Feature: Kasheem “The Dream” Peterson

Kasheem "the dream" Peterson featured at www.tonyward.ocm
Kasheem “The Dream” Peterson. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Text by Kasheem Peterson, Copyright 2024

Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Creative Director: KVaughn

Lighting Assistant: Tony Colagreco

.

The Dream

.

 I was born in Brooklyn, New York. My parents were both federal employees of the United States government. My father thought it was a great idea to train me in Shotokan Karate and military combative training such as blocks and strikes at the early age of three years old in our kitchen in Flatbush.  Dad is now a pastor of a Baptist Church in South Jersey. Him training me was intentional or purposeful due to the fact  that my name means warrior and protector in both Japanese and Hebrew.

We moved from Brooklyn to Sicklerville, New Jersey in Camden County when I was 9 years old. It was not too long after that I enrolled in pee wee football and Soo Bahk Do and Antero Karate where I received instruction from master trainer, Hector Rodriquez. He and my father thought it was best that I begin tournament style fighting at the age of twelve fighting adults. I did well and I followed the instructions of the instructor and my father.

I played football and wrestled in high school. Most importantly, I was a Battalion Executive Officer for the Junior Reserves Officer Training Program at Overbrook Regional High School in Pine Hill, NJ. I competed in junior special forces training and military drills and even went to a boot camp for minors headed into the military for the Delayed Entry Program. Through my training and accolades in martial arts and sports I attained a Congressional Nomination to the Citadel Military Institute of South Carolina.

I received an associates from Trident Technical Institute in Charleston and went on to get a Bachelors in Political Science from Widener University in Chester PA. During my years in college, I got signed by Cory Dueger Models and Talent and was sent to a casting call where I received a role in RADIO a movie with Cuba Gooding Junior and Ed Harris. I then signed with Hilory Beckford of Clones Model Management in New York. Under those two agents I walked in various run way shows across the east coast and was featured in several commercial, print publications and an industrial advertisement  for GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals. During my studies at Widener I also started training at Daddis Fight Camp in South Philadelphia and Philadelphia Fight Factory in the Northern Liberties/Kensigton Area. My instructors were Aaron Meisner, Brad Daddis, Rigel Balsamico, Steve Haigh, and Wilson Reis. I trained in Muay Thai, Jui Jitsu and boxing. I fought under the management of Ed Hsu who encouraged me to go professional.

I  won the Combat in The Cage Championship for NJ, DE, NY, And PA at 170lb which is classified as welterweight. It was then that I decided not to go to law school and decided to move to Las Vegas to train to become a Professional cage fighter. I was immediately picked up and signed by TAPOUT Research and Development Team coached by Shawn Tompkins, Keebo Robinson, and Robert McMullin. I traveled all around and trained in Japan, Australia, Abu Dhabi, and Canada. My coach Shawn Tompkins named me “THE DREAM” and I  have kept it to honor him in all my endeavors since then. After he passed away I began training with the number one Jui Jitsu practitioner in the world at the time Robert Drysdale and trained in Muay Thai with Mark Beecher under the HYENA MUAY THAI SYSTEM. I went through some hardships in life and stopped training and modeling for an extensive period of time due to personal circumstances.

I returned to training at Webb Fitness and MMA under Jonavin Webb and Phil Maldonato. I fought my last two fights and retired in 2022. I had a moment where I was lost and didn’t know what to do. I’m a Christian and a man of faith so I prayed and consulted my ex fiancé who is a corporate attorney and a law professor. She asked me what I wanted to do and she told me she would help by being a liaison and reference. I told her I wanted to get into the adult industry meaning porn. I actually started dancing under the management of Larry Evans under a company called Hunk-o-Mania. Shortly after that I  was soon picked up by the number one porn agency in the world, HUSSIE MODELS and represented by the owner himself Riley Reynolds. Since then I’ve worked for top companies such as BLACKED, BRAZZERS, SEEHIMFUCK, BANGBROS, TEAM SKEET and FILTHY KINGS. I worked with the greatest of producers such as Derek Dozier and Johnny Robins. I have over 74 Million Views on adult websites and my brand is growing by the day. I have goals. I want to be one of the best male entertainer/actors on the big screen in motion pictures.

.

Kasheem "TheDream" Peterson portrait of a very strong man
Kasheem Peterson. Photo: tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Tracey Olkus: The Latest Vixen

 

Text by Tracey Olkus, Copyright 2024

Photography and Set Design: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Styling and Creative Direction: KVaughn

Lighting Assistant: Anthony Colagreco

.

THE LATEST VIXEN

.

I have had the honor of working with Tony Ward only a few times over the last couple decades-most recently with Ellen Tiberino for The Vixen Series. So when Tony asked if I would be a part of this project, I thought he meant behind the scenes doing hair and makeup.  I was shocked when I realized that he wanted to photograph ME.  I’m never in front of the camera. I don’t even take selfies.
 
I love creating Vixens and encouraging Vixens,  but I had never thought of myself as a Vixen. I think of a Vixen as a woman who breaks from tradition, supersedes expectations and takes control of her destiny. She exudes confidence and sexuality.  She IS fire!  Well, part of that is definitely me.  I have been an entrepreneur most of my life. I have never had the patience to wait around for things to happen.  I have been told that I’m outspoken. And I only know how to do things in my own weird ways. I’m a sexual being through and through but I have never considered myself to be sexy.  When I told Tony this, he assured me that I was in good hands. And THAT I believed. I stepped out of my comfort zone and let him take the lead.  And it was a wild ride!
.
Portrait of hair stylist Tracey Olkus wearing black sheer dress on night out in Paris
Tracey Olkus. The Vixens Series. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

For almost two decades, Tracey Olkus  has been transforming faces and elevating styles from her private studio in Philadelphia. Specializing in everything from everyday glam to commercial shoots to TV and film. 

 
Tracey’s artistic interests extend beyond the chair. With a passion for costuming, she crafts bespoke headdress designs available through commissioned works.  
 
As the curator of The Performance Salon, Tracey provides a platform for emerging and established artists to showcase their talents in an intimate setting. From musicians, to thespians, writers to chefs, The Performance Salon has become a hub for artistic expression with performances that leave audiences mesmerized.
 
But Tracey’s interests go beyond her professional pursuits . A dedicated patron of the arts and the finer things in life, she enjoys hosting extravagant dinner parties and whimsical camping trips…often simultaneously.
 
When it is time to escape, Tracey can be found exploring the world, talking to strangers, and collecting stories from every corner of the globe. And along the way, she is most happy to have has amassed an eclectic collection of friends that share her passion for the extraordinary.

Lileet_Miriam: The Latest Vixen

Tara Mordin the latest Vixen in a series by Tony Ward Studio copyright 2024
Tara Mordin. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Text by Lileet_Miriam, Copyright 2024

Photography by Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

Styling and Creative Direction by KVaughn 

.

When I was contacted by Tony Ward Studio to partake in this project, “The Vixen Series,” I was genuinely honored, very excited, and quite honestly, humbled. I viewed this invitation to be in a league of its own – an elite circle of amazing women from all walks of life who were having their beauty, thoughts, strengths, and tribulations highlighted in a way that exuded power and commanded respect. As I began to ponder more on the concept of what it means to be deemed a “vixen,” I realized that the whole is greater than the sums of its parts. To be considered and included with these other “vixens,” meant that I brought something to the table that is equally powerful, enticing, and worthwhile that goes well beyond having a physical presence. 

Many of us have had moments in life where we are our toughest critics – questioning our worth, doubting our abilities, obsessing over how others perceive us. I think being considered a vixen allows one to fully embrace their true, authentic self and showcases how their individual uniqueness has its place in this vast world. We each have physical and interpersonal traits that make us different from the next. When we acknowledge and accept such attributes and celebrate what they truly offer, it opens a window of opportunity that is filled with confidence, empowerment, even pride. The more positivity and ownership of our value that we portray to others, the more impact and inspiration it tends to have. 

Over time, I feel that I have reached my own prime. I am unapologetically, me. I have grown a tremendous amount as a person, both inside and out. I have come to learn that my qualities do carry inherent value and that my input, time, energy, and overall presence, matter. Being a part of this series has reinforced that for me. It continuously sheds light that there truly is more to a person than what we first may see and that each of us should honor, praise, and recognize our own inner vixen, in all its amazing forms.   

Sightseeing in Paris at night beautiful woman wearing lingerie exposing her beautiful legs as she looks onto the Eiffel Tower.
Sightseeing. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

.

To access additional photographs from The Vixen’s Series portfolio, click herehttps://tonyward.com/the-vixens-series/

Nefertari Williams: Two Steps Smarter

An artist illustration of Taylor Swift by Thomcat23
Taylor Swift. Artwork by Thomcat23, Copyright 2024

Text by Nefertari Williams, Copyright 2024

.

Two Steps Smarter

.

I think Beyonce and Taylor Swift may have just two stepped all over our minds. 
 
Follow me through my pathway of parallel thinking..  And forgive me but “I was dreaming when I wrote this – forgive me if I go astray”. 
 
Well that’s where I’m going to start. This is a quote from the late great genius, artist and superstar, Prince. He wrote Purple Rain and America went wild. We didn’t care what genre it fell under – it was just amazing music… and we love it still to this day. 
 
Prince initially wrote this as a country song to sing with Fleetwood Mac specifically for Stevie Nicks but she admitted that she got a “fearful end of the world” vibe from the lyrics so she didn’t want to record it. She was right to get that vibe. The sing Purple rain is an actual spiritual reference that speaks about getting through tough times and your faith in a higher power during the end of time. Many pondered on the songs meaning for years. 
 
Prince used the color purple reference often, almost like he knew his end was coming sooner than later. 
 
I open with a Prince reference to show how we have had artistic geniuses  use their lyrics to shape our thinking throughout time. The art of story telling can change the mindset of generations- and it has. I believe it may be happening now. 
 
We lost this great artist in April 21, 2016 and his songs are still referenced and considered some of the most clever pieces of music ever made. 
 
Fast forward to present day. 
 
The world is on fire (as I write this Texas is literally experiencing its largest wild fire ever recorded 2/27/24) . There are three active wars, constant cyber attacks, women have lost their right to not have babies in some states and to get pregnant in other states. To top it all off, we have a man who is saying the quiet part out loud while running to be President. He wants to be a dictator (the very opposite of what the framers wanted America to be) He feels he has total immunity as a former President. 
 
This former President has tried to over turn the 2020 election, has incited an insurrection (but I think we have to call it a riot) and he might actually win his party’s nomination for reelection into the White House. 
 
Some Americans are ok with this because they feel as though they have been over looked and unseen. They are angry. Some may say rightly so. Some can’t even afford to buy groceries and they have been struggling financially for years. 
 
The problem is – the one man that they feel will be their “retribution” is part of the system that is keeping them poor but that’s another topic for another article. 
 
Ok, so here we are in an election year. We have a candidate who is running that most of the country doesn’t want to win. He is running against the current President who some believe is too old to do the job with the vigor that is needed. That is the epitome of being stuck between a rock and a hard place according to many voters. 
 
The former President is known for not having a close relationship with the truth. He feels the last election was stolen from him and now he uses strange conspiracy theories to get his “followers” to believe that if he loses again it is because he was cheated. 
 
This brings us to my reasoning for opening with the lyrics of the late great artist, Prince and his influence on the world. There have been stories surrounding a young beautiful pop star which are implying that she is using her popularity to influence the election. If she is that’s not against the rules and other artists have made songs that seemed to be aimed at influencing the election for the former President.
 
Like the late great artist, Prince – She too used to be a country song writer. To top it all off she starts dating a very popular Football star who happened to make it to Super Bowl 2023. That’s when more conspiracies started stating that they are just dating to gain more popularity which will mean a stronger audience and possibly more votes for the incumbent candidate. 
 
Ok fast forward; we have a popular award ceremony and Taylor Swift, the famous pop star (former country star) wins album of the year. Now this is a big deal because in comes another player. Beyonce, also a mega star has the most awards that this academy has ever given but has yet to win the one big award- album of the year. Taylor Swift  wins this title nearly every year.
 
Ironically (or maybe not) Beyonce’s  husband Jay-Z is honored at the 2023 Grammy award ceremonies and was allotted time to give a speech. He used that time to tell the world that it is wrong that his wife has never won album of the year although her songs have won the most awards ever (again – except for the highest honor that they offer which is album of the year). 
 
Now we are all confused. Why would he do that? 
 
During the big award show the pop star Taylor announces that her new album would release soon which brings the audience to a roar. With this announcement the pop star and Travis Kelce her famous football playing boyfriend are the most talked about couple all the way up to the big football game of the year. The Superbowl. 
 
The pop star has been making appearances at football games to see her famous boyfriend and this has been great for ratings. It has also pulled in a demographic of Americans who don’t normally watch football. 
 
Everyone is excited because there are rumors that the boyfriend is going to ask the pop star to marry him if he wins the big game (Travis  did win but didn’t propose).
 
So everyone is watching the big game. Then there is another twist. The mega star (Beyonce)does commercials during the superbowl  and announces that she’s dropping a country album ( she never won album of the year as a pop star and now she’s switching to singing country music). She then releases two country songs. Everyone is shocked. Everyone also thinks that this may be a competition between the pop Star who was a former country singer and the mega Star. 
 
That would be an interesting theory except when you turn on social media all you see are people doing the two step to the Mega stars new country song and the people who are dancing to it are the same demographic of the Ex President who is trying to get re elected. 
 
Coincidence – I think not. In fact I think the plot thickens. I don’t think the pop star and the mega star are competing at all – I feel that it’s all a brilliant plan to unify the country which has been deeply divided due to the two Presidents running on opposing issues. 
 
I also think, like the late great Prince has done so brilliantly ( for example when his record label would not give him a fair contract, to gain back control he referred to himself as a symbol that could not be spoken out loud ) one of the two singers is the master mind behind this effort to use music to unite Americans. 
 
In the mean time I’ll be two stepping right along with the rest of America as the Beyonce, mega star becomes the first black woman to have a song reach number one on the country charts, the catchy country ditty seems to be leaving us a little less divided. 
 
I think Taylor Swift, our blonde pop star, with her oh so mischievous grin, is sitting back, cowdboy hat cocked, thinking….the plan is working.
.
 
About The Author:  Nefertari Williams is a jewelry maker, activist for women with heart disease and the mother of five beautiful children.  She lives in Willingboro, New Jersey.  To access additional articles by Nefertari Williams link herehttps://tonyward.com/nefertari-williams-the-vicious-cycle-of-war/

Milton White: The Supreme Diva


Text by Milton White, Copyright 2024

.

The Supreme Diva

.

As Diana Ross celebrates her 80th birthday on March 26th, she is the new face of Saint Laurent Spring Collection 2024!

The photo selected for the campaign, is reminiscent of her 1976 DIANA ROSS album cover featuring the “Theme from Mahogany (Do You Know Where You’re Going To)” and “Love Hangover.”

During the spring and summer of 1964, America was introduced to the sounds of a new female vocal group, The Supremes. I purchased their album, “Where Did Our Love Go” with my allowance that year. In December of 1964, The Supremes made their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. As we all know, the group became Diana Ross and The Supremes, before Diana set out on a solo career.

Rather than chronicle her life and career, which either you know, can Google or find on YouTube, I will give you a glimpse of some performances and concerts that I have attended throughout the years.

Although I had been to many shows and concerts in my childhood and teens, they did not compare to my first Diana Ross concert.

I received a call from one of my roommates who was in New York for a fashion magazine photo shoot, asking me if I could come to NYC to see Diana at Radio City Music Hall.  Amtrak was my mode of transportation along the Northeast Corridor while I lived in Boston, so I made reservations so that I could make it to the “City” for the performance. I quickly packed a bag and headed to Back Bay Station for my train.  I stayed at the Essex House on Central Park South near Columbus Circle.  

Excitement filled the air in and around Radio City Music Hall unlike the atmosphere of the Christmas Show and the Rockettes, it was more exhilarating.  Prior to being seated, I walked to the stage and back to our seats stage left. My view, the audience, sophisticated and well-dressed, ready for a night to remember.

The house lights dim, the orchestra strikes up the overture, the stage lights come up and then it happens…Diana Ross appears, and this sophisticated crowd goes wild.  

Belting out “Reach Out and Touch Somebody’s Hand” with full audience participation, Diana reigned Supreme!  followed by a medley of hits by The Supremes, Diana Ross and The Supremes, then running off stage for a costume change while still performing, she never missed a beat. Then delving into her string of solo hits climaxing with The Them from Mahogony into “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” Diana disappears again returning with a Gardenia in her hair to perform songs from her movie “Lady Sings the Blues.”  Diana ends the show with “My Man” but after several minutes of standing ovations, she returns to perform a final song. Emotionally drained, yet full of life, I vowed that I would attend her concerts in the future.

At the time, this was the best live performance that I had ever seen.  Little did I know that I would continue to attend her performances to the extent that I have.  I would like to share just a couple more experiences that may, again, bring back memories for some of you.

I lived in Philadelphia when “An Evening with Diana Ross” opened at the Palace Theatre in New York. I had to see it! In this show, Diana begins with “Here I Am” and introduced “Love Hangover” which was released in February 1976 and incorporated this hit in the show, where she would invite several members of the audience onto the stage to dance with her.  I looked at the list of cities where she would perform next.  Boston, here I come…great performance!  Next stop Philadelphia.  I did have a ticket for the show, which I thought sold-out.  I called the box office the morning of the show and secured a ticket, wait for it…front row CENTER!!!  Oh my, what will I wear???  I drove out to the Tiger Shop in Wayne and told them that I needed an outfit for the show. I let them know where I was seated and they dressed me accordingly, suit, tie, pocket square, cuff links, the whole nine yards.  I arrived at the Shubert Theatre and was escorted to my front row seat. I was in my glory.  The show begins, I can feel every tingling inch of my body.  I hear the intro to “Love Hangover” I’m getting nervous, the tempo crescendos into the disco beat, Diana looks at me, Oh My God, she’s walking over to me, she extends her hand and pulls me up onto the stage with her…I’m on-stage dancing with DIANA ROSS!!! Others join us and then she disappears for her next costume change. When she returns, we leave the stage, but this was the best night of my life!  The next stop on the tour was Pittsburgh, and yes, I grabbed 2 tickets and took a friend’s’ brother who was studying at the University of Pittsburgh.

“An Evening with Diana Ross” was shown as one of her TV Specials, where she portrayed Josephine Baker, Bessie Smith and Ethel Waters. Magnificent!!!

I didn’t think that Diana’s show could get any better after dancing with me on stage, lol, but it did!!!

This is one of the greatest shows openings, ever!  

Curtains open slowly revealing a screen that fills the entire stage, photos of Diana begin flooding the screens while the orchestra begins, then you hear Diana… “If you need me, call me, no matter where you are, no matter how far….”  Next you see on the screen a vision of Diana at the top of a long staircase, descending, until, until, she steps through the screen Live!!! Mind blown!!!  You can actually view this on YouTube Diana Ross 1979 Caesar Palace.

I went to several other performances throughout the years at the Valley Forge Music Fair, where my Limo driver met and followed her driver for a while, champagne in tow, the Westbury in New York the Mann Music Center and Atlantic City.

I didn’t get to see The Supremes in my youth, the Motown Revue didn’t play the matinee at the Uptown and the next time The Supremes were in the area, they appeared at The Latin Casino in Cherry Hill, which I was to young to attend.  After Dianas’ pet dogs were poisoned there, she never returned.

The “Return to Love” tour in 2000, reunited Diana, Mary Wilson and Cindy Birdsong as Diana Ross and The Supremes. I was fortunate to see them perform in Atlanta before the tour was cancelled.  They performed 16 of the 29 scheduled performances. 

During the pandemic, Diana went back into the studio to record her latest album “Thank You” which is upbeat and special I love it.  In September 2022, I found myself with a couple of friends at Oceans in Atlantic City for her performance.  Let me tell you, her energy, her voice, her performance is just as bright as it was years ago.  She has appeared at Hard Rock Atlantic City most recently and continues to sell out venues here and abroad.  

Do yourself a favor, when you hear of Diana coming to a city near you, get tickets and sing, dance and have yourself a grand time!!!

Milton White III

Portrait of Milton White style editor and blogger at www.TonyWard.com
Milton White. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

.

 
About The Author: 
Milton White is a fashion aficionado, collector and consultant.  He is currently creative assistant to KVaughn Studio and style editor at TWS. To access additional articles by Milton White, link here: https://tonyward.com/milton-white-dining-out-in-february/