Category Archives: UPenn

Mu Qiao: The Shape of Water

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Photography and Artist Statement by Mu Qiao, Copyright 2018

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The Shape of Water

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“Water is the source of life”. Water, the basic element of life not only bred and maintained life, but also became the basic environmental factor of human society. The physical and chemical properties of water make it possible to exist in nature in three forms: solid, liquid and gas, and participate in the ecological cycle of nature. Therefore, water is omnipresent. It is as large as a vast ocean, as small as raindrops on glass, and even as invisible in the body of animals and plants. In addition, with the process of industrialization and the continuous development of modern urban civilization, water has more mixed forms, such as drinks and wine, and participates in urban landscapes such as rivers and fountains. Since then, water is not only an element of life, but also a carrier of life.

This portfolio focuses on the impact of water as a natural, environmental, cultural and life factor on human life. And the relationship or interaction between human activities in water bodies. Photographs of natural factors include rain, snow, and other weather scenes in Philadelphia’s city streets. The photos of environmental factors include the landscape of the coastal or riverside cities. Cultural factors include human recreation or fishing in the water. Photos of wine and drinking places are examples of water as a factor of life. The natural landscape is presented with a wider viewing angle, black and white colors and horizontal composition. Objects and activities are expressed in smaller perspectives and prominent colors. I hope that through this series, readers will be aware of the importance of water in our lives, discover the details and beauty of water which we usually neglected.

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About The Author: Mu Qiao is a Graduate student enrolled in the School of Architecture, University of Pennsylvania. To access additional articles by Mu Qiao, click herehttps://tonywardstudio.com/blog/mu-qiao-the-game-of-sunshine/

 

Also posted in Blog, Contemporary Architecture, Current Events, Documentary, Engineering, Environment, Photography, Politics, Popular Culture, Science, Student Life, UPenn Photography

Frank “Fangyi” Fan: The Art of Styling

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Photography and Artist Statement by Frank “Fangyi” Fan, Copyright 2018

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The Art of Styling

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I have always been a person who cares too little about my outfit. I follow the principle of dressing up neatly, but I don’t have much interest in being fashionable or stylistic in my clothings. Why do I stay simple? Probably because I am just lazy. It is only after I met Rongrong that I realized styling could be a form of Art. Rongrong has already made this art part of her life, and her passion in styling sort of inspires me to seek the beauty behind everything in my life. Therefore, I used this individual assignment to showcase her artistic work in styling.

The 24 pictures are separated into 2 parts. The first part, which consists of 16 pictures taken at the studio, exhibits some of Rongrong’s boldest stylings including kimono with fishnet stockings, baggy jumpsuit, and sleeveless top with cargo pants. I must admit that Rongrong has been the most versatile person in styling as she stays comfortable and confident no matter what clothes she puts on. The second part has 8 pictures taken outside the studio, around the world. Rongrong brought her art of styling to every corner she traveled to, from Milan to Rio, New York to Philadelphia. I had the honor to capture her styling artwork throughout this assignment. For me, the enjoyment not only comes from her exquisite styling, but also comes from the lesson she taught me: to seize the beauty around us.

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Portrait of Frank "Fangyi" Fan by Rongrong Liu, Copyright 2018

Portrait of Frank “Fangyi” Fan by Rongrong Liu, Copyright 2018

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About The Author: Fangyi “Frank” Fan is a Senior enrolled in the School of Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2018. To access additional articles by Fangyi “Frank” Fan, click here:https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/fangyi-frank-fan-colors-of-bottles/

 

Also posted in Accessories, Advertising, Art, Current Events, Documentary, Fashion, Glamour, Models, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Student Life, UPenn Photography, Women

Rongrong Liu: Me

 

Photography and Artist Statement by Rongrong Liu, Copyright 2018

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ME

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I woke up in the morning, looking into the mirror. That was a face I am so familiar with for 22 years, but how well do I actually know it? For most of the time, our face faces others. I didn’t realize how much I have changed when comparing the photos taken this year with the ones taken in my freshman year. I am just too used to it to recognize any everyday change. Then how about me, as a person? How much have I deviated from the me two years ago?

My photography experience started from my interest in fashion. I wanted to use this individual project to push me back to where I started, and use myself as the subject to let me re-examine and look into myself. I enjoy the paradoxical freedom and constraint of self-studio. During the photoshoots, there was no one else there, so I was completely free. I can control the camera. I can control the setting. I can control my facial expressions and my styling. However, the vacant viewpoint controlled me. I was not instructed, therefore I didn’t know how the photos would turn out to be. This makes self-studio harder than the regular photoshoot, but I enjoyed the unplanned surprises it brought and revealed the true me in front of the camera.

I didn’t plan for a specific theme in fashion to shoot, instead, I put together everything I love. There are some standard aesthetic stylings and self portraits – it is a regular me. There are some beauty photos, the starry night and the sakura (cherry blossom makeup), the ideas of which have jammed in my mind for a long time, but I wasn’t bold enough to wear those makeups outside. And there are ironic high-street fake design collaborations – it is a me to explore. The co-branding collaboration in high-street fashion becomes a way for brands to earn incredible profits through successful marketing. The supreme shirt is 50 dollars originally, but after its collaboration with Louis Vuitton, the t-shirt was sold at 395 dollars and more. What about this Colgate and Louis Vuitton collaboration, whose brand logo is so similar to Supreme? I guess via some systematic brand marketing, it could achieve the same. Other than that, there are some other collaborations like Joshua Sanders’ symbolic smiley face versus Acne Studios’ emoji, and the most recent rainbow burberry pattern in trend versus bandage. All these ideas popped up in my mind and I used the camera to record them visually. It is like my brainstorming diary.

This individual project on myself is not completed yet and it won’t be completed because I will continue doing it on my way to further self-exploration.

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Portrait of Rongrong Liu by  Lilibeth Montero, Copyright 2018

Portrait of Rongrong Liu by Lilibeth Montero, Copyright 2018

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About The Author: Rongrong Liu is a Junior enrolled in the College of the University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2019. To access additional articles by Rongrong Liu, click herehttps://tonywardstudio.com/blog/rongrong-liu-a-colorful-favela/

 

Also posted in Accessories, Advertising, Art, Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Environment, Erotica, Fashion, Friends of TWS, Glamour, Models, Popular Culture, Portraiture, UPenn Photography, Women

Wenjia Guo: View on the Roof

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Photography and Artist Statement by Wenjia Guo, Copyright 2018

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View on the Roof

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As an architecture student, I always treat design as a process of choice. Choose to show the real structure or hide with decorative materials. Choose to display the mechanical equipment or dress up with modernist elements. It is the same with the photographic medium, photographers choose the light, the subject, the environment as well as the attitude. So, this time, I used my pictures to discuss something that architects tried to hide from the public, the roof view. Nowadays, architects value roofs as the fifth façade. They came up with the concept of a green roof tried to turn the roof into a positive element in life and the environment.  However, during  development over time, architects used the parapet wall to prevent people from easily seeing the roof from the ground. I found several roofs to photograph and recorded these views. From an aerial view to observe these buildings, I found them familiar and strange. The equipment on the roof is still in the quiet of day there to complete their functions, do not look forward to my visit, but once I pay more attention, the snow in spring, the narrow skylight, the huge heating all tells their own story. Architecture design for me is a way of expressing my thoughts to the world and  to photograph structures like this provides me with an opportunity to read to the world.

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Portrait of Wenjia Guo by Mu Qiao, Copyright 2018

Portrait of Wenjia Guo by Mu Qiao, Copyright 2018

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About The Author: Wenjia Guo is a Graduate student in the School of Architecture, University of Pennsylvania. To access additional articles by Wenjia Guo, click herehttps://tonywardstudio.com/blog/wenjia-guo-travel-friends/

 

Also posted in Architecture, Blog, Cameras, Contemporary Architecture, Current Events, Documentary, Engineering, Environment, Photography, Popular Culture, Science, Student Life, Travel, UPenn: Photography Students, Women

Emily Cheng: But Where Are You Really From?

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Photography and Artist Statement by Emily Cheng, Copyright 2018

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But Where Are You Really From?

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To be Asian and living in America is to be a perpetual foreigner in our own land. Regardless of whether we were born in this country, or how much we have culturally assimilated, we are always deemed ‘other’ because of the color of our skin. I came to the United States four years ago from Hong Kong, armed with an encyclopedic knowledge of pop culture and an American accent honed by years of international school and reality TV. Perhaps it was naivety, or just ignorance, but I believed that acceptance would come easily to me. While my experience in the U.S. has mostly been positive, it’s been marred by everyday incidents, from well-meaning questions to racially-charged catcalls, that constantly reinforce my foreignness.

“Ni Hao!”

“Damn China”

“Wow your English is so good”

“But where are you really from?”

I liken the Asian identity to a costume that we cannot shed, no matter how much we try. It’s something that differentiates us, exoticizes us in the eyes of our American peers. For Asian-Americans, that hyphen in our name is a constant reminder that we are not quite as American as our white counterparts. This photo series highlights the complexities and contradictions inherent in the Asian-American identity. It also expresses the otherness that Asians experience in American spaces everyday – from restaurants and supermarkets to schools and workplaces.

I came to America thinking it was a cultural melting pot. But as I prepare to leave after four years, I see a country that is increasingly hostile to immigrants and foreigners, a country that strives to be homogenous rather than full of color. I hope that this series gives you pause, that it makes you question the arbitrary characteristics that divide Americans. After all, to be American is not to have a certain skin color, nor to speak a certain language, but to simply embrace the country’s principles of freedom and liberty.

To quote former president Ronald Reagan, “America represents something universal in the human spirit. Anybody from any corner of the world can come to America to live and become an American.”

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Portrait of Emily Cheng by Esther Fleischer, Copyright 2018

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About The Author: Wing Hei Emily Cheng is a Senior enrolled in the College of the University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2018. To access additional articles by Ms. Cheng, click herehttps://tonywardstudio.com/blog/emily-cheng-electric-avenue/

 

Also posted in Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Environment, Photography, Politics, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Student Life, Travel, UPenn Photography, Women