San Diego-based artist Jazmin Anita captures Black women as both fantastic and everyday characters, from galactic girls to casual teens, all dressed in Anita’s dreamy style. Her rendition of Sailor Moon—a glossy, Black Sailor Moon, with full lips, curly blond hair, hoop earrings, and piercing eyes—went viral not only because of its visual allure, but because of the powerful statement conveyed by Black women reimagining themselves as major players in human narratives.
The softness in Anita’s drawings lend a subdued, enchanting aesthetic. Her depiction of Black women in bright clothes with colored hair and sparkles on their skin, eyes, and hair creates an avenue for Black girls to see and accept themselves in a way society doesn’t. In Anita’s creations, they can be queer, fat, anime-inspired, galactic—or any combination. One identity does not negate the other. No single identity restricts the fact that Black is beautiful; all identities enhance it.
Anita’s interpretation of Sailor Moon recalls Afro-Cuban American artist Harmonia Rosales, who recreated Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam, with God, Adam, and all other beings as Black women. Black people can and should create original art, but we also can and should assert that we’ve always been a part of the story. Anita does this through her expertly rendered portraits that bridge artistry with accessibility. Whether her characters are emerging from the sea, adorned with stars, or just living their lives, they evoke a feeling of ethereal beauty I consider essential for Black women to see and believe is possible. Anita’s drawings remind us that positive representation is an underestimated necessity.