Free Flow ‘Fro: A Natural Hair Portrait Project

Images from an ongoing series of portraits that celebrate afro-textured hair in all its nuance variety, firstly through capturing a diverse British community of contemporary Black and Mixed Race actors, and then expanding to include people from all professions and walks of life in the UK.

45 sitters, of all ages, kindly gave their time to be photographed for the first shoot day in late July 2019, where I collaborated with another Make Space resident, the amazing Afro-textured hair stylist Cher Savery, and Diana Hudson, a vastly experienced MUA.

With Natural Hair Discrimination laws changing in California, writers like Afua Hirsch & Nadia Latif eloquently picking apart the way the entertainment industry has failed to understand and showcase darker skin tones and afro-textured hair and recent efforts like Project Embrace poster campaigns in this country working to “Break boundaries and change perceptions one curl at a time…” there seems to be a growing cultural impetus to celebrate, normalise, and create positive representations around afro hair.

I wanted to contribute to that positive representation by making impactful, aspirational photos, using lighting states designed to make darker skin tones look beautiful, while showing the texture and detail of afro-textured hair.