Designing the new collection is not only about creative expression but trying to use this platform to represent women ~ women of colour.
The original images come from American Vogue, which I buy in September as it’s their major release for the up and coming seasons. The magazine is more like a book, full of advertisements by brands showcasing their latest products.
What has always struck me is the lack of diversity of women of colour in this publication, to be fair this is not the only one. Even though it is seemingly high on everyone’s agenda, there is still a clear lack of representation. It is improving but slowly.
Flicking through the pages made me reflect on my own childhood and that of my mum and Aunty, who are both mixed race. They were adopted so any cultural alignment was severed so the only sources they could potentially align with were role models within the mass media. Sadly this was not the case. And made me think where are the role models now? Where can women of colour look? Where can they see someone similar in film, in magazines or on tv?
Now I am under no illusion, I know I am not able to change the world on this front. I am a solo person hoping to use my creativity to shed some light on this issue.
I hope my drawings and digital illustrations, that are printed onto t-shirts, allow this message to be communicated on the streets, creating a concrete catwalk if you like and not only held within the confines of a gallery. So the visual narrative is out there for everyone to see and support the visibility of women of colour.