An Interview with Ashley Patricelli

Ashley Patricelli is a painter whose work reflects an openness to experimentation and letting the subconscious emerge. Her work evokes emotion with rich texture and imagery interplaying with layers of color and dimension. Ashley describes a relationship with her art-making that is authentic, curious, and playful. After reading her words and seeing her work, I’m feeling so inspired that I just might dig out my acrylics (from the PCS box I just packed) and have some playtime of my own!

We at MilspoFAN are so pleased to introduce Ashley to you this month. Without further ado, here is Ashley in her own words…

MilspoFAN: How did you become an artist?

Ashley: I could never pinpoint when I became an artist, because that would imply that I was not an artist, and then I was. I have always been an artist, a person who loves to create paintings and drawings, since I was a little girl. I started actually painting for other people at our first military base almost ten years ago. I made myself a facebook page and mostly did local commissions and shows. I have been doing that ever since.

MilspoFAN: Describe for us your creative work and the aesthetic of your art? 

Ashley: My art doesn’t come with rules. It is my playtime, unless I am working on a specific commission, of course. Random ideas and images pop into my head…sometimes inspired by photos, sometimes by quotes or stories, sometimes by life experience itself. Then, with a vague idea of where I want to go, I just pick up the brush and start painting. Sometimes the image flows onto the canvas perfectly, it is really fun to see it fall into place. Sort of like watching puzzle pieces fall together, after only being allowed to glance at the complete the image on the box through foggy glasses in the dark. Other times, I have to work and rework, and cover up over and over again until something I like emerges. My most recent projects have a lot of mixed media collage work that blends into the paintings. I really like the added texture and randomness that it gives an otherwise “normal” image.

MilspoFAN: How has your role as a military spouse impacted your work- creatively, logistically, or otherwise?

Ashley: I believe being able to live overseas in a few different cultures has helped open up my mind to more creativity. I was only able to do this from being a military spouse. Attending galleries, exhibitions, and art shows was a great way to see what others were creating and get inspired myself. Also just getting out and seeing the local architecture, people, and scenery inspires me as well.


MilspoFAN: How do you meet other artists or plug into the local arts scene when you PCS?

Ashley: Mostly social media. Facebook pages, flyers, that sort of thing. I always ask and research with every new place and get involved with what I can.

MilspoFAN:  What is the most practical piece of advice that you would give to other artists?

Ashley: Don’t bother with labels. They are always changing, anyway!  Don’t worry about if what you are doing is going to succeed or fail. Just relax with your art and make it your time, the time that you look forward to, the time that you get to open up your soul and play.

Ashley’s Facebook artist page:

link to Central MO news article featuring Ashley:

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