselves as tastemakers. But for some bloggers, those who wanted to go viral for more altruistic reasons, Tumblr presented the opportunity to send a gay-positive message to the masses.
When Tumblrs with lesbian themes began to crop up, the women behind the Tumblr monikers Suicide Blonde and Bohemea began by posting lesbian-related art and photos, as well as opinions on fashion, film, television, music, and politics, then came to assume a vital role in the community—giving sage advice to readers, mostly girls and women, who needed to know that they are not alone.
The pair started their Tumblrs in 2008. Partners in life—they met on Livejournal circa 2001—they initially used the Tumblr-sphere to showcase their photo collections, as “a way to hone our aesthetic.” Through their own discoveries, they came to recognize how important it was to ignite some awareness in their followers. Today, their message is clear: “We want to show the people who look at our blogs, especially the gay and lesbian kids who are finding themselves, that the ‘gay gaze’ is unique—we appreciate beauty, struggle, and history because we are always aware of the people around us.”
Pictured: Bohemea and Suicide Blonde
Suicide Blonde and Bohemea recently took their celebration of the “gay gaze” a step further and created Pussy le Queer, a naughty-picture-only Tumblr. “Running an NSFW blog that’s completely devoid of male bodies, and with the mind-frame of accepting all different kinds of definitions of sexy, has been more successful than we could have imagined,” says Bohemea. But they will always take time to reach out to the lesbian and bisexual women who look to them for validation. “Women who are in that tender stage of just coming out are drawn to us because they see we are both women who share many of their same interests and are enthusiastically appreciative of women. It assures them that their emotions are natural and right,” she continues.
Jenna Rosenthal, the creator of Dyke, has a similar perspective when it comes to her readers, who see her Tumblr as a haven of good advice: “The main purpose of my blog is to give lesbians around the world a safe place to go to enjoy photos and have a blog they can relate to. I’ve gotten messages from people who live in small towns, feel alone, and have no sense of community. Seeing photos and reading stories about others like them brings them happiness, and that makes me feel like what I’m doing matters,” she says.
While all the women who’ve created these blogs appreciate the safe space that Tumblr creates online, they hope the messages and images they champion will have real-world impact as well, particularly in helping to strike down lesbian stereotypes.
Pictured: Katherine Fleming and Tiana Hampton of FYD
Katherine Fleming and Tiana Hampton, the co-creators of Fuck Yeah Dykes, started compiling photos of queer and androgynous women almost three years ago. “We love the diversity that we see in our submission box every day and hope that these images are of people our followers can identify with and be inspired by. Plus, who doesn’t want to see all those beautiful queers on their dashboard?” FYD has become so well-known as an eye-candy archive of famous and self-identified dykes that Fleming and Hampton now run their own online shop.
Dannielle Owens-Reid became the talk of Tumblr Town for her brainchild, Lesbians Who Look Like Justin Bieber, which takes photo submissions from lesbians who, spoiler alert, look like The Biebs. “I started it as a giggly joke, and I had no idea people would be so excited about it,” says Owens-Reid. But much of that excitement turned to controversy. “Right after I started LWLLJB, I got a bunch of negative comments. Some girls said I was stereotyping the lesbian community, or making lesbians look bad—or, in general, they were offended, because they think Tegan and Sara are way cuter than Justin Bieber and I had no right to compare the two,” she continues.
Pictured: Dannielle Owens-Reid
After she and her online counterpart, Kristin Russo, began to respond to readers, they recognized that some of those issues would be better served in an advice blog. The two created EveryoneIsGay.com, where they try to find the answers to readers’ questions through their own life experience, and deliver their pronouncements with comic relief. Their fresh, candid approach is what has made EIG go viral. It has recently become a nonprofit organization, and Owens-Reid and Russo now tour schools around the nation, educating young adults about the LGBT community. Owens-Reid finds it hard to believe that such important and rewarding work could have come from simply responding to a few negative comments: “Basically, LWLLJB changed my life.”
Many of these Tumblrs have changed the lives of the people who read them, too, especially the young girls everywhere who are looking for validation, reassurance, and most of all a place where they can keep tabs on the Tumblr-esbians who aim to take control of our culture.
6 Tumblrs to start following today!
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