In her photo series entitled Black Mirror, Deddah Howard remakes a number of well-known modeling campaigns featuring famous models including Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner.
Deddeh Howard is a 27-year-old model, medical student and fashion blogger who immigrated to the Los Angeles, California area from her home country of Liberia.
Photographer boyfriend Raffael Dickreuter and Howard collaborated to re-create ad campaigns by some of the world’s biggest fashion brands — including Dolce & Gabbana and Victoria’s Secret – as “a call for more diversity” in the industry. Howard told BuzzFeed News: “I thought it was perfect because we are mirroring two images. When you [black women] look in the mirror you question: ‘This could be me, why is this not me?”
Howard said the series was inspired by the difficulty she faced as an African American model: “Agencies would often tell me, ‘We like your look but there’s a black girl already’. It shouldn’t be limited to just one black girl; there can be more than one!” She added: “It’s as if they [agencies] are ashamed to represent diversity. It’s very painful and it made me feel insecure and bad of myself.”
Howard intends for her project, Black Mirror, to send a message that models of color are just as beautiful as anyone else, and should be more than simply the fulfillment of a diversity quota.