Last year, Google asked students everywhere to draw “what makes me…me” and Akilah Johnson, a 10 grader in Washington, DC, won with a doodle titled “My Afrocentric Life.”
Johnson’s drawing, which is live today, depicts “Google” drawn as a box braid surrounded by images that, according to Johnson, “explores childhood themes and then moves into reflections on our society.” Her drawing was inspired by schools she attended in northwest Washington, DC, which encouraged her to delve into her African heritage and learn more about African American history.
Johnson’s goal was to drawing something that connected with people, “not only for someone to see it and be amazed by it but also to have them understand and connect with it.” She added,
“Of all the things I chose to include, the six most special to me are the Symbol of Life (the ankh), the African continent, where everything began for me and my ancestors, the Eye of Horus, the word “power” drawn in black, the woman’s fist based on one of my favorite artist’s works, and the D.C. flag—because I’m a Washingtonian at heart and I love my city with everything in me!”
For Johnson, Doodle 4 Google was an opportunity to create are that resonated with people, it “gave me an understanding of why art matters and why MY art matters.”