Black Magic ? Vogue’s 104 year history has been rewritten.
Kennedi Carter, a North Carolina native is a student at the University of North Carolina earning a degree in African American studies has become the youngest cover photographer in the history of British Vogue. Her subject, Queen Bey herself! “It feels like it dropped out of the sky,” Carter says of the career-changing commission. “I’m 21… I haven’t really had many opportunities like this.”
Carter over time has been building up an impressive resume before landing this present honours: she had a self-portrait featured in a special project on Black photographers in the New York Times, has shot portraits of NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace for GQ, been honored in the British Journal of Photography’s 2020 Ones to Watch list among others.
Carter’s work has appeared on Bitch Magazine, The Oxford American, Vanity Fair among others.
For the shoot, Beyoncé specifically requested a woman of colour and together with Vogue’s editor-in-chief Edward Enninful Kennedi, a gifted young fine art photographer whose work highlights the “overlooked beauties of the Black experience” came in the picture.
A true surprise to Carter. “I thought I wouldn’t be able to do something at this level unless I was older, with many years in the game,” she says. “This is for people at the pinnacle of their careers.”
Kennedi on her experience says:
“I had done a lot of research into how she works and was just going with the flow. I had done a lot of research into how she works, and I had underestimated how much she’s willing to submit herself to a vision and truly become someone else’s muse,” says Carter, who worked closely with Parkwood
Beyoncé was “just so, so nice,” Carter says. “Plus she’s from Texas. So she has that energy.”
“It’s really amazing that she’s using her influence to be able to give young artists this experience, and allowing their voices to be heard. She’s opening the door for others.”