LOS ANGELES (WTVM) - A 27-year-old medical student, model, and fashion blogger bring attention to the lack of diversity in the modeling industry in a creative and beautiful photo project.
Deddeh Howard, a Liberia-born student, blogger and model now living in Los Angeles said in a recent blog post that she's experienced the lack of diversity firsthand during auditions and casting calls.
"Not too 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. "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."
Thus, the Black Mirror project was created. With the help of her partner, photographer, and designer Raffael Dickreuter, Howard recreated advertisement campaigns that featured supermodels like Kate Moss, Gisele Bundchen, Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid in high-end fashions like Chanel, Guess, and Calvin Klein.
"With this Black Mirror project I hope to show the world that it is time for all of us being seen," Howard wrote. "Just like a Gisele Bundchen, Kate Moss or Candice Swanepoel gets to travel the world, shoot the most amazing campaigns and live an exciting life to inspire young girls, let's give the next generation something to believe in."
In another blog post, Howard said reception of the project has been warmly received.
"I definitely think the fashion industry have heard us. Let's see what they do now," Howard wrote. "It's time for a change and we're not going to stop calling them out till they make a change so let's keep fighting and spreading the word!"
Howard also said that the number of messages she's received from all types of women has been the best part.
"We are also impressed by all the emails we are getting from especially women who feel very passionate about this subject," she said via email. "It seems to have created a movement. It is beyond incredible and seems to really have tapped into an issue that is relevant."
MOBILE USERS: To view the slideshow, click here.
For more of Dickreuter's work, click here.