I met Ashley through my longtime blog friend Mandi (you must also check out her new work over here, if you haven't already!). They both live in Akron, Ohio and I guess Ashley stumbled onto my blog through Mandi's? No matter how we met, I am so glad we did! She's a sweetheart and such a talented musician and singer. I've enjoyed getting to know her through the wonders of the internet (you can follow her on Instagram and Facebook). I'm so inspired by people that follow their hearts and do what they love... and as we artists know - that is not always the easy path to take! But when you do something you love, that you're wildly passionate about - well, only goodness can come from that.
Here are some photos of Ashley that Mandi took a couple years ago. Aren't they the best? Ashley is such a doll!
When she approached me to design her new EP Release Show Poster, I was so crazy excited. I've been a long-time admirer of show poster designers, and while I don't equate myself with that caliber of artists (they've been doing it for years!), the idea of designing my first gig poster was really exciting.
I knew it would be the perfect collaboration, as she and I obviously have a shared love of nostalgia and vintage style. I knew this would be a great addition to my graphic design portfolio that I'm trying to build as I focus on growing my business. Even though I did graphic design at various companies for over a decade, I never really got to work with many fun clients (hello, building supply companies?!), with the exception of a few projects here and there (designing logos for some local consignment shops was a highlight!) And when I went to work for myself, I got to go crazy designing in an aesthetic that I loved.
But as I mentioned here, I'm excited to start designing more for others - especially other creative individuals and small businesses!
Without giving away too much about Ashley's inspiration for this EP (I'll let her share that with you!), when she mentioned that she listened to (among other things) Doris Day and Sesame Street Music videos while recording - I knew I could have fun with that. She let me listen to her songs (they.are.so.good) so I could get a feel for the music while I designed.
There's definitely some country tones in there, but in her signature sweet sound. With the country influence (there is some steel guitar - or pedal steel - in the mixes), I did some inspiration googling for country and other album artwork from the 60s. I knew Dolly would be a great reference, and I while I didn't take direct inspiration from this album cover, I liked the idea of a portrait. And I loved the colors (my favorites!) and groovy shapes in the Tremeloes album cover (I've never heard of them but they were apparently a 60s beat band?).
Old school country music, and the sound of that steel guitar, really hit home with me. I grew up listening to that music and it brings back memories of playing at my grandparents' homes in Louisiana - this music often playing in the background, or in the car on roadtrips. I can tell you now, that Ashley's new EP will be a perfect addition to your Summer soundtrack this year! Don't worry though, the sound is not 100% country... it's sweet and folky with such pretty melodies.
I'm so happy with how the poster came out! I only wish I could go to Ashley's show. How fun would that be? She'll be hanging them at a couple places in town, and they'll also be available for sale at the show.
She's planning a crowd funding campaign to raise money for production costs soon, so I'll be sure to keep you posted on that in case you want to contribute. She's also releasing one of the songs early, and the entire EP will be released May 20th. Again, I'll keep you posted! In the meantime, you can watch this sweet music video she made and you can also purchase her previous music "All Songs in English" here and "Sweetheart" here. I have several of her new songs stuck in my head today, in such a great way. : ) I feel honored to get to listen to them early!
If you are a small business or independent artist and need some design help, please drop me a line at thousandclowns (AT) gmail (DOT) com... I'd love to work with you!