Student and Alumni Spotlights
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  • NYFA Grad’s “The Remains” To Be Released Worldwide

    the remainsWhat started out as Thomas Della Bella’s final thesis film at New York Film Academy has now turned into a feature horror film coming out in theaters and iTunes worldwide on August 5th. Written, directed and edited by Della Bella, The Remains stars Todd Lowe (True Blood), Samuel Larsen (Glee), Nikki Hahn (American Horror Story), Lisa Brenner (The Patriot), Brooke Butler (All Cheerleaders Must Die), Hannah Rose Nordberg (General Hospital) and Ashley Crow (Minority Report).

    With the NYFA BFA graduate’s film due out in a week, we thought we’d ask him a few questions about his film and his career as a filmmaker after NYFA.

    Congratulations on THE REMAINS! Can you tell us how this film come about?

    The Remains is the feature length version of my final year thesis short film Open House. I graduated the BFA Filmmaking program in late 2013 in Los Angeles. I knew going into my thesis film that I wanted to make a short film that could be used as a proof of concept for a feature. So, essentially, I wrote a 15 page mini-feature that followed a family that moves into a Victorian house. I broke the script down into three traditional acts with every 5 pages constituting Act I, II and III. So in the final 13 minute film you get this really cool and fast paced haunted house story.

    Now, at the time I had an internship at Blumhouse Productions. Blumhouse is the pinnacle of horror and thriller movies out here and I knew from very early on that one day I wanted to be involved with these filmmakers. Some of their titles include: The Purge, Insidious, Paranormal Activity. As I was interning and PAing for them, I was in post production on my thesis film. Once the film was finished, I sent it around the office to everyone I became friendly with. The following day, a co-worker who watched the film called me over to her desk to tell me how much she loved the film and how she was impressed with the quality of the film.

    Now let me also mention, the budget of the short film was $5,000 that I raised via Kickstarter. However, the tools that NYFA provided allowed me to elevate the short film to looking like a much bigger budget film.

    The co-worker introduced me to an independent producer at the time named Eric Fleischman. I met with him for lunch a few days later and pitched him the feature version. About three months later, the movie was green lit through Eric Fleischman and Sean Tabibian’s genre production company Diablo Entertainment. From that point, we were off to the races. Everything fell into place at rapid speed and the movie was produced on a shoestring budget.

    In your own words, what is your film about?

    The Remains is, at its core, a homage to the haunted house horror genre. The film follows John and his family after they move into an old Victorian house after the passing of his wife. Soon after moving in, his two youngest children find a chest in the attic that contains a bunch of antiques. From that point on, an item attaches itself to each family member and slowly starts to possess each family member while pitting them against each other.

    The themes I explored are all based around the crumbling of the family unit and the idea that you would do anything for the well being of your family.

    Were there any influencers that got you into the horror genre?

    Yes! Stanley Kubrick by far has to be one of my biggest influences. The Shining is one of my all time favorite films and you will see references of that in The Remains. I was just always blown away by the moodiness and composition of his films and I really wish I had a chance to meet him. But, specifically, The Shining, 2001: A Space Odyssey, A Clockwork Orange, and Barry Lyndon are my favorites.

    I’d also have to say that James Wan and Leigh Whannell are huge influencers of mine. I grew up watching the Saw franchise and those films always left an imprint on my brain. But, I don’t think it was until Insidious in 2010, when I was in my early film school years, that I realized these are the types of films that I want to make and these are the people I aspire to someday work with.

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    Thomas Della Bella on set of “The Remains”

    Thinking back to your time at NYFA. Do you believe your experience prepared you to write, direct, and edit the feature version of THE REMAINS?

    Yes, 100%. I learned so much doing my 1 year in NYC and 2 years in LA with the NYFA education model. From the very first day of class, they put a camera in my hand, and honestly, the best learning is by doing. And that is exactly what you do while attending NYFA — you make films. I was very lucky to have such an amazing class that really worked together to make fantastic art. I am still very close with most of my classmates and I hired a few of them to work on my film! I’d also like to point out that many of my teachers at NYFA were extremely supportive of anything I wanted to do or try. I think they definitely helped gear me up to jump into a movie as a first time director.

    Was there anything interesting that occurred on set that you’d like to share with us?

    Probably the weirdest thing about being on set of The Remains was that fact that we shot the short film at the same house. There are two or three scenes that are exactly the same and untouched that we were shooting for the second time. And it was just a very weird sense of deja vu while doing those scenes. But, we shot the film at this amazing 129 year-old house that had the most fantastic home owners ever. They basically let us take over their house and do whatever we wanted, twice in a row, and that was such a positive experience.

    Going back to the fact that the house is now 129 years old…it was just an incredibly creepy house. The second you look at the house from outside you immediately think to yourself, it’s haunted. But, I do remember on numerous occasions that the grip and electric departments were always rushing to get out of the house when we wrapped up every night, because the house is that much creepier at night. There were one or two reports of things moving around on their own, but, for my own sanity, I’ll blame that on the production assistants.

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    Thomas Della Bella on set of “The Remains”

    What advice do you have for filmmakers looking to shoot their first feature?

    My biggest piece of advice would be to make a short film with the goal of a feature version behind it. This way when you write the feature version, you have this amazing proof of concept to show potential investors and producers. Also, students should take advantage of crowd-sourcing sites like Indigogo and Kickstarter.

    The best move I made early on was getting an internship at a company I was truly interested in. Interning lead to set work and, honestly, I learned the most while working in a production office and being on big budget sets.

    Be sure to check out The Remains in theaters and iTunes August 5th!

    July 29, 2016 • Filmmaking, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 3222

  • Photography Student Work Featured in “Luxury Living” Magazine

    Headed up by New York Film Academy Photography Chair David Mager, Instructor Chris Knight, and Instructor Andreanna Seymore, photography students were given a truly hands-on experience, capturing images for The LakeHouse restaurant in Bay Shore, New York.

    Each instructor led three groups of students to capture environmental work, portraitures, and food product photography images that could be used for advertising and marketing purposes.

    “One of my favorite things about this school is the hands-on class work,” said NYFA student, Stephanie Schnabel.

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    “Luxury Living”; photographed by students from the New York Film Academy Photography Program.

    “We were really trying to show how beautiful the restaurant is, as well as the faces of the owners,” said NYFA Photography student, Emma Clinton.

    Students’ final advertising photos were featured in a Luxury Living article that highlighted the ten-year anniversary of the Long Island beachfront restaurant. Luxury Living is Long Island’s premier lifestyle publication serving the needs of the area’s most affluent residents. Published quarterly by Newsday, Long Island’s leading content provider, Luxury Living celebrates the life well-lived with coverage of high-end homes and gardens, dining and entertainment, art and culture, travel and automotive, and retail, specifically fashion, beauty, jewelry and accessories.

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    “Luxury Living”; photographed by students from the New York Film Academy Photography Program.

    “I’m really impressed with how everyone worked at this shoot,” said NYFA Instructor Andreanna Seymore. “After this experience, I can really see them working, shooting, and being really professional. I think that this experience has been very successful.”

    July 28, 2016 • Photography, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1082

  • Students and Alumni Meet with Agents

    As the clock struck 7:00 at the New York Film Academy Los Angeles Campus the lobby began to fill with acting students and alumni. Agents from Abrams Artists Agency, Central Artists, Daniel Hoff Agency, DDO Artists Agency, Howard Talent West, Ideal Talent Agency, LA Management, McKeon-Myones Management, Media Artists Group, Prodigy Talent, Debra Manners Talent Management, sat perched behind desks ready to take the student’s head shots and discuss their future.

    Frederico Mallet a recent MFA Acting graduate attended the recent looking for commercial and theatrical representation. “I think it’s fantastic that Barbara made this happen,” said Mallet. “Because she is really great. She’s one of the finest people at NYFA. She’s at it all the time. She cares so much about us and I’m really grateful that she did this.”

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    The event was organized and run by Barbara Weintraub, Chair of Industry Outreach and Professional Development. She wanted to give recent and soon to be graduates an opportunity not only to network and practice pitching themselves but hopefully to land an agent and secure work.

    Spring 2015 graduate, Katisha Seargent, “I graduated in May and I’ve been trying to get out there. I was doing a lot of self-submissions. I was so grateful to the school put together a program to help us get that foot in the door because it’s something we’ve been trying to do since we graduated.”

    “I watched the footage that they made us shoot on our very first week at NYfA and I just compare it to where I am now and the growth is just exponential. It’s ridiculous. I learned so many things. My interpersonal communication skills rose exponentially. My confidence…it just went through the roof. I’m playing roles now that I never thought that I would do, that I didn’t think I was good at. I found out I have a comedic side. I never thought I was funny. You find out so much about yourself through this process here at NYFA.”

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    Acting student Owen Rousu knew he only had two minutes to impress the agents, “I have a commercial agent already so I’m looking more for theatrical. My little spiel goes, ‘Hey, I’m Owen. This is my theatrical headshot. I’m looking for theatrical representation; either a manager or an agent. I’m SAG eligible. I think what sets me apart from other actors is I spent five years in the army. I deployed twice as a US Army Ranger. So, the roles that I would go up for are usually army, marines, cops, firefighters, or the bad guy, apparently. I get a lot of villains, which actually, I love.”

    When all was said and done we had several students reach back to tell us about their experience.

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    The meet and greet was such a great event! I got an audition for commercial representation at Daniel Hoff! Which is an agency I’ve wanted to audition for so bad!

    So, thank you!

    Best,
    Linnea

    Thank you so much for yesterday the event was great! I was already contacted by two talent agencies!
     
    So, thank you so much! Those events must keep on going! They are of great help.
     Gonzalo
    Thanks for last night event!! I got contacted by DDO agency already for an interview next Thursday for possible representation!
    Thanks,
    Todd
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    The New York Film Academy would like to thank all the agencies that came to view our students and the current students and alumni who took advantage of this opportunity.

    July 21, 2016 • Acting, Community Highlights, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1339

  • NYFA Doc Grad’s “Legacy” Earns Award at the White House

    The tradition of cowboying is alive and well—in Brooklyn. In former New York Film Academy Documentary student Amy Wright’s film, Legacy, which premiered at DOC NYC in 2015, Wright takes a glimpse into the lives of the men and women who comprise The Federation of Black Cowboys. From trail riding in Virginia, to giving riding lessons to kids back in Brooklyn, The Federation ensures that the legacy of America’s forgotten black cowboys will live on for generations to come.

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    This Wednesday, July 20, Wright’s film was recognized and awarded Best Short by the March on Washington Film Festival, which was held at the White House. The March on Washington FF strives to increase awareness of the events and heroes of the Civil Rights Era and inspire renewed passion for activism. The festival uses the power of film, music, and the arts to share these important stories.

    “I accept this award in honor of my late grandfather, who was the inspiration for the film,” said Wright. “I’m so glad to have been able to share the legacy of black Cowboys with the world.”

    In her film, Brooklyn’s own Federation of Black Cowboys ride the trails, transport inner city kids off the streets and onto horses, and work to preserve and celebrate the legacy of the forgotten 1/3 of old west cowboys who were Black. Wright shines a light on the lesser-known aspects of Black history. Her journey with the Federation of Black Cowboys, from urban Brooklyn to rural Virginia, reveals the nuanced intersection of Black culture and American iconography.

    “The making of Legacy has been a whirlwind experience, from pitching it in the one year NYFA doc program to its screening today at the White House,” added Wright.

    “These cowboys have character in every sense of the word, from their quiet integrity to their colorful personalities,” says Andrea Swift, Chair of the Documentary Department, New York. “Seen through the lens of Amy Wright’s camera, scions of the American West like Captain Lee, Rabbit, Momma, Bug, Magic and Mountain Man fill the screen and the imagination with an unconventional vision of life on the range—if the range was Brooklyn.”

    Wright’s film is yet another shining example of the high quality, award-winning films that haven been produced with the New York Film Academy’s Documentary Program.

    July 21, 2016 • Documentary Filmmaking, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1917

  • 16mm Camera Test at Griffith Park

    As a part of Six-Week 16mm & HD New York Film Academy Filmmaking Camp our students learn how to actually shoot on film. Why, you may ask? Well, regardless of the fact that nowadays digital imaging is equivalent or maybe even surpassing the technical capabilities of film, many productions are still shot on film. This means that knowing how to work with 16mm is still a precious skill in the industry.

    Recently, at a beautiful location at the Griffith Park, the students had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with film for the very first time. Have a look for yourself!

    July 20, 2016 • Filmmaking, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 355

  • Alumna Nabs Portuguese-Brazilian Award

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    NYFA alumna, Gabby Egito, being honored with the Portuguese-Brazilian Award

    NYFA alumna, Gabby Egito, was recently honored with the Portuguese-Brazilian Award, one of the most important accolades of Lusophone communities in the United States. The honorees list was handpicked by a jury committee of journalists who gathered names of the art world, entrepreneurs and notable professionals who excelled in cultural or social awareness in support of their communities in America.

    Egito was recognized for her achievements as a recent Brazilian filmmaker. Her fast rise began in 2010, when she came to the U.S. to attend a NYFA 8-Week Workshop at the Los Angeles campus. In the workshop she produced a 7-minute dark comedy, Synergy, which was honored at the Awareness Film Festival, in Hollywood. This sealed her participation in the NYFA One-Year Filmmaking program under a merit-based scholarship.

    During her studies at the New York Film Academy, Egito wrote and directed two other films that became festival darlings including the thriller Stuffed and the psychological drama Taken for Granted. Egito has amassed nine awards and five nominations at competitions from coast to coast: Hollywood, Las Vegas, Orlando, Atlantic City (New Jersey), Houston (Texas), Atlanta (Georgia), Cleveland (Ohio) and Muskogee (Oklahoma).

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    Still from “Synergy”

    “It’s amazing to look back and realize how much I’ve achieved since I arrived in this country with two suitcases and a dream of becoming a filmmaker,” said Egito. “NYFA certainly played a decisive role in this journey, providing me the hands-on experience I needed to start off.”

    Egito is now working on a long-form documentary about disparities between American and Brazilian dating. “I want to address the cultural differences I’ve been observing in the past six years living in Los Angeles,” commented Egito. “It’ll be very amusing, I promise you.”

    The Portuguese-Brazilian Award, organized by Ricky Terezi, was held on July 12 at a 19th-century Norman-style castle overlooking the Hudson River, 30 miles from New York City.

    July 18, 2016 • Filmmaking, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 2754

  • MFA Photography Grad Nominated as Top 15 Best National Cosplay Photographer of 2016

    Alify Nasution

    photo by Alify Nasution

    MFA Photography Alumnus, Alify Nasution, has been nominated by Cosplay Gen Magazine as one of the top 15 Best National cosplay Photographers of 2016. Nasution is a fine art photographer, specializing in conceptual portrait photography. He’s been shooting since 2009 but found a passion for photographing costume enthusiasts, otherwise known as cosplayers.

    Cosplay is a design driven art form where fans create costumes based off their favorite characters. Media from which characters are pulled range from anime to video games, comic books, and even real people. Sometimes cosplayers take two characters and create a singular hybrid. This new age art form allows fans to demonstrate their incredible creativity and innovation.

    The costumes can take hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars to create. For many in the community, it’s more than just a hobby; it’s a lifestyle. Before turning to photography Nasution was a cosplayer. His first costume was Rogue from Ragnarok Online.

    Back in 2005, when Nasution was getting started, there was no such thing as cosplay photography. Photographers would simply go to conventions and take ‘documentary-style’ photographs of the convention goers.

    Alify Nasution

    photo by Alify Nasution

    This is when Nasution realized all of the efforts poured into making costumes and role-playing characters could be better appreciated if photographed professionally.  He saw how he could combine fashion photography, fine art photography, and portraiture to properly document these unique pieces of art.

    In 2015 Nasution began his journey to become a professional photographer. He moved from Indonesia to Los Angeles to study Fine Art Photography and in 2016 he graduated from the New York Film Academy receiving his MFA in Photography.

    Alify Nasution

    photo by Alify Nasution

    While at NYFA his knowledge of photography increased tremendously, both technically and theoretically.  During his studies he was able to explore vast concepts from political to fantasy, eastern and western culture, every race, creed and nation. Nasution remains steadfast in his goal to introduce cosplay photography to a global audience. He doesn’t just take a beautiful photograph; he preserves a story.

    July 14, 2016 • Photography, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 2615

  • NYFA News on the Scene with President Obama

    Earlier this year two of our Broadcast Journalism students — Alisa Rajkitkul and Urvashi Barua — became accredited White House reporters. This means they are entitled to attend any White House media events. Last week, they traveled to Warsaw to cover President Obama’s participation in the biennial NATO heads-of-state summit.
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    As far as we know, they are the first student journalists ever to accompany the President on an overseas trip. The team shot stories first in Poland and then Spain, for use on NYFA News, the program the 1-year Broadcast Journalism students produce.
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    President Obama meets the global media, and reacts to the tragic events in Dallas where five law enforcement officers were killed.

    In addition to shooting stories for NYFA News they were also active on social media, including Snapchat. Stay tuned for more White House coverage from Urvashi and Alisa.

    July 14, 2016 • Broadcast Journalism, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1825

  • David Bowers Speaks with Summer High School Students

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    This week, director David Bowers brought his latest project, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days, the third installment in the Wimpy Kid franchise, to screen at the New York Film Academy – Los Angeles Campus. Flanked by NYFA Cinematography Chair Tony Richmond and moderator Eric Conner, Bowers spoke about his long career in animation, working his way up the ladder, and navigating big Hollywood studios.

    Students from the popular NYFA Summer High School Program were in attendance for the screening and were excited for the opportunity to speak with him about his successful career. Bowers had an illustrious career that began as a kid making Super 8 Claymation films. When he was twenty he began working as an animation artist on Who Framed Rodger Rabbit. Bowers said in the Q & A he was only hired because, “…they were desperate for anyone who could hold a pencil.” He went on to explain that this stroke of luck set him on a challenging and rewarding career path. Since the work on Rodger Rabbit was so new and complicated he was learning as the technology was being created. With the knowledge gained he was able to launch his career.

    Bowers continued to ascend the ladder as an animator in American Tale: Fievel Goes West and the 90’s revival of Danger Mouse. Other works include FernGully: The Last Rainforest, We’re Back! A Dinosaur’s Story (produced by Steven Spielberg), and The Prince of Egypt.

    But it wasn’t until he began work at the legendary production company, Aardman, that Bowers began his foray into storyboarding. First he worked on Balto and then The Road to Eldorado. Bowers recommended every film professional practice storyboarding, stating, “It’s an opportunity to make mistakes before you shoot.“

    WC3When Aardman and DreamWorks teamed up to do joint features Bowers was the obvious choice to direct. Students erupted when Flushed Away, Bowers directorial debut, was brought up. The director broke down his time on the nearly four-and-a- half-year project.

    After the massive success of Shrek, DreamWorks’ first tentpole project, the expectations of Flushed Away skyrocketed. The American based DreamWorks wanted to push for a universal project. They wanted less British and more standard American English. However, Aardman, the UK based company, felt the cultural touches made the film distinct. In the end, the British cultural touches gave the film a certain truth of character that made it a favorite of children on both sides of the Atlantic.

    Through the trying process of filming Flushed Away, Bowers learned what he liked and what he didn’t like about the animation process. The yearlong wait between storyboarding and viewable animation always felt too long. The teamwork and collaboration, on the other hand, were invigorating. Bowers shot one final animated feature film, Astro Boy, before moving to live-action properties.

    When asked if there was one thing he could go back and change about his career, Bowers stated, “I’d launch into live-action sooner.” Later adding, “Live action is thrilling because you’re making things all the time.” Within just 8 months Bowers had shot and released the second Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules. “Even on your worst day when everything’s gone wrong… it (film) is still fun.”

    Richmond, who shot the film, remarked at the onset movie magic they were able to create as a team. The luxurious country club is actually a very old community pool. Richmond described it as being “…rather dirty.” But with fabulous set dressing and a carefully placed camera they were able to convince the audience they were at a ritzy club.

    WC1A student asked the pair if they ever had trouble working with a director or cinematographer. Tony stated that a cinematographer’s job is to make the director’s vision come to life. He’s never had a problem working with a director.

    Bowers said his greatest challenge was learning that there are times when your confidence will be knocked or you believe in yourself and other don’t. “Astonishingly,” he added with a laugh. “It’s not that you get knocked down. It’s that you get back up.”

    New York Film Academy would like to thank Mr. Bowers for taking time out of his schedule to sit down and discuss his cinematic career with student. He did inform the audience that he was working on a fourth film in Diary of a Wimpy Kid franchise. We look forward to seeing where Greg Heffley’s adventures take him next.

    July 13, 2016 • Acting, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1648

  • Former Student to Present Photo Exhibition at Cloud Gallery in NYC

    Stone Wong

    Stone Wong

    Born and raised in Hong Kong, the New York based photographer and former New York Film Academy Photography student Stone Wong has been featured in Gothesque Magazine and Nam Magazine.

    With a focus in fashion, beauty and portrait photography, Wong is especially strong in capturing the emotional moments of people, and he has a keen sense in presenting a blend of Chinese and Western culture in his works.

    Beginning this Thursday, July 14, 2016, Wong will be presenting a Solo Photo Exhibition “In Search of Hong Kong” at the Cloud Gallery in New York City (66 W Broadway). His exhibition will run until July 28th.

    Recently, NYFA had a chance to catch up with the busy photographer before his upcoming exhibition.

    Would you mind telling me a little bit about yourself and your background?

    My name is Huang Ka Kit. You can call me Stone. I was born and raised in Hong Kong. I grew up in a very normal family with my parents in the fashion trading industry. After I graduated from high school, I started helping them out while working as part-time photographer at the same time. It wasn’t until I turned 29 years old that I decided to chase my dream as a photographer.

    What drew you to study photography at NYFA?

    I fell in love with photography when I first owned a camera at the age of 17. When I turned 29, I realized life is not all about making money, so I decided to put a hold on my work in the fashion trading industry and pursue my dream in photography.

    When I think of photography and fashion, New York is always the first city that pops up in my mind. I always wanted to live and study in New York at least once in my life. I’ve been learning photography on my own for a few years but I’ve never received any professional training. New York Film Academy provides the most hands-on program as far as I know. That’s why I decided to come to NYFA to improve my skills.

    work by Stone Wong for Gothesque

    work by Stone Wong for Gothesque

    What was your favorite aspect of your Photography Program at NYFA?

    What I truly enjoyed the most was the close connection between our instructors and the students. It goes beyond class hours. Whenever I had any technical questions, regardless of time and distance, I could always ask for guidance and advice from my teachers during and after the class. For example, they guided me through the way of exploring and figuring out what photography means to me both as a photographer and an audience through my own efforts. Students have to rack their brains to express their feeling towards photographs and critique them in a professional way under instruction. Among all the courses, I love “Vision and Style” the most.

    I also love the way students work as a team just like in a real work environment.

    Before joining NYFA, I learned all of my technical skills from the Internet. I took photos based on whatever ideas or concepts popped into my mind. NYFA’s program helped me put my “scrapped” techniques and knowledge together in a more systematic and structured way, further improving my understanding of the art and technique as a photographer in a profound way. It also gave me a clearer direction of where I’m going to in terms of personal artistic style and career path through teaching me how to develop a concept, compose an image, use color, interact with models and eventually tell a story.

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    Wong’s work for Nam magazine

    What’s your favorite work that you have produced thus far?

    My final project “Lost in Chinatown” is my favorite work produced out of the NYFA program. In my opinion, photographic work should not only appeal to our eyes but also to our minds, which means I expect these visual images to influence people in a more meaningful way.

    As a New York based Hong Kong photographer, I’m very proud to have a Chinese identity with strong experience in culturally diverse environment, which enhanced my reflection of China. From this “Lost In Chinatown” series, I want to create a peculiar yet coherent collection that challenges people’s perceptions on Chinese beauty. By having an American stylist, a Japanese make-up artist and a Chinese model to collaborate in this project, I tried to present vivid visuals of China in its new era.

    "Lost in Chinatown" by Stone Wong

    “Lost in Chinatown” by Stone Wong

    What has been the greatest challenge you’ve faced during the production process and how did you solve it?

    It’s all about leveraging between creating a high quality photograph and dealing with the difficulties encountered all the way through pre-production to post-production: the limited time and resources to conceptualize a creative idea, setting up everything for shooting, controlling the unpredictable circumstances on set, and the necessary technical skills to polish your work and develop it into something you desired. I want my work to be perfect, so I will spare no effort to achieve what I want.

    In what ways do you think NYFA helped you to develop the business skills needed to succeed as a professional photographer?

    The program itself is very practical and inspires me a lot. The techniques and theoretical knowledge that I obtained from classes have been applied to some of my favorite photographic pieces.

    Which artist influences you most and why?

    Annie Leibovitz is one of my favorite artists. She is a great storyteller. Her photographs are just like condensed romantic films appealing to her audience emotionally. We have all the necessary recipes including lighting, scene, mood and subject — now you just need to blend everything together into a decent and delightful meal. That’s something I’ve always been looking for and working on.

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    “Deviate in Murk” by Stone Wong

    Can you tell us about your solo fashion photography exhibition coming up this July?

    Yes, I’m going to have my first ever solo photography exhibition at the Cloud Gallery in New York City. It’s called “In Search of Hong Kong Vision.” It will showcase some of my favorite pieces of work, including “Lost in Chinatown,” “Film Noir,” “The Lady,” “Fear,” “Deviate in Murk,” “The Gentlemen and Dark is Coming.” I want to present a harmonious blend of Chinese and Western culture while sharing a special view for China’s rapid development, Hong Kong and international vision, and humanity issues.

    Hong Kong is my root, but I travelled and lived in different cities in China and the U.S. in order to widen my perspectives and culture inspirations. There is no definite answer for Hong Kong Vision. By understanding through thinking and discovering through experiencing, I attempt to define this unique view of Hong Kong Vision, and present his distinctive sense of Chinese and Western culture into his fashion photography and portrait works. I love the saying that “Photography is not only about the moment of pressing the shutter, photography is nothing but eternity.”

    This exhibition will open on Thursday, July 14th, 2016 with a public reception at 7pm for the artist.

    Please find out more information from the following link.

    Where do you see yourself as a photographer in five years?

    I want to be a full-time fashion and commercial photographer without compromising. I will keep working on my “In search of Hong Kong” project. I hope a couple of years later when I look back on today’s work, the quality of my work grows simultaneously with the increase of my age and accumulation of life experiences.

    Any additional advice you would like to give to NYFA photography students?

    If you love photography and decided to devote yourself to this industry, you should get started as early as possible. Photography cultivates your life in an artistic and educational way. It teaches you to appreciate the world and the fine parts of it by concentrating it into a tiny little image. But before you choose this career path, you should be aware that it’s a road with no turning back. It’s the enthusiasm and hard work that support you at the end of the day, so just be prepared to face all the challenges and the endless efforts you should make on your road to success. If you are not quite sure about it yet, you probably should enter schools like New York Film Academy and figure out who you want to be and where you want to go.

    If you would like more information about Stone and to see his portfolio, please check out his website, Facebook & Instagram.

    July 12, 2016 • Photography, Student and Alumni Spotlights • Views: 2156