Category Archives: News

A.H. Scott: Vortex of the Vile


Illustration by Eustace M. Pilgram, Copyright 2017



Poetry by A.H. Scott, Copyright 2017




In the vortex of the vile, there is never a reason to smile

All asphyxiated in this acidic arena they go

Stature diminished in a discombobulated flow

Emperor elbows anyone in his path, as a naked negativism exudes the core of this being’s wraith

Tactful restraint is nowhere about, for he must always toss around his clout

With belligerent belch of insensitivity incessantly coming from his mouth

This is the essence of what the vortex of the vile is about

For country, ideology, or any other reason it could be

Viper of chaos has chased them upward onto the branches of a burning tree

Generals of combat and command

For sense of duty

Titans of trade and commerce

For cents of duty

Duplicity is the oath of loyalty they now bear

Their once sterling reputations in former fields of glory have been sullied by the sadistic soul-shredder without care

At the helm of the vortex of the vile is a shit-starter who tosses fecal-laden sucker punches and scurries back from the front-line of retaliation by critique

But, that’s nothing new

Oh no, it’s not unique

There’s always a shit-starter who sets off the flame

But, as the firestorm blazes in the four winds in varied ways

They stand back and have others sacrifice their pride with statements of righteous defense

From tiny thumbs, the infantile tirade comes

But then again, the world holds its’ breath for the adults in the house to stand fast and fill the breach

Oh, who the Hell are we kidding?

Punditry from left and right, speak of maturity’s assurance to save us from this house of madness’ plight

Dog of many a year isn’t going to learn some new tricks

Because, being cruel is how he gets his kicks

Now, the carnival is afoot about how he turns his staff from lions to kittens

Charlottesville was nothing but a blip or a hiccup in time

Fine people were on both sides of that line

Mnuchin and Cohn got an important job to do

For constructing a mighty tax shelter will make them invisible to the Tiki torch-bearers’ view

Wave that flag! Wave that flag!

Try not to blind the public too much

Patriotism shouldn’t be callously manipulated like a bumper-sticker slogan and such

Dare not take a knee, for whatever unknown reason it could be

Knees are only meant to be capped by a boss in his high-chair

As he admonishes Rex not to don a diplomatic hat

So bizarre it is that a name of an Elton tune has been plopped into the mix

Howling at the moon is his style

No soul is safe in the Vortex of the Vile

Four men of valor taken too soon

And, actions of those in the office before you are knotted into your response

Will you stop it, will you stop it?

Stop reaching back beyond the Inauguration date of your own hand on that Holy book

Look in the mirror and take a close look

You can’t, you won’t, or maybe you just don’t care

Always right, ya’ gotta fight

Never wrong, that’s your song

Talk about news being fake, there are some things so beyond real

Touting how great thou art is your lofty deal

Paper towels punted, Mayor of San Juan shunned

For him, this is just so much damned fun

Throwaway lines and answers are spoken, leaving even the most steadfast souls broken

A father’s greatest pain spoken at the podium is even sadly diminished into a spin cycle’s token

Sacred things, sacred things

Pity how hollow that singular word rings

Audience of one sits in the office and cynically nods to himself 

Will he apologize?

Oh no, he will never take a knee

To be graceful and gallant as a gentleman he shall never be

America is being flushed down the drain of civility


About The Author: A.H. Scott is a poet based in New York City and frequent contributor to Tony Ward Studio. To read additional articles by A. H. Scott, go here


Also posted in Affiliates, Art, Blog, Current Events, Poetry, Politics, Popular Culture, Women

Victoria Meng: Life at the Penn Museum


Photography, Video and Text by Victoria Meng, Copyright 2017




Sometimes on rainy afternoons in the Penn Museum, when the air is more musty than usual, and the light is just dim enough, I feel as if I can almost hear the alluring whisper of the past, the echo of music and laughter from a forgotten era.

On my first day of work at the Penn Museum, my boss took me on a tour. As we walked among the cool, darkened hallways that house over a million artifacts, I learned about the museum’s illustrious history.

At the end of the 19th century, Provost William Pepper commissioned the museum as a humble way to house artifacts. Through the course of the next few decades, the Penn Museum would evolve into a prestigious institution where Philadelphia’s elite could ascend to higher society.

From the exotic architectural motifs to the smallest details in building fixtures, the Penn Museum would’ve been an incredible marvel at the time that it was constructed. Complete with mosaics designed by Tiffanys, seemingly no expense was spared in creating an “eclectic Victorian extravaganza.”

Yet, as I recount my memory of the museum tour, I remember one detail in particular.

In 1929, Alexander Stirling Calder, was commissioned to create a statue for the European gallery. While his father was known for putting William Penn on top of City Hall and his son reached international acclaim for his mobiles, Stirling made his own statement with a depiction of a Greek maiden styled like a Roaring 20s flapper.

Ironically, it was this anachronistic detail that really became my inspiration. This proof that the museum had once been a backdrop for Gatsby-scale parties made history more real to me than ever before. In fact, the more I looked into the Museum during this era, the more true life became stranger than fiction.

At one point in the early 20th century, a glamorous reception attracted more than eight hundred guests. Two of these guests, perhaps under the influence of too much champagne, allegedly climbed on top of and eventually collapsed ancient Chinese tomb figures of camels. While the ruins were eventually restored to original condition, this raucous memory lives on in my imagination.

Ultimately, my inspiration for my portraits was derived from the Museum’s core mission: to help us remember who we are and where we came from. The more I learn about anthropology, the more I realize that although the way that we live has changed greatly, who we are as humans has hardly wavered.




Portrait of Victoria Meng by Simeon Ristic, Copyright 2017

Also posted in Architecture, Art, Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Environment, History, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Student Life, UPenn, UPenn Photography, Women

TWS: September 2017





Text by Racquel Ward, Copyright 2017


Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2017




Angelinos live amongst the stars, palm trees, vegan diets, terrible dating and gorgeous people. But if you live in the city the right way, it means to explore the rich history of Hollywood, visit it’s beautiful beaches, eat a myriad of authentic ethnic foods and talk to the characters of the city.

Catalina Island is a good place to start. Yes, there are great restaurants and south of France like beaches, but perhaps one of the most underrated sights to see is the 20th century art deco inspired Catalina Casino. Built and owned by the Wrigley Family, this architectural marvel puts you right back in time to the early days of Hollywood. The island itself is known as the “playground of the stars,” but the casino is where they gathered. Casino means, “gathering place” in Italian, and that’s just what Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra and many others did at this decadent Hollywood hot spot.

There is nothing “unknown” about the famous pink wall which houses Paul Smith’s flagship clothing store – mostly because it is one of the most popular places to take a selfie in the United States. If you’re into pop culture and all things Instagram, this is a must-see when you’re shopping on Melrose. It’s a great place to people watch since just about every second of every day you can see people taking snaps at the wall. However, perhaps the most unusual fact about it is that visitors rarely go into the actual store. Go figure.

Let’s not skip over the locals in Venice Beach. The neighborhood is a gentrified mess, but that still has not kept the locals from honoring their stake in the cultural fabric of the area. Keeping the character of Venice alive, 30+ year Angelino residents like Ben Bennett, have made their homes in Venice and do not intend to leave. It is not always appreciated but these guys and gals make the neighborhood what it is despite the presence of Facebook and Snapchat. Next time you see a Venice local, and believe me you’ll know one when you see one, stop and say hi. Ask about their lives, their histories and what makes Venice special to them. This exchange will deepen your understanding and appreciation of one of America’s greatest neighborhoods.

Next time you’re in Los Angeles, explore the city through a different lens. You may be surprised at what you find. But shhhh, don’t tell everybody, for like the oceans and the rain forests, these gems too need protection. Visitors and locals are all stewards of the cultural preciousness of the city.  Happy hunting!


About The Author: Racquel Ward is a writer and educational therapist living in Los Angeles. She holds a BA in Culture and Media studies and a BFA in Contemporary Music from the New School University – Manhattan, New York. Racquel also holds a Master’s of Science in Teaching. She has been published on ThoughtCatalog and most recently finished her first children’s book entitled: The Boy Who Couldn’t Read. Available at


To access additional articles by Racquel Ward, click here


Also posted in Art, Blog, Current Events, Environment, Erotica, Fashion, Glamour, History, Models, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Women

Venice Beach: Portrait of the Day


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Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2017


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Also posted in Advertising, Announcements, Art, Blog, Documentary, Environment, Friends of TWS, Gifts, Men, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Travel

Studio News: A Passion For Fashion

Pia Sulau and Rima Ker Keri of Hamburg, Germany



Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2017


Text by Pia Sulau and Rima Ker Keri, Copyright 2017


Rima and Pia got to know each other during their studies in the city of Hamburg, Germany. They have completed project work and housework together. Both of them quickly realized that they are a good team and complement each other in a variety of interesting ways. They became fast friends mainly because of their common passion for fashion design. They have now both finished their studies and would like to make a hobby their profession. Rima and Pia, currently are active in the commercial and service sector, and would like to start a professional reboot and of course geared towards the fashion industry. Their business idea is to give fashion blog tips on fashion and styling. You will also find trend patterns as well as key pieces here. Rima and Pia are hoping that their dreams will come true and that their fashion tips will become popular, and that their names create a buzz in the German fashion sector.


Sittings Editor: Suzaan Talib

Also posted in Advertising, Affiliates, Announcements, Art, Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Erotica, Fashion, Friends of TWS, Gifts, Glamour, Jewelry, Models, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, T-Shirts, Travel, Women