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Meet Ashley Thalman

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

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
Photography has always been an important part of my self-expression. When I was young, I felt most at home in myself while creating and enjoying welcoming spaces and documenting a sense of familiarity felt by my family and friends. I wanted to remember the textures and atmospheres of the people in my world, in the places they felt most themselves. The composition or quality of those snapshots didn’t determine their value so much as their existence allowed the meaning of those images to shift and morph with age and experience. The images were haunting and holy as they appreciated with time.

Once I began to discover the art of photography as it pertains to composition and lighting, I realized that deliberately honest documentation was a language I spoke and one I wanted to share.

It is in the intimate space of home that the truth of connection, care, tension, togetherness, love, relaxation, routine, and tradition can be best captured. One of my favorite photographers, Jessica Todd Harper, affectionately refers to the true, messy evidence of home as “domestic debris”. It is an art to photograph people in their home, and it is an art to quiet the insecurity that commonly swells when the client sees the inevitably perceived disarray of home. To make the client feel at home, in their home (be it in their body or in their home) is my work. I work to document the graceful, messy truth of people and place. My clients enjoy a private showing service 2-3 weeks after their session where I present my clients with a gallery of images from their session. Then we preserve the client’s session favorites in fine art prints and heirloom albums.

Please tell us about your art.
Photography is a form of adoration. Learning to observe and document the details of another human being is a practice.
I used to show up for a session fairly certain of what shots and setups I would try and, while I still prepare ideas for my sessions, I’m more focused on seeing and trusting what is. I try to be still and take my time. Maybe it means noticing what the child wants to touch and to take interest in their play or watching the way the father sits or talks or looks at his wife, or listening when mother speaks about her hopes and home as the baby screams for milk. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I can’t help but feel love and admiration for each of my clients. For me, adoration means that I do not betray a client’s unique singularity with pre-chosen poses or expectations of what our time together will produce. What a real lucky joy this profession is! To sit (and crouch and run and bend and climb) in the front row of life for an hour or two with other humans always leaves me inspired by their greatness and that makes me so so lucky. Photography matters.

As an artist, how do you define success and what quality or characteristic do you feel is essential to success as an artist?
Success is achieved by being able to trust the gut-speaking muse who urges us to tell the truth of what we see. Success is marked by a feeling of honesty in our work, by detailed professionalism, and in attracting the right clients and appreciating their patronage by continuing to evolve our services and skill.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
I am available for world-wide travel for children and family portrait sessions. My work can seen at or on Instagram @ashleythalmanphoto

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photo credit on artist portrait- Matt Eastin of Violet Suitcase

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1 Comment

  1. Ali Lewis

    November 2, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    Ashley is one of the most truth telling, heartfelt photographers on this planet. Every image I see of hers moves me and stirs up so many emotions. I always want to know more about the subjects and wish I could be a fly on the wall to watch Ashley through her process.

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