While I’m not a huge movie buff, I make sure to watch every movie that Cinema Femme has me design for. Strong Island was one I had actually never heard of, so I was surprised to see that it was nominated for an Oscar! This interesting movie is based on a murder that happened in 1992. The victim, a 24 year old black man named William Ford Jr., was fatally shot after a series of controversial events occurred and the person who shot him walked free. What makes this film even more emotionally charged is that the victim’s brother, Emmy award winner Yance Ford, made this movie and conducted an investigation.
Some of the artwork I created could be classified as dark or provocative, but that’s the basis of what happened in this movie. I toned it down a tiny bit from the original designs, but personally, it was really important to illustrate the gravity of the situation. And… something I had to take stock of was the fact that I’m a white woman creating art for a movie about a black experience. Out of concern, I consulted my friend, an empowered black woman from Chicago, to take a look at what I created and give me her honest opinion. I was happy to get her positive feedback saying she felt that what I designed was right in line with the nature of the film. Granted, somebody could still feel some type of way about it, but I hope they can appreciate the heart I put into creating this edition of Cinema Femme.
Any way you slice it, the story of William Ford Jr. ends in tragedy and my thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.