“More little girls need to see themselves as magical,” says 23-year-old Symone Seven, a photographer and photo editor living in the U.S city of Atlanta, Georgia.
Gaining media attention over her Black Cinderella transformation with the help of her photography and editing skills in 2019, Symone aims at empowering brown and black girls to feel seen and heard through her “Princess Series”
The influencer said she was inspired by her childhood star, Brandy who starred as a black version of Cinderella in 1997
“This photo series began with me wanting to pay homage to one of my childhood favourites which were Rodgers and Hammerstein’s ‘Cinderella’ musical featuring Brandy, Whitney Houston and a culturally diverse cast,” Seven told Good Morning America in an interview. “I would request to watch that movie daily as my mom intentionally raised me in a culturally enriched environment.”
In an interview with Insider, she said the series showed her that black folks needed a lot of representation in the media.
“Once I posted it online, the response made me realize that it was way more than just me. I got stories from moms and photos of their children in princess costumes,” she explained.
After the initial success of the Cinderella version, she moved to create more depiction of black princesses in the Disney princess series featuring Ariel, Tiana, Princess Jasmine, Maleficent, Rapunzel and quite recently Belle from Beauty and the Beast.
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Her little fans have begun recreating these princess pictures and submitting to her; a development she warmly welcomes.
“The numbers are great but nothing compares to seeing the real stories people share with me in response,” said Seven. “I’ve had children get so excited to see a princess that looks like them — with brown skin and hair kinky like theirs.”
A French woman wrote her a note and said ” if she had seen something like [that] growing up it would have changed a lot of things,” Seven revealed.
Check out the full series below: