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While Brazil is more than carnival and soccer, beaches and rainforests, that's what pops up in image libraries and search engines. Aiming for a more genuine portrayal of the people of Brazil, creative agency Lab 678 decided to build its own stock photo site.
The images on Brasil com S (Brasil with an S) are split into three categories that correspond with three random slices of daily life in Brazil: doing business on a Tuesday at 12:11, Thursday happy hour at 19:43, and a relaxed Sunday with friends at 16:27.
As Rio de Janeiro-based Lab 678 states, "We are a country rich in diversity of bodies, skin tones, identities, gender expressions and sexualities," and that's reflected in the photos. Brasil com S isn't just providing free images, but calling on Brazilian media makers to stop using out-of-context photos from abroad and start adding authenticity to their projects.
Brasil com S launched two weeks ago and currently includes 200+ images that are free to use for editorial purposes.
Everyone deserves to see their own humanity reflected in the images they encounter. While social media democratized who gets to be seen and heard in South America, mainstream media and advertisers still have some catching up to do.
To truly connect with increasingly self-aware audiences, editors and art directors need to abandon Eurocentric patterns and preferences, and fully embrace what's local. Kudos to Lab 678 for making that easier by serving up a diverse and decolonized range of images. One to introduce in other countries, too?