Ashley Morrison's Blog

June 17, 2022

Farewell my young friend.

Filed under: Family,Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 8:30 am
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Almost nine years to the day I took this picture out in garden just after we got back from County Westmeath…

.. where Royal Princess was born, as you can see on her Registration Certificate… 

.. but we decided to call her Venus instead.

My parents always loved Dobermanns, and always had at least one for as long as I can remember – trained them, showed them and breed them too – so this was mums latest one which I helped her bring home that day.

One month later…

.. one year later…

.. there was never any doubt, she was a princess.

I would have called around most evening to see my mum after my father passed away – and Venus would have always greeted me at the back door, plus it seems she would have also stood at the window each night waiting for me to arrive. So yes, even though she wasn’t actually my dog, she always made me feel very welcome – like I was part of ‘her family’.

Nevertheless, she was very much my mother’s dog and would have rarely left her side – up until mum went into hospital around this time last year.

Naturally, at first, I assumed mum would be back – but in the meantime I knew Venus needed looking after. So I put her red collar on once again and took her down to the beach…

.. and then that’s what I had to do every morning after that – because she clearly loved it – as you can see from these images that I took of her over the next few months…

.. which I would have shown to mum each time I visited her.

Anyway, after mum said “good-bye” I basically stopped taking pictures for a while – of Venus, that is, because… well, that was like the end of a chapter.

Naturally I continued to walk her every day, but it wasn’t until February of this year that I started to take pictures of her again, at home enjoying the good life – as this was now her house…

.. and so I basically let her sit and lie where ever she liked – which naturally included on the sofa…

.. which obviously she loved…

.. and in the meantime Holly & I started painting everything white…

.. while she watched with great interest.

Happy

.. happy

.. happy” – as we tried to match her black & tan look throughout 🙂

Life was good…

.. but then about a month ago, around the time I took this picture of her on my father’s chair…

.. she started acting a little strange – lying more on the floor and then among the bushes outside…

.. in the garden where I took that first picture of her – which isn’t a good sign, I have been told.

Anyway, on Monday of this week I took this picture of her lying in the back of the Land Rover outside Claire Ferris Veterinary Practice

.. again, much like the first picture I took of her – with my arm around her – expect unfortunately this was to be the last time 😦

According to Claire, “Dobermanns don’t like growing old” – the problem it seems was her heart – which now leaves me with a broken one.

Farewell my young friend…

.. I’m lucky to have known how hard it was to say goodbye – to you, my Royal Princess.

March 3, 2022

A Real Character

Featuring Jamie Trimble…

..and Danny…

.. his German Pointer, in their two bedroom Georgian terrace house in the County Down town of Dromore.

Both real characters – hence the title of our latest published work, which can be seen in the April 2022 issue of Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine…

.. on pages 66 to 75.

Thanks to his creative eye, photographer Jamie Trimble was able to turn a rundown property in Dromore into a stylist home.

His first renovation project…

.. which he talks at length about…

.. which therefore just leaves me to say: Congratulations, Jamie…

.. for making it into Ireland’s largest selling interior magazine for 27 years – from Marie, Mandi & me.

October 19, 2021

The Good Shepherd.

The drawing and some of the tools used by Dony Mac Manus… 

.. who was the sculptor that carved Christ the good shepherd at the centre…

.. with the four Irish saints most closely associated with Armagh on either side: Malachy with the pallium and the apple, Brigid with the cross, Patrick with the shamrock and Oliver Plunkett – on the block of Tunisian limestone…

.. that arrived on the 2nd of May 2003…

.. and was lifted…

.. while being closed watched by Cardinal Seán Brady

.. along with Fr. Eugene Sweeney (Secretary to Cardinal Brady), Jack O’Hare (Editor of the Cathedral Guidebook) and Gerry Gribbon (Cathedral Restoration Clerk of Works)…

.. and then pushed…

.. and pulled…

.. and pushed some more…

.. before being finally lifted into place… 

.. to make the alter for St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Armagh before the rededication…

.. on 25th of May 2003.

Which was part of one of the most memorable projects that I have ever worked on…

.. along with Tommy from Octoberstone design.

So needless to say Claudio and I were delighted to be asked back recently…

.. to shoot Eamon Martin, who is now the Archbishop of Armagh and the Primate of All Ireland…

.. at that same alter inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Armagh…

.. where the carvings facing the congregation depict Christ the good shepherd at the centre with the four Irish saints most closely associated with Armagh on either side.

October 1, 2021

Mum said “good-bye” this morning.

She will be greatly missed by all the family – especially by her three sons, Terence, Nicholas and me.
Mary Morrison

According to the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages document, which she kept in the safe…

Mary Isabella Gallagher's Registration of Birth.

.. Mum was born on the 31st of May 1932 in the District of Fannett, in the Irish County of Donegal – and they called her Mary Isabella.

Under her bed my daughter, Chloe, found a large box that was full of pictures – many of which none of us had ever seen before – like this one of her Mum & Dad,  Kathleen McKemey (18) and Daniel Gallagher (33)…

Catherine McKemey and Daniel Gallagher on their wedding day.

.. which, according to what she wrote on the back, was taken in October 1924 on their wedding day.
And so it’s some of those pictures that I would now like to use here, to help me tell this story about this amazing person that I was always so proud to call my Mum

She was the eldest girl in a family of eleven, eight boys and three girls.

One of the earliest pictures that I found, was this one of her when she was 14, with her two sisters, Sadie (10) and Ann (7), taken in 1946 outside their family home in Moross…

Sadie, Mary and Ann Gallagher

.. with a note beside it saying the “summer after mum died”.
So yes, she lost her Mum when she was only 13 – which is hard to imagine.
Anyway, on the 8th of April 1953, she began her training at Ards Hospital in Northern Ireland – and on the 30th of May 1956, according to framed certificate that I found, she “passed the examinations held to test her proficiency, and has preformed her nursing duties to our satisfaction.”
So she, along with her two sisters who followed her led, became a State Registered Nurse…

Mary Isabella Gallagher

.. and it was around that time it seems, that she met John Morrison (a young farmer from the Ards Peninsula) at a dance in Regent House.
And on the 19th of September 1957, she became known as Mary Isobel Morrison from that day on – as seen here with her brothers (Dan, John, Robert, Tommie, Charlie, Jim and Alfred) and sisters (Sadie and Ann) on her wedding day…

The Gallagher family in 1957.

.. along with Dan’s wife, Joan – and John Morrison…

John and Mary Morrison on their wedding day.

.. who a few years later became my Dad

Swimming was a big part of our lives when I young – and she, as seen here at the back on the far left of this picture of INST swimming club…

Inst swimming team

.. was very much into it as well.
She even flew out to Australia to watch me compete in the 1982 Commonwealth Games – to my surprise – because she never mentioned she was going before I left, the week before the Opening Ceremony…

Opening Ceremony at the 1982 Commonwealth Games

.. which she clearly enjoyed, as she took loads of pictures of that.
So yes, one of the nicest memories that I have of her was at the start of my first event, looking up into the spectator gallery as they announced my name and seeing her with her sister, Sadie, waving their arms and cheering.

I couldn’t believe it – but that was my mum

She loved to travel – and as did my father – seen here together at Thousand Islands on their way to Kingston in 1995…

Mary and John Morrison at Thousand Islands

.. with a note on the back saying: USA on the far side.
So there are lots of pictures of the both of them in various part of the world – as well as lots of pictures of herself with her two sisters, Sadie…

Mary and Sadie

.. who lives in Sydney – and Ann…

Ann and Mary in New York.

.. who lives in New York City.

Many of which I had never seen before.

The picture that I use at the start, by the way, I took of her in a kitchen we were shooting that was featured in the October/November 2005 issue of 25 Beautiful Kitchens magazine…

October/November 2005 issue of 25 Beautiful Kitchens magazine.

.. which she kept in her bedside table – where she stood-in as the homeowner.
So that was definitely one of my favourite images of her, as well as this one…

Mary Morrison's 71st Birthday party.

.. which I took at her 71st birthday party

One thing is for sure, I will miss her and she will be greatly missed by all the family – including her six grandchildren, Ross, Ryan, Amber, Chloe, Holly and Ella – and her dog, Venus…

Venus

.. which the people of Ballywalter knew was always by her side.

The end of a chapter, Mum – but not the story  – as you live on in each of us

January 6, 2021

Full of Romance

Is the title of our latest published work which can be seen on the cover and in the February 2021 issue of Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine…
The cover plus pages 40 to 49 in the February 2021 issue of Ireland's Homes Interiors and Living magazine.
.. on pages 40 to 49 – featuring Amanda and Keith’s renovated Grade B1 listed Victorian townhouse in Belfast.

Amanda and Keith stripped a double-fronted Victorian townhouse in Belfast to the brick to create their French romantic, shabby chic home from scratch.

Which I talked about us shooting here: Wow, I take my hat off to you Ashley!.

So once again congratulations to Keith and Amanda here…
Amanda Holly with her two sons Bailie & Oliver in the sitting room of their renovated Victorian town house in Belfast.
.. for not only making it into this beautifully printed magazine but for also making it onto the cover too…
The cover of the February 2021 issue of Ireland's Homes Interiors and Living magazine.
.. from Marie, Mandi, Stuart & me

October 3, 2020

Celtic Connection

Is the title of our latest published work which can be seen in the November 2020 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine…
Pages 74 to 77 in the November 2020 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Louise McGuane and her husband Dominic McCarthy's renovated four-bedroom extended stone cottage called 'The Safe House' near the village of Cooraclare in County Clare.
.. on pages 74 to 77 – featuring Louise McGuane and her husband Dominic McCarthy’s renovated extended stone cottage called ‘The Safe House’ near the village of Cooraclare in County Clare.

Natural light, eclectic street art and open space have turned an 18th-century cottage into an idyllic Irish hideaway for Louise McGuane and her husband Dominic McCarthy.

Which I talked about us shooting here: The Safe House.

So congratulations once again to Dominic and Louise here…
Louise McGuane in her renovated four-bedroom extended stone cottage called 'The Safe House' near the village of Cooraclare in County Clare.
.. for making it into this beautiful national magazine which has more inspirational homes than any other – from Marie, Mandi and me

October 1, 2020

A Slice of History

Is the title of our latest published work which can be seen in the November 2020 issue of Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine…
Pages 56 to 65 in the November 2020 issue of Ireland's Homes Interiors & Living magazine featuring Sue and Alan Wilton's renovated Georgian cottage near Lisburn in County Antrim.
.. on pages 56 to 65 – featuring Sue and Alan Wilton’s renovated Georgian cottage near Lisburn in County Antrim.

When experienced renovator Sue first stepped into this unique Georgian house that she would soon call home, the sense of history emanating from every room was almost tangible.

So congratulations to Alan and Sue here…
Sue Wilton in the sitting room of her renovated Georgian cottage.
.. for making it into this beautifully printed magazine – from Janet, Dianne, Ivan and me

August 15, 2020

New Beginnings once again.

Is the title of our latest published work which can be seen in the September 2020 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine…
“Pages 20 to 24 in the September 2020 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Jacqui and Peter’s Victorian detached house in the County Down town of Bangor
.. on pages 20 to 24 – featuring Jacqui and Peter’s Victorian detached house in the County Down town of Bangor.

By respecting the heritage of this once crumbling rectory, Jacqui and Peter Kirk received an award from a local conservation group.

Which we talked about shooting here: Classic design that stands the test of time.

So huge congratulations once again to Peter & Jacqui – plus to Charlie & Ben here too…
“Jacqui
.. for making it into this beautiful magazine that features more inspirational homes than any other – from Janet Dianne Ivan and me

May 19, 2019

Rain, Hail or Shine

Beautiful outdoor terraces are a rare find in Dublin city center…
Screenshot of The Nurserie Terrace page on the Dylan Hotel's website.
.. but rain, hail or shine the secret is out!

As we created an image…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. of The Nurserie Terrace
One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. which like it says on their website is the ideal location to catch or even capture…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. the evening rays or light, in this case…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. as the terrace enjoys direct sunshine from early afternoon until sunset.

The partially covered and heated terrace, which can be enjoyed all year round…
One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. is the perfect spot to retreat to…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. which Claudio was obviously happy illustrate smile

Brimming with freshly potted plants and flowers, it is a decadent urban oasis
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. which we clearly wanted to show. A place to relax and unwind
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. with a cold glass of Rosé
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. a delicious cocktail or one of the Dylan’s very own, low kcal, refreshing Champagne ice pops, certain to put you in the summer mood – rain…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. hail…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. or shine – because this is Ireland at the end of the day smile

Seriously though, guests can [now] choose to dine al fresco in The Nurserie Terrace
The Nurserie Terrace area at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. for breakfast, lunch and dinner, from 6.30am till late… at Dublin’s leading five star boutique hotel smile

May 12, 2019

The Ruby Room…

Filed under: Photography — Ashley Morrison @ 1:23 pm
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.. by the one and only…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. with lots of help from everyone at The Dylan hotel smile

So after shooting this area…
One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.

Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.

One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.

Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. in the Wood Panel Room…
The Wood Panel Room in the Dylan Hotel which is one of Dublin's leading five-star boutique hotel.
.. it was into the hotel’s hidden gem, The Ruby Room – where “you’ll be warmly welcomed…
One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. by the expert bar team who will guide you through the unique cocktail list or create one for you based on your taste.”
“The Ruby Room is colourful…
Behind the scenes during the shoot at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. yet intimate…
One of the captures taken during the Dylan Hotel in Dublin.
.. with patterned fabric walls and deep feather filled cushions making it easy to forget the world outside…
The Ruby Room Bar in the Dylan Hotel.
.. while enjoying a few of the bartender’s creations…”
Screenshot of The Ruby Room page on the Dylan Hotel's website.
.. at the Dylan Hotel in Dublin smile

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