African American Apparel Advertisements are a mock series I started for young black individuals in my area and beyond. It started because I personally struggled with finding individuals who look like me and represent people who look like me when I was younger and sometimes now. I would have a cynical little game of finding how many black people I could find in a magazine or how many black actors were cast in a movie. In magazines such as Seventeen and Teen Vogue, I rarely saw black models featured or make up and hair tips that would be beneficial for those with African features. You are more likely to see models who are fairer skinned and have European features as that is the most desirable standard of beauty in current Western society. I also noticed specifically with the company American Apparel, it was very rare to see a black girl on there who resembled someone like me. Someone with dark skin and kinky hair. Someone with a wide nose and deep dark brown eyes. The more I viewed television and movies and flipped through these magazines, I realized there was a huge disproportion to healthy portrayals of people of different races. In movies we would be shown in the same limiting negative stereotypical roles. Being exposed to that kind of unhealthy representation can really affect one's self esteem. I noticed it started to affect mine. I thought it would be great to show people that black people, especially young black people can be portrayed in a positive light. I decided to to play around with American Apparel's style of advertisement collages and make my own. The point of this project was to let people represent themselves freely and not feel excluded. Whether it be by how they look, what they study, how they dress, what their hobbies are, what their religion is, what their sexuality is, what they believe in, etc. This project is about young black individuals and how THEY see themselves.