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This Gorgeous Photo Series Crushes Stereotypes About Black Masculinity

"These inaccuracies become ingrained in our society and have real consequences for those that are inaccurately represented."

Meet Myles Loftin. He's a 19-year-old freshman at the Parsons School of Design in New York.

And he's the creator of Hooded, a beautiful series of photographs attempting to undo negative stereotypes of black masculinity.

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

Loftin shot the photo series after seeing the stark contrast between the Google results for "black boy in hoodie" and "white boy in hoodie."

It inspired Loftin to want to "create a new narrative for ourselves; a more accurate and free one," he told BuzzFeed.

In contrast to the images of black men depicted in the Google image search, Loftin's poses are sweet, affectionate, and sometimes silly.

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

"Black people, and black men specifically, exist outside of the stereotypes that have been created for us by the media and those that control it," he told BuzzFeed.

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

Loftin's photos also attempt to recontextualize the hoodie — so associated with the shooting death of Trayvon Martin — and change mainstream culture's associations between the hooded sweatshirt and "thuggish" behavior.

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

"These images are so important right now because there is a lot of art coming out tackling the idea of what it means to be a black male," Loftin told BuzzFeed. His series "deconstructs the idea that we are all expected to be hyper masculine beings."

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

Loftin hopes that his photos will encourage people to question the representations of black men they see in the media. "A lot of times the representations that you see are watered down, or completely skewed versions of the truth," he said.

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com

"I want people to understand that these inaccuracies become ingrained in our society and have real consequences for those that are inaccurately represented."

Myles Loftin / Via mylesloftinphotography.com
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