X marks the fifth name i've used to publish writing. I've published more than 1000 newspaper articles with my by-line. Twice with my real name. One with first and last name, one with my full name. I've published twice under pseudonym, while undercover as a journalist in dangerous situations. Online, i've never used a pseudonym, for writing. I try to keep it as real as possible. This is my first pseudonym online for blogging.
This year I published photos quoting Martin Luther King Jr and other civil rights leaders and was censored for the first time. It was a tribute to my late brother who died at 29. The photo series created fear in a man who took matters into his own hands to block a voice of free speech. It was not censored on MySpace or Facebook. It made me realize the fear of one man can bring anyone down.
The photo series was called the Black Tile Series.
My brother left behind a JPEG, totally black before he died. The last photo he uploaded. It reminded me of censorship and of the collective identity of 1000 people. I celebrated faces of Black history and quotations with this series, putting captioned photos on Black Tiles to give them identity. My screen name was Yellow X in honour of my brother, a civil rights leader of 10000 people.
X is symbolic of identity. Defining a brand identity as people. An identity we can choose. Not determined by someone else.
X marks the spot.