Yellow Maverick: A Rebellion Against Expectation and Confinement

This month, KAMSI introduces a passionate Nigerian-American photographer from Arizona- Oghalé Alex. Oghalé is getting his feet wet with fashion photography and is becoming a natural talent. We introduce his project, "Yellow Maverick: A rebellion against expectation and confinement." Learn more about his inspiration behind his project below:

Growing up as a Nigerian in the United States has taught me much about being black and how skin color plays a much deeper role than we think. The color of your skin says so much about you even before anyone has the opportunity to learn who you actually are. Because you have black skin, you are expected to be a thief, a criminal, aggressive, and a lot of other things that most of us are not. While conversing with a few friends the other day, I began to reflect on my childhood. I thought about how my father forced me to dress “smartly” and tuck in my shirt because white people would be less likely to think I was dangerous. I thought about how I always had to refrain from using my ebonics around teachers, parents, adults as to keep from being misunderstood and mistaken for "just another" black boy with no hope or future. I always felt as though I needed to assimilate through my actions whereas with my people, my black people, I fit right in. I was understood, I was accepted, and I was loved for simply being me. I never had to fight to change a pre-given perspective of myself. I was allowed to be myself and express myself the way I wanted to be seen. This photo essay is centered around freeing yourself from the constraints of trying to find acceptance. Seize autonomy. Be yourself even in your chaos and those who are for you will accept you.

Photographer: Oghalé Alex / @oghalealex

Model: Ashley Maleya / @iamashleymaleya

Creative Director: Umberto Lukama / @umberto.luk

Stylist: Tammy Dill / @tdilll

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