Photo via: Getty Images
Vogue Magazine editor, Anna Wintour, recently granted Beyoncé unprecedented autonomy to choose the photographer who will shoot her cover photographs and also edit the cover story to appear inside the book. Beyoncé has chosen 23-year-old photographer Tyler Mitchell to photograph her, which will make Mitchell the first African American photographer to be hired by Vogue to execute a cover shoot.
In Vogue’s 126-year existence, the work of African American photographers has been featured yet only inside of the highly regarded fashion publication. Beyoncé has once again demonstrated her commitment to uplifting the Black community by using her influence and power to yield a historic opportunity to a fellow young and talented artist.
While only 23, Atlanta-born Tyler Mitchell had already begun to make a name for himself in the fashion world when Beyoncé came knocking. He is an alumnus of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and his portfolio of work includes past campaigns for Marc Jacobs and Givenchy. He was also profiled and acknowledged by the New York Times last year for his techniques used when shooting people of color. His photos depict saturated colors and explore the intersections between culture and identity. “I depict Black people and people of color in a really real and pure way,” said Mitchell. “There is an honest gaze to my photos.”
Photo credit: Joshua Aronson/The New York Times
Last December, Mitchell expressed his increased interest in contributing to forms of print media and how to do so would resonate differently than when virtual platforms are used. “I think magazines are a great way to be like, ‘This is important enough to be published on the printed page,’” he shared with The New York Times.
While details of why or how Beyoncé identified Mitchell for this particular opportunity have yet to be shared, their intentions seem to complement one another to ultimately create a timely masterpiece to be referenced as a part of Vogue’s history for years to come. To see a glimpse of Mitchell’s work in anticipation of the notable and highly anticipated September Vogue issue, check out his Instagram page (@tylersphotos).