WHEN IT COMES TO GRADUATION SHOOTS: FAMU REIGNS SUPREME

Florida A&M University grads ALWAYS understand the assignment. FAMU students are notorious for their grandiosity when celebrating milestones in their collegiate career. Over the past few weeks, Spring 2021 grads have been dropping some of the most creative, edge-snatching, and jaw-dropping photoshoots to hit the internet. After a year of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they decided to reclaim their time and showcase how they Bragg differently.

I created a list to amplify the students and photographers who raised the bar even higher when it comes to graduation pictures. These Rattlers will be on the vision boards of many. Take a look at some of my personal favorites below:


“FASHION AND MODELING UNIVERSITY”

AIYANA ISHMAEL
B.S. in Broadcast Journalism
@aiyanaish

PHOTOGRAPHY: 422 AGENCY | My sis, Aiyana SNAPPED! She handed us not one but THREE serves on a silver platter and the people gave her a standing ovation. AS THEY SHOULD. I mean, look at the material. Look number one REALLY blew me away. The shot in the rain was reminiscent of a campaign you’d see in a high-fashion magazine. Tweed is so befitting for a J-School grad; definitely gives “Journalist” vibes. Finally, if you know Aiyana or follow her on social media, then you know she loves herself some Doja Cat! What better way to pay homage to the leader of the Kittens, than to “Rattler-fy” her “Hot Pink” album cover? 11/10!


ANIA WILSON
B.S. in Industrial Engineering with a minor in Computer Science | FAMU-FSU Engineering
Delta Sigma Theta
@anialexis

PHOTOGRAPHY: (Pictures 1-3, GuyXPhoto. Picture 4, Ernest Pierre) | Ania gave an ethereal essence with the first look. I love the color of her Kai Collective gown and how it compliments her skin. No jewelry for this look was a great call as the Rattlesnake she holds is all the accessory she needs. All white look with a Colgate-white smile! One can never go wrong with rocking all white. Ania paid tribute to her beloved Delta sorority in a bright red dress with crystals embellishments draping from the shoulders. Look number four was a festive, school-spirited look that also highlighted her passion for computer technology.


AUTUMN THOMPSON
@theautumnolivia

PHOTOGRAPHY: Vernon Barber | Autumn Olivia, truly one of the most divalicious shoots to date. My favorite is the orange tulle look. The way this moment was captured radiates an emotion of true delight and celebration. I’m also always here for a good leg moment! Looks two and three showed her Rattler Pride as she is an alumna whose school spirit runs deep. Her collegiate resume is top-tier. Get into it!


BRIANNA COULTON
B.S. in Business Administration
@bri.vanee

PHOTOGRAPHY: GuyXPhoto | It goes without saying just how creative this is! The way this photo was edited is so fun and full of school spirit. Salute to the talented photographers who can listen to their client’s vision and execute it flawlessly.


ARIYON DAILEY
B.S. in Broadcast Journalism
Alpha Kappa Alpha
@ariyondailey

PHOTOGRAPHY: 422.AGENCY (Pictures 1-3) | A play on Beyoncé’s I Am…Sasha Fierce album, Ariyon Dailey transformed into “Ari Fierce”! She and Aiyana are my favorite play-on-album concepts. I’m especially loving the snakeskin, knee-high boots she paired with the black leotard. She also showcased a fire sorority shoot to her beloved Alpha Kappa Alpha.


ROBYN SENIORS
B.S. in Business Administration
Delta Sigma Theta
@robynseniors

PHOTOGRAPHY: GuyxPhoto | Anyone who knows Robyn, knows that she’s a boss. And if you don’t know, now you do. She gave the girls luxury, classic and sleek looks for her graduation shoot. The edit with the elephant in the background!?!? I wonder how many people are going to recreate it? Just make sure if/when you do, you remember where you saw it first and give credit where it’s due, honey! Now, on to the power suit. It’s the pose and face, for me. The cream suit paired with that silk blouse!? Wall Street isn’t ready for this Queen! She then wore a festive FAMU ensemble to pay tribute to the time she served as SGA President from 2018-2019, a gorgeous, sheer floral dress and a classic, back number at the Rattler statue.


ARYANA LLOYD
B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies, Visual and Performing Arts focus
@aryvna

PHOTOGRAPHY: Jay.Peg Photography | It’s the creativity, for me! Aryana absolutely nailed this “School Pride” look. I love the way this shoot was edited and the custom soles of her Nike’s (which she hand-painted herself). She’s so cool with it; I love it! Another trendsetter raising the bar.


MORGAN DYSON
B.S. in Architecture
@momodicee

PHOTOGRAPHY: Opulent Visuals | In the words of Morgan Dyson “Adding a notch to the 0.3% of Black female architects.” She is truly an inspiration and the images convey that so beautifully. I love the draping and ruching of this “Agricultural Green” dress and strappy black sandals she wore. I’m definitely a gold jewelry girl and she accessorized this look to perfection. Makeup is stunning as well with little details I appreciate, like the green eyeshadow worn under her waterline.


KENYA WILLIAMS
B.A. in Theatre with a minor in Psychology
@kenyaameera

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | Dream girl. She is ready to hit the stage called life! Kenya radiated Hollywood Glamour in a sleek, classic black gown with crystalized embellishments across the sweetheart neckline. I love the big “21” numbers in her FAMU pride look! As a theatre student, it’s only right to add the perfect props! She also popped out in a figure-flattering green dress with a gorgeous (makeup) beat and black strappy heels. Can I have your autograph!? I totally stan.


SHUKURA MCKENZIE
B.S. in Political Science with a minor in Sociology
SISTUHS, Inc.
@lovein_kura

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | Wow. Alexa, Siri–SOMEBODY– play “Glamorous” by Fergie! Shukura truly looks stunning. I need to know the skincare routine, sis! I love the chandelier earrings she wore with her black gown, which has a plunging neckline. She also accessorized this look with a chunky silver bracelet! Then, the infamous Rattler statue! I love the long sleeved gown and how it flows so beautifully to her feet. Velvet is also a fabulous fabric when opting for a formal look. And she followed tradition with a festive FAMU preppy look!


KAILYA JACKSON
B.S. in Business Administration
@kailyamali

PHOTOGRAPHY: By All Means Creations | She understood the assignment and passed with FLYING colors. You all should check out her Instagram to see the full set of photos from this shoot. I loved this tribute to her time as a Women’s Basketball player for FAMU. She also wore the CUTEST, custom FAMU pants! “This was [my seamstress’s] first time making something like this,” she shared with me about the making of her custom pants. “We both agreed that we challenge each other. She’s also from Gainesville, FL like me.”


TATYANA BERRY
B.S. in Elementary Education
Alpha Kappa Alpha
@taatyb_

PHOTOGRAPHY: GuyXPhoto | Let Tatyana be the one to show you how FAMU women are top-tier. Top-tier face, wardrobe and shoe-game was given so effortlessly. She was also on the FAMU Cheerleading team! Girl, we are certainly cheering you on in all that you do. She looks like a million bucks. My personal favorite of hers, is the nighttime look she wore, in the black sequined gown with the thigh-high slit, plunging v-neckline and Steve Madden heels.


NEHEMIAH FIELDS
B.S. in Industrial Engineering
Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Inc.
@ambitionisthemission

PHOTOGRAPHY: Marq Visuals | Not everyone can say that they marched in the greatest band in the land, The Marching 100, let alone one of the Marching Chiefs! Often imitated but never duplicated, Mr. Fields marched in several historic and exciting moments. His pose holds meaning as this is a tribute to the late and great, Kobe Bryant.


DR. BERNICE FORD
@doctorbusybee

Before you call her “Bernice”, make sure “DOCTOR” is in front of it! Dr. Bernice Ford looking absolutely gorgeous as she celebrates earning her Doctorate degree from FAMU’s school of Pharmacy. Beauty, brains and graceful style.


JORDAN X. SHEPPARD
B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Communications, Art, & Design
Phi Beta Sigma
@jordan.xjames


PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre. Graphic Designer, Ragland Art & Design, LLC | I love it when FAMU men showcase their grad pictures in an expressive and creative way. The first look is very festive and even has the “Parental Advisory” sticker in our Citrus Orange and Agricultural Green colors. I also love that it’s placed near his sneakers which follow the same color palette. By far one of my favorite men’s shoots. You also can’t go wrong with a tailored suit! But the twist on this, is that he opted for a suit with a checkered pattern. Finally, streetwear, but make it Sigma. I wonder how he finds all of these shoes to match every look!?


CIARA D. MIMS
B.S. in Public Relations
@dolledupc

PHOTOGRAPHY: GW Creatives | I had the pleasure of styling this PR Queen for one of her graduation looks! Ciara wanted a simple look that still slapped, and I styled her in a black, off-shoulder, satin dress with a slit. She also wore snakeskin, strappy Steve Madden heels (which we were clutching our pearls to arrive in time, which they did!) and minimal jewelry. She also wore a champagne colored, open-shoulder jumpsuit with a crystal belt, tailored to perfection, and clear heels.


ERIKA JOHNSON, The 114th Miss Florida A&M University
B.S. in Voice Performance
Alpha Kappa Alpha
@erikanxcole

PHOTOGRAPHY: Picture 1, Larry Dula. Picture 2, Daaiyah Studios, LLC. | THE 114th Miss. FAMU never misses. She showcased an elegant orange dress while posing in front of the Rattler Statue. She is someone who can do it all and I am always in awe of any and everything she does. Not only is she a multi-talented Queen, but her style is unmatched. She also showed love to her beloved sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha with an on-theme studio shoot.


TAMONI D. JOHNSON
B.S. in Health Science
@tamonidinique

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | Miss. Tamoni knew to bring that FAMU energy to her photoshoot! Her shots captured her essence and personality so beautifully. My favorite look of hers, was the custom, velvet green gown. That ensemble truly took my breath away. Can we also get into the golden snake that was coiled around her knee!? That is so unique and details like that make me give a standing ovation. Ain’t nobody doing it like FAMU women!



ALANA MORLEY
Business and Administration, MBA
@a.lakayy

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | In the words of Nicki Minaj, she got on the “Tom Ford heels with the locket, uhn!” Bundles, FRESH. Makeup, BEAT. Slay, UNMATCHED. Listen, you can never, ever go wrong with a little black dress. Alana is now two-degrees hotter and she’s got the pictures to prove it. Simplicity is key and her hair is styled to perfection! I also love the way in which she accessorized her look. It’s truly giving Black Luxe Barbie.


ASHLEY FOSTER
B.S. in Pharmaceutical Science with a minor in Business
@ashkardashh_

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | What a doll. Ashley served up a five-star slay of girly looks for her graduation shoot. Of the three looks she posted, my favorite has to be the all white look. I’m a sucker for the way all white looks against melanin. She also gave us mint-green realness in her second look and followed the traditional spin on the signature FAMU pride look.


PETE PAULINIS
B.S. in Health Science, Pre-Physical Therapy
Omega Psi Phi
@saucedup_pete

Pete came through with the dope FAMU ‘nalia. One thing about it, FAMU has some of the best apparel on the market. I really need his crewneck, like ASAP but it’s sold out (right now)! He also had to show out for his fraternity one time for the one time!


JAVIER REBOYRAS
B.S. in Architecture
Alpha Phi Alpha
@jani.jjr

PHOTOGRAPHY: Ernest Pierre | I am so here for these looks. Javier opted for a minimalistic approach to his grad photos, that is clean and crisp. My favorite look has to be the cream suit. It’s refeshing to see men wearing suits in different colors aside from the standard navy blue, black and grey. Don’t get me wrong, those are personal favorites of mine too but suits in the neutral color family are perfect for the Spring/Summer Season. He also had to show love to his beloved fraternity and showcase his Rattler Pride in a traditional FAMU spirit themed look.


Needless to say, these grads absolutely KILLED these looks! You should read all of the memes on Twitter from people around the nation, applauding this rollout. These grad shoots truly can’t be beat. Check back daily for updates to this list (until April 30, 2021) and DM me on Instagram @katmarlew, and send me more grads I should feature! Be sure to share this post with all of your friends, family and followers!


As Always, Keep on Stylin’!
XOXO,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s