New DigiComArts Website provides showcase for teens and others

Just in time for the build to Harvest Festival NYC, Librarian Rodger Taylor and myself are proud to present the new DigiComArts site which will provide a showcase for teens and others. Digicomarts features Digital Communication Arts projects that are the result of the Digicomarts workshop series at the New York Public Library. Since many of the projects that are created during the workshop series are also nominated for Platinum PIAs Awards, Digicomarts provides a way for surfers to experience the work of participants.

The Platinum PIAs Awards are featured during Harvest Festival NYC.

the platinum pias media network starts with education

In a collaboration between Video Film Web Studios and H-Quin Productions, the Platinum Pias Media Network starts with education. The Platinum PIAs Awards are the Oscars of Beauty, Entertainment and Education recognizing outstanding achievements in the use of Digital Communication Arts to build community. The theme of this year’s PIA Awards is “Giving Back”.Giving back includes participation from media network sub-hubs including NYC AIM, Digital Communication Arts, Lights Camera Read, Magic Neighbors troupe, Help the Homeless NYC, Media Space NYC, Review Me NYC, Celebify and “What is Mass Communication?”

NYC AIM is the New York City Apprentices in Media which is an educational and  vocational organization committed to empowering students for entrepreneurship and employment by giving them real world experience working on a media network. This year’s NYCAIM PIA is being awarded to interns who show excellent promise for succeeding in the media field.

Digital Communication Arts is the art and science of using media to broadcast a message to achieve a result. A memorable moment from this year’s Digital Communication Arts workshop series at the New York Public Library is when Shacara Mclauren, a bullying survivor and “American Idol” contestant, came to speak to workshop participants as an ambassador for Stomp Out Bullying. The theme of this year’s DigiComArts PIA is anti-bullying.

The Lights Camera Read contest is the competition held through the New York Public Library in which students write stories inspired by books. And if their tale is chosen as a winner it is performed by the Magic Neighbors Troupe. A memorable moment from this year’s Lights Camera Read program is when children’s book author Justin Tuck of the New York Giants, was interviewed by Lights Camera Read magazine and gave coaching and writing tips to young writers entering the contest. The theme of this year’s Lights Camera Read PIA is to write a piece based on the phrase “You can’t borrow honey from a zombie because…”

The Magic Neighbors Troupe is the theater group that does community outreach by performing the winning tales of Lights Camera Read. This year’s Magic Neighbors PIA will be awarded to participants in outreach performances for children of shelters.

Help the Homeless NYC at is the organization that recognizes businesses and their customers for helping the homeless. This year’s Help the Homeless NYC PIA is being awarded to partipants in the City Harvest and Nurture the Children charity events as well as homelessness prevention through education support such as donating school supplies.

Media Space NYC is the network of over 70 blogs and publications that that are in partnership to bring a message of hope and communication to various online neighborhoods. This year’s Media Space NYC PIA is being awarded for outstanding journalism in the network.

Review Me NYC helps people support people by creating a forum in which testimonials can be posted. These testimonials in turn count toward winning a PIA. This year’s Review Me NYC PIA is being awarded to the person who gets the most positive reviews.

Celebify recognizes undervalued artists and others who do not receive the attention they deserve. This year’s Celebify PIA will be awarded to artists and their documenters for making progress in gaining visibility.

What Is Mass Communication? – is the study of people who through mass communication have made a difference in the world. This year’s Mass Communication PIA is being awarded to a public figure behind a good cause. A memorable moment from this year’s “What Is Mass Communication?” journalism is when Alex Corrado of Platinum PIAs magazine interviewed two PIA nominees and reality stars who are both strong supporters of children’s charities. These stars are Tracy DiMarco of “Jerseylicious” and Jacquline Laurita of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey”. This year’s “Mass Communication” PIA will be awarded to a celebrity or emerging celebrity who has had a meaningful impact on society.

Dramatics NYC founder interviewed

In conjunction with an article I was writing, I recently interviewed the founder of the salon chain Dramatics NYC. I’ve known Rock for around 15 years or so. It was interesting going back to the beginning of Dramatics with him and hearing his story. It’s the story of how a combination actor/hairstylist on the threshold combined his worlds and created a hair salon chain that is influenced by the acting profession. And now Dramatics is sponsoring the Platinum Pias Awards.


Every business needs to have a competitive edge. Something that differentiates it from competitors. Dramatics NYC, among its various differences, includes the beauty meets entertainment connection. Some describe it as “hair and sizzle” with the stylish locks representing the beauty industry and sizzle being a code word for show business. The thing that works out nicely for Dramatics with its “beauty meets entertainment” approach is that it encourages members of the team to be creative. Creative in terms of how they cut and style hair as well as creative in performance. That’s why stylists have stage names. You are actually entering an alternative experience. An example of Dramatics’ hair and sizzle connection is the involvement of several of their hair stylists in the Stylists for Literacy and Magic Neighbors collaboration: the Lights Camera Read outreach performances. These were done by the theater troupe for children of shelters. Plus it all comes together each year during the Harvest Festival NYC with the Platinum Pias Awards.

the Pias and Dramatics shin-dig

the Pias and Dramatics shin-dig is coming up on Saturday. This party, held at a Dramatics NYC salon, is an important reference point for the campaigns of stylist contestants. 9 stylists, each from different salons across the city, are competing for the title “Stylist of the Year PIA”. The winner of this particular Platinum Pias Award gets the bragging rights of being the top stylist in the North East section of the United States. I think the PIAs producers’ logic is that in Manhattan “If you make it here you can make it anywhere” and therefore a win in New York City gives you cred stretching at least a third or so across the country. This upcoming party, one of the biggest events in the build to the actual PIAs awards, is also a terrific example of Digital Communication Arts in action. Many forms of media will be present at the happening including online video making, blogging and more.

harliquin is the director of the show

Harliquin also known as “Harley” at Dramatics NYC is the director of the upcoming Platinum Pias Awards and he has a vision. He sees the presentation of the 9 awards being preceded by a video and live action. Each of the 9 videos will be about an important community issue. A video is then followed by a fashion scene and then the award is presented. One of the key issues being explored is helping the homeless in NYC.

Dramatics NYC will sponsor the Platinum Pias

Dramatics NYC, Manhattan’s most successful salon chain, will sponsor the Platinum Pias Awards, recognizing outstanding achievements in the art and science of building communication with the Oscars of Beauty, Entertainment and Community.

Who will the “Review Me NYC” committee select? 5 beauty awards will be presented as well as 4 others in the areas of entertainment and community:

Help the Homeless NYC PIA: Homelessness
Acknowledging businesses and their customers in NYC who help the homeless
Interview with Safari, General Manager Dramatics NYC

Lights Camera Read PIA: Literacy
Awarding the creativity of contestants and their role models in this literacy contest
Interview with Justin Tuck, the New York Giants, encouraging teen participants.Since this year’s theme is “You can’t borrow honey from a zombie because…” there will also be an interview with Judith O’Dea, Communications Expert and female lead in the original 1968 “Night of the Living Dead”

Magic Neighbors PIA: Outreach
Acknowledging those involved with performances for at risk audiences
Plus clips of performers performing for children of shelters.

Digital Communication Arts PIA: Media
Recognizing participants doing writing, graphic arts, music, video and theater projects in the digital communication arts workshop series at the New York Public Library. This year’s theme is “anti-bullying”. Meet Shacara Mclaurin, “Stomp Out Bullying” Teen Ambassador and “American Idol” contestant plus others participating in the program.