INTERVIEW: FEMALE FOUNDER - NICOLE ASHLEY - WORLD RENOWNED WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER
FEMALE FOUNDER – NICOLE ASHLEY – WORLD RENOWED PHOTOGRAPHER + OWNER OF NICOLE ASHLEY
She's won Worlds Best Wedding Photographer two years running, and is a kind, and beautiful soul - inside and out.
I dare you to look through her photos without crying. Even writing this article, I went back through some of her shoots, and was in a puddle of tears. (PS - Here are some of my favorite shoots: 1, 2, 3)
LOVE is something that binds us all, and it's what life is all about. For without love, there is no meaning.
Nicole Ashley is a true artistic and creative soul, who was bestowed with the gift to capture love in all its form.
She forms, and creates a legacy that will live on for centuries, and touch people, families, and generations into eternity.
She is a special human being, and her work is out of this world.
In this interview she shares her journey to how she came to be today, leaving behind tradition schooling to follow her passion, what keeps her motivate, how she deals with stress, her words of wisdom on pursuing your dreams + how she keeps her self glowing form the inside out.
HERE SHE IS //
First of all, thank you so much for doing this interview with me!!!!!!!! Second before we dig in, tell us a little bit about yourself and why you felt compelled to start your own photography business?
I always knew that I wanted a career in a field were I could help people but I struggled on what that should look like. I initially thought that was in the area of Psychology but shortly after I moved over to Education. While working on my degree I took up shooting as a hobby. I fell in love. I never imagined I could make a career in a creative field but after completing my degree I knew I had to try. This was hard to stomach at first, because I had just invested 30,000 into a degree I was choosing not to use, but with the support from family and friends I focused solely on photography for my first year and built it into a career.
What’s your vision + mission for your photography, business and beyond?
I want to help people leave a legacy of beautiful memories for themselves and for others. Making them feel loved and special throughout the process is important to me.
How did you know you wanted become an entrepreneur and start a business?
I didn't! If you would have told me that one day I would run a business I would have laughed!
How do you stay motivated on a daily basis?
I set realistic goals and make lists constantly.
Are you always thinking about your business, career, releasing new content and growing?
On that note, is this a 24/7 job and commitment? (I think this is what people are fearful of!)
Hahaha YES...I work all the time. It can be hard to take breaks but they are important!
Where do you find your inspiration to continually stay relevant and authentic to your vision?
Travelling is a big one for me. I travel a lot for work but I always make sure to tack on some personal travel time while in new locations. Being in a new setting with new people is very inspiring
I know so many entrepreneurs who have all these ideas and desire to start a business / release a product, but they are fearful and have no idea where to start! It can be overwhelming. How did you move past this and what obstacles arose from the process? What would you tell someone in this place?
To be honest I started off the best way- for fun. There was no pressure and it was all for the enjoyment of it. Until there was a demand for what I was putting out there did I consider I should make it into a business.
Are you ever really ready to go solo and become an entrepreneur? Or are the people who are actually doing and living it simply taking action? (As you did with Nicole Ashley) because many people start off slow, but lose hope and steam as they aren’t seeing any results, feedback or gains.
You just need to take action. Life is short and you have to be persistent if you want to make it work. You only get one life here on earth, you need to make it count.
Who are your biggest mentors / sources of inspiration?
My husband. He was also a teacher but a creative at heart. After teaching for 3 years he gave up a steady income, benefits and set schedule to apprentice as a tattoo artist. It was terrifying at first and really really hard, but a couple years later we couldn't imagine if he didn't take the leap. He is now living his dream career also creating for others :)
Favorite book on business?
Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert and Cold Heart Truth by Kevin O'Leary
Top 5 Favorite Foods you eat daily?
StrawberriesGranolaDried CoconutVegan YogurtDoes coffee count?
Are there any foods that you try to stay away from?
I really try to stay away from dairy and recently I have been making a huge effort to not eat animal products. This is a new learning curve for me but one that I am excited about.
Top 3 favorite foods to indulge in?
Movie theatre popcornMini eggsChocolate
Favorite way to sweat?
RunningLate night walksYoga
I love skin and I'm fascinated with how people maintain their 'glow'. What are your Top 5 favorite skincare products or procedures (facials, treatments, etc.)?
Dove unscented soapDd Dennis Gross peel/moisture wipesAmore Pacific moistureFresh Black Tea mask
5 non-negotiables when it comes to your self-care routine?
Getting a good nights sleepDrinking as much water was possible throughout the dayFinding a way to move around each dayTaking time for people I loveSnuggling with Blanche (my kitten)
How do you practice glowing from the inside out?
In general trying to put out good, positive energy everyday, there's enough terrible things going on in the world.
(ps - I know this beautiful couple! She is a dear, dear friend from growing up! How beautiful are they? ♥)
Favorite quote or affirmation?
Kinddess. It doesn't cost a thing. Sprinkle that shit everywhere.
How do you practice self-love?
How do you find balance in your life, and how do you relax?
Going to the movies is my favourite treat to myself. I love getting lost in visual stories.
What would you tell your younger self?
Wear sunscreen and don't worry what people think of you.
What is your true passion + purpose?
What do you do when you feel stuck or start to feel fear creeping in? (self-worth, uncertainty, financial, physical, all areas).
I put work away and spend time with people I love. It always makes me feel better.
If you could only give 3 pieces of advice to aspiring entrepreneurs + people who are stuck where they are, about life, love, business and living your passion – what would those be?
Don't give up. Make realistic actions plansTurn to people you love for advice
If you could wave a magic wand, what would it do?
Clean my house!
What is greatness to you?
THANK YOU BEAUTIFUL SOUL! YOUR WORDS + PHOTOS ARE SO INCREDIBLY INSPIRING.
BIG LOVE & LIGHT,