These Photos of Redheads of Color Are Positively Mesmerizing

When you think of a redhead, the image of a pale-skinned, freckle-faced beauty may come to mind — maybe she looks like Julianne Moore. But while that's the most common perception, it's not a completely accurate one. Photographer Michelle Marshall is seeking to flip the notion on its head with her photography project MC1R.

MC1R is the recessive gene responsible for red hair. When both parents carry it and the gene's receptor is mutated or fails to activate, the result is a red-haired child. BBC News reports there are approximately 70 to 140 million people in the world with this mutation, and it is considered a widely European (specifically Celtic — after all, look at the movie Brave) trait.

However, the true history of the gene is uncertain and can be found in people of many ethnic backgrounds, which is why Marshall is documenting as many Afro-Caribbean redheads that she can find. "I want to stir the perception that most of us have of a redhead as a white Caucasian individual potentially of Celtic descent," she told VSCO. "I am not sure that being 'ginger' still only means being Scottish, Irish, Welsh, or even being white."

In the future, Marshall hopes to host an exhibition that draws the attention of geneticists so that she can pair a deeper analysis of the science behind the MC1R gene with her photographs. Take a look at the stunning images — we guarantee that they'll change your perception of "the classic redhead."