“AFRO” EMOJIS ? |EMOJIs – the lack of representation PART 2|

Written on December 20, 2017

FEELING SOME TYPE OF WAY ………………..

I wrote about the lack of representation through the absence of emojis with Afro hair in mid November 2017 for an upcoming project separate from my blog. (It was only posted here today).

Previews of the 2018 emojis have been released recently and ‘Afro’ emojis are part of it. Clearly somebody heard me/us, but they also did NOT hear me/us. 

What classifies hair into an AFRO? In my opinion, the hair’s ability to defy gravity and stand freely in the air, whether curly or very coily etc is what turns hair from normal into an afro. These emojis are a joke! To me, this does not look like afro hair but simply short caucasian-looking curly hair.

DO THESE SOFTWARE DEVELOPERS AND EMOJI CREATORS NEED BETTER ILLUSTRATORS TO ASSIST THEM ?

Black hair is so versatile and Afros are all about texture! If they did not know what to do, they could have included a variety. This pattern of society is deliberate. It seems that this world is all about shitting on black people. 

& YET, I STILL BELONG!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I collaborated with an extremely talented illustrator by the name ‘Phathu Designs’. I simply gave her an idea of what type of illustration I wanted and she made it come to life in to time! She created the illustration above (& below) specifically for me, for this article. See more of Phathu Designs and connect with her on the following media links:

http://www.phathudesigns.co.za/

https://www.instagram.com/phathudesigns/

https://twitter.com/Phathudesigns

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EMOJIs – the lack of representation |PART 1|

*Written on November 17, 2017*

I collaborated with an extremely talented illustrator by the name ‘Phathu Designs’. I simply gave her an idea of what type of illustration I wanted and she made it come to life in to time! She created the illustration above (& below) specifically for me, for this article. See more of Phathu Designs and connect with her on the following media links:

http://www.phathudesigns.co.za/

https://www.instagram.com/phathudesigns/

https://twitter.com/Phathudesigns

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“…and do you belong?” – “I DO.” That must be my most favourite lyric of 2016, sang by Solange Knowles in her song ‘Weary’

I do belong in the world and I am going to use my voice to provoke this. When I hear the word ‘emoji’, I think of a cool, fun & humorous way of expression. A few years ago, that is pretty much all I thought when it comes to emojis. Today’s emojis still encompass that along with the acknowledgment of diversity in races. I really like the fact that emojis vary in skin color shades & can go super dark, but I do have a concern. If skin color can be taken into account, it must be just as simple to include emojis with afros. NOT EVERYBODY HAS NATURALLY STRAIGHT HAIR! All the emojis (girls and boys) have straight hair. This sends out constant subliminal messages to the subconcious. I remember back when I was a child I loved playing with Barbie dolls, but at that time, one could only get white Barbie dolls since black Barbie dolls weren’t introduced yet. I remember always wishing I had naturally straight, long hair; I always anticipated the next time I would have relaxer put on my hair. As a kid, I also always wished I had a white best friend. If this is what my mindset was like in the 2000’s, what is the mindset of the youth today? The world is moving at a very fast pace with social media etc. I believe the social pressure of today is much worse than what was in the 2000’s, therefore, sending out subliminal messages like “you do not belong” is quite dangerous to the minds of today. What makes it worse is that it all goes to the unconscious mind, without any awareness of the message that is being absorbed. There is no real awareness until one actually has the interest of asking questions such as “why”. Not many people have even picked up on what these phone softwares and developers are promoting through emojis, which we use EVERYDAY! That is the level of unconsciousness that it is at. Although there is the skin color preference option, it is not enough! None of the emojis even have hijabs! It is 2017. BTW, I am also extremely tired of hearing “first African American/black person/woman to…” Tired.

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will VOGUE finally care about EBONY issues?

Left photo: edward_enninful/twitter | Right photo: photo: @randomandchic/Instagram

2 words: Edward Enninful, 1 hashtag: #NEWVOGUE

Vogue magazine has always sparked racial controversy and it is for good reason. British Vogue is 101 years old, yet there have been less than 5 black models to ever grace its front cover (in solo form). Naomi Campbell (named British Vogue’s contributing editor 2017) and Jourdan Dunn are among the models to have graced the cover. It is no wonder statements like “Vogue doesn’t care about Ebony issues” have been expressed. If Vogue does not really use black models on its cover, the magazine clearly does not care about how this would affect the black community all over the world and black aspiring models all over. More people of colour should be hired behind the scenes, so that we may all have a voice. Naomi Campbell posted an image of the British Vogue staff of 2017, what is seen is quite disturbing.

Picture:  screenshot of vogue

                             

The entire previous staff was white as seen on the picture. This clearly shows why the magazine has been run this way for all these years, there has been no voice for people who are not white. How cool would it be if every company had to undergo a diversity test? I mean, it would be sad that it would have to come to that but I mean…. It is 2017 and this is still happening in so many workplaces! Thankfully for British Vogue lovers and readers, Edward Enninful has come to the long-awaited rescue!

Mixed-race Ghanaian model and activist, Adwoa Aboah (also contributing editor to the magazine) is the cover girl for the November issue, which is the first magazine edition that Eninnful has released as new Editor-In-Chief. We can clearly see that Enninful is not here to play any games! Edward has stated that his goal is to bring inclusion and diversity to the international magazine. Enninful does not only want to represent a community or a portion of the world but seeks to represent THE WORLD, as it should be. It seems #NEWVOGUE will finally care about EBONY issues.  This is what happens when diversity is included as STAFF, #NEWVOGUE is trending all over the world, it is probably the most talked about British Vogue edition ever, the previous Editor-In-Chief could learn something here… Diversity & inclusion brings readers from all over.

 

 

Windhoek Fashion Week 2017 – FEEDING you with affordable aesthetics

Windhoek Fashion Week / #WFW2017 happened on 1-4 November 2017 and I attended the finale/day 4. I was not present as a blogger or model, just as a spectator. Talented photographers took beautiful pictures of me and I thought I would share them, along with what I wore. I decided to attend last minute [literally only about 4 hours prior to the shows], therefore I did not wear any ‘desinaaaa’, instead, I wore clothes that I already had in my closet. Side note: IT IS NOT DIFFICULT TO LOOK FLY ON A BUDGET! Many people stress themselves by having the mindset of “If I’m not wearing a designer, I’m not attending.” Well, I wore what I had, attended, had a blast, received many compliments and got STUNNING photographs from it.

Outfit details from head to toe:

Black choker – Mr. P | Black bandeau – China store | Black bomber jacket – Identity . The ‘Windhoek’ patch was sewed on | Pastel purple leather pencil skirt – Legit Fashion | Black plain court heel – Legit Fashion | Pastel purple sling handbag – Foschini.

Styling & Make-Up – Lorna Mabuku

My beautiful yellow eyeshadow is from MUD cosmetics. Available from MUD Namibia distributor, Viver Fragranciamu make-up consultants: ViverFragranciaInstagram / ViverFragranciamuFacebook , see previous blog post for more info.

A ‘2 events in 1’ YouTube VLOG is coming up on WFW + a Halloween party I helped plan & attended at Chopsi’s Bar right after fashion week. Stay tuned. In the meantime, head over to my channel: YouTubeChannel 

Below are some of the photographs taken of me at #WFW2017 with all photographers’ credited, along with links to their pages respectively.

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Photo: Kevin Perestrelo | KevinInstagram
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Photo: Kevin Perestrelo | KevinInstagram
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Photo: Kevin Perestrelo | KevinInstagram
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Photo: Blesser Malcah TV | BlesserMalcahtvYouTubeChannel
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Photo: Blesser Malcah TV | BlesserMalcahtvYouTubeChannel
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Photo: Martin Amushendje | MartinInstagram
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Photo: Blxckfyre | JacobInstagram
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Photo: Blxckfyre | JacobInstagram
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Photo: Vaultz | VaultzWebsite
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Photo: Vaultz | VaultzWebsite
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Photo: Blxckfyre | JacobInstagram

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MUD COSMETICS NAMIBIA LAUNCH & REVIEW

MUD PRODUCTS REVIEW

I have had the pleasure of working with MUD cosmetics’ Namibia distributor and make-up artist, Marilie Vermeulen (@viverfragrancia of instagram) on several occasions.
She did my make-up on 2 separate photoshoots. Through my exposure to MUD, I have genuinely come to adore the products. Why? – MUD make-up feels light (not heavy or harsh) on my skin. I also love that the products are very pigmented, meaning that you do not have to use so much product at once (like the eyeshadow and blush). I use the yellow eyeshadow like everyday! NO LIE!!!! I literally wore it everyday for a week straight when I would go out during the evening. It looks SO pretty on my skin tone. pictures inserted:

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The work I did with Viver Fragranciamu (make-up artist) using MUD make-up are as follows:

  1. July 2017 – COLLABORATIVE BRIDAL PHOTOSHOOT: Marilie of Viver Fragrancia Make-Up Consultants did my make-up for a bridal collaboration shoot (various businesses/brands involved with the aims of tapping into each other’s social media following as a marketing tool.) 2 models were used; Myself and Lizelle.

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All brands of Collaborative shoot involved:

Make-Up: Viver Fragrância Make-Up Consultants
Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/viverfragranciamu/


 

Model: Lorna Mabuku
Facebook: https://facebook.com/lornamabuku/



Model: Lizelle Esterhuizen
Photographer: NaschéD Photography 
Photographer: Lourika Reinders Photography 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LourikaReindersPhotography/


Make-Up: Viver Fragrância Make-Up Consultants 
Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/viverfragranciamu/


 

Spray Tan: Wonderlab & Bronze Bodiez
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BronzeBodiezNam/


 

Floral Design: Kaapse Tafel Your preferred florist 
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kaapsetafel


 

Pictures of the anti-animal cruelty shoot along with a handbag shoot:

#MUDDNAMIBIA : THE LAUNCH

The launch of MUD Namibia happened on the 15th September at the Inspiration Tables which is a fun day of exploring different brands/stalls. MUD Namibia/Marilie Vermeulen had a fashion show showcasing avant-garde fashion along with Namibian design garments. I was 1 of the models who walked the runway for this. Our day started at about 6AM for makeup and the show started at around 9.30AM. The show was good, I had a lot of fun backstage/behind the scenes as I always do with fellow models. We also had photoshoots with about 3 different photographers after the fashion show. It was also pretty cool that in each guests’ goodie bag, there came a booklet of information regarding MUD and biographies of all models & make-up artists involved. The cover of the booklet was a picture of myself :), it is also quite exciting everytime I go to Viver Fragranciamu make-up consultants’ office (situated in Maerua Mall – Next to Spar) as my face is enlarged on a banner. These pictures were taken through my previous work with Viver Fragrancia make-up consultant, Marilie Vermeulen. Make-up was MUD.

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x, L.

#NHBE2017

So the 3rd annual Natural Hair and Beauty Expo happened on the 9th September 2017. I attended for the first time ever and not merely as a spectator but I was honoured to be present as 1. Blogger – fashion and personal style and 2. One of the speakers in the panel discussion on the topic ‘Beauty from Within’. You can find the video of a part of my input in the ‘Beauty from Within’ panel discussion on the following link: LornaBeautyFromWithinVideo

We were asked the question “What advice would you give to young men and women on confidence?” My answer was – BE YOURSELF is the message I carry and pass on. I don’t know how to be ‘confident’. All I know is to be me. All I know is to simply BE. No long stories. Confidence is simply a mirror perception on how YOU view YOURSELF. It has nothing to do with other people | NOTE: You cannot love yourself if you do not know yourself. Therefore, LEARN. SEEK. SEEK TO KNOW YOU. Many people do not like learning about others, about life. They do not ask questions. They do not realize that learning about others teaches one fundamental knowledge on self. [I learn more about myself each day, especially through observing others, listening to others and asking questions] LEARN! Embark on a journey of self discovery. Self-discovery & acceptance are the prerequisites to confidence/self-love. 

The #NHBE2017 (official hashtag) was amazing and I feel that events like these are so vital in our society. Learning is so important to me. I learned quite a bit about myself and about my natural hair/how to care for it. It was literally natural hair products, skin care products, beauty products and funky clothes EVERYWHERRE! It was so cool. I met so many new people along with people from social media. 

Below are pictures I took of my FAVOURITE looks along with some of the media publications of the event and pretty pictures taken of me. I would like to say a BIG thank you to Zodidi (one of the founders and organizers) for having me on board for this, and to the #NHBE#NHBE2017 #NHBENAMIBIA . I enjoyed myself!

Enjoy.

x, L

 

FED.

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Okay. It is evidently no secret that i have been M.I.A for a bit although i have been creating constantly – taking pictures and videos of events which i would like to post. I have had a lack of inspiration i guess, even though I have been documenting. I am so glad that i am not the type of person that FEEDs largely off society and the expectations of others. I just do so much all at the same time and it does get overwhelming even for me. I took a break. I’m back. I would like to be more consistent with my posts from now on. 

I am back and I am BETTER. After a few months of slacking, I feel refreshed, FED and ready to continue what I have started.

Btw, while I was offline, I created my logo BY MYSELF (see, I do A LOT – now a graphic designer? *hahahah*)  The logo is basically me as a brand – LORNA MABUKU – Picture on the top left

x, L 

 

 

 

Red Bull AMAPHIKO – “A platform created for social entrepreneurs”

“Red Bull Amaphiko’s mission is to give wings to pioneers who are using their talents, creativity and energy to solve problems and make a difference”

Amaphiko (Zulu) : Wings.

I am writing this post because:

  1. Many people do not know what social entrepreneurship is (I didn’t either.)
  2. Some people are social entrepreneurs and are seeking help to develop and take it further but do not know of opportunities like Red Bull Amaphiko.

Last Saturday morning I had the privilege of attending the Red Bull Amaphiko social entrepreneurship talk which was hosted at Chopsi’s Bar (Windhoek). It was an amazing, open, conversation about social entrepreneurship and ways in which to join the movement. The set up was super cool and laid back. The morning started off with the invited speaker, Thokoza Mjo (from South Africa) introducing herself and sharing her story on how she became a social entrepreneur with her brand ‘Beyond the Lemonade Stand’ which is her aid in creating access to the market for teen led enterprises. Thokoza’s clear passion is to train the African youth to be economically active. She showed us a slideshow of all the students/youth she has been mentoring. All of them have created innovative ways to generate an income. Some of the youth are only 15 years old!!! WOW.

Pictures from the event:

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What is a social entrepreneur?

Thokoza is a social entrepreneur. I won’t lie, when I heard this term, I was like “a whaaaaa?” She later went on to explain what it is. From what I understood, a social entrepreneur is someone who plans to or owns a business(es) in which the primary objective is to make money ofcourse, but also one which aims at creating sustainability within the community. The point of social entrepreneurship is not to keep all the knowledge to oneself and capitalize on it, but to teach others so that they too may start their own businesses and so forth; It creates and maintains sustainability.

Why social entrepreneurship?

Social entrepreneurship will probably not make you fast money but it will generate money over time and it will help with poverty reduction through the opportunity you will be giving to people in need.

Red Bull Amaphiko academy aims at:

  • Assisting social entrepreneurs who feel the urge and are making positive differences in their communities
  • Providing inspiration, mentorship and practical skills & tools which are needed to heighten social entrepreneurs and the projects they lead
  • Lastly, to be able to network and communicate with leading innovators, businesswomen/men and storytellers across the world.

For more info, head to https://amaphiko.redbull.com/en

OH AND BY THE WAAAAYYY, Red Bull Namibia is finally on Instagram!! Whooooppp!! @redbullnam go folloooowww 🙂

 

Linking misogyNOIR to fashion

INCLUSION x DIVERSITY

“As women of color, we know fashion items colored as “nude” don’t actually match our skin.”

“In runways to magazine covers, fashion still lags in representing a range of races and ethnicities. There are various reasons why, but one recurring argument is that there aren’t enough people of color being hired behind the scenes, where decisions are made.”

Point of reference: Louboutin’s Solasofia pointed ballet flats

Author, Krissy Turner (April 2016) – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/fashion/news/why-christian-louboutins-nude-shoe-line-is-revolutionary-for-bla/

News of a nude shoe line shouldn’t be controversial, but as the shoes are available in a spectrum of creams, coffees and caramel shades, for women of colour this Solasofia shoe launch is revolutionary.

From shoes to underwear and lipsticks, ‘nude’ has always essentially meant beige or cream, and eliminated my skin tone and millions of others completely. Even a Google search of the word defines it as a ‘pinkish-beige colour.’

‘Nude is not a colour, it’s a concept,’ designer Christian Louboutin said when describing his nude collection. And he’s right. If ‘nude’ is supposed to look natural and fit your complexion perfectly, with underwear merging to look flawless under sheer tops, and shoes which should ‘disappear like magic and become a fluid extension of the legs’ as Louboutin says his new Solasofia pumps do, then why are so many skin tones traditionally left out?

Other brands have also realized that the term ‘nude’ is misleading. A quick search online shows that many other brands including Wonderbra, Undiz and Next, are now calling their previous ‘nude’ shades names like ‘skin’ and ‘neutral,’ but whilst Next now offers ‘chocolate’ and ‘mocha’ which are darker shades of shapewear, most of the other brands remain woefully white. 


Marc Bain – https://qz.com/651734/christian-louboutin-is-making-nude-shoes-to-match-every-skin-tone/

Louboutin explained his decision to expand the nude range in a blog post last year. “I’ve always done a Nude shoe but only using the color beige,” he said. It wasn’t until a team member bluntly stated “beige is not the colour of my skin that he recognized “nude” should be a concept rather than a single shade.

One person took to social media by writing “Louboutin – you guys are the best and the only luxury brand that does this. They may ‘only’ be shoes but you’re making a difference by designing and retailing inclusiveness and diversity.


Lorna Mabuku’s thoughts

Yet again, the hatred of black women is evident; black women are always excluded, and it never seems to matter. *sigh* misogyNOIR

x, L

misogyNOIR vs. AFRIKA-misogyny

In order to understand misogynoir, one must first understand the term ‘misogyny’

Disclaimer! The excerpts below are not the words of the author. Go to ‘Lorna Mabuku’s thoughts’ to see my review and thoughts on the topic.

Misogyny (dictionary.com) hatred, dislike, or mistrust of women, or prejudice against women.

Misogynoir (contributors: Eliza Anyangwe – theguardian.com, urbandictionary.com)

The term is a combination of the English word ‘misogyny’ and French word ‘noir’ (meaning black).

“London nightclub Dstrkt was accused of turning away two young black women for being ‘too fat’ and ‘too dark’, prompting a swift, strident response on social media. The club was quick to deny the allegations and the council equally quick to express its concern. News outlets went into overdrive, to find “voices” to give the incident context. DJ Edward Adoo discussed the pervasive racism of London’s nightclubs as a matter of fact… What is alleged to have happened at Dstrkt isn’t just about race; the accused promoter is black. It’s about gender too. Discrimination, prejudice and unchecked fear aimed specifically at black women now has a name: misogynoir.”

The term was coined in 2010 by gay black feminist American academic Moya Bailey, who defined it “to describe the particular brand of hatred directed at black women in American visual and popular culture”. Since then black women – and some men – predominantly on social media, have taken ownership of the term, using it to describe prejudice experienced in a range of contexts.

“Misogynoir provides a racialised nuance that mainstream feminism wasn’t catching,” says black feminist commentator, Feminista Jones. “We are talking about misogyny, yes, but there is a specific misogyny that is aimed at black women and is uniquely detrimental to black women.” She says it is both about racial and gender hatred and can be perpetuated by non-black people and by black men – it is the latter, Jones says, she experienced the most often.

Activists argue that the prejudice against black women is ignored by mainstream feminism. This is why misogyNOIR exists!!

Person #1: Black women are ugly! No wonder black guys never date them!
Person #2: Now I see the misogynoir……


Lorna Mabuku’s thoughts

Misogynoir has always existed and continues to exists in the entire world. I have indeed seen and experienced misogynoir in Namibia and South Africa countless times. I will share 1 encounter with you:

My friend and I were in long street (Cape Town) one evening looking for a place to hang out. We came across the famous African club called “Chez Ntemba” so we walked to the entrance. The bouncer asked us if we got free entry tickets around the corner as there was a black man giving away free tickets for entry into Chez Ntemba. We actually saw the man minutes before, not knowing what he was handing out. He had also seen us as we walked right past him but he did not give us any tickets. As we were talking to the bouncer explaining that the man did not give us tickets, the bouncer said that we should go back to the man and receive our free tickets since the ‘free entry’ passes were about to expire. As we were about to leave the subject and proceed to pay for entry, a young white man behind us in the queue overheard our conversation and in a heated tone, asked “why didn’t he give you tickets. That’s not fair! He gave my friend and i free tickets and we came after you. Come with me, let’s go talk to him. He cannot do that.” So we went with this guy to the (black) man giving the tickets. YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT THE MAN TOLD US after we asked him why we did not get tickets. He had the nerve to say “The remaining tickets are for foreigners only” foreigners AKA WHITE. We were in shock that he would say that. That statement angered the young white man we were with even more! He wasn’t entertaining this talk and told the man to give us tickets. The man actually gave them to us!

It was such a shocking experience because, it was not about getting free entry, but more importantly about principle. The man was also black but yet he discriminated against us. It was quite amazing how a stranger saw the injustice and helped the situation even though he did not have to. (Actually, yes. He did have to! When you see an injustice, please do speak on it and help. Never turn a blind eye. Help where you can.)

My question now is, if that young man that helped us was not white, were we still going to get tickets or no? Probably not. MisogyNOIR!!!

I also always wonder how a black guy can say things like “I don’t date black girls” and then have the audacity to back up this stupid statement by saying “it’s just my preference.” MisogyNOIR!!!

AFRIKA-misogyny

Moya Bailey is a genius for coming up with such a term! It is so real for black women. The definition, though, needs to be adjusted from ‘American visual and popular culture’ to WORLD visual and popular culture. I have started to notice that black American feminists are the first ones to call out white American feminists for not including them in mainstream concepts and definitions of feminism. but…. WHAT ABOUT US? African women, especially, are so often excluded in the mainstream conversation surrounding feminism. I am coining a new term: Afrika-misogyny, which is described as “A ‘misogynoir’ feminism branch based on the wordly hatred & exclusion of black African women” (Afrika is the swahili spelling for ‘Africa’.)

x