Meet the photographer challenging stereotypes and celebrating black sisterhood.

Miranda Barnes didn't have to look far to find the inspiration for her heartwarming photography project.

In her collection, "Doubles," the 22-year-old photographer from Brooklyn captures the indelible sisterhood of black female twins, glowing with joy and affection for one another.

Photo by Miranda Barnes, used with permission.


Her grandmother was a twin and passed away in 2009. The family only has a few photos of the twins together, so Barnes pursued this project as a way to reconnect with her family history and celebrate the kinship among black women — sisters by blood or shared experience.

"When we talk about black women being celebrated for being caring and loving, it's always in a mothering way but never in a sisterhood way," she says.

Barnes' grandmother, Joyce, (left) with her twin, Jean, in 1978.

But finding black twins to photograph wasn't easy.

When the project began, she didn't know any sets of black girl twins. She met her first pair of twins through a mutual friend and a few more through chance encounters that can only be described as fate. Once, Barnes saw a mom and her twin daughters on the subway.

"She was a tired mom with two kids, and I was like, 'This is going to sound so weird,'" Barnes says with a laugh. "But she let me into her home, and we've remained friends. ... It's funny to see how I met a lot of these people."

Photo by Miranda Barnes, used with permission.

Now, with the project generating so much buzz, twins are approaching her, making the scouting process easier. She even considered expanding the project to include male twins, but after a few shoots, she just wasn't feeing the same connection to her work. For now, she's focusing her attention on women and girls.

Photo by Miranda Barnes, used with permission.

Barnes hopes her series exudes the joy and warmth she sees in black women each day.

Too often, the media represents black women with stereotypes and tired tropes of the angry black woman or the mamie-like matriarch. Shows like "Living Single" and "Girlfriends" have long been cancelled. Reality programs like "Real Housewives of Atlanta" and "Love and Hip-Hop" focus more on backstabbing and fights than genuine relationships.

Photo by Miranda Barnes, used with permission.

Undoing generations of stereotypes to celebrate black womanhood, friendship, and sisterhood is no easy task, but it's vital work.

"I don't think my photos can change that, but I do like to show a different side of black women that deserves to be shown," Barnes says.

Photo by Miranda Barnes, used with permission.

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I'm staring at my screen watching the President of the United States speak before a stadium full of people in North Carolina. He launches into a lie-laced attack on Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, and the crowd boos. Soon they start chanting, "Send her back! Send her back! Send her back!"

The President does nothing. Says nothing. He just stands there and waits for the crowd to finish their outburst.

WATCH: Trump rally crowd chants 'send her back' after he criticizes Rep. Ilhan Omar www.youtube.com

My mind flashes to another President of the United States speaking to a stadium full of people in North Carolina in 2016. A heckler in the crowd—an old man in uniform holding up a TRUMP sign—starts shouting, disrupting the speech. The crowd boos. Soon they start chanting, "Hillary! Hillary! Hillary!"

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via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

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