Category Archives: Art & Design

06May/16
Blaise Djilo

Cameroonian Photographer Blaise Djilo is Capturing the Real Africa

bl9Blaise Djilo is a Cameroonian photographer who is capturing the true essence of Africa for us all to enjoy. Bask in both the beauty of traditional Africa and how Djilo captures it. Our stories, told and shared by us, are important for the preservation of our history and culture.
Blaise Djilo Blaise Djilo

On March 5, 2016, Cameroon celebrated The Matakam festival held in the Alliance Franco Camerounaise Office in Garoua (Northern Cameroon). This celebration is held only once per year. These people live in the Mayo Tsanaga Division (the far north Cameroonian region). During this festive ceremony, the local tribes can be found eating and dancing all to commemorate their ancestors spirits.

“DITSUMA” means “JOY” in the MAFA language. It is one of the main tribes of the MAYO TSANAGA division, in the far northern regions along the Nigerian boundary of ADAMAWA State. Tsanaga division is a rocky, mountainous region and is mainly a rural area were people essentially live a life of agriculture. The main city of this division is MOKOLO but there are seven other subdivisions (Bourrha, Hina, Koza, Mogodé, Mokolo, Mayo-Moskota (Mozogo), and Soulédé-Roua). This part of Nigeria is crowded with more than 570,00 habitants and the area has a density of 131 habitants/km2.  Interestingly there are also thirteen diverse ethnic groups (Mafa, Moufou, Mofouélé, Hidé, Kapsiki, Minéo, Zoulgo, Bana, Kola, Guiziga, Baytsawara, Roua, and Fulbes) as well. These African communities are hard-working and the region is generally viewed as a very poor area. 
 
During harvesting season and the dry season, these African tribes traditionally hold annual ceremonies to celebrate prosperity of the villages. It’s also an opportunity for young people to learn their initiation rights and also to marry. During such seasons, some tribes also use the opportunity to give gifts to their ancestors by performing a dance which is concluded by killing a cow, which has been fattened in a dark room during two to three years in a narrow place. This practice is called Maraye. The initiation rights dance is called “ZOVOD” (“UNDER THE SHINING MOON”). During this particular ceremony each young person wears or handles something to show his skill (a skirt made of goat fur for a hunter, or a grass skirt for a farmer). During the dance of Maraye, the local villagers always wear traditional clothes, and use special sticks to see if the cow (which will be killed) will react in a good way.
23Apr/16
624713ART

624713ART is Producing Beautiful Artwork for Everyone

624713ART624713ART is a collective that consists of two intellectual thinkers who sometimes collaborate with friends, family, and collectors with the intention of producing a multitude of beautiful artwork for everyone and anyone to own. They are based in Brooklyn, where it all started, with a group of about six artists who all continue to make art under their respective company names. Husband and wife duo, Carlesto & Jenevieve, met 19 years ago via skateboarding. They both like to shoot photography, skateboard, sightsee and live in love and peace. Jenevieve studied at Cooper Union and Carlesto studied at F.I.T. Their work is a mix between our original photography, decoupage and collage, skateboarding and life. Their website encompasses their accomplishments and ideas that they have brought to life with positive thought and hard work. To fill your place and your heart with their art, contact 624713ART here!

624713ART  624713ART

624713ART

03Apr/16
rising stars

Black Beauty: Today’s Rising Stars

Rising Stars

These photos were based on up and coming/rising stars in the African American community, focusing on the youth of today and getting a glimpse of what they are capable of, in the future, if not today… they are already amazing!
Model: Jayhawk St. James
Wardrobe Styling, Hair, and Makeup: Jayhawk
Photography & Retouching: Gabriel Garcia
Rising Stars
Every so often, there comes one who embodies the likes of past legends and yet, is light years ahead of anything current. Those are the Muses, one whom life chooses. We as onlookers can only sit back and allow them to flourish, all the while taking it all in and be entertained, inspired and love through it all and only wish to become like they are, now.
Model: Sasha Plastyc
Make-up and photography: Gabriel Garcia for,  Bio IMAGERY
13Mar/16
WinC Con 2016

WinC Con 2016 is Changing the Comic Game!

WinC Con 2016

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

WinC Con 2016 (Women in Comics Convention) was a great success again this year! With nearly 1000 attendees, dozens of vendors, and lots of panels and workshops, the Bronx Library Center was constantly buzzing! From gorgeous color poster  illustrations to fun on-the-spot doodles, the vendors filled the main floor with an art lovers eye candy, while panels and workshops discussed the real and raw of the comic business. On top of all of this dopeness, admission was free to the public, welcoming all to come and feast.

We enjoyed the Women in Comic Cosplay Showcase that discussed the powerful role of women in cosplay, specifically women of color. They came dressed as characters from Star Trek to Super Girl, modeled, posed, and explained what goes into making their costumes and why they choose the characters they choose. It’s important to notate that race should never matter. They made it clear that they didn’t have to be Black Super Girl or Black Black Canary, just the character as they are since they are embodying the character’s spirit. There is also no need to over sexualize their cosplay and harassment of any sort is not tolerated. They have fun but stand strong.

 

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

The organization that put on the showcase, The NY Cosplayer Network, Inc., also does a lot of charity work with shelters and military bases. They show up fully dressed to cheer up children and brighten their day. They collect books and hand them out and chat up the kids about their favorite characters. They even do events and birthday parties so people knowledgeable about the characters can interact with the kids instead of regularly overpriced agency finds who aren’t as invested.

Cosplay, or Costume Play, refers specifically to dressing up as a character but there is also costuming which is creating your own costume/character to bring to life. We’d love to see more of this happen with Black cosplayers. It’s good to break the mold, but it’s even better to create your own!

Check below for more images from the event and be sure to Like their page on Facebook at Women in Comics NYC Collective International!
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016  WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016

   WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016

18Jan/16
Tuskegee Heirs

Tuskegee Heirs: Flames of Destiny

Tuskegee Heirs, a futuristic sci-fi adventure from the minds of illustrator Marcus Williams (Hero Cats, Super Natural and D.M.C) and children’s book author Greg Burnham (Broken Glass and Grandpa’s Shoes), follows a small squad of young gifted aviators who are forced to become earth’s last line of defense against a menacing race of artificially intelligent villains bent on destroying civilization. Marcus and Greg look to pay homage to the historic Tuskegee Airmen, while bringing forth a new set of character rich young heroes. With a graphic novel set to release mid 2016, Marcus and Greg intend to push this project towards animation. Following in the Japanese animation genre’s age old practice of dropping unusually talented youths inside the cockpits of enormously powerful machines, the amazing pilots of this series will be no exception.

Tuskegee Heirs

Tuskegee Heirs, Earth’s last line of defense…

The Tuskegee Heirs will be set 80 years in the future where a world sculpted by rapid progressing technology will come to ban human pilots from operating aircraft and go as far as to criminalize the act of even training pilots. Our young pilots, however, have found a secret training facility and refuge in the historical airfield once used by the fabled WWII War Heroes, the Tuskegee Airmen.  Under the careful guidance of Col. Mars, a long retired veteran pilot, the team of young hopefuls are trained and educated about the strong ethics that made the classic airmen the formidable unit that they were. Not long into their training, a mysterious military force composed of highly advanced self-aware war machines fixated on destroying civilization as they know it, declares war on all societies. Suddenly the teens are thrust into the middle of a war for humanities’ right to exist. They will have to use their training as pilots, knowledge of history, and unique skill sets to defeat this fearsome enemy.

We appreciate the historical focus of Black legends being beautifully developed in a creative and educational environment. Currently in it’s Kickstarter phase, the series has already blown through it’s pledged goal of $10K and 2 stretch goals of $15K and $25K in just 4 days. Their other goals include development of Tuskegee Heirs T-Shirt line for Men, Women and Children, a family geared board game and sweet mobile game app, a full figurine lineup of all the Tuskegee Heirs Characters including the Jet and Mech, and a prototype toy of one of the characters and jets. Be apart of history in the making by becoming a backer of the project at www.kickstarter.com/projects/2120208298/tuskegee-heirso to achieve their ultimate stretch goal. $75K and UP will launch an ANIMATED PILOT (Short piece) to be enjoyed on monitors big and small. For gems and eye candy, follow their facebook page at www.facebook.com/tuskegeeheirs.

Tuskegee Heirs

 

Anais1

Anais Sierra | Artist, Painter, Crafter | Single mother, Lupus and RA warrior who defeats her everyday struggles. She puts everything into her crafts to share with the world and hopefully people will love it as much as he does. | Astoria, NY | IG: @_anaisart

Anais2

Anais3

Anais4

Anais0

08Aug/15

Black Owned Business: My Kinda Thing ~ Custom Crochet Dolls

My Kinda Thing owner, Aniqua Wilkerson, is a crochet artist specializing in creating unique custom crochet dolls – particularly Brown Girls. Her objective is to create realistic depictions of our beautifully brown children in efforts to promote pride and confidence.

Find her on Instagram and Twitter @my_kinda_thing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/mykindathing.

Visit her etsy shop for some already made styles, but most orders are custom made! www.etsy.com/shop/MyKindaThing

20150522_134948   20150515_135017   20150602_124658

 

UCMW

“50 Shades of Black” – Showcasing the art and fashion of Minnesota and the Midwest | Photographer: Jordan Vogt | Creative Team: Upperclassmen, IG: @ucmlife | Model: David Maxwell, IG: @drmaxwelljrwww.ucmlife.com