Black Female Creatives Promote Diversity and Representation in Wedding Editorials


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 13, 2018

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Martine Séverin

Black Female Creatives Promote Diversity and Representation in Wedding Editorials

Icelandic Photoshoot Featuring WOC in Fine Art Wedding Editorial

Reykjavík, Iceland – People of color have long been underrepresented in wedding magazines and editorials. For photographer Martine Séverin, and friends, Kpoene' Kofi Bruce and Nika Vaughan, this absence of inclusion prompted several conversations on how they could be agents of change.  With an upcoming vacation to Iceland, they decided to collaborate as an all-black team of creative women and model to flex their creative talents to address this disparity.

“We often talked about the lack of representation of black women in wedding editorials. The three of us have been in the wedding industry for at least a decade, but seldom see black faces except on wedding publications explicitly marketed to black women,” mentions Martine Séverin.

“With Kpoene’ as a designer at Mignonette Bridal, and Nika as a makeup artist and owner of Nika Vaughan Bridal Artists, we began to shape what a fine-art photoshoot that could look like.”  The trio would go on to use their craft to explore their relationship with representation, as well as their own identities as black women.

“For many, fine-art weddings connote a non-brown bride. It felt, to us, like the opportunity to explore something missing in wedding and fashion editorials. We wanted to represent beauty in new ways and to amplify the voices, faces, and work of women of color in a new setting,” states Severin. Using Iceland’s natural beauty as an inspiration for the color scheme; lichen lava fields, to its black sand beach, to its draw-dropping waterfalls, the editorial unconventionally juxtaposes a woman of color in ethereal and vibrantly colored gowns.

The full editorial can be viewed HERE.

Martine Séverin is a fashion and lifestyle photographer based in Chicago, IL. Martine grew up in Haiti before moving to the US.  She has lived all over the world including Europe. Before starting her photography studio, Martine studied and worked in the field of child development policy at Harvard University.