Larson Hunt: On Becoming a Model

Model Larson Hunt wears Linen scarf by KVaughn Summer 2024
Larson Hunt. Photo: Tony Ward Copyright 2024

Text by Larson Hunt, Copyright 2024

.

On Becoming a Model

.

In my mind, I was tagging along with my dad for a photoshoot. Why? The sole reason was that he needed help carrying his equipment up over five flights of stairs. To think this would be the start of the string of events sparking my love for the worlds of art and fashion was all too fun to ponder. The shoot for my dad  took place at the James Oliver Gallery, in Philadelphia. I was doing my small part away from the cameras. That was until the director, K.Vaughn, wanted to shoot me for an up and coming collection of scarves. This started my relationship with K.Vaughn. He was already good friends with my dad, they embarked on the project of renovating  his atelier/ home. Once again, I tagged along. I got a unique window into the life of the creative mind of K.Vaughn. My respect and admiration for him and the art he surrounded himself with grew. 

It wasn’t too long until he called me in for another photoshoot, and another, and so on. It wasn’t just photoshoots that I helped with either. He requested me for his exclusive bistro parties, sudden pop up shops, and the occasional hang out. At this point, I considered him my fashion uncle. KV hit me up for a photoshoot at the Rittenhouse Grill, and told me he’s bringing in another photographer. It was Tony Ward. 

I could tell that Tony was more than just a photographer. He’s a man that has the collective creativity of thousands of minds. KV would go on to book two shoots at Tony’s  studio. It was during those shoots that I got to know Tony and hear his stories. Over the course of several conversations, I was able to understand some of his philosophies. Tony understands that life is a gift full of struggles, and triumphs. Furthermore he (Tony) teaches that over time life reveals that you need your struggles to be directed towards the triumphs you dream of. This is reflected in his confidence about his work. He knows that his triumphs are the works of art he produces, and the people he decides to invite into his life. With all of these wonderful lessons and experiences I’ve absorbed, my inspiration to continue this absurd string of good fortune has been further strengthened. I can tell it will lead me to places I’d never imagine, but I feel as though I already belong.

 

Milton White: Linen is HOT!!!


Text by Milton White, Copyright 2024

.

Linen is HOT!!!

.

Photographs and Video Clip by Ted Kawalerski, Copyright 2024

.

The photographers, models, creative director and assistants gathered on the grounds at Tony Ward’s studio for what became a great collaboration of talent. 
 
Each of us being inspired to bring life to the product…Kvaughn Scarves.
 
***Love, Unabridged – Prose and Poetry by Zachary Starr.But where does inspiration come from? Some say that it is born from the depths of our souls, a wellspring of creativity that flows endlessly within us. Others believe it to be a gift from the universe, bestowed upon those who are open to receiving its divine wisdom.***
 
I have been a muse for Kvaughn Scarves for many years, always wanting more to show off Kevin’s gift of finding fabrics and patterns that turns heads not only at special events, but also everyday wear.
 
The Parisian scenes and settings in the TWS studio are provided by TW. The outdoor scenes are also exceptional, provided by the enclave and grounds at TWS.
 
Though we had planned to shoot until 2pm, we wrapped an hour earlier. We were on fire! The flow of energy throughout each setting kept us all on top of our game. 
 
Matt Sampson, aka the sneaker guy, brought colors that completed the look for each scene.
 
Larson Hunt, model extraordinaire, was playful on the tire swing, blow up pool and for a finale, he got hosed down in linen.
.
 
KV (Kvaughn), always creative, wore his scarves with style and flare, as only he can.
 
I, myself, was simply there…natural.
 
The photographers, TW, Ted Kawalerski (who visited from New York), AlbFor and Isiah, and the assistants Brian Hunt and Tony Colagreco gave their all in making the magic happen.
 
Afterwards, we sat down around food, drinks, good music and conversation.
 
Sunday was a day to unwind, regroup and refresh our vision for the next shoot. KV, Brian Hunt and TW joined me at my cabana poolside for a dip in the pool. Cocktails, lunch, music and conversation (which lead to a little brainstorming) defeating our purpose for the time together, but we did return to relaxing with drinks. Then a final dip before saying farewell to until we meet again.
 
Looking forward to our next venture!
.
poolside with Milton White and fashion designer KVaughn
Poolside: KVaughn and Milton White:  Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2024

.

Milton White models KVaughn scave 100% linen 2024 summer collection
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-the-supreme-diva/
 

Nefertari Williams: Students Protest and The Truth

Text by Nefertari Williams, Copyright 2024

.

Student Protests and The Truth

.

Truth seems to be beyond reach as of late. Even definitions of words can be left to interpretation. The questions that young people longed to have answered as they eagerly leave high school during this graduation season and enter the colleges of their choices seem to have turned back the hands of time to over fifty years ago. Is history repeating itself as college students lock arms to protest issues that our parents thought were resolved issues back in the 1960’s? 
 
Regardless of  how I feel about the current geopolitical conversations that the news stations are discussing daily, I would never be as bold and brave as the college students that are protesting today. Some of these students stand firm in their beliefs and risk being expelled for what some argue are their constitutional rights – the freedom to peacefully assemble.
 
It is very scary how the narrative of what some of the students are saying have been twisted by some of the news agencies. A student will make a very clear statement and the news personality will clearly spin their words to whichever narrative fits the political angle that particular news outlet generally covers. This isn’t the way those of us raised in the 80’s experienced “news”. When a reporter told a story, for the most part, we were told and unbiased version of the facts and allowed to form our own opinions as to right or wrong. 
 
These days watching our young impressionable students peacefully protesting with locked arms chanting how they feel about a situation that is happening in our world; Their words can be clear, their signs can have words that are easy to read yet somehow their message is being sent out into the world differently than how they are intended. We the television watchers are being told that what we are seeing is not what is actually happening. Trust is no longer truth. 
 
As a mentor to our youth I must admit I feel helpless in these situations. Some topics are not to be discussed in this country. The tragic topic that they’ve bravely chosen to tackle at such a young age could cause some of “adults” to loose employment, contracts, professional relationships and more should we chose to speak on the subject. 
 
As sad as it may be the best some of us older people can do is to tell our college students to remain silent. I feel cowardly not speaking out but until black is black and white is white, most of us can’t risk losing everything, being ridiculed like we were during the BLM protests. Although most humans would agree that leaning on a man’s neck until he can’t breath is wrong, a large portion in this country found a way to turn it around to imply that some lives have more value than others and the rest of us have been paying for our decisions to speak on every since. 
 
We don’t want our children to be branded, labeled and mistreated just because they have an opinion about humanity that some may disagree with.
.
 
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 here: https://tonyward.com/nefertari-williams-facts-are-facts/

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/