I’m Rae Tweed, an artist and graphic designer based in Los Angeles. After graduating from my technical design program in 2010 I spent a few years developing my studio practice and experimenting with an array of mediums. In 2017 I started working in graphic design full time and recently I’ve shifted my career focus to try to merge my worlds of art and design.
I was assigned equality and to me that word represents many fights and power struggles in the ongoing stand for civil rights. Previously the word equality was mostly connected to racial equalities but today we fight for sexual, gender identity, social classes, and STILL racial equality. I wanted to represent that fight through a blur of human faces.
Being creative brings me joy in small and mundane things other people may miss. My creativity gives me appreciation for things like the lateral horizon of LA or an understated but purposeful palette someones chosen to wear. Seeing the world for its visual treasures is a gift and it brings me so much joy.
My experience as a Black designer has been as beautiful and as alienating as my experience as a Black American. Sometimes I have the privilege of being a part of a team that values, relates to and celebrates my view point as a Black woman. Then other projects I’ve been a part of my Blackness is foreign to my team and met with hesitation and misunderstandings.
I think any creative team that is comprised of only one color/ethnicity should aim to shake up their group dynamics. Not just in introducing one black member but introduce two or more black/poc designers to a non-diverse creative team as soon as possible.
Forming stronger networks and communities in the creative world would be a great start for achieving equality in the design world. I do think the networks and groups have to hold some weight though. While its always a great thing for us to come together and share opportunities with one another, I’d love to see us push our organizations to the forefront of the design world and achieve recognition as a black operated, reliable, industry resource.