Check out this interview in the Guardian with the great Andre Leon Talley.
I've enjoyed his editorial missives in the pages of American Vogue and astute, loving, judging-slash-mentoring on ANTM ("it's gauche, darling").
Read about him finding his place in the fashion world:
"It didn’t occur to him to question whether he would belong in this crowd. 'I felt like I was included, because there were people I wanted to be like – eccentric, original, people who were artists, writers: Truman Capote, I so identified with him.'"
Growing up homeschooled, religious and poor in the PNW, growing up before internet and cell phones and almost never allowed to watch TV, I relied on the public library as my peephole to the secular world. I wasn't allowed to bring home fashion magazines, so I'd plant myself in Periodicals with a stack. Vogue was my favorite; I loved the fantasy and aspirational nature of the ads and the fashion spreads. The beautiful ridiculous breath-taking clothes and shoes and jewels. Of course I couldn't wear Christian Lacroix, there was no place within 100 miles that would ever remotely even carry the label, but I could look at the glossy photos, the glaring models, the airbrushed oddities, and dream.