The Artistic Beauty of Truth

A Personal Commentary

Featured Photo: Purely Zenn Art

Gemma Magazine is an online magazine about artists, their talent, and the comprehensive story of their struggles and accomplishments. Overall, it is about their journey (within themselves and towards reaching their professional goals). On behalf of Gemma Magazine, writing upon artists and attending events of all types is about the facts. Yes, the form is creative and artistic, however; the actual structure of representing someone and their talent needs to be stated in the factual form, while still producing a sense of inspiration and creativity. Trust me, as a writer, there is nothing worse than having the artist let you know that they were not portrayed correctly. Well, here it is — Gemma does not always get it right, even when we think we do. On a personal note, (and as the Editor), I take that to heart. It even takes me a few days to understand what went wrong. Why? It’s simple. We are completely inspired by every artist that we feature.

Artist Daniel Winn


We could post Instagram photos on the daily with one sentence. However, that is not the vision of the magazine. I’m attracted to artists and feel an obligation to them because that is the goal of Gemma Magazine. However, it’s also the vision within my heart. Portraying the artists correctly can be compared to raising kids. If you have more than one, they are all different and as a parent, you should let them thrive based off of each child’s innate personality. You might want to mold them based off of your standards — but that usually doesn’t work. There is also so much to discover and be in awe of by watching them grow into their individuality.

Why is representing someone correctly so important? The answer lies somewhere within me, but I rather not look. It’s more appealing to keep my eyes on them. Maybe I feel I’ve been categorized incorrectly and need to get the artists right. The vision has meaning, value, and importance. Mostly, it resembles integrity and emotion (all in one).

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In the end, we will continue to produce, represent, and write the right way — with heart, objectivity, and a lot of inspiration. Nothing will be swept under the rug. Actually, looking at the painting, performer, and designer dress, is a fantasy that tells a truth. Just listen carefully.

Filmmaker/Photographer Kelly Needleman

The Walter Collection (LAFW)
Bonnie Strauss Clothing

Revealed

The Beauty of Divine Art Producing Global Work

Celebrate the exceptional “Existential Surrealist,” Artist, and International Curator, Sir Daniel K. Winn,” as he features his exclusive artwork at Art Pier 94, NY, NY May 2nd – May 5th, 2019, presented by Art Pier Miami (Booth 312). Winn is a leader and mastermind in the art world with combining elements, ideas, and textures into one fantastic story. Daniel Winn is the founder of Winn Slavin Art, Head of Masterpiece Publishing, and a Philanthropist.

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Artist and International Curator, Daniel Winn, developed the artistic style known as “Existential Surrealism.” Winn’s artistic style is self-curated due to his innovative and innate talent. Winn has a unique eye for details that may go unnoticed by others. His specific style is two-fold. Philosophically, the technique involves contrasts and examines the dichotomy of existence. Visually, Existential Surrealism uses a surrealistic style and subject matter to invite the viewer to explore the nature of reality. “Translucent figuration in my paintings is a reminder that the distinction between our physical and spiritual selves, is merely a matter of perception,” says Daniel K Winn.

Winn’s work is primarily figurative as it is inherently focused on the human experience, but also incorporates abstract and even mythological elements to communicate the divinity of creation.

Beyond Enigma

Like his artwork, Daniel Winn’s life has been one of many contrasts. Fields of abstract and surreal backgrounds depict the dichotomy which defines existence. Winn was born into a country at war with itself. His family, once among the wealthiest in Vietnam, were evacuated to the United States when Saigon fell on April 30th, 1975 with little more than the clothes they were wearing. Daniel worked immensely hard and has excelled in everything he has taken on. Daniel Winn always knew he wanted to be an artist. However, he went to medical school and excelled there as well. Daniel eventually followed his passion for art and committed himself fully by taking on won numerous accolades.

Beyond

Besides his passion for his art and his business, Daniel is an avid philanthropist. In 2001, Winn put his connections to good use to establish The Academy of Fine Art Foundation, a public charity dedicated to using the art for the benefit of humanity. He’s also active in raising funds to provide badly needed medical services as well as basic necessities to underprivileged children and families in the U.S. and Vietnam.

Can art imitate life? Winn’s work prompts this question. Daniel’s concept of life is the idea of a universal creative divinity against the concept of free will and self-determination. This is accomplished by acknowledging divinity as the seed of autonomy and recognizing our responsibility for global action. Within his work, the frequent use of partially translucent figures is a metaphor for the physical/spiritual duality which is at the core of the style.

Revealed

Overall, Winn draws upon his own life experiences, surreal in themselves, his ancestral culture, and the contemporary influences of the U.S., which he has called home since escaping war-torn Vietnam in 1975. To learn more about Daniel, you can follow him on the following social platforms:

www.winnslavin.com

https://www.facebook.com/WinnSlavin/

https://www.instagram.com/sirdanielwinn/

Daniel Winn

Storytelling Through an Unfiltered Lens: Filmmaker Kelly Needleman

Kelly Needleman is a creative force and an inspiring one at that. He is an accomplished landscape photographer and an aspiring filmmaker. He’s motivated, only seventeen, and his work is stunning. He’s prepping to start filming his first feature this summer. “I feel grateful that I have found a passion for creating movies. People search their whole life to find what they are destined to do. I am self-taught in photography and film, but I know I have so much more to learn and I am looking forward to the journey ahead,” says Kelly Needleman. At such a young age, Kelly has already produced beautiful work in both photography and film and you rarely see someone his age with such a strong vision and work ethic.
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However, sometimes talented filmmakers see life through a lens — with the film playing in their mind — it’s part their daily creative process. Needleman is one. Kelly Needleman is a Director, Actor, Producer, Photographer, and Entrepreneur. He’s compelling in his calling to create films, especially in a culture where many teens are not sure what they want to do, especially with so many options. Kelly’s passion and discipline consist of filmmaking told through artistry, nature, and meaningful storytelling.
At a young age, Needleman had a creative eye. Growing up with his cousin, David Needleman, who is a professional photographer that shoots celebrities, influenced him to pick up a camera. Kelly was attracted to the beauty of nature and started taking images and time-lapses of landscapes. His strong ambition to create resulted in being published in various publications and awards, such as National Geographic and Canon. Actually, he’s been published 7 times in National Geographic YourShot. (https://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/profile/1460193/#awards)

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Photo: David Needleman

His pictures became viral on social media resulting in a celebrity status following.
Needleman’s passion for landscape photography was a natural progression into the film industry. He formed his own company called Needleman Productions, where he showcases his movies. He has made numerous shorts and experimental films. Kelly has been recognized locally as a student filmmaker and has recently won a prestigious award (Best Young Director) for his documentary, MY IDENTITY, in the Hollywood International Independent Film Festival. His goal is to make beautiful movies by utilizing the natural elements of nature, fog, sea, and sunlight as tools in an outdoor studio.
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We were stunned when we saw his work. His photos are beautiful, enticing and eclectic all at once. It took me somewhere else, which is the point. When an artist evokes emotion or makes you leave your thoughts for a while; it’s real art. Needleman has a gift, and the only mistake would be if he did not utilize it to his full capacity. It’s incredibly inspiring when someone this young takes the risk and doesn’t hesitate. When Kelly had a minute, he spoke with Gemma.
How did you become interested in taking photos of nature?
My love for nature developed by exploring my surroundings in Northern California. I am fortunate to live in an area where beauty envelops the atmosphere. I started traveling with my family at a very young age and visited unbelievable locations such as Iceland and the Dolomites in Italy which inspired me to share my experiences through film and photography.
Do you sometimes feel like an “old soul?” Your vision is very mature.
Yes, I do feel I am an “old soul.” I feel grateful that I have found a passion for creating movies. People search their whole life to see what they are destined to do. I am self-taught in photography and film, but I know I have so much more to learn and I am looking forward to the journey ahead.
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What was the inspiration to transition into film?
I do love photography and always will — Yet, as a storyteller, I felt the medium of film was more engaging. A movie can create a mood, develop characters and share a point of you. It takes people out of their everyday life to experience something new. It can also make you a different place mentally, which is very powerful.
How did you find the process of screenwriting? Creatively Challenging?
Screenwriting was something entirely new for me. As a director and a visual person, the mood of the film was essential to me. I set the scene in my mind, and the dialog flowed from there. It comes with challenges of course, but I seem to thrive off of that.
Do you feel driven to create?
I do! I always like to try something new and authentic. It is easy to create something that already exists, but I strive to be as original as possible which fuels my ambition to be the best I can.

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Photo: David Needleman

Who are some of the directors that you admire?
I admire directors such as Ron Howard and Martin Scorsese for their mastery of storytelling. I appreciate when a director displays their style throughout the filmmaking process. I also respect the careers of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon as student screenwriters/actors to directors.
How do you balance being an HS student, working in photography, and now, making films? (Not to mention, the business aspects)?
I thrive on the energy of always being busy. I am a very organized and disciplined person, but at times it does get a little bit crazy.

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Photo: David Needleman

I know you are working with Gigi Cesare on your upcoming film “Lost Visibility.” We covered her, and she’s so confident, talented, and fun.
Yes, I am incredibly excited to be working with Gigi for my upcoming feature. She is a very talented actress, and I love her passion for the film. She is a beautiful addition.
Can you please expand upon your upcoming feature film, “Lost Visibility?”
The logline for my feature film “Lost Visibility,” is: Maybe they were not as close as they thought they were. Three friends share intimate dreams that bring their secrets to reality. The film is in the genre of Psychological Thriller, Teen Drama, Mystery, and Horror. I am currently in pre-production and plan to shoot during early summer of 2019. The film will most likely be released at the end of 2019.
I also really enjoyed your short film, “Lucid Visions.” Again, visually, it’s gorgeous. Can you explain your personal experience?

“Lucid Visions” was a unique film for me because it exposed me to an exciting genre. I loved the concept of dream versus reality. This short film led me to the idea for my feature film.

You do act as well. How do you like acting?

Yes, I do act, and it’s an entirely different experience from directing. I feel being in front of the camera helps me connect and have a better understanding of the actors when directing a film. In my opinion, it’s essential to learn both aspects of acting and directing to create the best possible film.

Kelly Needleman has an extremely bright future ahead of him. We hope to report upon him again (Part 2) when his film is released. After graduating from High School, Kelly is planning on majoring in Film Production (specifically directing) and minoring in business around LA.

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Photo: David Needleman

You can follow Kelly on the following social media platforms: