SWI was founded in 2018 in response to the varying levels of industry exploitation amelian experienced behind and in front of the camera over the past decade. first, as a model at the hands of ADIDAS and JEREMY SCOTT a global marketing campaign. in which there was no offer of a release nor was a single one signed.
amelian was told she was participating in a look book yet she was catapulted into a unauthroized global marketing campaign. she was not paid anything after asking and was told “there was no budget for her”. this affected her idea of self worth moving forward as she pursued her dream of becoming a wardrobe stylist. amelian experiencedbusiness financial abuses as a corporate stylist and as a freelancer. the combination with lack of guidance lead to amelian’s journey through depression, suicide, drugs, alcohol. in 2018 amelian discovered everyone was paid on the adidas and jeremy scott sets, and as the only black body on the set unpaid she began to unravel the violence of transactions in delving deeper into production based jargon, “budgets” and what is fair and deemed unfair industrywise.
︎ a light bulb clicked when the connection was made between the long standing systemic factors that confirmed her exploitation. opening up about her internal and industry battles at the very first SWI meeting parted the clouds. community saved her life.
︎ there are countless stories of media abuses. many femmes of color have suffered in silence for too long. our mission is to empower the reclamation of media as a form of reparations.
︎illustration by Debora Cheyenne Cruchon