“Please don’t just follow me because you want to blackify your following. Do so because of my work.” – Oyindamola Animashaun
Fallout from Covid-19 has impacted every sector of society and has led to dramatic changes in the fashion industry which is struggling to chart a new course amidst big chain closures, the end of the runway calendar and uncertainty from head to toe. In this month’s fashion feature we talk to a number of the key players on the scene here, who explain how they’ve been affected and where their future lies.
Oyindamola Animashaun was in hospital “isolating before everyone else” when lockdown struck. However, she was there from exhaustion having not had a single day off from December to March, including Christmas Day. Styling Jafaris for the Choice Music Awards in Vicar Street on March 5 was the culmination of a staggeringly hectic period which saw her styling for short films and press as well as multiple music videos.
“For me personally, it was a bit of a blessing. It was the first time I was able to take a break,” reflects Animashaun. Unsurprisingly, she was “sick of it” by the end of March. “My job is completely about other people but no one going anywhere or doing anything, it meant I resorted to styling myself for IGTV.”
One significant happening during the pandemic has been the re-emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement and how it has impacted on her. “It has really helped me out in that a lot of people are showing love to people like me and I am appreciative of that.” Still, Animashaun is conflicted about some of the motivations behind this newfound affection. “It really bothered me too. I felt uncomfortable. Please don’t just follow me because you want to blackify your following. Do so because of my work.”
And so, whilst the challenge of sourcing clothes, securing locations and having less assistance is something Animashaun is part of the new normal, she’s also appreciative of the fact that “this pandemic has changed the whole trajectory of my life… There are 100% more opportunities within the industry for me now and I am going to figure out how I can make it here in Ireland.”
Words: Michael McDermott
Check out other perspectives in this month’s Fashioning A Future series here: