Background story

in 2021, i launched a creative agency, mystic pineapple, specializing in web design for veteran-owned, small businesses. of course, i already had experience in web design and visual design, but i wanted to continue learning as much as i could.
i began to google "famous web designers" and much to my surprise (it being 2021), i found zero designers that looked like me. it's not that i went looking for black web designers, rather, the results were so overwhelmingly non-minority, it was hard not to notice.
being fairly new to the design space, i thought to myself "i wonder what it must be like, being a black web designer, in a creative space with such little recognition."
i then thought back to my own personal experiences, where, being the only black kid in an all white class for example, i had moments (both positive and negative) that i wasn't able to share with anyone.
"being black was" is a creative space where those forgotten moments can be shared, read, discussed, and most importantly, healed from.
it's not until we better understand each other and what we've gone through, that we can evolve from this collective consciousness-limiting tribalism we find ourselves in.
while the submissions on this page will be limited to those of black experiences, i do hope this page will reach members outside the black community so that we may be more aware of the subtle judgements, assumptions, and prejudices we all make, so that we can be more consciously compassionate towards our fellow human beings.

meet the team

Mario Smith-Mena

Afro-Latino US Naval Officer turned Tokyo Coffee Roaster turned New York Designer. I love the ocean, flowers, and compassion. I speak Japanese, but it's helped me get 0 jobs to date.

Mario Smith-Mena

Afro-Latino US Naval Officer turned Tokyo Coffee Roaster turned Designer. I love the ocean, flowers, and trip-hop. I speak Japanese, but it's helped me get 0 jobs to date.

being black was...

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