Student Life
Category

  • Q&A with Army Veteran and NYFA Photography and Cinematography Alum Xavier Velasquez

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail


    Two-time New York Film Academy (NYFA) Photography and Cinematography Alum Xavier Velasquez has been making waves in sound design and cinematography since graduating from NYFA in 2019.

    Velasquez spoke with New York Film Academy about what he’s been up to since graduating, what inspires his work and his advice to anyone looking to get started in filmmaking.

    New York Film Academy (NYFA): Can you tell us a bit about yourself and life before NYFA?

    Xavier Velasquez (XV):My name is Xavier Velásquez. I am a Cinematographer, Photographer, Audio Engineer and Sound designer. I also do a lot of conceptual/surrealist digital art work and I am originally from Brooklyn, NY. 

    Before attending NYFA, I served in the United States Army for 5 years. I was stationed in Germany for 3.5 years and Fort Bragg for the remainder of my contract. I was deployed twice during my service. Once to Turkey for 6 months and the other to Kandahar, Afghanistan for 9 months.

    NYFA: What brought you to the New York Film Academy?

    XV: Honestly, the idea of making films as a career or professional was so far-fetched to me. As a kid I would force my sister and cousins to make films with me on my dad’s old VHS recorder (which I still have). As I was graduating high school, I realized that you could go to college for filmmaking, media, arts – things like that. I decided that was the route for me and applied to the Art Institute of Boston. I was accepted, went to orientation and took the placement tests only to learn that I would also need to do math, science, english and all the other regular subjects before I even got to learn anything about making films. That right there was a NO for me. I looked up other film schools on Google and found out about New York Film Academy and I was hooked. Everything they provided and showcased on their website was exactly what I was looking for. So I applied and got approved for a grant NYFA offered at the time, but then I couldn’t attend because I was 18 and broke and was unable to cover the rest of the tuition. A few years passed, I joined the Army at 20 and while I was deployed to Afghanistan, I was debating whether to reenlist for more years or get out. After having a conversation with my platoon sergeant about college, I decided to google the New York Film Academy again. I saw that the school accepted the G.I bill, a benefit I received from being in the military which would pay for my schooling; that sealed my fate right there. The decision was clearer than ever. I left the military on Veteran’s Day 2015 and by December I was signed up for school and ready for classes in January.  

    NYFA: You mentioned you studied Filmmaking, Audio and Photography. What motivated you to continue your studies and transition from Film, Audio and Photography?

    XV: Well there’s no question about it, as much as I love cinematography, compositions, framing, lighting, you NEED really good sound or, in my opinion, your  films don’t work. You can be very experimental with how you shoot and light anything but bad sound is never forgiven. I had months left on my G.I Bill and decided that sound was something I wanted to get more involved in. I love the sound design part of filmmaking. The audience might hear clothes rustling but they wouldn’t know that it’s just me balling up one of my sons clean diapers. It’s exciting creating noise from anything to be anything. I felt solidified in my decision to endure the world of sound design when a film I executive produced, Dp’d, colored and did the sound design for actually won best sound design at a festival. Photography is also important. In my opinion, it is the foundation of good cinematography. The photography program at NYFA really opened my eyes to the artistic world and what a lens can capture. That program alone is what made me the DP I am today. It taught me to appreciate what the light captures and what it doesn’t. It taught me to appreciate the shadows and embrace them because everything has a story. Care about your framing because that one frame can tell a story.

     

    View this post on Instagram

     

    A post shared by Xavier (@_eckz_)

    NYFA: Tell us more about your latest project & how you got involved in the project? What was your role in the project?

    XV: My latest short film is Sutherland. It is an atmospheric horror film that I co-executive produced and was the director of photography for. I got onto this project because another project I was supposed to DP for fell through. I spoke to the director of Sutherland about it because he was also supposed to be on that project with me and since the first project had fallen through, he offered to write a script for us to work on, if I was interested. He wrote it (what would be Sutherland). I loved it and we went from there. We got a cast and crew and spent 5 nights in July shooting a horror film in a historic house in Virginia. It’s by far one of my favorite projects I’ve been blessed to create. It is currently going through the film festival circuit It has been selected in the category of Best Cinematography for the Montreal Independent Film Festival. 

    Take a look at the Sutherland teaser below!

    There is also and Instagram page for the film : @sutherland_film. 


    NYFA: What other projects have you worked on since graduating?

    XV: Aside from Sutherland, I have also been working on 2 other projects. A documentary that I’m DPing, GodsChild, that I’ve been filming for about a year now with former NYFA student, Darius Green. It focuses on a DJ who was a rising basketball star in the early 2000’s here in Virginia. The second project is an episodic comedy of which I am DP and co-producer, Simpleton. An observational comedy that follows the life of our protagonist Gerson. Episode one is finished and we are getting ready to release that soon.

    NYFA: What kind of stories do you want to be known for?

    XV: I don’t know. That’s tough question because I seem to have fallen into the suspense horror genre. Don’t get me wrong, I love that world and creating it but I also want to see if I can venture into other genres but still maintain my artistic integrity where if someone watches anything I’ve made they can tell I either filmed it myself or influenced the project. It is one of the reasons I took on the episodic comedy I mentioned before. At that point, I had never shot a comedy and wanted to see if I could pull it off. Sutherland and Simpleton are polar opposites. I wanted to see if I could do it and make it fit my style of shooting.

    NYFA: What is the importance of film and storytelling in your opinion?

    XV: Film and storytelling are outlets for artists. If it’s documentary work, it gives people a voice. They can choose to use that voice to bring awareness to social issues, tell the truth, or persuade an audience. 

    If we are talking about fiction it gives us the power to use our imagination. For the most part, we are taught to go to college and get a job and that’s it. Our creativity dies out as we fall in line with this “life plan”. With that plan, when are you being creative or imaginative? Being able to create something that tells a story, either using film, photography or art is something creatives cherish. I feel that we are true risk-takers as not everyone can make a living doing something in this field. A lot of artists don’t even get recognized until they pass away. We do this for freedom of self expression but most of the time we don’t care if everyone loves our work because we do. It’s our outlet at the end of the day and if people don’t like it or they think they can do it better, they should pick up a camera or a brush and do it.

     

    View this post on Instagram

     

    A post shared by Xavier (@_eckz_)

    NYFA: Have you won any awards or been showcased in any festivals or competitions?

    XV: Yes I have. Both in my film work and my photography work. My conceptual work was accepted in both the APA (Annual Photography Awards) and the Fine Art Photography Awards. I also had my work in the Conception Art Show in Tribeca and The A.R.T (Artistic Recreational Therapy) in the UK. 

    NYFA: Who has inspired you in your work? Who has inspired you personally?

    XV: This is such a hard question to answer. Inspiration comes from too many places. I could be listening to a song that gives me a feeling or makes an image pop in my head and I would go from there. That’s how most of my digital artwork is created. Either life experiences or music I’m listening to at the time. But if I had to name a few in the film world it would be directors like David Fincher, Ari Aster, Jordan Peele. Tod Campbell’s cinematography work. The photography work of Gregory Crewdson, & Dan Winters are just a few of the many artists that inspire me.

    NYFA: What did you learn at NYFA that you applied directly to your project?

    XV: Everything. I knew absolutely nothing about cinematography, photography or filmmaking as a whole. I legitimately left the “comfort” and “stability” of the military without knowing if I would be good at any of this. The first time I held a real camera – outside of my fathers old vhs recorder – was at Nyfa. Whenever someone asks me about going to film school, I tell them if they can afford it then go for it. If they still have any doubt all I have to do is show them my work. I will always consider myself a student of this art form but I do feel that I know what I’m doing simply because I went to NYFA.

    NYFA: Any advice or tips for anyone looking to get involved in photography, film or the visual arts?

    XV: I mean not to sound cliche but just go for it. For the most part nobody is stopping you from doing anything but yourself. Yeah, you can bring up money but if you’re old enough to have these kinds of questions then you should have a phone in your possession and the phones nowadays can do everything. I’ve shot films on my phone. One of my photos that was included in an art gallery I originally took on my iPhone 11. If you want to be a storyteller, there’s literally no reason as to why you can’t write a story, and then find the people that can help you bring it to life.

    I’ll end this Q&A with this: there’s this saying or quote I don’t really remember where I heard it from or who said it but I remember it like this, “there’s pen and paper everywhere, but not everyone is an author” I used that quote to inspire me all the time. I don’t consider myself a writer at all but it reminds me that just because people have access to things doesn’t mean they know how to use it. So if you want to be an author – write stories, a filmmaker – make a film, a photographer – take photos. You never know you just might have that artistic voice someones been waiting to hear, see or feel.

    New York Film Academy congratulates Xavier Velasquez on his accomplishments! We look forward to seeing more of your work!

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    February 11, 2022 • Acting, Cinematography, Diversity, Photography, Student Life • Views: 953

  • OSCARS 2022: FULL LIST OF WINNERS

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

     

    NYFA Celebrates Oscar 2022 Nominations

    The nominations for the 94th Annual Academy Awards are in! This year’s nominees were
    announced by the internet’s favorites Tracee Ellis Ross and Leslie Jordan on Tuesday,
    February 8th.

    By the pricking of my thumbs, some nominations this way come.

    There were some snubs, firsts, surprises and some not-so-surprising but entirely welcomed
    moments, like Denzel Washington dethroning himself as the most-nominated Black actor with
    his 10th nomination for The Tragedy of Macbeth.

    The Power of the Dog leads with 12 Oscar nominations including Best Picture,
    Best Actor (Benedict Cumberbatch), Best Adapted Screenplay and director Jane Campion makes
    history as the first female director to be nominated for Best Director twice.
    The Power of the Dog’s
    Cinematographer Ari Wegner could make history as the first woman to win Best Cinematography.

    Coming in close second this year is Dune with 10 Oscar nominations
    including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Film Editing and Best Visual
    Effects. NYFA 3D Animation and VFX Alum Francesco Panzieri was the in-house compositor for
    the adaptation of the Frank Herbert classic. In a Q&A with NYFA about the film, Panzieri
    told NYFA that he had been tapped for the project long before it began production; the
    in-house team at Wylie VFX sought his collaboration after Panzieri’s work on Terminator: Dark Fate.

    Also nominated for Best Picture is NYFA Guest Speaker Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story. NYFA Musical Theatre Alum Ilda Mason was casted as Luz, a member of the sharks in Spielberg’s remake, shortly after her run on Broadway in Ivo van Hove’s Broadway revival of West Side Story in 2020. The on-screen revival is also nominated for Best Cinematography making it the 7th Academy nomination for Spielberg’s long-time collaborator and NYFA Guest Speaker Janusz Kaminski. But perhaps most outstanding is Steven Spielberg’s nomination for Best Director; with this nomination, Spielberg became the first director to be nominated 11 times in the category, dethroning former record holder and cult-favorite, Martin Scorsese.

    Maggie Gyllenhaal’s The Lost Daughter has been all the rave since premiering last December
    and the debut feature is not letting up. Gyllenhaal is nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay
    for her adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s classic of the same title. The film is also
    represented in the Best Actress category, with Olivia Colman nominated for her
    outstanding performance in Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut alongside Penelope Cruz (Parallel Mothers), Nicole Kidman (Becoming the Ricardos), Kristen Stewart (Spencer), Jessica Chastain (The Eyes of Tammy Faye). Also nominated for her work on The Lost Daughter is Jessie Buckley for Best Supporting Actress. The film’s producers Osnat Handelsmen – Keren and Talia Kleinhendler spoke at length with the Director of the NYFA Q&A-List Series, Tova Laiter, during a Q&A about the process (and difficulty) of securing the rights to adapt an Elena Ferrante novel and filming during a pandemic with closed borders and a mostly international cast and crew. It seems it was worth it in the end as the film continues to collect nominations this award season. Not too bad for a directorial debut.

    Beloved animated film Luca brings in a nomination for Best Animated Film for Pixar Studios.
    NYFA Alum Raquel Bordin is part of Pixar’s International Editorial Department, where she
    worked for 11 weeks putting the final touches on the coming-of-age Italian film. More of
    Bordin’s work is headed to the big screen. She recently confirmed with us that she is
    working on the animated sci-fi feature, Lightyear, set to release this summer.

    Also in the Best Animated Film category is NYFA Guest Speaker Amy Smeed who continues to
    soar as Head of Animation at Walt Disney Animation Studio and co-head animator for
    Raya and The Last Dragon
    which has been nominated for Best Animated Film. The animated Danish documentary, Flee, is also nominated and makes Oscar history as the first film to be nominated for Best Animated Film, Best International Feature and Best Documentary.

    Nominated alongside Dune for Best Visual Effects is Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. Director Destin Daniel Cretton and actor Simu Liu spoke with NYFA during a Q&A curated and moderated by Tova Laiter about bringing the Marvel comic to life, representation and working with special effects.

    Lastly, Drive My Car, adapted from Haruki Murakami’s short story by the same name and
    directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, is the first Japanese film to be nominated for Best Picture
    and the first Japanese film to be nominated in more than one category including
    Best International Feature, Best Directing and Best Adapted Screenplay.

    NYFA congratulates all the nominees, alumni and guest speakers for their nominations at the
    94th Annual Academy Awards! We look forward to hearing the winners on March 27th, 2022 on
    ABC.

    Check out the complete list of nominees below:

    BEST PICTURE

    “Belfast”
    “CODA” – Winner
    “Don’t Look Up”
    “Drive My Car”
    “Dune”
    “King Richard”
    “Licorice Pizza”
    “Nightmare Alley”
    “The Power of the Dog”
    “West Side Story”

    ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

    Jessie Buckley, “The Lost Daughter”
    Ariana DeBose, “West Side Story” – Winner
    Judi Dench, “Belfast”
    Kirsten Dunst, “The Power of the Dog”
    Aunjanue Ellis, “King Richard”

    ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

    Ciaran Hinds, “Belfast”
    Troy Kotsur, “CODA” – Winner
    Jesse Plemons, “The Power of the Dog”
    J.K. Simmons, “Being the Ricardos”
    Kodi Smit-McPhee, “The Power of the Dog”

    INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM

    “Drive My Car” – Winner
    “Flee”
    “The Hand of God”
    “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom”
    “The Worst Person in the World”

    DOCUMENTARY (SHORT)

    “Audible”
    “Lead Me Home”
    “The Queen of Basketball” – Winner
    “Three Songs for Benazir”
    “When We Were Bullies”

    DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

    “Ascension”
    “Attica”
    “Flee”
    “Summer of Soul” – Winner
    Writing with Fire”

    ORIGINAL SONG

    “King Richard”
    “Encanto”
    “Belfast”
    “No Time to Die” – Winner
    “Four Good Days”

    ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

    “Encanto” – Winner
    “Flee”
    “Luca”
    “The Mitchells vs. The Machine”
    “Raya and the Last Dragon”

    ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

    “CODA” – Winner
    “Drive My Car”
    “Dune”
    “The Lost Daughter”
    “The Power of the Dog”

    ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

    “Belfast” – Winner
    “Don’t Look Up”
    “King Richard”
    “Licorice Pizza”
    “The Worst Person in the World”

    ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

    Javier Bardem, “Being the Ricardos”
    Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Power of the Dog”
    Andrew Garfield, “Tick, Tick… Boom!”
    Will Smith, “King Richard” – Winner
    Denzel Washington, “The Tragedy of Macbeth”

    ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

    Jessica Chastain, “The Eyes of Tammy Faye” – Winner
    Olivia Colman, “The Lost Daughter”
    Penelope Cruz, “Parallel Mothers”
    Nicole Kidman, “Being the Ricardos”
    Kristen Stewart, “Spencer”

    DIRECTOR

    Kenneth Branagh, “Belfast”
    Ryusuke Hamaguchi, “Drive My Car”
    Paul Thomas Anderson, “Licorice Pizza”
    Jane Campion, “The Power of the Dog” – Winner
    Steven Spielberg, “West Side Story”

    PRODUCTION DESIGN

    “Dune” – Winner
    “Nightmare Alley”
    “The Power of the Dog”
    “The Tragedy of Macbeth”
    “West Side Story”

    CINEMATOGRAPHY

    “Dune” – Winner
    “Nightmare Alley”
    “The Power of the Dog”
    “The Tragedy of Macbeth”
    “West Side Story”

    COSTUME DESIGN

    “Cruella” – Winner
    “Cyrano”
    “Dune”
    “Nightmare Alley”
    “Westside Story”

    ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND

    “Belfast”
    “Dune” – Winner
    “No Time to Die”
    “The Power of the Dog”
    “Westside Story”

    ANIMATED SHORT FILE

    “Affairs of the Art”
    “Bestia”
    “Boxballet”
    “Robin Robin”
    “The Windshield Wiper” – Winner

    LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM

    “Ala Kachuu — Take and Run”
    “The Dress”
    “The Long Goodbye” – Winner
    “On My Mind”
    “Please Hold”

    ORIGINAL SCORE

    “Don’t Look Up”
    “Dune” – Winner
    “Encanto”
    “Parallel Mothers”
    “The Power of the Dog”

    VISUAL EFFECTS

    “Dune” – Winner
    “Free Guy”
    “No Time to Die”
    “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”
    “Spider-Man: No Way Home”

    FILM EDITING

    “Don’t Look Up”
    “Dune” – Winner
    “King Richard”
    “The Power of the Dog”
    “Tick, Tick… Boom!”

    MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

    “Coming 2 America”
    “Cruella” – Winner
    “Dune”
    “The Eyes of Tammy Faye” – Winner
    “House of Gucci”

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail
  • NYFA Presents: The Rock The Vote Rally 2020

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    A rousing group of New York Film Academy students, faculty, and staff from all three campuses (New York, Los Angeles, and South Beach) participated in a Rock the Vote Virtual Rally yesterday. The Rally included special guest, Tony-nominated actor Daphne Rubin-Vega (Broadway’s RENT, Les Misérables, The Rocky Horror Show ), who shared stories of her immigrant family background, becoming a U.S citizen, and the imperative to vote. 

    NYFA Producing alum Lisa Cortes (producer of the Academy Award-winning Precious, recent Emmy Award-winner for The Apollo, and producer/co-director of the just-released Stacey Abrams documentary All In: The Fight For Democracy) spoke of the importance of voting in light of the long history of voter suppression in the U.S. In the making of All In: The Fight For Democracy during the COVID pandemic, Cortes talked about how her NYFA Producing education proved so valuable in pulling together the project during such challenging times. Attendees were treated to a special viewing of the All In trailer and a special musical clip of Janelle Monae performing the closing title song from the film. 

    Also joining via specially recorded video clips was Nikki Renée Daniels from “Hamilton” and Shoshana Bean from “Wicked”,  A special “Get Out The Vote” tribute by Lin Manuel Miranda and the cast of Hamilton capped the Rally. 

    The event was co-produced by NYFA Producing Chair Neal Weisman and Chair of the Musical Theatre Department, Kristy Cates. 

    “Our sincerest hope was not only to invigorate the NYFA community to become excited about and committed to voting, but to inspire everyone in attendance to reach out to their circles and do the same.” – Kristy Cates

    NYFA’s Rock The Vote efforts include a Zoom room every Tuesday from 1 p.m. ET – 4 p.m. ET that offers voter registration and mail-in ballot assistance for NYFA students, faculty, and staff from all three campuses. Please stop in and check your registration, apply for absentee ballots, etc. Further information is available on the NYFA Voter Resources page.

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail
  • Congratulations to the Winter Class of 2020 at New York Film Academy Los Angeles (NYFA-LA)!

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    The end of January was an exciting time at New York Film Academy (NYFA), as students and instructors witnessed the culmination of their hard work over multiple days of final screenings, presentations, pitches, and of course, graduation ceremonies. 

    Students were able to invite family, friends, and industry professionals and present their work; Filmmaking, Producing, and Acting for Film students held their final screenings at Warner Bros. Studios; Photography students had their work displayed in art galleries; Screenwriting and Producing students pitched ideas to entertainment professionals; and Game Design students presented their creations at a showcase. The excitement concluded with a full day of graduation ceremonies with family and faculty cheering on their graduates.

    The January 2020 graduation ceremony was held at the Harmony Gold Theater in West Hollywood. Throughout three ceremonies, family and friends from all over the world gathered to celebrate as NYFA graduates proudly accepted their diplomas and tossed their caps in the air.

    Guest speaker and NYFA Board Member Matthew Modine encouraged graduates to be actively present in the moment, instructing students and guests to take a deep breath, while stating, “Conscious breathing reminds us that we are alive, in the moment, and that the moment–this moment–is all there really is. No one has ever existed in the past or the future, there’s only now. You must always remember to breathe.” 


    Modine continued his commencement speech by motivating students to hone in on their creativity and open their minds, proclaiming, “Being an artist requires you to think. It demands you to reason, collaborate, and develop a worldview. Your creativity will only be as vast as your imagination. Your talent will manifest in the choices that you make.” 

    He added, “Today, you graduated from this Academy and you must now enroll in the school of thought. The cost for this next investment is simply being present and aware of each and every moment.” Modine’s message garnered a positive response from the hopeful graduates, excited to share their creativity with the world. 

    New York Film Academy congratulates all of the incredible students who have dedicated so much time and hard work into completing their training here. We look forward to celebrating all their wonderful achievements to come! 

     

    Take a look at all the images in the following links:

     

     

     

    January 2020 Graduates  

    .

    Mahmoud Abul Burghul

    Meshaal Al Jaser

    Sura Aldakhil

    Elton Alexander

    Khaled Algrainees

    Seda Anbarci

    Nida Arif

    Alina Averianova

    Veronica Badell

    Branden Bailey

    Ryan Barnes

    Catalina Barragan Castano

    Frederick Scott Basnight II

    Alexander Bethea

    Zhishen Bi

    Lyndsay Bianco

    Jaime Blanson

    David Bockenkamp

    Jaden Tyler Boland

    Ekaterina Bolshakova

    Trey Bond

    Cole Ryan Brewer

    Sarah Brine

    Troy Brown

    Amara Brown

    Nathaniel Bryan

    Samuel Buckner

    Zhiyin Cai

    Lissette Camacho

    Matthew Relyea Capron

    Federica Carlino

    Andrei Carmona Linhares

    Yu-Fang (Annie) Chang

    Chin-Wei Chang

    Lingjuan Chang

    Kritika Chawla

    Suimeng Chen

    Yanqing Chen

    Haolin Chen

    Yufei Chen

    Lan-Chi Chien

    Sungho Chun

    JaToris Combs

    Paige Conroy

    Alexis Cruz

    Keren Dekterov

    Brianna Dickens

    Francisca Emma Dolha

    Lialdon Donovan-Green

    Yuwei Du

    Zhiyuan Duan

    Daniel Morgan Duddy

    Murat Dugan

    India Edwards

    Theresa Katharina Eschbacher

    Jose Escorcia

    Anthony Alexander Esparza

    Boise Badilla Esquerra

    Liujin Fang

    Chloe Feller

    Aaron J. Field

    Devan Ford

    Hunter Fox

    Huanting Gao

    Daniel Garza

    Steve Grigdesby

    Haining Gu

    Abdulrahman Haddadi

    Erin Lynnette Hall

    Paiten Hamilton

    Woonyea Han

    Ziwei Han

    Wahijadeen Harrison

    Jingya He

    Skye Hendon

    Herbert Antonio Hidalgo

    Chia-Yu Hsieh

    Xuemao Hu

    Xin Huang

    Sean Jackson

    Sebastian Jaimes

    Julianna James

    Tian Jin

    Bobby LaMont Johnson II

    Senka Joti

    Shreya Karunakaram

    .

    Sanaya Gautam Khatri

    Mina Khouzam

    Shreya Kotian

    Anton Krasavin

    Brandon Lattman

    Nicholas Lehman

    Yinghao Li

    Junke Li

    Yilin Li

    Dong Huk Lim

    Doudou Lin

    Shiyu Liu

    Gong Liu

    Kameshia Logan

    Chenxin Lou

    Pedro Louis

    Yi Lu

    Gabriel Lugo

    Chi Ma

    Megan Ressa Mann

    Yasmine Mazboudi

    Jack McKeever

    Ryan Mechling

    Siyuan Miao

    Jaasir Omar Minor

    Nicolai Ndambo

    Joseph Neibich

    Rialene Nel

    Nolan Nelson

    Zhuoran Ni

    Dylan Nuttall

    Mudiwa Kennedy Simbai Nyamande

    Ashley Oge

    Romelia Osorio

    Botagoz Ospanova

    Caglan Ozdogan

    Caterina Piccardo

    Justin Piehler

    Muhammad Rehan

    Jason Dale Rhodes

    Kameron Donnel Rory

    Alexandra Maria Roth-Rosenthal

    Aaron Rowe

    Gulshan Salamli

    Sharwin Sandesh Samant

    Juan Martín Sánchez

    Brenda Serrano

    Jia Shi

    Agnes Shinozaki

    Ilan Siegal Berner

    Thorunn Sigurdardottir

    Chul Hyeon Son

    Noelle Soulier

    Cristopher Spagna

    Athena Stamakinley

    Jonathan Stroughter

    Jeremy Suarez

    Edward Suh

    Keping Sun

    Yueh-Tzu Sun

    Rongkang Sun

    Jared Swift

    Phyllis Tam

    Yuchi Tian

    Diego Toussaint

    Joaquin Trapero

    Szabina Hanna Tutor

    Rachel Vaswani

    Vitoria Mitsuyo Wada

    Jiayu Wang

    Yu-Tzu Wang

    Shiran Wang

    Joshua Weyers

    Daniel Wheatley

    Anthony White

    Banghao Xiao

    Jingrui Xin

    Zehao Xu

    Chuanzhuan Xue

    Vladyslav Yuriyovich Yaremov

    Chen Yu

    Yazeed Zailaee

    Miaoling Zhao

    Muyun Zhou

    Sainan Zhu

    Adilet Zhumabek

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    March 2, 2020 • Community Highlights, Student Life • Views: 3249

  • African Black American Film Society Kicks Off 2020

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    On Thursday, February 13, the African Black American Film Society kicked off their first meeting of the year by setting the initiative of the club in motion as several New York Film Academy (NYFA) students as well as alumni from various departments gathered to discuss the way forward. 

    ABA Club Feb 2020

    Members showed a keen interest in organizing and hosting events that would build morale, as well as establish and solidify relations amongst individuals. During the event, new members also had the pleasure of meeting the ABA advisor, NYFA Producing instructor Kim Ogletree. 

    Ogletree spoke about the Industry Lab and how it is beneficial in assisting creatives in developing their projects. The club has a lot in store for current and potential members this year in terms of numerous networking and collaborative opportunities that will benefit students in their respective fields.

    Four days later, on February 17, the ABA hosted an African Heritage Day presentation and screening. ABA members Lethabo Mokgatle and Thembelihle Nkosi provided a presentation about South Africa and some of the things that make their home country special to them. They screened Sarafina!, the 1992 South African musical film about the 1976 Soweto uprising against apartheid that stars Whoopi Goldberg. 

    Before the screening, all the attendees got into an engaging discussion about both South African and African American history, violence, injustice, and how there are so many similarities between the two. At the end of the screening, not only were people exposed to a new movie they’d never seen before, but had learned from each other’s experiences. 

    Though the attendees came from different geographical locations around the world, this did not limit the ABA meeting as everyone was able to connect, respect, listen and engage with others’ points of view and grow our overall understanding.

    Written by ABA members Thembelihle Nkosi and Rhema Boston

     

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail
  • New York Film Academy (NYFA) Hosts Chinese Lunar New Year Dinner

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    On January 28, New York Film Academy’s New York campus, located in downtown Manhattan across the street from Battery Park, hosted a dinner party to celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year—the Year of the Rat—in the student lounge.

    More than fifty students from across the globe joined the dinner to taste a variety of traditional Chinese dishes and celebrate the Year of the Rat together. Additionally, several representatives from New York Film Academy recently celebrated the Lunar New Year at the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in New York.

    New York Film Academy wishes everyone a warm and happy Lunar New Year!

    Check out the photos below from our successful Chinese Lunar New Year celebration:

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    January 31, 2020 • China, Community Highlights, International Diversity, Student Life • Views: 2022

  • New York Film Academy (NYFA) Celebrates International Education Week with Food, Culture, and More!

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    Did you know that New York Film Academy (NYFA) has welcomed students from 140 countries?! 

    NYFA offers a unique experience for artists to blend their education and talents with a diverse range of international culture. The Academy has had the privilege of teaching students from all over the world in a creative space of acceptance, community and teamwork.

    Recently, NYFA celebrated International Education Week, an entire week dedicated to recognizing students from around the globe through music, food, education, and storytelling.

    International Education Week 2019
    One of the most popular events of the week was the Food from Around the World & International Map Pinning Party, where delicious Latin American, Mediterranean, European, and Asian foods were brought together under one roof for all to enjoy. 

    The event not only allowed students to discover new and exciting tastes—it gave them an opportunity to reconnect with home. A world map displayed during the event was surrounded by proud students eager to represent their cities with colorful pins.

    When asked what they like most about studying at NYFA, here’s some of our students had to say:

    “It’s always nice finding people from all over the world and experiencing different ways of thinking.”
    – Alessio Giurgola (Italy)

    “Learning about different cultures helps me build my characters.”
    – Max Abadilla (USA)

    “I’ve lived all over the world—Nigeria, Ghana and Dubai. I like that I’m not basic, there is so much to talk about as an international student.”
    – Sushi Kohli (India)

    “I was born in China and have lived in New Zealand for eight years. Had I not come to NYFA, I would not have met so many people from different counties. I have the opportunity to expand my horizons!”
    – Qiao Qiao (China)

    There is no doubt that NYFA is a special place, one filled with creative, colorful, expressive, and committed individuals! Cheers to oneness, togetherness, and to celebrating diversity every day!

    written by Lena Purtu

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    December 23, 2019 • International Diversity, Student Life • Views: 1667

  • New York Film Academy Los Angeles (NYFA-LA) Celebrates Pride Month

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    The New York Film Academy Los Angeles (NYFA-LA) campus had a lively Pride Month with six opportunities for engagement, including two socials, a trivia night, a film screening, a workshop, and a raffle. Many of the events were hosted by the LGBTQI+ club as well as Student Life.

    Pride Month kicked off with a lunchtime social with doughnuts, a photo booth, and a music playlist with all LGBTQI+ artists curated by the LGBTQI+ club. Students, faculty, and staff all came together to meet each other and show their pride with custom photo booth props designed by LGBTQI+ club.

    LA Pride Month 2019
    LGBTQI+ Club president Hakam Kharraz shared, “Everyone was happy and proud. I wanted people to socialize with others that they don’t know, and for them to be able to celebrate themselves with others that don’t identify as LGBTQIA+, and I think that was successful. The event promoted acceptance and safety, and was networking for people which is good for this industry.” A closing social was also held so that community members in both buildings, Riverside and Barham, can participate in Pride Month.

    LGBTQI+ club also hosted a trivia night, where students competed for prizes donated by Hamburger Mary’s. The trivia questions ranged from LGBTQI+ history, to films and pop culture. “It was educational in a fun way. Everyone said they learned a lot, whether about Queer history or Queer representation in media, said a student.

    The learning continued at the Why It Matters: Gender & Sexuality workshop led by Director of Student Life Missy Dominguez. Students, staff, and faculty came together during lunch to learn about the difference between gender and sexuality, transgender and gender non-conforming inclusion, pronouns, and all-gender restrooms. “It was one of, if not the most, informative, insightful, and organized NYFA presentations I’ve been to,” expressed NYFA faculty Terah Jackson. Due to its success and popularity, another workshop will be held August 1st in Barham.

    Pride Month ended with a screening of The Miseducation of Cameron Post, a film about a teen sent to gay conversion therapy. LGBTQI+ president Hakam Kharraz expressed, “It was very important to show a movie about such an important topic, because this topic is relevant all around the world.” After the film, students had a discussion both about the topic at hand, gay conversion therapy, and the technical filmmaking. “Cinematically it’s beautiful. The story is relevant,” expressed a student.

    LA Pride Month 2019

    At the end of the screening, the Pride Raffle winners were announced. New York Film Academy held a Pride Raffle at all campuses where $1 raffle tickets could be purchased for a chance to win a special edition NYFA Pride shirt and bag. Each dollar is matched by New York Film Academy and all proceeds donated to GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, & Straight Education Network). As a result, the Los Angeles campus will be contributing a $254 donation to support LGBTQ youth and foster safe schools.

    If you did not get to participate in Pride Month, Kharraz has a message: “If I could reach people who didn’t come, I’d say NYFA itself is a safe environment for everyone and our LGBTQI+ club is very inclusive of people both who identify as LGBT and who do not. We are all friends. We don’t judge. We’re our own community within a community.” 

    “If you are not out, you can always anonymously send a message to the club at lgbtq.clubla@nyfa.edu or request a meeting with the president. There is also Jackie (Jackie.Rabinowitz@nyfa.edu) and Kathia (Kathia.Rabelo@nyfa.edu), the therapists on campus, who have an LGBTQ support group every week to create a safe space for students to talk.”

    LGBTQI+ Club can be reached at lgbtq.clubla@nyfa.edu. Staff and faculty interested in forming an LGBTQI+ faculty and staff affinity group can contact any member of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programming committee, including Susan Ashe, Christine Daniels, Missy Dominguez, Art Helterbran Jr., Prarthana Mohan, Jenni Powell, and Barbara Weintraub.

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    July 11, 2019 • Student Life • Views: 2321

  • The Broadcast Club at New York Film Academy (NYFA) Visits 2019 National Geographic Contenders Showcase

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    On June 2, members of the Broadcast Club at New York Film Academy (NYFA) attended the 2019 National Geographic Contenders Showcase. The club is one of many co-curricular activities available to students at our Burbank-based Los Angeles campus.

    NYFA Broadcast Club NatGeo
    The 2019 National Geographic Contenders Showcase is a one-of-a-kind event held outside, featuring concerts, screenings, and other fascinating, interactive events. This year’s Showcase was held at the Greek Theatre.

    The Showcase began with a picnic in the early evening. Additionally, it featured a VR experience and photo exhibit to bring people up close and personal with the animals of NatGeo’s Hostile Planet, as well as puppies up for adoption.

    Also offered was a unique cryo-spa with ice cold facials to show off the NatGeo production Life Below Zero. The Broadcast Club students and other attendees were also able to get henna tattoos and create their own charms as they spoke with the producers of The Story of God, featuring Morgan Freeman. For 90s arcades fans there were nostalgia-inducing games inspired by NatGeo’s Valley of the Boom.

    Along with a behind-the-scenes look at hit Julianna Margulies medical thriller The Hot Zone was a picture and sound editing demo of Academy Award-winning documentary Free Solo. Attendees could feel what it was like first hand when New York Film Academy editing instructor for the Documentary department Bob Eisenhardt sat down and put the film together. Additionally, Free Solo subject and record-breaking rock climber Alex Honnold was on hand to meet everyone and sign his book.

    The night ended with a final live concert event hosted by Morgan Freeman and featuring footage from Free Solo; Hostile Planet; and The Flood, narrated by Angela Bassett.

    Check out photos of the Broadcast Club taking in the Showcase below!

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    June 26, 2019 • Student Life • Views: 1890

  • New York Film Academy Chinese Students and Scholars Association (NYFA-CSSA) Awarded ‘Excellent Student Home’

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    On May 19, the New York Film Academy Chinese Students and Scholars Association (NYFA-CSSA) was presented a Certificate of Appreciation and awarded the title of Excellent Student Home for outstanding contributions to the Southwestern Chinese Students and Scholars Association.

    The Southwestern Chinese Students and Scholars Association is an organization under the management from the Chinese consulate in Los Angeles. The group organizes clubs for students from China studying in the United States—the Chinese Students and Scholars Association—around college campuses nationwide.

    NYFA-CSSA Award
    NYFA-CSSA is based at the NYFA-Los Angeles campus and boasts around 30 students. The club has hosted two events so far this year, including the Chinese Spring Festival Gala in February. The Gala involved different shows and an authentic Chinese dinner for guests.

    In May, NYFA-CSSA hosted the LA Chinese Student Film Screening. The event showcased films from Chinese students—not only from NYFA but also from other distinguished schools in the area, including Chapman, AFI, and USC—making NYFA and NYFA-CSSA a central hub for Chinese students in the greater Los Angeles area. The LA Chinese Student Film Screening also invited the film directors to have a Q&A with the audience, and was a very well-received event by all.

    Because of these two events as well as other contributions by NYFA-CSSA, the Southwestern Chinese Students and Scholars Association awarded the club the Certificate of Appreciation. New York Film Academy congratulates the members of NYFA-CSSA on the terrific achievement!

    Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

    May 31, 2019 • China, Community Highlights, Student Life • Views: 2223