Five African Women in the Creative Industries You Should be Following On Instagram

The modern African woman is not just a doctor, lawyer or UN project manager. She is in true millennial style – an artist at heart, who crave side hustles that doubles as her creative outlets.

More than ever, African women on the continent and of the diaspora are slaying roles in writing, art direction, creative marketing, architecture, and design.

If you’re looking for jobs at agencies who work on projects that reflect your home or want to stay posted on artistic journeys in the continent’s creative hubs, keep reading this article.

Here are five women in the creative industries you should know about, contact and work with! Click To Tweet

Asiyami Gold

Asiyami Gold is one of the continent’s most notable Instagram influencer’s who is consistently revered in hundreds of comments for being authentic and inimitable in her storytelling as well as her work.

Her personal storytelling does not hold an essentialist, romantic nor exotic gaze of the continent.

Rather, everything she does, from her presets to her consulting, shows the continent the way it is— a mix of technological innovations and idiosyncratic socio-economies, with a shared political history.

Gold is the Founder and CEO of the creative agency A Gold Studio and has worked with clients like Furla, Pantene, HERE map and Christian Cody.

Amy Sall

Amy Sall is the founder of digital magazine SUNU:  forthcoming print and digital publication.

 Even before the launch of the Journal, Sall’s tens of thousands of Instagram followers have known her best for making pre-colonial and historic media (film, TV, photography, interviews, reports etc) from the continent accessible by sharing images and stories that scream “for us, by us and of us”—foreshadowing the meaning of “sunu”, the Wolof word for “our”. 

Chidera Eggerue AKA @theslumflower

Chidera or @theslumflower is the award-winning author of the book What a Time to be Alone, a speaker, and an all round epicentre for inspiration, tough love and ultimately self-love.

A few months ago, a friend of mine suggested that I follow @theslumflower on Instagram, and my life has never been the same since!

Sis is all about being unapologetically self-loving, creative, independent and successful.

If you want to write, design or create but you’re feeling like as an African woman, there are certain worries that you work through alone, then following @theslumflower will give you enough inspiration to turn your #hotgirlsummer into a #hotgirlyear.

Mamy Tall

Mamy Tall is a Senegalese powerhouse, an architect, a photographer, and art director whose work has been featured on Livingly and Le Petit Journal

In December 2018, Tall’s art direction for the music video of Nix’s Highlander, won Video of the Year at the Galsen Hip Hop Awards.

Mamy Tall’s instagram content is a mix of architectural design and inspiration, art direction, photography, fashion, a non-replicable tourist eye and all round African excellence. 

Nadia Marie Sasso

Nadia Marie Sassois an unconventional digital storyteller from Sierra Leone based in Los Angeles.

She often combines critical writing and research with digital media in film, music, and fashion. Named among Katie Couric’s “Next Generation of Female Leaders”.

Sasso’s recent film Am I: Too African to be American or Too American to be African? has been featured on media platforms, such as Centric, Jet, The Huffington Post, Blavity, The ColorLines, OkayAfrica, Black Enterprise, and AfroPunk— and recognized by film festivals nationally and internationally.

Sasso’s journey is one of triumph— one quick scroll through her IG, and you’re bound to overcome any mood you’re in and want to slay your start-up goals.

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Nadia Sasso is the co-founder of Yehri Wi Cry (YWC), an organization that distributes birthing kits in Sierra Leone to increase the successful delivery rates for women. She is also a branding & social impact strategist for Royal Dynamite.

Born in America to parents who emigrated from Sierra Leone, Sasso is a leader in establishing social and entrepreneurial connections across cultures and fostering civic responsibility.

For Nadia Sasso, the connection to the African Diaspora has always been strong.

She has a dual Bachelor’s degree in English and Sociology from Bucknell University where she was a Posse scholar. She also bagged a Master’s degree in American Studies with a certification in Documentary Film from Lehigh University, as well as a Master’s degree in Africana Studies from Cornell University.

Nadia Sasso is also currently pursuing a PhD in Africana Studies with a minor in Film Studies from Cornell University, and has been named as being amongst the “Next Generation of Female Leaders,”.

Her recent film Am I: Too African to be American or Too American to be African? has been featured in media platforms, such as Centric, Jet, The Huffington Post, Blavity, The ColorLines, OkayAfrica, Black Enterprise, AfroPunk etc, and has been recognized by film festivals nationally and internationally.

She is also working on a new age docu-series about Afro millennials in Washington D.C., starting a creative collective and unpacking culture, race, and heritage for their generation.  

Through both film projects, she is changing the conversation on what it means to be African and American in America and on the continent via the digital landscape. 

Nadia has received much recognition and awards for her commitment to social responsibility and inspiring others to help make an impact in their communities. In this article, she talks about her love for storytelling and social work. 

We need to create stories for us and by us and not necessarily as an explanation to people - @iAmNadiaMarie Click To Tweet

What attracted you fostering civic responsibility?

I am American-born but my parents are natives of Sierra Leone.  They taught me to live by the following credo: ‘We cannot own what is out of our control; what we can own, is that which exists to be a part of the solution.’

My parents taught me to focus on what truly inspires me, on issues that captivate my attention and on challenges that evoke my abiding sense of social justice.

One important consequence of my family’s teachings has been that my achievements are most meaningful to me when I am socially responsible and when I am being the change I want to see in the world. For as long as I can remember I have been deeply invested and interested in media as a storytelling tool to engage and inspire audiences.

My educational and professional experiences have provided me with a strong foundation in the fundamental aspects of media and the role that media can play in my work.

How has this change affected your life story in terms of impacting the new generation of female leaders in Africa?

I would have to say being honest about my journey; the struggles and the privileges in the African diaspora. It has led me to work hard to be as transparent as possible.

Lastly, I make it a point to look back to not only give back but to continue learning as well.

How can we as Africans in the continent and diaspora change the lens by which we are viewed across the world?

We can change the lenses in which we are viewed by controlling the narrative. We need to create stories for us and by us and not necessarily as an explanation to the other(s).

Telling our stories can come in various formats, which can include text, photography, video, audio, graphic illustrations, and/or social media.

These storytelling tools are powerful resources as we seek to expand our knowledge of pressing transnational issues and build ties across cultures.

The wide variety of new digital media tools and platforms has created an unprecedented opportunity for people from all disciplines and backgrounds to share observations and personal narratives with global audiences.

As a brand strategist, what are the three key MUST HAVE ingredients for every entrepreneur?

  • Consistency/ Repetition: Make sure that you are always working hard at what you do but that you do it on a regular basis.
  • Quality: Always going the extra mile and make sure your work is above standards and expectations.
  • Collaboration: There is no “I” in a team. There are so many benefits of working with others in the form of collaboration that includes but are not limited to reaching new audiences, information exchange, and creativity.

If you had a chance to select any program or brand/company for a collaboration in Africa, who would you choose and why?

I would choose Maki OH. She is someone whom I have admired for a long time, and she utilizes her culture and daily experiences to create.

Also, she does it with a lens that is purely hers and doesn’t care to include western commentary. She is a rebel with a cause does it with so much confidence.

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