CULTURE

9 Creative Women Who Have Utilized Cannabis In Their Work

A lot of amazing women have turned to cannabis as a creative tool.
A lot of amazing women have turned to cannabis as a creative tool. / Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Cannabis and creativity have long gone hand in hand. The plant allows consumers to dig deeper and express themselves in unique ways, and this can translate into some truly amazing works of art (or problem solving).

For decades, famous women have fueled their love of cannabis into their creative work, from Maya Angelou to Louisa May Alcott. This is a true act of bravery, considering cannabis’s decades-long stigma and the fact that women haven’t always been warmly welcomed in the workplace. 

Despite the inevitable obstacles, women have forged on, sharing their experiences with the plant in a way that has a powerful effect on society. 

These nine female creatives have all found a way to work cannabis into their form of art, playing a major hand in the global destigmatization of the plant and normalizing unbridled expression for women everywhere.

1. Maya Shaw

It’s no secret that the cannabis industry has long been a boys club, and as a result, cannabis smoking accessories have always been geared toward a male audience. Think: Adult Swim-themed pipes, Cheech and Chong lighters, etc.

While this style certainly has its place in cannabis kitsch, there’s more than one way to be a cannabis consumer, and designer Maya Shaw aims for chic every time.

The artist has not left her love for cannabis to the imagination: rather than allowing the plant to inspire her love of art, Shaw funnels her creative energy into ’60s and ’70s inspired beautiful smoking accessories.

Her online smoke shop, SHAW . BK, provides consumers with the chic accessories, cannabis education pieces, and information on People of Color in cannabis. 

2. Lizzy Jeff

Known as the “Rap Priestess”, Lizzy Jeff is the industry’s “cosmic guide to higher vibrations.”

The curator of Zen & Kush, a cannabis-centric lifestyle brand that explores the elements of erotic art, culture, plant medicine, and community, Jeff is dedicated to the cultural and artistic aspects of cannabis in every way.

The curator travels the nation with her events, empowering people everywhere to fuse their love of the plant with the creativity within in order to create impactful art and experiences. 

3. Jacquie Aiche

Hailing from California, jewelry designer Jacquie Aiche looks at every piece she creates as an opportunity to empower women and honor her wild, spiritual nature.

Aiche hand selects minerals and crystals that inspire feelings of love and beauty, crafting them into covetable pieces of fine jewelry.

Minerals and crystals aren’t the only substances that inspire Aiche’s dreamy collections: the designer is a long-time cannabis advocate, and she’s been integrating plant-themed motifs into her creations for years.

While shouting about cannabis love from the rooftops is increasingly destigmatized and accepted in today’s society, Aiche was advocating for the plant before it was “in” to do so, releasing her “Sweet Leaf” collection in 2017 to spread awareness throughout the high fashion crowd. 

The designer has definitely paved the way for cannabis-inspired artistic designs, especially in the fashion world. 

4. Miley Cyrus

Another female artist who boldly claimed cannabis before it was in vogue to do so? The “Wrecking Ball” queen herself, Miley Cyrus.

Cyrus’s “wild” years were witnessed and commented on by the world, during which she pole danced at the Teen Choice Awards, twerked with a foam finger, and was even caught smoking a certain psychoactive herb in 2010. 

At the time, there was nothing more controversial than a former Disney teen star recorded with a bong in hand, but Cyrus didn’t stop there. 

Three years later, she publicized her love of cannabis in an undeniable way, lighting up on stage during the MTV Awards in the Netherlands.

Despite the backlash Cyrus received for her actions (and there was a lot), the performer paved the way for countless other women to come forward about their cannabis use, and to feel free and safe to express themselves honestly. 

5. Rihanna

Barbadian pop sensation and entrepreneur Rihanna has never been shy about expressing her love of cannabis.

From purportedly getting kicked out of a Barbadian hotel in 2010 for hotboxing the room to performing shows adorned in cannabis leaf fashion, the singer is a proud consumer and advocate and has never pretended to be otherwise.

Who can forget the notorious images of Rihanna rolling a blunt on her bodyguard’s head at Coachella in 2012, or this legendary photo of RiRi lighting up with Warren G and Snoop Dogg?

Rihanna and cannabis have gone hand in hand for several years, and while members of the “Rihanna Navy” are constantly wondering when the entrepreneur will release a new music album, those of us in the cannabis industry are patiently waiting for her long overdue strain to drop…any day now.

6. Gifted Gab

Born and raised in Seattle, Gifted Gab is one of the most influential up-and-coming rappers in the game – and you’ll rarely find the creative without a fat blunt (or two) in hand.

Christened one of Seattle’s “Most Stoned Emcees” of 2018, Gab has been as involved in the cannabis industry as she’s been in the rap game, and her dream is to come out with her own weed brand in the near future.

With experience in cannabis retail and cultivation, Gab is highly informed on the scientific side of the plant, but she’s also adept at utilizing it for creative purposes and consistently working it into her artwork.

7. Jenny Lewis

Indie rocker Jenny Lewis is one of the most recent female creatives to pursue her love of cannabis in a highly influential way, but certainly not the last.

The musician recently collaborated with cannabis cultivator Glass House Farms to create a new hybrid strain called “The Rabbit Hole,” named after one of the songs on her 2019 album, On The Line.

Although Lewis is somewhat new to cannabis entrepreneurship, the artist has been utilizing the plant for years to inspire her creatively and keep her feeling healthy and well. 

8. Yasmin Bawa

Berlin-based designer Yasmin Bawa infuses cannabis into her work in a much more tangible way, using hempcrete (a hemp-based alternative to concrete) to create beautiful plant pots and furniture.

Although hemp is an affordable and natural alternative to many design materials on the market, very few artists and designers utilize the material for creation. Bawa aims to change that, sharing her preference for hemp with anyone who will listen.

The designer was always drawn to concrete as a medium in her earlier years, but she was turned off by its toxicity, both for the environment and for herself.

It was in her search for a safer and healthier alternative that she stumbled across hempcrete.

“I had seen natural building methods, but never this,” Bawa said in an interview

“I was like: This is it. It was a light bulb. I was researching it and I couldn’t stop talking about it. Even though I hadn’t touched hemp or seen it, I knew it would work.”

9. Lesley Hampton

Fashion designer Lesley Hampton is redefining the industry in more ways than one. Her self-named Canadian-based brand is Indigenous-owned, women-led, and entirely size-inclusive – oh, and sometimes, cannabis-inspired. 

Hampton’s latest collection, a size-inclusive athleisure line ROBUST, was inspired by cannabis and the positive effects the plant has on consumers’ mental health.

The collection uses macro shots of cannabis buds as its main source of inspiration, allowing wearers to express their love for the plant in a loud and unapologetic manner.

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