With Black History Month coming to a close, we want to make sure that we not only celebrate the Black women that continue to show their creative prowess in society for just one month but all 365 days of the year. Here's to the women that are making history today, and paving the way for the new generation of creatives.
With the drop of A Seat At The Table back in September 2016, Solange has shown her ability to stand alone as an artist and creative, and not just Beyoncé’s little sister. Not only did she write all the songs on the record, but she took her creative vision to the next level in creating the visually spectacular music videos to Cranes In The Sky and Don’t Touch My Hair alongside her husband, Alan Ferguson. With the visuals and the sound that she has evolved into, along with her creative hub Saint Heron that celebrates diversity, innovation, and progression in music, art, & culture, it is safe to say that Solange has established herself as a creative visionary that has helped inspire a new generation of POC creatives.
2. Issa Rae
For 6 years now, Issa Rae has put her creative vision on display for the world to see, and it has been welcomed with open arms. Since the launch of her web series Awkward Black Girl on YouTube back in 2011, she has amassed over 26 million views on her YouTube channel alone and has created various other digital series. Her smart and witty writing not only caught the attention of her YouTube audience but helped get the attention of HBO to help land her first (and critically acclaimed) series Insecure that premiered last fall. With Issa’s shows on the web and on TV, along with books and podcasts galore, one can only feel inspired to continue creating like she has and make your ideas come to life.
3. Warsan Shire
Obsessed with Beyoncé’s Lemonade? Then you might have heard of the London-based Somali poet who has helped Beyoncé’s visual album hit another level of depth with poetry that hit right at the soul. Before her talent was discovered by Beyoncé, Warsan had already caught the attention of the poetry community with her groundbreaking writings of family, love, sex, heartbreak, and trauma, and even became the Young Poet Laureate of London in 2014. Today, even after the release of Lemonade, she continues to inspire women with her poetry to be strong warriors and also tap into their creative mindset and express their happiness, love, and even pain through the power of words and poetry.
4. Aurora James
One look at Aurora James’ Instagram, and you’ll be inclined to hit the follow button immediately to keep her inspirational and meticulously curated feed right on your radar. As the Creative Director for her brand, Brother Vellies, Aurora has not only expressed her creativity through her product, but she has also created in a way that has helped create jobs in Africa, while still preserving the craft of shoe making in the region. When creativity and sustainability come hand in hand, there’s no way to go wrong, and Aurora has only gone right. Not only that, the vision that she has helped create for the brand, along with the one she has created for herself personally, are some that we always come back to for reference when we need an extra dose of creative inspiration.
5. Nikisha Brunson
Nikisha Brunson is a multi-hyphenate extraordinaire. Wife, Mom, BA in Psychology, MA in Education, content creator, wellness professional, and entrepreneur – just to name a few. There is no stopping Nikisha, and her life tailored to health and wellness has inspired us take a more healthy approach to our everyday lives. Not only that, but Nikisha also saw a hole in the market for 100% natural handmade apothecary products for women of color, and she pounced on the opportunity to provide that. Fast-forward a year later, Folie is now featured on Solange’s Saint Heron shop, Nylon, Stylecaster, and Condé Nast Traveler, just to name a few. It’s safe to say that Nikisha’s ambitious energy is super contagious, and has helped inspire us to not only be our own bosses, but continue creating because life goals shouldn’t really have a defined finish line. Always continue evolving.