Many on social media are upset about a makeup artist, who uses the Instagram handle @paintdatface, who did a transformation of a white woman into an apparently black woman using makeup.

MAKEUP ARTIST UNDER FIRE FOR BLACKFACE TRANSFORMATION

The photo was posted with a disclaimer trying to explain the reasoning behind his choice, but still the image backfired. “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,” he said. “I struggle to remain challenged.”

He explains a fear of backlash and a racial scandal, but fails to explain to followers why his transformation should not be taken racially. Here is the disclaimer in full:

“DISCLAIMER. 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. I believe we live in a society nowadays that seeks any reason to stomp around town with a picket stick in their hand, fighting ABOUT something, rather than FOR something (and yes, there is a difference!).

“I didn’t want this to become another reason to stir up negativity. 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 image has been hotly contested on Twitter between people angry that an artist would essentially paint blackface on a white model, and others saying it shouldn’t be a big deal because he is just showing off his makeup skills.

While the artist has since removed the original post, he did post a response to the backlash. But most importantly, he said he would not apologize for it. “The transformation that I recently posted of a woman transformed into a woman of another culture has been highly criticized by those who don’t understand the message. I deleted the post, not because I had regret or saw wrongdoing, but because of the negativity social media turned it into,” he began. “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. 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.”

The transformation that I recently posted of a woman transformed into a woman of another culture has been highly criticized by those who don’t understand the message. I deleted the post, not because I had regret or saw wrongdoing, but because of the negativity social media turned it into. 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. 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.

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