In June of this year I was hired by Fantastic Sam's in Longwood to photograph hair. Stylist were competing for the 2019 ASA Style Awards (FS's national competition) and Andria Mateos and Greg Crump were working together for the Best Team category. They'd come up with a concept that involved five generations of women dressed in tribal warrior style, each with cool up-do's. Sage was Tribal Matriarch for theme and I was awestruck by her flowing silver locks. Never had I encountered a woman of her age (54) with such naturally beautiful sparkling hair. After all, society says, "dye your hair."

Sage, far left. Andria and Greg won Team of the Year with their Warrior Generations concept.

a shoot of my own

The woman and the hair remained in my mind. I was so inspired by her unapologetic rejection of a norm that dictates gray hair be colored and any signs of aging be hidden, how could I forget her? I planned then to reach out to her when I had time for a photo shoot of my own.

senior citizen with long silver hair stands for portrait

Sage standing for portrait session with Miriphoto

silver haired beauty sits for portrait

Sage sitting for portrait session with Miriphoto

Change triggered by tragedy

Joseph Coleman, Sage's father, was decades older than Darlene, her mother, when they married. He passed on at the age of 70 leaving his young daughter of 14 to grieve his loss. It was soon after that Sage's hair began to show silver strands.

Older father holds baby daughter

An elder Joe snoozes as he holds his daugther. Joe, a respected barber in his day, was bald by age 30.

Mom Darlene and Sage in happy times.

Grandma Mary, grandbaby Sage, & Grampa Lloyd. Sage would grow to resemble Mary.


I am so grateful Sage would indulge my inspired vision and plan to work with her again down the road. She's a courageous woman to step outside the routine of her life and be photographed so I may share her story with the world. Warrior, indeed, this unintentional peacock.

retro portrait of salt and pepper haired woman

A salt and pepper beauty at age 29

beautiful long silver hair with peacock feather

Silver Peacock, private session with Miriphoto

Warrior Matriarch

Warrior Matriarch, Fantastic Sam's 2019 ASA Style Awards