Black History Month Spotlight: Jade Purple Brown

Adreon Patterson
2 min readFeb 22, 2024

Artist and illustrator Jade Purple Brown amplified the voice of women through illustration. Brown was born near Chicago to a loving family. Her artistic gifts were encouraged at a young age as she grew up drawing and painting. Eventually, her creativity pivoted toward fashion design and styling, spending her teen years obsessed with clothing. She studied fashion marketing and management at the Illinois Institute of Art.

After initially attending college to become a fashion stylist, a mundane yet life-changing moment occurred during her time at IIOA. Brown needed to take a marketing course for her program. The course was her gateway to illustration and graphic design as she enjoyed Adobe programs like Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign. The artist studied the programs and practiced design in her free time. After graduating, she took her newfound knowledge and launched a successful illustration and graphic design career.

Her post-grad career brought numerous high-level positions, including marketing designer and art director for multiple notable companies like Macy’s and Moroccanoil. However, her career went in a different direction as Brown gave up the corporate world in 2018 for life as a freelancer. Her first year as a freelancer was quite fruitful as the artist scored her lucrative project with the beauty store Sephora. After that, she began working with major clients, including Apple, Google, and actress Drew Barrymore’s beauty lifestyle brand Flower by Drew.

Brown continues her prolific design career as she recently partnered with brands BT21 and Build-a-Bear to create exclusive work for them.

Jade Purple Brown has been craving a lane since leaving her full-time job. Her illustrations have changed the approach to graphic design. Brown is one of those leading the charge in making the field more inclusive and diverse. Of course, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery as Brown copycats flood the field. So, I say, “Ms. Brown, we want to see you keep doing what you’re doing to evolve graphic design.”

I’ve felt like my narrative was often missing from the art world, so it’s also very important for me to show Black women in a dynamic, empowering light.

Jade Purple Brown

Originally published at on February 22, 2024.



Adreon Patterson

A multi-faceted creator trying to change the world one word at a time. Check out more at