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Meet Ashley Gallagher

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ashley Gallagher.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
As a child I was always drawing, crafting or painting. My mom dabbled in painting and crafts so there were always supplies around. I recently found some drawings I did as a child where I used my mom’s makeup to create it. I also remember the time as a small child where after a heavy rain, I finger painted the side of our garage with mud and then blamed it on a make-believe stranger. My parents were not amused. Art was the only thing I was truly passionate about and my parents definitely saw the passion and always supported that.

I studied art at San Diego State University and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Studio Arts with an emphasis in painting and printmaking. During my time there I realized I only wanted to paint for the rest of my life, and that’s what I’m doing. I paint every day because that’s what makes me happy. I’m consistently setting goals for myself and trying to reach them. I take on commissions, respond to call for artists, and just stay busy trying to navigate through this art world.

Please tell us about your art.
I am a painter and I describe my art as pop surrealism low brow, and then people say “huh?” And then I say, “just some fun funky stuff with a lot of color man.” Pop culture, music, friends and even strangers on the street serve as a main influence for me to create images that evoke humor and nostalgia. For many years I was an oil painter but have since switched to acrylic paint because of its non-toxic and easy clean up qualities. Recently, I started a project I call “Potheads,” where I paint terracotta pots to look like beloved characters or famous people. The first thing people do when they see one of my potheads is smile. And that’s what I get a kick out of. People laughing when they see some of my art and maybe recollecting on a carefree time in their life.

We often hear from artists that being an artist can be lonely. Any advice for those looking to connect with other artists?
I suggest going to shows, openings, drawing groups. Thumbprint Gallery hosts live drawing nights at Bar Basic, there is a Sketch Party at the Whistle Stop Bar in South Park and the Back-fence society in Vista hosts a live model drawing class as well. The Hillstreet Country Club gallery in Oceanside always curates compelling shows, and hosts the Papercut Zine club for all ages.  There are many opportunities out there to connect with fellow artists, it’s just hard to step away from what you’re working on sometimes! Also, social media is a great way to meet other artists. It’s so cool to follow and communicate with an artist who you admire and then meet them in life!

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
People can see some of my original art at Distinction Gallery in Escondido. I have a wall space there where I rotate art. I also love to show work at The Back-fence society in Vista, CA, which is an awesome community art space that has so many fun and eclectic shows every month. I also show with La Bodega Gallery in Barrio Logan, which is another truly fantastic gallery run by wonderful folks. Coming in July I will be part of their annual Frida Kahlo group art show.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Scott Harms

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