mfa photography

  • Photo Arts Conservatory at New York Film Academy (PAC at NYFA) Showcases Work in Photo LA


    This year, the Photo Arts Conservatory at New York Film Academy (PAC at NYFA) participated in Photo LA, the annual event that links local and global artists and thinkers by sharing work to create an encompassing photographic experience. Students, alumni, and faculty were able to showcase their work alongside galleries, artists, collectors, dealers, and publishers. 

    Photo LA 2020

    PAC at NYFA curated an exciting show representing the values, aesthetics, and the intellectual rigor of our students, alumni, and faculty. The work shows our strong commitment to facilitating an education that combines fine art and commercial skills with critical theory and contemporary issues. We are thrilled to be a community of global visual storytellers, made up of students and faculty from around the world. 

    Additionally. PAC at NYFA also produced, hosted, and moderated three panels at FOCUS Photo LA. Our first panel featured photographer and NYFA faculty Lane Barden discussing his work in the MONUMENTality exhibition at the Getty. Frances Terpak, Curator of Photographs at the Getty Research Institute, joined the discussion, sharing her process of curating the show and the ideas behind it. Also there to deepen the conversation was Roberto Scheiberg, architect from the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design, who was present and an active player in the funding and exhibiting of the Linear City project at Woodbury University’s gallery in Hollywood (Wuho). 

    Our next panel was called Social Media Giants: Thoughts and Advice on Instagram, which featured Baz Here (NYFA MFA Photography student), Maddie Smith (BFA Photography student), and Alejandro Ibarra (MFA alum and NYFA instructor), who all have strong Instagram followings. Silvi Naci, artist, curator, and NYFA faculty, moderated the discussion exploring their use of Instagram as a platform, how they got their following, and what they saw the future of Instagram to be for photography. 

    Photo LA 2020

    Our last and totally sold out panel was a round table discussion called Photo Reps: The Inside Scoop on Intersectional Trends in Advertising. Artist reps and photo producers discussed their experiences in finding and representing diverse photographers and the roles women and people of color take in the making of commercial imagery. This panel featured Maren Levinson (RedEye), Jigisha Bouverat (BOUVERAT COLLECTIVE), Jen Lamping (Director of Photo Production at RPA), and Clarissa Garrett (Producer at 72andsunny), and was moderated by artist and PAC at NYFA faculty Amanda Rowan.

    Artists from PAC at NYFA that exhibited at Photo LA included:

    Changhao Song, BFA Alum
    Eric Magana, BFA Student
    Baz Here, MFA Student
    Dia Yunzhi Wang, MFA Alum
    Oluwasegun Oladele-Ajose, 1-Year Conservatory Alum
    Suge Hou, BFA Student
    Yilin Li, MFA Alum
    Jon Henry, 1-Year Conservatory Alum and Faculty
    Mengmeng Lu, BFA Alum and Faculty
    Angel Alvarado, Digital Lab Coordinator
    Amanda Rowan, Faculty
    Andre Keichian, Faculty
    Jackie Neale, Faculty
    Lane Barden, Faculty
    Naomi White, Chair


    February 5, 2020 • Faculty Highlights, Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 1895

  • NYFA LA BFA and MFA Photography Students exhibit at Schomburg Gallery


    The BFA and MFA Photography Exhibition opened on Saturday, September 28th at the Schomburg Gallery at Bergamot Station, Los Angeles. This is the largest turnout of a photography exhibition in the school’s history.

    NYFA Photography at Schomburg Gallery

    The group exhibition is entitled “Syzygy” which is defined as a pair of connected or corresponding things. Themes varied from racism, violence, the pollution of food, explorations of a runaway Indian bride in New York, and strippers in Palm Springs.

    Kingi Kingibe, from Nigeria, explored the devastating effects of cotton; from its role in the enslavement of African American people to its damaging effects on the planet. Kingibe frames actual cotton plants in gold and transfers stunning portraits of Black women in vintage cotton clothing onto actual raw cotton. His exhibit juxtaposes the ubiquity of cotton with its barbaric origins.

    NYFA Photography at Schomburg Gallery

    Ziomara Ramirez, from Los Angeles, in her ongoing project, “The Last Time”, explores photography’s relationship to death. In her haunting urban nightscapes, Ramirez takes photos during the same time and at the same location that her subject died. Most of her subjects are young Hispanic and Black men. All their cases remain unsolved.

    NYFA Photography at Schomburg Gallery

    Wen Tao Tu, from China, created still-life photos using food that has been affected by pollution. He used dyes, inks, needles, and syrup to raise challenging questions about how GMO vegetables and hormone-fed meat threatens our health. Tu contrasts these upsetting narratives by placing his contaminated still life photos on colorful and commercial backdrops, evoking the deception of advertising.

    NYFA Photography at Schomburg Gallery

    The New York Film Academy would like to thank everyone who attended the gallery and supported our students. Congratulations to all of the graduates. We look forward to attending your next gallery event.


    October 23, 2017 • Photography • Views: 2968

  • 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 & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 7056

  • BFA and MFA Photography Gallery Show


    photo gallery

    The BFA and MFA Photography Gallery Show of the Spring 2016 graduating students from the New York Film Academy Los Angeles was held at Schomburg Gallery, in the famous Bergamot Station in Santa Monica, CA. The seven MFA students and three BFA students had a wonderful turn out of 250 people. Aside from family and friends, one of the guests was the retired curator of photography from the Getty Museum – Weston Naef – who stopped by to enjoy the exhibition.


    Bergamot Station is a facility housing multiple art galleries in Santa Monica, California. The site was previously a railroad station from 1875 to 1953, serving the Los Angeles and Independence Railroad and later the Santa Monica Air Line. The station was named after the Wild Bergamot flower, which once grew in the area. The Bergamot Station is on schedule to become a Historical Landmark in the next few years.

    The New York Film Academy and Schomburg Gallery at Bergamot Station have created a partnership and the BFA and MFA Photography shows will be exhibited there every semester going forward.


    July 4, 2016 • Community Highlights, Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 4108

  • MFA Photography Graduate Exhibition


    The graduating MFA Photography class had its Gallery Opening at 4565 Santa Monica Blvd. on Saturday, January 23, 2016. There were over 75 guests that came and reviewed the New York Film Academy students’ work. If you weren’t able to attend the Gallery Opening, the work will continue to be on display from Monday-Saturday until February 6th.

    mfa photography

    The five graduating students are from diverse cultural backgrounds from around the world. They completed their Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program in Photography with full-time study over the course of four semesters.

    Parth Sutaria finds the connection between nature and our human bodies through his project, Our Intimate Connection with Trees. This series reminds us that the key to our existence is nature.

    Khulud Muath’s thesis project, Under The Microscope, is about her experience living as a Muslim woman in the United States. This artwork explores the notion that terrorism does not belong to any religion or country.

    Hadeel Alahmari has created her thesis about the fashion and style of Saudi Arabian women after they leave their home country. Her work illustrates six different versions of the Hijab and Abaya worn by Muslim women here in the United States.

    Hongbin Dai’s thesis project, Self, explores Hongbin finding her place within her personality and identity in relationship to the rest of the world. Finding “oneself” is the purpose of this project.

    Zhuoqun Jiang created and made all the props and accessories in her beautiful series, Non-Breath Creature. As non-breathing objects, her stained glass inspired props are the centerpiece of the project and they represent immortal creatures.

    The New York Film Academy provides a creative setting with which to develop, challenge and inspire the talents of prospective photographers in a totally immersive, professional environment. By combining seminars and lectures with intense, hands-on classes, students acquire a sound understanding and appreciation of still photography and learn to integrate knowledge and professional experience.


    January 26, 2016 • Community Highlights, Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 5647

  • MFA Photography Student Joseph Bornilla Exhibits at Photo Independent


    joseph bornillaMFA photography student, Joseph Bornilla, exhibited his work last weekend at Photo Independent in Los Angeles. Joseph’s final New York Film Academy thesis project entitled, Chaotic Beauty, is a series of documentary images on the aftermath of the tsunami on the City of Tacloban, in the eastern Philippines. On 8 November 2013, the city was largely destroyed by Super Typhoon Yolanda and Joseph travelled there to photograph during December 2013/January 2014.

    Joseph states, “How is beauty possible when incidents like this have left us with so much destruction? These images will not only be a reminder of finding beauty everywhere in the face of upheaval but also give hope, lead us to contemplation and give us strength. One strong characteristic of the Filipinos in such difficult times is resiliency molded by their yearly visitors including tsunamis, storm surges, and earthquakes among others, that made them stand strong.”

    Sales from the series will go to the tsunami relief fund. Donations can be made through Joseph’s website:

    Joseph Bornilla

    photo by Joseph Bornilla


    April 30, 2014 • Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 5502