Studio News: Harvey Finkle – Under One Sky

poor black immigrant using old mattress as a trampolene
Photo: Harvey Finkle, Copyright 2022
 
Dear Friends:
 
Under One Sky: Documenting Immigrant Communities in Philadelphia The Photography of Harvey Finkle is an exhibition being planned for October of this year. We are raising much needed funds to assist with the matting, framing and mounting of 43 photographs out of the 83 that will be in the show and any amount donated will help us get closer to achieving our goal of being able to show these amazing photographs. Below please find a little more about Harvey’s work and this exhibition.
 
For five decades Harvey Finkle has documented immigrant communities, as well as social and political activism in Philadelphia and other US cities. He photographed and documented the Sanctuary Movement in the early 1980s and in 2003 his exhibition Philadelphia Mosaic: New Immigrants in America was held at the Free Library of Philadelphia.
 
 Under One Sky: Reflecting Immigrant Communities Through Photography 1982-2018 will present thirty-six years of Harvey Finkle’s photographs documenting the many immigrant communities that call Philadelphia home and is the biggest retrospective of his immigrant photographs to date. 
 
The proposed exhibition also comes at an important time when immigrant communities in the USA are experiencing backlash, and in the case of Asian and Pacific Islandercommunities, a rise in attacks and violence in the form of anti-Asian hate. It is also an important exhibition as Harvey is no longer able to photograph due to the onset of rapid macular degeneration, which forced him to give up the camera, despite this challenge, Harvey continues to work by organizing, distributing, printing, editing and showing his work while continuing to make photos with a digital printer. 
 
The exhibition will present over 80 photographs showcasing 17 immigrant communities living in North, South and West Philadelphia. The groups represented in the exhibition include Indonesians, Vietnamese, Hmong, Cambodian, Laotian, Indian, People from Burma, Bhutanese (Nepal), Mexican, Peruvian, Guatemalan, Liberians, Afghans, Lebanese, Ethiopians, people from Sierra Leone and Jamaicans. 
 

Below please find a link to our indieGoGo fundraiser. Your generous contribution no matter how small will assist us in readying the work for exhibition. Thank you in advance for your consideration. 
 
 
Sincerely yours,
David Acosta & Harvey Finkle.

Amanda Stevenson: The Creative Process

 

Text by Amanda Stevenson, Copyright 2022

.

The Creative Process

.

Is that a painting? No, it is a photograph. This is the question I have heard during my entire 35yr. photography career. Now in 2022, I only have clients I choose that give me full creative freedom.

Let’s start from the beginning. I am an artist, I do not think linearly, my mind works in an abstract way. I sees in colors and shapes not beginning to end. I was fortunate to have a fashion model as a mother so I was influenced by a creative field that could bring home the bacon and still be creative.

The creative side: I am fulfilled when I can explore the unknown and respond to the situation (did I just write my true self realized). It is like a puzzle. How can I create a photograph with a set, models, products, weather conditions, clients requests, egos, budgets and deadlines. This may not appear to be a creative process. As I write it, does seem more like a business negotiation. It is artistic, because we are in the moment creating and everything is evolving. I can create a photo set up in my controlled studio. Take notes, calculate the light and can document every angle and the next day it is different. I can’t explain it but it is never exactly the same. It is the unknown element. Maybe it’s the weather, the position of the moon, maybe it is everyone’s mood, maybe a bad hair day or the chemistry of the people I are working with.

Life is always shifting. Maybe it is just a new day and a different perspective. The plus side is that when I work with a creative team and creative directors, it evolves and we find our voice together. It may not be like the original layout but it’s better because it is ours as a team.

My Advice: In the beginning I tried to produce/create what I thought my clients wanted like a spread sheet. But the truth was they didn’t really know, they are looking for my inspiration. It is a creative process. Who knows what can happen. Create what you see and feel and you will be rewarded by using your own vision and delivering above exceptions.

What does this have to do with art and photography. Stay true to your self, take risks, stay in your power. Enjoy and respect your creative process. 

.

About The Author: Amanda Stevenson is a professional photographer having over 25 years of experience. Amanda uses her diligent nature and artistic vision to collaborate with her clients to display the still and video imagery in various publications and exhibitions around the world. To learn more about Amanda Stevenson photographic services, click herehttps://amandastevensonphoto.com

.

Portraits of Amanda Stevenson by Tony Ward. Creative Direction by KVaughn. Photographers assistant, Anthony Colagreco.  Copyright 2022.

Mikel Elam: Trauma


Text and Art by Mikel Elam, Copyright 2022

.

Trauma

.

Imagine how much trauma there must be in the world . All of the acts of disrespect on the planet and to the planet. In some ways we might be kinder to our pets . Not that there is anything wrong with giving our pets love . It just that we don’t give ourselves enough of the same energy .

Then we wake up and fake it . Fake life . Fake ego. Fake values and Fake intentions. Multiply that by billions of incidences throughout the world . I would say we are all in need of therapy. How can we think we are a good person if everyday we look the other way when something doesn’t suit us . Keeping silent when you hear a slur about someone else is the same as being a contributor. We are powerful beings if we try . We can make a difference in someone’s life .

Use technology with all of its faults . If someone is in distress call for help . Document it. The first time this was done was with Rodney King . Without the unnamed citizen who caught the beating , the incident would have just been erased. Reach out to someone you don’t know . Keep an open mind . Leave our judgements at home . Be present.

.

About The Artist: Mikel Elam was born in Philadelphia. He attended the University of the Arts receiving his BFA in painting. He also attended the School of the Visual Arts in New York. He has been showing his paintings in numerous gallery spaces nationally and internationally for the last 25 years. Mikel is currently an artist in residence at the Fitler Club in Philadelphia.

.

To see more of Mikel Elam’s artwork, link here: https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/mikel-elam-our-collective-consciousness/

Katie Kerl: The Long Haul

 

Photography and Text by Katie Kerl, Copyright 2022

.

The Long Haul

.

I am trying to remember the last thing I wrote here and I can not. Life is such a mind fuck. Yes, I said mind fuck. I had covid right after my father died in December and it is now March 30th. In between that time symptoms come and go every few weeks just as If I had covid again.

I write about wellness all the time, I take care of myself, I got the shots, I bought any and everything to get better. I felt absolutely insane complaining about being sick like this because not one person I knew felt that way except the one other person who got it when I did. 

Months have past, doctors called, prescriptions written, and NOTHING.

I will go for one or two weeks and be completely fine. Then taken down again.  All of this I was not fine with but it was manageable. I could not work out, and slept like a narcoleptic cat. If you know me, sleep is not really my forte. 

The thing that finally was enough? 

Standing in an upholstery store with my mother and getting chest pains across my back shoulder blades and down my arms. 

I’m standing there trying not to upset my mother who just lost my father but the pain just kept spreading.  

We ended up in the ER and the woman said this is the most common trait of long haul covid. She kind of smiled with a concerned look on her face and let me know she could give me a recommendation for a pulmonary doctor, but I would be waiting months out like everyone else. 

MONTHS you could have serious damage to your internal organs and this woman is saying months. 

I really feel for the first responders who have patients like me sitting there saying now what with zero resolution ZERO.

A week later that pain has subsided . I am still run down, but much better. 

I decided I am going to live my life freely. 

Not that I don’t now, but in a much different way. I will not waste my time doing things I do not want to do. I will see all the things I want to see, take care of my mom, make meaningful connections ,and help as many people as possible in the time that I have here. 

The fact so many people have died leads me to believe the ones who are left were meant to move on to the next phase of life. 

I am currently sitting in Atlanta at my work experience center area in Atlantic Station . Thinking how much personal work went into sitting here today. Also, how lucky I am to be in such a forward thinking company. 

On my way to the airport I passed my old job. 

Nothing had changed, the same workers, and I was no longer confined to a building. Amazing business to have the opportunity to design restaurants. I did not want to be a body in a store designing or not. 

Last night on the news they said 4 million + people quit their jobs this month. The great resignation is an ongoing thing. You can watch the United States unravel daily. People are fed up. If you play it right you can make a living on Instagram and Tik Tok. That will never be totally for me, but for the people pushing out content three times a day…. GET THAT MONEY

Did I mention we are at war??? Not that I need to tell anyone but,  It is 2022 and I feel like we may be using some of those fallout training we were made to do in elementary school. If anyone thinks for a second we’re just safe here I beg you to think again. To all of my Ukrainian friends and just the large population of Russian and Ukrainian people in the Philadelphia area. My heart goes out to both sides. People with families suffering, and ones who are being ridiculed for being Russian. When are we just going to accept PEOPLE as PEOPLE ?!?!? That is the entire point of the world catching fire the last three years. 

Start living your best life now. Not tomorrow, not when you feel better, not when you lost weight, and not when you are in a better place .

This piece is going to be as ADD as my brain. 

Anyone that has read my past pieces knows that I invest, and am into crypto. For the second time Game Stop and AMC have short squeezed. I held my AMC after trading it many times. I have watched CNBC daily for two years. The first time they said get into crypto was just a few weeks ago right after the war started. There are metaverse and crypto commercials daily on that channel. I had said to many people; crypto will run up again after the shorted stocks do.  That is not a new occurrence, more people just caught on. 

I took those gains right to my crypto. 

I am not sure why so many people hate crypto when the stock market is corrupt. If you could potentially double your business revenue from NFTs & the Metaverse are you really that averse to change you would miss out on this type of real wealth?

Teenagers are making more money than their parents because they get it, just like social media. We are going to see more digital millionaires and billionaires in our lifetime because of this.  

My company just created a metaverse, crypto coin, our own wallet, and avatars.

I highly suggest researching  blockchain, stable coins,  utility coins, transaction based, metaverse related ,and get into some of it now. 

Before some are too high to buy into . Get Kracken /Gemini apps, and get interest on your crypto and your US dollar coin. 

The Gemini dollar  is like 8% some apps up to 12% in some cases. 

You become the bank. 

One of the old school banks I had an account left in infuriated me. They blocked some of my crypto trades. The teller’s response?  “ We are trying to protect you”. Excuse me, overdraft fees ,0% on your savings ,and cards that do not work internationally just sound like they were controlling how I spend.  I have never been happier switching than when I did. 

It is two days after my 38th Birthday. Last year I was in Miami partying at Miami Music Week. Those few days always set me free. For the first time in a decade I came to the vivid realization that week was no longer for me. At least not in that way.

I still love Miami though. I went in December and did it a much different way. We went to Strawberry Moon pool ,and Dante’s HiFi. Rich Medina played an awesome vinyl set. What I took away from the two experiences; I don’t want to be at your oversold party, I do not want to get treated like a piece of meat at your table, or on your boat with strangers. I am not for sale. Granted not all of Miami is like this, but its the majority of d*ck swinging men trying to get the most pretty women to party with them. 

My goal is to own the boat.  

They say you meet people at the most unexpected times. If you would have told me I would meet someone at 3 am at a party we both didn’t intend on being at and bonding over Solana.( you would probably ask me what that is. I will let you google that and maybe it will inspire you.) It is now about to be April and he is as supportive of me, my goals, my dad’s death, being covid sick forever, and I am not easy to deal with for most people given my be yourself attitude. 

Alice crossed a Mad Hatter who was just as out there and caring as her. 

We will see how far this rabbit hole goes lol. 

I am beyond blessed and thankful for the life I have right now. 

Am I still grieving ? Absolutely

Do I still have awful reoccurring covid symptoms 100%

Did I just drop  enough money into crypto in the last four month to help all that just a bit. 

You are damn right I did. 

Tomorrow I am going to a women’s executive networking event being hosted by KewCali of the Fostered Foundation in Atlanta. It is called The Kewl Experience. One Hundred women coming together to progress forward. 

My ability to connect real people together is kind of my superpower. Sounds funny, but I owe everything I have to building relationships.

People ridicule you for going through acquaintances or friends. I will never understand that. If you do not change your circle how will you ever change your life? 

How do you grow without expanding your reach and trying new things ?

I usually have some meaningful closing to these pieces. 

Not this time. It is more of a warning. 

LIVE 

I do not care what you do; just START. 

As someone who decided to do just that; I can’t wait to see more people in this position. A position to design your life. Not have it dictated to you. 

While I never felt grief like this, I feel free.

No one will be taking that from me.

 I walked through my fire . I dare you to do the same.

.

portrait of Katie Kerl, lifestyle writer for Tony Ward Studio
Katie Kerl. Spring of 2022

.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Katie Kerl was raised in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania. She is currently living  in Northern Liberties, Philadelphia. Katie has a background in Psychology from Drexel University. She is a manager in the commercial/residential design field . Katie can be reached  on Instagram @kerlupwithkate 

For collaboration e-mail: Kate.kerl32@gmail.com

To access additional article by Katie Kerl, click here:  https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/katie-kerl-philly-reloaded-life-after-lockdown/