Model Deddeh Howard Recreates Fashion Ads Showing Lack of Diversity

Model Deddeh Howard recreates fashion ads showing lack of diversity. Liberian model Deddeh Howard has published ‘Black Mirror’, a photographic series that recreates fashion ads showing lack of diversity. In this series, Howard can be seen beautiful posing in replica ads from Vivara, Chanel, Calvin Klein, Guess and David Yurman that were previously modeled in by Gisele Bundchen, Linda Evangelista, Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and Kate Moss. Howard worked with photorapher Raffael Dickreuter and Makeup Artist Jessica Davis to complete the thought-provoking images.

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“Not to long ago it happened to me that I would walk into various fashion model agencies and I would immediately be compared to that one or two black model that they had on the roster,” Howard wrote on December 5th on her website SecretofDD.com. “Even though I was told by those agencies that I have an amazing look and wish they could represent me, they already have a black model.  Besides having an abundance of white models. It seemed as if one or two black models on the roster are enough to represent us all. When you are told that, trust me, it feels bizarre.”

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Howard continued:

“We are bombarded everyday with flashy advertisement, billboards and television ads that try to inspire us to buy the products that are hitting the market. Something that always bothered me when you see these amazing images that very rarely you ever see a black woman on them. When growing up as a girl I always wondered, why the big brands such as Gucci, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Guess and many others rarely seem to use a black model? And if they do, a very small group of black models does make the cut here and there, but that group seems to remain pretty much identical over a long period of time.

In a time where black people too often are in the media for being underrepresented at important events such as the Oscars or make headlines for being targeted by the police I felt it was time to do something positive and inspiring about my race. For too long the negativity seemed to take over in the public eye.”

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The open letter from Howard concluded with wondering why the big brands don’t embrace diversity in their advertising and do more to showcase the variations of beauty within races. She writes, “I’m personally fighting for more diversity especially more black race to be seen on billboards, movies, TV commercials, advertisements etc as much as the white race. We need a diverse amount of inspirations for all of us.”