Photo essay by Jahnae Miles

Black people’s crowns are so versatile. I challenged myself to take portraits of different people with their natural hair among their natural environments. I asked each person two questions;

1) What do you love most about your hair?


2) How does your hair make you feel?

Their answers had a common theme, powerful and confident!

This was a very fun project. I struggled with finding people that were local to me and willing to get covid tested for the shoot. I think I did well in capturing beautiful photos of beautiful people. None of them are models so I also feel I did well in getting them to trust me and my camera, which was a great learning experience. Originally, I really wanted to create a unique detailed set with different props for each person. As I realized that was too complicated
for the amount of time and people I had, I figured natural environments would be captivating and more productive for everyone. I also wanted to capture more intimate close-ups, since I submitted wide shots for most of the semester. Lastly, thank ou Casey for inspiring me to go In this direction with the project, it felt awesome capturing a story I’m passionate about!

About the author:

My name is Jahnae Miles, I’m from Long Beach, California and currently a student at Cal State Eastbay in Hayward, CA. My passion is to use filmmaking and photography as a tool for my political activism through true storytelling. You can find more of my work @uPowerProductions on Instagram! 

This photo essay was originally published on The Pioneer, CSUEB’s student-run newspaper.


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