Monday, June 24, 2013

Photogs & Creatives!

I just briefly wanted to announce that I am going to be releasing my first guided imagery (both led & written by myself) on 'finding the source of your own inspiration', meant to help those who are struggling with ideas or relaxing into themselves enough to get to their own pool of creative self, in a new meditation meant to spark your personal creativity, by going into your own mind & finding out just what it is offering you. My plan is to release by the end of July. I'm also going to be making a guided imagery more related to health & well being, for those that aren't necessarily a creative, but who are still wanting to look at themselves more lovingly, in depth & in kindness. I've been meditating for over a decade & feel that I'm finally in a place where I understand its value & how to begin teaching that very simply & accessibly to other creatives. I will be sure to post on here as well as all networks when it's up & available.

 Many thanks,

 Ashley x

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Announcements ~~ June, 2013

Well, just a few announcements ...

First & foremost, Dust Bowl is back to kicking up dust. ;)

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of photographing the strange & gorgeous creature, Annie Montgomery [of Muse Models, NYC] (she looks like an icelandic fairytale) out in the Big Apple. After meeting her in a Brooklyn cafe, I knew I wanted to put her into Dust Bowl so, so badly. So, a few days later, we did. 

Here's a teaser from that day on a fire escape in West Harlem. 
The rest have not been edited just yet. 

I will post all on my facebook fan when they are ready to go & I hope you enjoy.

Beyond that, I just wanted to mention that I have a 12 page feature coming out on 'Faerieland" in the June Issue of the Greek "Economist" Magazine, for all over there that might be able to see it. 
This is the first piece of news about that collection, this year & I'm so excited to see it in print. :)

Lastly, I have some work coming out in Papercut Mag, also covering a new sequence in Faerieland & I'll be sure to post it here when that goes live. 

Many thanks & have a beautiful week, 

New Faerieland!

Hello to all!

I felt it was time to touch base w/ some new work. (!)

2013 has been incredibly busy, not only creatively but also in terms of travel and the locations I've had the pleasure of shooting within. I've photographed thus far, everywhere from the Pacific Northwestern Rainforest of Oregon & Washington state (my favorite place on Earth) as well as in NYC and back in Minneapolis. So many new characters & so many yet to come.

The character synopsis' for each of them can be found on my Facebook Fan under the "Faerieland" folder/album, while my site is undergoing its new overhaul (which I'm very excited to launch)

Hope you enjoy these new pieces & thank you to all for the overwhelming amount of love & support this year, thus far, on every network.

I will try to post these all in chronological order and I am posting these in their entirety, but as many of you already know with Faerieland, there are often hidden faces & elements that cannot be found or seen unless you zoom in, so detail shots of those are also on my facebook fan. X

Lastly, while my site is in transition, for those who dig higher resolution, please view my 500px account to see them as sharp as they are intended.


"Ephymn" | [Song of Transient Things]






"The Seer" 




"Birds of Passage" (Sequence, Image 1)


Again, THANK ---> YOU.

- Ash

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Constant State of Motion

Friends, I saw this illustration/painting this AM and it prompted me to do what I haven't done in too long: just a little bit of writing about this career that keeps me in a perpetual state of motion, always going going, going.
Thought I'd take a moment to touch on the personal and more honest, even bittersweet side of it all, in a blog dedicated to those of you who might also stir from somewhere deep inside when they see this which, for some, I know also hits very close to "home"

My writing below is for
the lover
the traveler
the passionate
the spirited heart
creature people.

I saw this painting this morning and it brought tears to my eyes, as i am once again in the last few days of being in one place for very long. i do think there's an irreversible beauty that can come from nowhere else but in the experiences we find in traveling:

Those we meet and live and laugh with along the way but, as with all things, we become attached to places, people, animals and the things we keep to remember them, even love, because they kept us so heartily well and if they didn't keep us well, perhaps we are attached to the memory or the lessons they left instead.
We are so humanly, honestly, vulnerably and beautifully attached to the way we know or remember feeling in certain moments.

In nostalgia, today i think of berlin subway adventures. italian accents and the men who wore them. the rainforests of the PNW, that i am soon going back to. i think of bands that started on trains heading westbound when two people met and had to do something with their perfectly harmonized voices, she from america, he from england. i think of the way my dog is sleeping right now, along my feet and breathing so softly that i know it will be impossible to say goodbye this coming thursday morning when i trade her beautiful spirit for an inanimate suitcase's weight and where I know in my absence, she will just look for me out the window. I think of how minnesota waited and waited and waited for the snow to melt and how when i first got here on the 18th of April after nearly three months away, i was the only person happy to arrive in such a blizzard, such a perfect signature for this flat land I grew up on.
...And then... I think of the plane i was flying in last summer, as it landed in iceland, before I ever went to england or scotland, before i ever knew what was going to happen on that 2 month trip that turned into 5...... how that plane flew through a dawn and through a rainbow and through lightning bolts, over lava rocks and bobbling foggy boat harbors where icelandic men were pulling their nets through their clenched fists, half standing in ocean and their own pipe smoke.

I think about how i took that all into my permanent memory before the wheels ever touched the tarmac. and then i think of the cows in the alps that have giant bells like wreaths around their necks, that I got to know in 2011 and how they wander through city streets in the north of provence, completely stopping the traffic lanes. i think of the sunflower fields that roll along the swiss mountains' many spines and the gypsy white dress i wore my last day in geneva before it unraveled. i think of how pretty i felt in that dress and how i'd slip into photobooths to get a quick photo of the feeling of that whole day.

I think of how i left photoshoot prop dresses to lighten my load of too many suitcases back in west yorkshire and then another box in storage in edinburgh and finally, just to make weight and board a plane, another load in Berlin, 20 minutes before I left the continent, where I not only left my things, but also a solo girl, a friend, who was her Irish toughest in not crying in the international terminal of TXL (because I did) as I had to keep going and our fates were parted. How many months had I not slept alone, had we been in constant company to suddenly have to be parted - An example in hundreds, maybe even thousands like it. So many airport, train, bus, street corner hugs and goodbyes. I remember each and all of them.

I think of how many years it'll be, if ever, that i see any of those boxes again or any of the people that helped me fill them me carry them, along footpaths, along holy wells, in and out of trains.

And in all of this introspection, especially in my last days of being 29 years old, i feel very quiet, contemplative, even old sometimes, like a tree that is half uprooted and think there's a certain yearning to find a home that can be longer than a week, a month, a year, perfectly/utterly mixed with the confusion in knowing the fact that i love to get onto a plane and ride through that light that rises & sets over people's whole lives or how much i love seeing the mountains from a sky, knowing that that span of land has never been settled, that it's always been wild. it's a raw peace and a bittersweet one as well and i know when I arrive back "home" in Portland, that i'll lay late into the night, after all of roommates lay asleep, after the city becomes silent, with my window cracked open and I'll listen for the midnight train calls that start so late and run through the night, burning their sounds out, knowing that I've been on them, many of them, seemingly being beckoned to get on yet another when noone is looking. And i hope for the all the travel i have yet to do, the loves i have yet to meet and know, the leaving that is still coming and the arriving that also has yet to happen and that will continue to happen again and again, as is life... in every shifting change or settling in,
...all the solo sojourns, i simply hope to recognize the importance of staying grounded within it, while all else spins in perpetual motion, an adult merry-go-round I suppose.
Again, I hope to continue to not only appreciate it but also to recognize that spin and how it affects the human spirit, a life, one whole identity, allowing it to always grow and ebb and flow and for me to stay myself within it, whatever I want for that to be.

To NYC, to PHX and Boston, keep this little filly safe and sound and rested and held while she goes through you in May. Especially you, New Yawk, you've got a reputation.

At any rate, as you can see, I thought that picture a touchingly beautiful illustration and wanted to share.
My love to all of you, ashley x

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


High fives all around. 

This week I had the nerve-wracking honor & pleasure to sit down w/ the folks over at Phlearn and give quite possibly, one of the most in depth interviews I've ever given, covering everything from my earliest work (which had me cringing to share, but i bit the bullet ;) to the sources and inspiration for my newer Dust Bowl and Faerieland imagery, to posting a Before & After of how I composited a popular Faerieland image and, lastly, a question that led to my finally speaking publicly and for the first time about what it is like working within the industry while also working within the confines of an illness and with a 12 year disability. 

In addition, I chat about the imagery of Brooke Shaden & Erik Almas among other sources of great inspiration in History.

If you fancy a read, have a wander:

I've another in depth interview also coming out within the week & will post that when it's up, covering another range of topics with questions that were so different and such a fun time to answer.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Moving Day! [Dreams] | Goodbye MINNESOTA!


today i board a train upon which i will romanticize finishing a novel I started back in 2011 as it carries me over the long haul of 38 hours & 1,800 miles from the home i've known here in Minneapolis to a new home on the pacific northwestern coast- a place that i hope to begin the next chapter of my life in a manner that suits myself & my work with something of great beauty.

the last time i rode this route i remember riding through glacier national park at sundown as the amish aboard sang hymnals & a man whose name escapes me now, played a fiddle late into the night. there was whiskey & there was singing & there was laughter.

i look at my suitcase, my one lone ranger to this retro kitchen, packed to the gills with things i'm bringing of my life & it sits amidst a house of the things i inevitably have to leave behind: ...prop dresses, medieval buckets, headpieces, old favorite clothing, books, stuffed animals, my art along walls, cameras, a typewriter, blankets that lovers, friends & myself used to stay warm these years as they blow in and blow out of my life. | all of that so & so & such & such still resides here - an inventory of the who's who of my life has collected to this little second story flat on 2nd street.

and though i'm torn, i'm so ready.
and i think this is what life is, this middle area of letting go & riding that 'go' where you direct the intention to take you. it's that fluid recognition of abiding by your heart, not only when it's beautiful and easy, but when it's scary and involves a whirlwind of change & pushing to the very very edge.

so, with a very bittersweet & incredibly open heart, i want to thank everyone in Minnesota that i have met, known, loved, shot with, traveled with, taught, been friends with personally or professionally. your support, love, friendships have meant the world to me at every point of my life & will continue to & will continue to and will continue to, forever, no matter my locale. ♥

i woke this morning to a soft blizzard & so the city sits quietly as i finish these last hours here, an apropos moment for what i've conceived the meaning of this to be for me.

how many great adventures begin this way?
a perfect gradient in the western sky by nightfall, i'll hope.
and just a girl with a suitcase, a passport, her pen & her camera.

all my love to you MPLS | thank you for growing me !

for those needing anything in the next 1 -2 weeks, please email: & I will message back when i'm settled into my new place, as i will be unavailable in this interim for all practical purpose taking in a new air with deep breaths to eager lungs.

ash ♥

ps: no visuals today, but here's a bit of sound playing as I finish the pack:
cut to 2:40 to feel what i'm feelin'

Monday, July 30, 2012

"Beyond the Forest"

As I sit here, in Devon, England, packing and awaiting my train to Scotland, I am sitting in an old library which has found me transfixed, this entire afternoon, specifically by the following book, images and words...


literally translated, Transylvania means "beyond the forest".

... passages taken from beyond the forest, a photographic book by Claire Richardson 'about a people believed to be the descendents of the children that were led out of hamelin' ...

the children that were led out of Hamlin are those that legend has it are the children who followed the Pied Piper.


'beyond the forest' 

he lives in a world of silence. a world of hard work & necessary patience; waiting on the weather and growth. they call him Mr. Pipe, a diabetic, water passes straight through him. his mother worries he shall never marry. he loved the butcher's daughter once, but her father sold the mountain.
claiming the common ground, he felled the forest and sold the oak. a rich man now, his daughter should marry well, a businessman from the town, perhaps. 
spurned, the boy strung up a lifeless scarecrow in his own image, a reminder to the girl of her father's betrayal.

the butcher's wife says the photographer is barren, and has come to buy children to operate her domestic machines. she welcomes the photographer, preparing a meal with the greatest of care and measure. 

the forest taken, the horizon restored. it offers no shelter now. an emptying landscape. as claims are made, fences erected and the horizon breached. only Mr. Pipe remains, the others have now gone, they spoke of a life beyond the forest...


(c) Claire Richardson: