dominican republic

  • Photography Alumna’s Fashion Work Featured in Cosmo China and Lucy’s Magazine


    While in high school, Kimiko Chan received her first camera and quickly fell in love with capturing the details of her world. After studying painting for more than 20 years, Chan decided to attend New York Film Academy’s Photography Program to learn some of the practical elements of photography.

    Kimiko Chan

    photo by Kimiko Chan

    While in the program, Chan recalls her class trip to the Dominican Republic as one of the highlights of her experience. “The DR trip was the best moment at NYFA,” said Chan. “Teachers and students traveled together and worked as a group to explore the country while taking photos and documenting the live’s of local people.

    Since completing her program at NYFA, Chan has worked in fashion photography for Cosmo China magazine, Lucy’s magazine, and some Chinese celebrities.

    “Nowadays, fashion photography trends are more real and more relaxed,” says Chan. “More and more fashion photographers try to explore the deep feeling of human nature instead of a beautiful picture.”

    photos by Kimiko Chan

    For a look at more of Kimiko Chan’s fashion photography work, please visit here website at

  • NYFA Los Angeles Documentary & Photography Excursion to the Dominican Republic


    Each year, MFA, BFA, One-Year and Two-Year photography students, as well as MFA and One-Year documentary students are invited on a one-week exotic trip. This year the New York Film Academy Los Angeles headed on an exotic excursion to the Dominican Republic. The team was led by Documentary Chair Barbara Multer-Wellin, Production Sound Instructor James Coburn IV, and Photography Instructor David Blumenkrantz. Joining their instructors were documentary students Guangli Zhu, Carolina Sosa and Yuan Li, as well as photography students Brenda Cantu and Ziomara Ramirez.

    Along the trip, Ms. Multer-Wellin kept a log of this incredible journey that captured the exotic landscape and culture of the Dominican Republic.

    September 16, 2016

    dominican rep

    We left Los Angeles at 11:00 PM, switched planes in New York and arrived in Santo Domingo the next afternoon. We spent the rest of the day getting acclimated and renting some lighting and grip equipment from a local rental house. Afterwards, we had dinner at an oceanside restaurant, as a huge orange Harvest Moon rose in the sky.

    September 17

    ruins dr

    After a quick stop at a local cambio to change dollars into Dominican pesos, the NYFA team started filming the streets of Santo Domingo. The team began at the ruins of the Monastery of San Francisco, built in 1503. Walking through the local streets we filmed street vendors, performers, painters, young couples, an evangelist, domino players, and a trio of musicians playing Merengue Tipico — the traditional form of the Dominican national dance and music.

    Since we’re here to make a documentary about Merengue, this was a great stroke of luck. Dinner was at a restaurant in Santo Domingo’s China Town. Our two Chinese team members, Guangli and Yuan, were able to speak with the owners in Chinese, although their dialects were not the same. Somehow, in a mixture of Spanish, Chinese and English, we managed to order a real feast.

    September 18

    dom rep

    Today was all about challenges and overcoming them. Our NYFA crew was scheduled to interview the noted Dominican percussionist and folklorist Edis Sanchez at his new apartment. But we soon discovered that Mr. Sanchez had yet to move in, so the apartment was empty (luckily he brought his drums and some chairs). We were able to film a great interview with available light and a single bounce board.

    That evening we filmed an outdoor Merengue concert and dance party with the band Grupo Bonyé at the ruins of the San Francisco Monastery, first built in 1503. We hope to interview the band’s leader, Señor Nestor Sanchez, later this week, a great addition to our documentary about the importance of Merengue in the Dominican Republic and just maybe our reward for hanging in there.

    September 19

    dancers dr

    By our third full day we had adjusted to the realities of filming here in Santo Domingo. Traffic on weekdays rivals Los Angeles — it just takes more time than you think to get anywhere, even with the expertise of our driver/new friend Victor. We spent the morning filming more establishing shots for the opening sequence of our documentary, including the first cemetery built in Santo Domingo; a haunting and eerily beautiful place full of crosses, angels and a few stray dogs. Next were a flower/flea market, the Presidential Palace and an upscale residential area. This is a city of stark differences between the way the rich and poor live, like most cities. We spent the afternoon at the Palace of Fine Arts where we were fortunate to be able to film the fantastic dancers from the Ballet Folklorico Nacional Dominco as they rehearsed three Merengue pieces. One couple demonstrated the basic steps of Merengue for our cameras. Tomorrow, an interview with Elizabeth Crooke Morel, Director of Ballet Folklorico Nacional Dominco, and Nestor Sanchez, from the great band that played at the concert at the ruins of the San Francisco Monastery.

    September 20


    The New York Film Academy LA documentary crew began the day back at the Palace of Fine Arts in Santo Domingo to interview the Director of the Ballet Folklorico Nacional Dominco, Elizabeth Crooke Morel who told us more about the elements of the dance Merengue. After a quick stop to film more establishing shots in a shopping area in the city, we all piled back into the van. Soon we arrived at the home of musician Nestor Sanchez. Señor Sanchez spoke movingly about the history of Merengue and the profound meaning it holds for the Dominican people.


    September 27, 2016 • Community Highlights, Documentary Filmmaking • Views: 4801

  • Photography Alumni Spotlight: Ana Paula Tizzi


    Since completing both the 4-Week Summer Program and the One-Year Photography Conservatory, New York Film Academy alumna Ana Paula Henrique Tizzi has worked on several photography projects including works from her excursions to the Dominican Republic and Cuba. The Brazilian native and current photography teacher’s assistant broke down some of her astounding work for us, and took the time out to answer some questions about her time at NYFA.

    Dominican Republic

    “The NYFA trip to the Dominican Republic was absolutely incredible to me. It was the first time I was able to put into practice all of my new skills and techniques I had learned, and really see the development of my style and ability—it’s a very special and unique piece of work.”


    “I went to Cuba in the beginning of this year to work on a short documentary movie and had the opportunity to also work a little bit on my own project, in which I was able to show a little bit more of my point of view.”


    “The circus project really means a lot to me as a person and also as a photographer. Circus taught me to embrace falling and making my own mistakes without being self-conscious.”


    “Encarando is a project that was very challenging and fun for me. I love people’s reaction and movement. With a flashlight I light up people’s face on the streets, capturing crazy and funny moments that made my life easier.”

    (All photos above are by Ana Paula Tizzi)

    What made you decide to come to New York Film Academy?

    New York Film Academy is a very well known school in Brazil, so it was my first thought when I decided to come to New York for the Intensive 4-week Summer Program. After that, I began planning for my next course at NYFA, which happened two years later with my One Year Conservatory Photography Program.

    What was your most memorable moment at NYFA and what is one of the best lessons/skills you have learned while attending?

    During the one year program most of my most memorable moments were the day-to-day interaction with the students and staff on top of the first hard experience of a professional photographers work schedule. The one year program was incredibly intense and packed with learning and new experiences, but by the end of the course it felt like not only had the time flown by, but I had also learned a lifetime of knowledge in such a short period of time. I have been lucky to meet amazing people and the greatest mentors I could ask for. Needless to say, it was the greatest two years I could ask for.During my overall experience at NYFA, I developed not only as a professional but also as a person.

    How did the program help you in terms of the projects you’ve presented to us?

    NYFA not only taught me to become a photographer, it also allowed me to believe in what I do. I’d like to thank all of my teachers and friends that I have made my NYFA experience an intensive and unforgettable year.

    What do you see yourself doing in the future?

    I am applying for a Masters Degree in Digital Photography, so after graduating I see myself growing and learning more about this amazing field. I also hope to jump-start my career as a photographer and travel to improve my portfolio and professional experience.

    Do you have any advice for anyone interested in entering the photography industry?

    Be patient and never be defeated. Never miss an opportunity. Keep shooting. Your eye is as good as your next shot.

  • New York Film Academy Photography Heats it Up!

    dr island

    © Maciej Stachowicz 2015

    This month, one-year students from the New York Film Academy Photography Department took to the skies for the first ever “photography expedition,” a new initiative by the Film Academy to provide its students with an international educational experience. For students of the visual arts—such as photography and filmmaking—exploring another culture is key to re-examining their perspective on the world while providing valuable new ways to inspire and shape their art-making. The program’s plan is for all students enrolled in the Photography and Documentary Filmmaking Departments, from all U.S. NYFA campuses (Los Angeles, Miami, and New York), to have the opportunity to travel to an exotic destination each year. At least six photography and documentary filmmaking expeditions per year are planned.

    The venue for the Photography Program this term was the Dominican Republic, while the Documentary Department journeyed to the Central American country of Belize. Occupying the eastern two-thirds of Hispaniola, the Dominican Republic is the second largest country, after Cuba, in the West Indies.

    dominican republic
    Upon landing in Samana and traveling to the small town of Las Terrenas, student April Vidal stated, “I’m so excited,” and she, like all of the students, remained excited for the rest of the trip.

    NYFA student Mathew Williams reported, “We have been experiencing Dominican culture: the music, the food, the environment, the weather …that’s been really great!”

    Las Terrenas and its surroundings offer a wide variety of visual subject matter for students to photograph. While there, the assignment was to tell a visual story about the country. Students created a varied and large selection of works– everything from social documentary, to landscape, to portraits, to abstracts of the colors in Las Terrenas.

    “This trip is an amazing opportunity for students to put into practice everything they have learned in our program so far; to do so in a live shoot environment couldn’t be more exciting or challenging,” said NYFA Photography Co-Chair David Mager.

    “The best part of this trip was the freedom to go out and shoot whatever we wanted to shoot… it’s so beautiful. Everyday when I wake up I feel like I am getting closer to my dreams, because this is what I want to do for my career. I want to be a photo journalist, so being out here, meeting all these people, learning about the culture is so inspiring for me,” said Courtnie Keith, a one-year student at NYFA.

    “This was an invaluable experience. I think I fell in love with photography a little more each day,” exclaimed Alexandra Schaede, a student from NYFA’s New York City campus.

    nyfa dr

    The College’s faculty is in the process of scouting locations for future programs. Locations under discussion include Cuba, Honduras and Costa Rica.

    The New York Film Academy is a proud member/partner of the Institute of International Education’s Generation Study Abroad initiative.


    March 24, 2015 • Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 5038

  • NYFA Partners with FUNGLODE/GFDD

    Michael Young and Leonel Fernandez

    NYFA President Michael Young and the Honorable Dr. Leonel Antonio Fernández Reyna, former president of the Dominican Republic

    As many of our students and faculty are well aware, the New York Film Academy whole-heartedly embraces a diverse student population. In our continuing efforts to expand our reach internationally, NYFA has entered into an agreement with the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (FUNGLODE/GFDD) with offices in the Dominican Republic and US. Today, NYFA President Michael Young made the agreement official after signing the deal with FUNGLODE/GFDD Founder Antonio Fernández Reyna at NYFA’s Battery Park campus.

    Founded by the Honorable Dr. Leonel Antonio Fernández Reyna, former president of the Dominican Republic, the foundation serves as a bridge for Dominican students seeking higher education in the United States of America.

    In support of the efforts of FUNGLODE/GFDD in regard to student mobility, the New York Film Academy will offer a 25% tuition reduction for students approved by FUNGLODE/GFDD and accepted by NYFA for its degree programs.

    “NYFA is excited to partner with FUNGLODE/GFDD,” said NYFA Director of Outreach and Development, Jack Newman. “Planning is underway to expand the opportunities for Dominican students to experience the hands-on and intensive education provided by the Academy.”

    All applicants will be pre-screened by FUNGLODE/GFDD and will follow the admissions requirements noted at Applications and supporting materials will be forwarded to NYFA by FUNGLODE/GFDD for review, processing, and final approval for admission to NYFA.


    January 9, 2015 • Community Highlights, Study Abroad • Views: 6081