Drawing while black isn’t just a hashtag, it’s a movement. Black illustrators are using social media platforms for visibility and carving out ways to put their messages out into the world and even start businesses ranging from comic books to apparel and accessories. Here are five of our favorite Black illustrators to follow on Instagram.
People who shop at The Children’s Place may have seen some of Miller’s gorgeously designed t-shirts featuring a diverse array of images from brown mothers with their children to ballerinas in whimsical situations and more. The illustrator and apparel designer is also well known for self-esteem building books like <em>Princess Hair</em> and <em>Don’t Touch My Hair</em>, and her book series with Academy Award-winning actress Quavenzhané Wallace, which features the adventures of best friends, Shai and Emmie.
Follow her on Instagram @CoilyandCute.
Obi Arisukuwu’s illustrations range from paying homage to celebrities to depicting comical real life scenarios starring himself, from awkward first dates to shopping with fear of a declining credit card. There are also pop culture references and more throughout his creations. Arisukuwu’s art ranges from still pictures to hilarious video strips and honestly, if you don’t laugh at his strips then you have no soul.
Follow him on Instagram @Obiaris.
Veronica Jamison creates chic watercolor-style art geared toward celebrating fashionable Black women in almost every situation imaginable. That translates to amazing and unique greeting cards. Jamison is also a children’s book illustrator. Her debut, <em>A Computer Named Katherine</em>, is available now.
Follow her on Instagram @VeronicaJamisonArt.
Lyle Omolayo is a New Jersey-based emcee and illustrator. Omolayo’s style seems to chanel graffiti but also anime (and he also cites Artemisia Lomi as a recent influence) in various images that celebrate Black women’s beauty, parody the sometimes ridiculousness of the hip-hop scene based on his experiences, and generally tell the story of moments in his life. Omolayo is currently working on an autobiographical comic book.
Follow him @LyleOmolayo.
Dana Bly is best known as “Pardon My Fro.” The North Carolina-based artist designs vibrant accessories and prints geared toward Black women and their mini me’s. Her colorful designs celebrate and encourage people to embrace their individuality. Pardon My Fro’s range includes luggage, umbrellas, shower curtains, bookbags, duffel bags, notebooks and more.
Follow her @PardonMyFro.