HI! Ashley WEST here — Before I let Ashley Wallace share her own words I just wanted to take a second to share some of mine.
I’ve known Wallace for a long time now – (she was actually my husbands first kiss when they were in elementary school and she’s going to KILL me for saying that haha). She grew up with my husband and we connected over social media several years ago. I followed her photo journey and was always impressed by her spirit and work. When she accepted my offer to be my full time second shooter in 2013 I was SO excited. We’ve shot about 50 weddings together and I just think the world of her, personally and professionally. I suggested she start shooting weddings on her own as my associate, and it TOOK OFF. Why!? Because she’s adorable and talented and likable and professional and totally the full package. I never thought my business would ever grow larger than me, that was never my plan. But when I got to know Wallace I just felt like she was such an amazing addition to Ashley West Photography. She is taking 2016 by storm, shooting almost 30 of her own weddings and about 10 with me! Any day I spend with Wallace is a day well spent. I am so proud of this lady’s accomplishments and so excited we get to do this side by side.
Today is Wallace’s last day at her full time job. After 6pm she will be a full time wedding photographer!! Her and I talked about making this dream a reality for her for years and I am literally bursting with excitement for her that the day has finally come.
Ash, I am here for you always!! So excited that together we can capture so many amazing moments for all the #awbrides out there.
I LOVE YOU. YOU DID IT!!!
xox – Ashley West
Some may think I’m a little crazy… but I’m pretty excited to share some news. Today I’m handing off my full-time photography position at Grandview Mercantile. At 6pm this evening I get to walk in to the lovely world of living that full-time wedding photographer’s life. As much as I’m going to miss photographing antique furniture and vintage jewelry Monday-Friday, I’m going to miss my best pals at the Merc most. I’ve made some pretty great life long friends. But I am SO excited to finally focus on one business.
Life has been busy. I have been in the process of booking 28 weddings for 2016 and 8 for 2017 so far, shooting engagement sessions left and right, and managing the tasks that go along with it all. Life got to that point where it was a bit too busy to manage and it is extremely important to me that I give my clients the best me, along with focusing on my husband, family, house, and cats! Something had to give! I love this job more than any job I’ve ever had. As stressful as a wedding day can be at times, there isn’t a better feeling than leaving with 5,000 awesome photos of a couple in love and feeling like you have gained a family.
I have been working so hard for this the last 3 years, and I kind of feel like I’m dreaming. Cramming meetings in right after work, running home to answer 25 emails, editing most days of the week, and shooting on Saturdays has been so worth it. I finally get a break. I get to go to the pool this summer? And edit with West on her front porch (and she will probably make me a delicious fruit smoothie and a cucumber sandwich)? I can edit in bed while my kitten cats snuggle next to me???? I can go out to lunch with my grandpa whenever I want? I am so excited!! My husband took the leap in to tattooing a year ago or so and I can’t believe we’re both full-time, self-employed, client managing, artists. Let me tell ya, it’s been a wild ride growing up together the last 7 years. Pretty grateful to be here with this man! By the way, we bought old married couple bicycles this week. Catch ya on the path!
My parents and in-laws have been so supportive of my decision, even when I felt nervous. When I told them I was thinking about leaving my steady paying position they told me to go for it with out hesitation. Encouragement from your parents is kind of the best. And Ashley West. I swear. This woman. She has built this business from the ground up and has been kind enough to let me be apart of it. She has trusted me to go out on my own as another face of her company and I couldn’t be happier. I love you with my whole heart Ash. You saw something in me 4 years ago and you have helped my dreams happen faster than I ever imagined they would. You’re my soul photo sista for life. <3
Anyway. Thanks for listening to me ramble. If I can do this, you can do this. Chase. Your. Dreams. WHATEVER they are. NEVER stop running. My papa has always said ‘work hard to earn the lifestyle you want to live.’ And the famous ‘Fly right or you will be living in a van down by the river!’ Not sure if he turned me in to a monster-workaholic, but I am here.
Now to start this off with a bang. I’ll chat with you all after my double header wedding weekend!
<3 – Ashley Wallace
Here’s us at West’s new home eating ice cream, laughing our butts off, playing with barn cats, and being so genuinely happy that life has taken us both in this amazing direction.