While makeup artists are constantly posting photos of their work on social media, one makeup artist's before and after transformation photos have led to some serious outrage. Los Angeles-based artist Paintdatface has been accused of trying to turn a white woman into a black woman with makeup. His original post has since been deleted, however the makeup artist posted a screenshot of his post with the original caption, giving us the sense that he may have predicted the photos would receive some backlash.
The original caption, which can be seen above, said: "I want to clearly express the sincere place I am coming from with this transformation. As an artist and visionary, I can become bored of the 'glam' and done-up looks that we find all over social media, my page included. I struggle to remain challenged, and as a result of that, my posts have become more manufactured than authentic. This is a transformation that I've been holding back from releasing for a while now, solely because of the fear I've had of people turning it into a racial scandal against me. THIS IS NOT ABOUT A RACE CHANGE. This is about one woman acknowledging, embracing, and celebrating the beauty of another woman's culture . . . This is, by far, the proudest I've ever been of my work, and I'm so fortunate to have created it with @annathorsell, who trusted my vision from the very beginning."
The makeup artist was correct, the photos have turned into a "racial scandal," but only because he is being accused of using makeup to change this woman's race. With makeup, he transformed a light-skinned, blonde-haired, blue-eyed woman, into a woman with darker skin, dark hair, and brown eyes.
He has since issued a message to those who were offended by his photos, claiming that they "don't understand the message" he was trying to portray with the photos, but wants to make sure this is not interpreted as an apology.
"I deleted the post, not because I had regret or saw wrongdoing, but because of the negativity social media turned it into," he wrote. "It's been assumed by most that my intentions were to transform my model into a black woman. Truth is, my intentions were to keep the look vague enough to be relatable to many women of different cultures, but the true inspiration of the overall look came from my Cuban heritage. Although I am saddened by how many people are angered, I can't offer an apology for my artwork and for what I find to be beautiful."
He continued, "The transformation came from a place of love and was not about mocking one's race, but rather about celebrating it. I am so proud to be illustrating a woman representing several cultures along with their achievements, beliefs, and histories. Art is interpreted differently by all, and sometimes it's uncomfortable, but making this world a better place starts with our mindset — thinking positive, showing love, and practicing unity."
Although he claims this is about "art," many Twitter users have fired back, explaining that this is most definitely "blackface," and if he wanted to "celebrate black culture" he should "get a black model."
— DoYourOwnResearch📚 (@SheilaPThatsMe) May 28, 2017
If paintdatface had to convince herself that this wouldn't turn into a racial scandal, then shorty knew wtf was up... next https://t.co/9FwV6KOPlD
— . (@OfficiallyAsi) May 28, 2017
Really paintdatface? You want to celebrate black culture? GET A BLACK MODEL! This is clearly blackface, your "disclamer" doesn't change that https://t.co/p724ZDtajK
— Nessa (@vanessago_89) May 29, 2017
#paintdatface you could have used a woman of color. Idc what your vision was.
— Anthony Xavier (@axavier__) May 30, 2017
#paintdatface nothing on your page indicates an admiration for diversity in fact it severely lacks it.
— Jem (@JemClassic) May 30, 2017
Supposedly the 'Paintdatface' guy was trying to create a 'Cuban woman' and thinks his work is still art. 🤔 pic.twitter.com/n3ev9C9Cyw
— rennesseyxo (@renzomayah) May 30, 2017
So, do you think he was in the wrong or just expressing himself artistically?