For all of my ‘Insecure’ fans we have a lot to look forward to in the new season. Issa and Daniel living together, Molly’s situationship with Dro and of course the fire soundtrack.
But something that get might overlooked in the midst of the drama is the lighting. Which is something that I’m really looking forward to in the newest season.
The show does an amazing job of bringing out the actors’ skin complexions in a way that makes the show even more organic. Mic released a viral video last year in which the director of photography for the show Ava Berkofsky explained how she makes sure that the lighting and the makeup ascents the actor’s complexions.
I’m not a film or photography major but this video really got me thinking about how the industry has repeatedly painted black people in a bad light (both literally and figuratively). But it’s a much deeper conversation than Hollywood.
For so long black skin has been viewed as ugly and something to be ashamed of. And with white people being the standard of beauty for so long, black people a lot of times have been forced to meet those standards. Whether that means straightening your hair for a job or something more extreme like skin bleaching.
It wasn’t until the last few years that brands have had to seriously reconsider who they put at the forefront of their ads because it greatly favored lighter skin people. And we still have a long way to go on that issue. But that’s why I love the lighting on ‘Insecure’ among all things. It really does capture the beauty of the actors’ skin tones without dramatically altering them to be darker or lighter. Whether if one of the characters is in a dimly lit club or Issa is doing one of her infamous mirror moments, their skin is guaranteed to look amazing.
And this is why a show like Insecure is so groundbreaking. It’s not only showing a relatable experience of a black woman and her friends in their late 20’s. But it’s visually showing a beautiful portrayal of black people. It shows the attention to detail that the team at Insecure took to ensure that this show stood out from the rest.
Other shows should take notes because the landscape of Hollywood and media is changing. And in order to connect with your audience you need embrace that change.
This is also a lesson for black creatives to consider how every element of your work resonates with your audience. The smallest details can make the biggest impact so keep that in mind during creative process.
Also, collaborate with others that like Ava who will go against the grain to help you execute your vision. In the video, it’s mentioned how Ava does not agree with only certain colored lights being used on darker skin actors which was something that was taught while she was in film school. By taking that risk she has allowed black actors on the show to not be limited to only being shown in the same one or two colored light.
Now that I’ve spent this article talking about Insecure, the only thing left to do is rewatch seasons 1 and 2 before the season 3 premiere on August 12th at 10:30 p.m. on HBO.
Written By Alexandria Brooks
Alexandria is journalism student who loves all things food, lifestyle, fashion, and politics. Her writing tends to do the talking when she can’t find the words to do so. Overall she's a driven young woman who’s excited for what the future holds for her career!