How to Get Away with Murder star, Emmy winner, and two-time Oscar nominee Viola Davis has had one career defining year. She graces the December 2015 edition of InStyles cover, and she looks Magnificent. Her interview focused on her growth, and what she’s realized about herself as she’s evolved over time. Viola never ceases to amaze me both on and off set. She is truly an example of a woman who is still REAL even beyond her fame. She admits in the interview that she actually has to work really hard to look good, and that honestly if it wasn’t for paid stylists she probably wouldn’t be able to put the looks together that she hits the red carpet with. “Taking care of a 5-year-old, cooking at home, and running to the set when you’ve had four hours of sleep, you don’t feel like a movie star…then, every once in a while, you put something on that makes you feel cute.” And post stylist days she says..”Back in the day, my style was whatever was different and cheap. I was an artist, and I wanted my clothes to reflect that. I now understand fashion in a way that I don’t even have a language for. I know designers. Before, you could’ve put a gun to my head and asked me to name just one designer and I would’ve been dead.”
Viola gave a profound acceptance speech at the Emmy Awards this year where she touched on the topic of opportunity and lack of diversity within Hollywood, “The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity. You can’t win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there….So here’s to all the writers, the awesome people — Ben Sherwood, Paul Lee, Peter Nowalk, Shonda Rhimes — people who have redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading women, to be black. And to the Taraji P. Hensons, the Kerry Washingtons, the Halle Berrys, the Nicole Beharies, the Meagan Goods, to Gabrielle Union, thank you for taking us over that line.” Viola is yet another example of a woman of color who has redefined what we are capable of achieving, as well as given Americans a different perspective on what it means to be beautiful and black on both the inside and outside. Her talents and wisdom have touched the lives of many young women, and her courageousness is humbling.
On the cover she rocks her natural fro, her beautiful dark skin, and her pristine smile. She is comfortable with who she is and what she stands for, and is proud of it. She tells Instyle, “What’s released me most from the fear of aging is self-awareness…I’ve never determined my value based on my looks or anything physical. I’ve been through a lot in life, and what has gotten me through is strength of character and faith.” More positive images of black women such as Viola need to be discussed in the media. Unfortunately we have so much negativity influencing us it’s hard to find the ones who we really should be looking up to as role models. Viola makes it a point to mention that having adopted a daughter she understands how important setting a good example and focus on building character and self-love is. She says she tells her daughter Genesis, “she was born from my heart, not my belly.” How precious is that!