Illustrator Shayla Hunter Brings 200 Black Females* to the Fore

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In three words, how do you define being a Black woman?

Was there ever a time you felt you had to hide something about who you are?

If you hosted a dinner with three guests of the Civil Rights Movement, who would they be?

What changes do you want to make in the world?

These are among the many, many questions that brand marketing strategist and illustrator Shayla Hunter has asked black women* over the past three years of her 100 Black Females Project—which has now reached 200 black females.

Hunter began the endeavor as a 100-day challenge at School of Visual Arts’ Masters in Branding program (on whose social media we discovered it yesterday), and never stopped.

“I created The 100 Black Females Project to grow a sense of community. Not only for myself to connect with other women of color, but for all to feel that they belong. It is to reach Black women and girls everywhere and let them know that their stories, thoughts and experiences matter. This project is about empowerment, vulnerability and sharing your true self with the world. It is a place to speak loudly, be heard and be celebrated.”

Alongside striking illustrations, her questions elicit reflections that are powerful in their resonance. Collectively, they reveal a brilliant array of perspectives.

Here are but a few of Hunter’s illustrations from the project. Check out all the profiles and stories here, and follow along on Instagram here.

*As Hunter notes, “The 100 Black Females Project stretches beyond the terms ‘female’ and ‘black.’ It is for all who express and identify themselves as a woman, girl, femme, female, trans, queen on any day or all days. The term ‘black’ reaches all of those with roots and history of the African Diaspora.”