Ashley Morrison's Blog

July 31, 2011

It’s a tough old job…

Filed under: Photography,Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 5:21 pm
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.. but someone has to do it – as the saying goes.

This week took us back to the Antrim coast again, to shoot a fabulous old converted coach house, The Shola. Which was originally built around 1860 and has been lovingly restored and extended by Mary & Arthur McAllister.
The sun shone throughout the day, which was great; however, the one image we needed it most for, was the exterior – to highlight the beautiful stone work.
We were determined to capture this… but as with most things in life, the simplest of things can often be the hardest.

In this case, the sun didn’t hit the front until well after 6 o’clock – and by that stage, it was starting to drop behind the big trees to the right…
Mary and Arthur McAllister's converted coach house near Portstewart in County Antrim.
.. so this one simple looking shot, actually took over an hour to capture.
However, to help pass the time while we were waiting, Mary very kindly brought us out a glass of red wine.
Yes I know, it’s a tough old job… but someone has to do it smile

Inside, Mary & Arthur…
Mary and Arthur McAllister in the sitting room of their converted coach house near Portstewart in County Antrim.
.. combined the cosiness of the coach house with stylish decor – and if all goes well, you should be able to see all the images printed in one of the leading interior magazines, later on this year.

A tough one, but a lovely one – so a big thanks to Mary & Arthur for making us feel so welcome and inviting us in to capture The Shola.

From Marie & me @ ampimage.com

Eye Candy.

Is the title of one of 3 features we have in the September 2011 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine this month…
Pages 82 to 86 of the September 2011 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Charles Drumgoold's three story waterfront terraced which over looks the town of Bangor in County Down.
.. pages 82 to 86 – featuring Charles Drumgoold’s three story waterfront terraced which over looks the town of Bangor in County Down.

“Charles Drumgoole needed a single glance through the window of a Victorian terrace to realise the place enjoyed views that were out of this world.”

‘Singular Vision’ being the other one…
Pages 142 to 145 of the September 2011 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Andrew Webb's semi detached house in the Belmont area of Belfast.
.. on pages 142 to 145 – featuring Andrew Webb’s semi detached house in the Belmont area of Belfast.

“Andrew Webb was determined to make his mark on a dared Belfast semi and create a space to display treasured heirlooms.”

And ‘Moving Mountains’ being the third one…
Pages 128 and 130 of the September 2012 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Davina and Ian Callen's cottage near Seaforde in County Down.
.. pages 128 to 130 – featuring Davina and Ian Callen’s cottage near Seaforde in County Down.

“Despite the obstacles in their path, Davina & Ian Callen built a new home in the hills of County Down.”

So a big thanks to everyone involved – eye candy indeed – and great to see these all in this one issue.

Marie, Mandi & Ashley @ ampimage.com

July 25, 2011

Phase One rocks

Filed under: Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 9:30 am
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This movie was produced by a Phase One distributor…

.. and it made me smile – because that really is a ‘want item’ right there 🙂

July 24, 2011

On days like this…

.. we make the most of it in Ireland.

Waiting for the summer to arrive this year, has been a long wait; however, we finally seem to have got a few good days at least.
So it was off to shoot some exteriors along the Antrim coast to complete the series of images for the various editorial features.

One being the home we shot last week in Cushendall…
Briege and Stephen Conway's Victorian townhouse in the County Antrim coastal town of Cushendall.
.. which lies in the shadow of the amazing table topped Lurigethan Mountain.

Jumping out into the middle of the road and back again, as cars whizzed by in this busy town, was fun – and I’m sure if anyone had been watching, they would have wondered what I was up to.

Still it was worth the wait, because on days like this the drive along the coast to the Glens of Antrim, is to die for – and it’s easy to see why it’s a major tourist attraction in the north of Ireland.

Long may the sun shine on this area of outstanding natural beauty, which hopefully we have managed to capture here, for all the world to see.

July 18, 2011

Labour of love…

.. in Cushendall – and so capturing that was our latest project.

Briege Conway with her daughter Cerys in the kitchen of their Victorian townhouse in the County Antrim coastal town of Cushendall.

When Briege & Stephen decided to buy this house, 9 years ago, on their wish list was: a small traditional town in which to raise a family, plus a period house with character. Despite having no connections with the town, they spotted this house and fell for it, even though it needed a massive amount of work. The fact that Cushendall is on the coast and is also close to beautiful glens and forestry nailed it! Basically it was a complete gut job – which meant making one room habitable and living there throughout the renovation, while bring up their young family.
So it was a true labour of love for all.

And I think that showed in our images, as it was all hands on board throughout the day, to capture this stylish…
The dining area in Briege and Stephen Conway's Victorian townhouse in the County Antrim coastal town of Cushendall.
.. urban home.

So we would just like to say a big thanks to Briege, Stephen, John and especially to Clerys here…
Briege and Stephen Conway's daughter Clerys on the stairs in their Victorian townhouse in the County Antrim coastal town of Cushendall.
.. who was the Star throughout the day – for making us feel so welcome and letting us capture your beautiful home.

From Marie & me @ampimage.com

July 10, 2011

Never work with kids and animals…

.. they say – or bank on the weather…
One of the pictures taken of the Kids play area at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare.
.. here in Ireland.

Well we were recently back down with one of our favourite clients – The Lodge at Doonbeg – where they have a well tuned market strategy aimed at showing how this stunning resort has more to offer than top class golf for anyone who doesn’t necessarily play the game. With their incredibly stylish self catering cottages, it’s ideal for family breaks…
Kids play area at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare.
.. and this time our role was to show the many varied attractions they have laid on…
Outdoor games at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare.
.. to keep everyone happy & occupied during the day.

I must say the two boys where complete stars throughout…
The animal farm at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare.
.. however, getting the rabbits & chickens to pose was a bit trickier smile

Still, there is nothing quite like the appeal of a chilled drink while enjoying a beautiful sunset !! And in the west of Ireland, the sunsets over the Atlantic can be spectacular – so our goal was to capture all of this as well for their marketing material. The only problem was, when we were shooting the outdoor social area, it was mid afternoon and the clouds were rolling in fast…
Capture-157643
.. so it didn’t quite have the look we were after.

This is Ireland after all – where it rains approximately 225 days a year.

So creating that whole feeling of being there as sun sets, was challenging to say the least – but with lighting, etc…
Marie McMillen and Ray Kearney outside Darby's Bar & Restaurant at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare.
.. I think we came close to making it look like the real thing.

Anyway, as always we had a wonderful time at this 5 Star Resort – which is the home to one of the best golf courses in Ireland, built by two-time British Open champion Greg Norman – and would just like to say a big thanks to Ray for making a good call on the weather last week – it may not have been perfect but I think we got there in the end – plus a big thanks out to everyone else at Doonbeg, for all their help & co-operation throughout the days we were there.

From Marie & me @ ampimage.com

July 9, 2011

Blogging – Italian Style

Filed under: Web links — Ashley Morrison @ 3:16 pm
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This is another instance of a Blog about a Blog.

This time the Blog Spot is by a wide network of mainly Italian girls who clearly love “Modern Country” style – they had spotted some of our magazine images and were clearly very taken with Marie’s styling – as a result, they asked for an interview which can now be seen on Apple Pie.

Modern Country: Marie McMillen, quando il web è una continua scoperta.

The kitchen table in Marie and Alan McMillen's 1920's bungalow near Holywood in County Down.

This really is a beautiful composed Blog Spot – it just shows that a love of homes and styling is a truly international thing.

Pretty Far West

This is actually a Blog about a Blog – and coincidently this happened twice this week for us !!
We shot a very pretty country style home in Connemara …
Brid ni and Steve Fhlathuin modernised Irish cottage overlooking the Aran Islands in Connemara.
.. a beautiful part of the world over looking the Aran Islands.
The homeowner, Brid, writes a superb blog about everyday living with a country style theme.
So you can check out her Blog about our photoshoot at Pretty Far West.

Anyway, we would just like to say a huge thank you to Brid and her Scottish husband, Steve, for making us feel most welcome.

Steve, by the way, has theee most amazing Harley Davison so when the girls were having fun chatting about – well girly things I guess – we had a most enjoyable discussion about boys toys – and I even got a wee go on his Harley.

So needless to say, we all had a great day… pretty far West !!

From Marie & me @ ampimage.com

July 8, 2011

Old House New Beginnings.

Is the title of our latest published work in the August 2011 issue of Period Ideas magazine…
Pages 30 to 36 in the August 2011 issue of Period Ideas magazine featuring Mairead Anderson's thatched cottage located near Portaferry in County Down.
.. on pages 30 to 36 – featuring Mairead Anderson’s thatched cottage located near Portaferry in County Down.

“At a crossroads in life, Mairead decided to head for the hills and an idyllic rural cottage with a lifestyle to match.”

Plus ‘Passport to Perfection’ is the other one in this issue…
Pages 38 to 45 in the August 2011 issue of Period Ideas magazine featuring Melissa Thompson and Rod Moore's first floor apartment in a Victorian house on the coast near Bangor Marina in Country Down.
.. on pages 38 to 45 – featuring Melissa Thompson and Rod Moore’s first floor apartment in a Victorian house on the coast near Bangor Marina in Country Down.

“Melissa Thompson transformed her home with influences from around the glode.”

So a big thank you to everyone involved – especially to Steve at Chilli Media, who once again made it 2 in a row.

Marie, Mandi and me @ ampimage.com

July 7, 2011

Oooh La La.

Was our thoughts during the recent shoot at this beautiful Victorian terrace…
Amanda and Keith McGuile's Victorian terrace which overlooks Bangor Marina in County Down.
.. of Amanda and Keith McGuile, which overlooks the Bangor Marina in County Down.

Amanda adores French shabby chic style – and she achieved exactly this look with great flair here…
Amanda McGuile in the sitting room of her Victorian terrace which overlooks Bangor Marina in County Down.
.. as the high ceilings, stunning fireplaces and original shutters made this house…
The dining area in Amanda and Keith McGuile's Victorian terrace which overlooks Bangor Marina in County Down.
.. ideally suited to her style.

Shooting homes for the glossies these days, is all about lifestyle – as a result, Marie usually brings lots of props – like cushions, throws, flowers, crusty bread, fruit, etc, etc.
The fresh strawberries however, were just a little bit too hard to resist for this little fella…
Amanda and Keith McGuile's son Bailie in the kitchen of their Victorian terrace which overlooks Bangor Marina in County Down.
.. Bailey, Amanda’s son – who was the star of the show throughout the day.

Anyway, just to say it was a really lovely shoot and a big thanks to Amanda for making us feel so welcome.

From Marie & me @ ampimage.com

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