The mommy to be spoke candidly about her pregnancy and why she feels now is the right time for her to become a mother.
The extended interview and behind the scenes video is posted below. The full interview can be read on Harper’s Bazaar official website.
Bazaar: You started working towards your career at age 8. If you could go back in time and give your younger self some advice, what would it be?
Beyoncé: I would tell myself to trust myself. I am finally at the stage in my life where I am not so concerned with other people’s opinions about my life decisions. It is so liberating to really know what I want, what truly makes me happy, what I will not tolerate. When I was younger I had a hard time setting boundaries.
Bazaar: You’ve described yourself as very shy but you seem to radiate confidence. How did you earn it?
Beyoncé: I’m not as shy as I used to be. I’m a good listener and I like to observe and sometimes people think that’s being shy. I think I’m confident because I love what I do and I work very hard.
Bazaar: You have pointed to Diana Ross and Tina Turner as inspirations of yours. What about their careers would you like to emulate?
Beyoncé: They were fearless and are icons. They are great performers with amazing style and beauty. As black women they both rose above adversity and showed the world how truly strong they are.
Bazaar: You are very close with your sister, Solange. How have you avoided having sibling rivalry?
Beyoncé: I think it’s because I have always been the big sister. I am five years older than Solange and just always felt the need to love and protect her. I just never had it in me to fight with my sister. We are very different in what we like and how we do things but those differences added to our friendship.?The love I have for her is indescribable.
Bazaar: What have you learned from seeing Solange become a mother at a young age?
Beyoncé: I saw her in a very different light. Suddenly her strength was at the center of who she is. I learned patience and honesty watching her relationship with her son. She added a beautiful human being to our family. My nephew is an unbelievable child. He is smart, inventive and strong. All the things my sister is.
Bazaar: What is the best advice your mother has ever given you?
Beyoncé: She has given me so much advice but the one that stays with me the most is that beauty fades and it’s most important to be beautiful on the inside. She is generous to everyone she meets and has taught my sister and me how important it is to give.
Bazaar: Are you a fan of contemporary art? Which artists in particular and why?
Beyoncé: My mother has been an art collector and always taught me the value of art. She has encouraged me to invest in art since I can remember. The first artist I was truly inspired by was Vincent van Gogh. I was 17 and began doing my own paintings. I used to copy his style. When I was 20 I visited the Sistine chapel and saw Michelangelo’s work and it was one of the most spectacular experiences of my life. I then went on a tour around Europe and visited all the places Picasso and Matisse hung out. I then visited Art Basel and was exposed to all kind of contemporary artists. It got me into art that’s more abstract. Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring are two of my favorites but I appreciate so many contemporary artists. Art inspires me in so many ways. I use art as reference when I’m looking for inspiration for my performances, wardrobe or a video I might be working on. My husband and I collect all types of art from Basquiat and Warhol to Marilyn Minter.
Bazaar: What was it like the first time you met First Lady Michelle Obama?
Beyoncé: She is an amazing person, inside and out. She inspires me to want to do more, to want to know more about the world and work harder to make a difference.
Bazaar: You sang at President Obama’s inauguration. What was that moment like for you?
Beyoncé: To this day I am still overwhelmed by that experience. It would have been enough of an honor to go to Washington, D.C. and witness history. To have been asked to sing for their first dance was one of the biggest moments of my life. I had to keep telling myself, to snap out of it and sing. I look back at the performance and I still don’t know how I kept it together.? ?
Bazaar: Have you ever seen any of the videos of babies dancing to “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)”? What do you think about it being such a hit with the diaper set?
Beyoncé: I have seen them and they are hilarious. There’s something about that song. Maybe it’s the repetition and the simplicity of the video that get the babies’ attention. I’ve heard that babies like black and white images so maybe it’s that. Whatever it is, it goes to show that music speaks to everyone.
Bazaar: You have said you feel best when you are curvy and looking feminine. What look do you think flatters your curves best now?
Beyoncé: I like to show my waistline and legs. I feel women should find their best features and accentuate them but it’s interesting to be versatile. I let my mood dictate what I wear before my curves. Sometimes I feel classic, sometimes I feel like a hipster. Sometimes I feel like a seductress and sometimes I feel like a tomboy. It’s great to be a woman and have the freedom to express my emotions through fashion.
Watch the behind-the-scenes video from her cover shoot below.