#FollowFriday, Aug. 24: You Should Be Following These 5 Queer Illustrators, Performers and Photographers
This week’s #FollowFriday fab five will bring you illustrations that take you to another world, performances that will shock and amaze you and photographs that are sure to steal your heart. Welcome to another handful of delightful LGBTQ ‘grammers who are gonna rock your screen.
The passion, realness and intimacy of Cristal Veronica’s photography is pretty moving. We don’t want to sound cheesy, but you can see the love shine through in her photos. Take a look for yourself, it’s true!
So, if you’re in any way associated with the wedding industry, you know there’s been lots of talk about a certain well-known wedding blog calling it quits & then changing their minds, all within about a month’s time. And when they announced that they’re not quitting, they make the announcement with a photo taken by a photographer who everyone knows is homophobic. It says a lot about a company who chooses to market themselves via vendors who are homophobic, especially when the company’s entire site glorifies weddings of straight, white, cis, thin couples. • But here’s the thing. I don’t really care. I’ll continue to choose not to support such companies & instead work with companies whose mission is to be inclusive. Companies who find strength & beauty in highlighting diversity in all its forms. And I will continue to make images with couples, families & people whose stories are time & time again, pushed to the periphery. • While my work has been featured on various sites & publications (thank you!), being featured has never been a huge goal of mine. The real goal is knowing my clients/friends will have images that capture their love, families & loved ones for a lifetime, and even after that. Knowing someone will treasure an image I made because it’s a part of their story/history means far more to me than anything. #cristalveronicaphotos
Veronica has that special knack all photographers long for but few have. With a personal focus on documenting “real connections” among POCs and everyone on the LGBTQ spectrum, she says, ““I’m passionate about getting to know the “real” you, and sharing stories of friendship, strength and love of people with histories that are rarely told, but need to be told; specifically LGBTQ identified folks and people of color… People like me.”
The humor, humanity and individuality of Mohammed Fayaz’s work makes his art stand out from the crowd. Born and raised in New York City but a “Queens girl through and through,” this illustrator documents queer and trans POC with a mixture of rawness, strength and fragility that makes each one of his characters come alive in front of you.
Fayaz is a queer Muslim artist who pushes cultural boundaries with works that are radically opposed to his cultural upbringing. Yet they have a delicate balance of family, queerness and equality.
The piece I created for @drmartensofficial ☺️ I been thinking a lot about our chosen families. Warmth, strength, respect, ease, and familia is what I wanted these kids to convey and they remind me of crews I’ve seen all over the world from @nosessola to @traiciondf to @moonshine.mu @bbz_london to @qween_beat @brechoreplay @felagucci @desiremarea and @jovanisrael @kiddysmile @yesyesninobrown and soooo many more ??
He’s also the art director of Papi Juice, a New York City party featured in Teen Vogue, a place for queer artists of color to make waves.
Ricardo Bessa’s illustrations are perfect for telling stories, and that’s exactly what each image does. They’re the kind of illustrations you can get lost in, and what lovely things to get lost in. This London-based Portuguese artist is much sought-after, with commissions by entities as varied as Oxford University Press, restaurant chain Zizi and cult zines Delta and Baewatch.
We especially love his gorgeous hunky cyborg creations for #baewatchzine and this stunningly sexy kiss for Smirnoff Vodka’s Pride campaign. The man himself is pretty gorgeous, too!
His inspirations from nature, queer art, comics and mythology blend together into something unique and extremely satisfying to the eye and to the mind.
Juliana Huxtable is one of the most versatile queer artists you’re likely to find on Instagram. From photography and poetry to DJing and fashion — she does a ton of things — all of her passions will leave you seriously impressed.
Her art explores the internet, the body, text and history, to name just a few topics you might come across in her work. She’s part of New York’s House of Ladosha and is a shining light for queer POCs and a fierce voice for gender identity. She was born intersex and began her transition after college.
We love the mixture of artistic mediums that come to life in her feed. An inspiring human being through and through.