Ashley Morrison's Blog

October 29, 2013

Let it snow.

Filed under: Publish work — Ashley Morrison @ 4:50 pm
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Is the title of our latest published work in the December 2013 issue of Period Ideas magazine…
Pages 42 to 48 in the December 2013 issue of Period Ideas magazine featuring Julie and David Morrow's Edwardian terraced cottage near the County Down town of Comber at Christmas.
.. on pages 42 to 48 – featuring Julie and David Morrow’s Edwardian terraced cottage near the County Down town of Comber at Christmas.

“Julie and David Morrow’s pretty cottage is tailor made for a cosy Christmas and the couple love decorating their home every winter.”

And a wee message in from Julie to say:

“Delighted we’re in Period Ideas at Christmas. Just waiting for that front cover issue, then I’ll have arrived!! Lol.”

Because I did mention to her at the time, that I could see this image of her…
Julie Morrow outside her Edwardian terraced cottage near the County Down town of Comber at Christmas.
.. making it onto a cover someday – which I still can – so hang in there Julie 🙂

Anyway, besides saying ‘Let it snow’ now that I have a new wagon to play with – I’d also like to say a big thanks to everyone involved here once again – and especially to Steve at Chilli Media for making this one happen.

From Marie & me @


October 28, 2013

Let there be light.

Filed under: Photography — Ashley Morrison @ 2:54 pm
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As the count begins, was what I was thinking here…
.. as we setup the first of a series of shots, for the Natural Calico website.

Yes, it’s that time of year again – so with less than 60 days to go until Christmas, it was time for me to turn on my lights…
.. to complete the dream.

Which is basically what it’s all about – from my point of view – selling the dream of Christmas cheer…
.. so with that in mind, we shot everything from jugs…
.. to musical fairies…
.. as well as what seemed to be everything else in Marie’s kitchen..

But the item that I think we both had the most fun with, was this advent calendar…
.. which was a kind of a “grown-up” vision – quite urban & chic.

But I’ll let Marie tell you more about that, over on the Natural Calico site – as the magical 24 day count down draws closer, to see what ‘my true love gave to me’.

Anyway, with only 57 days to go, it’ll now not be long before you too are saying: “Let there be light” – as you turn on your Christmas lights for the first time this year… while keeping your fingers crossed that they still work 🙂

So this is just a wee insight, into what we have been up to, to add a little cheer to your Christmas this year.

Hope you have a good one from Marie & me @

October 24, 2013

All is calm, all is bright.

Is the title of our latest work in the December 2013 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine…
Pages 44 to 48 in the December 2013 issue of 25 Beautiful Homes magazine featuring Marie and Alan McKernan's detached 1960's house in Belfast at Christmas.
.. on pages 44 to 48 – featuring Marie and Alan’s detached 1960’s house in Belfast at Christmas.

“An easy, breezy ensures Christmas at the McKernans’ is a relaxed affair.”

Which we talked about here: 50 Shades of Grey – at the end of last year.

So the first of the Christmas issues is out and it’s that time of the year again, to start wishing everyone a merry one – which is hard to believe, as it only seems like yesterday we shot this house….

.. or maybe that’s because it is the house we have been shooting in for most of the year, as this is when Marie first came up with the idea to launch Natural Calio 🙂

Anyway, congratulations to Marie & Alan here, for making it into this top selling national magazine – which is full of amazing homes, which their is most definitely too.

So from me to all of you – Merry Christmas everyone.

October 21, 2013

Looking for new opportunities…

Filed under: Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 11:14 am
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.. to move things forward.

So besides shooting some new banner images of hand painted furniture…
Hand painted furniture
.. art work…
Art work
.. and throws..
.. for the Natural Calico website – Marie also decided we should do a wee pitch, to see if we could get a foot in the door with a possible new client she had in mind – which is something we would often do if we felt the timing was right.

As Henry Ford once said:

“My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me”.

– and so that’s what Marie is to me smile

So I set-up the camera to produce an image of this stove, while Marie worked her magic…
Setting-up the stove image in Marie & Alan's home.
.. before I lit it up.

The result of good ‘team work’ lead to us creating this image…
Electric stove in the living room of Marie and Alan McMillen's renovated 1960's house in Belfast.
.. which we where both very pleased with – and so now the pitch beings smile

All part of being self-employed or working freelance, as it’s often call in the photography world – so, therefore, one is always looking for new opportunities to produce some great images that others will want to use.

So that’s what we’ve been doing over the past weeks, trying to create new opportunities as well as some new images, to move things forward.

Not easy – as being busy could just mean being a ‘busy fool’ – which one obviously needs to watch out for too – as it’s very easy to become one of those.

‘Better not working than working for nothing’, as Brain Swan at Irish Colour labs used to say to me – which always made me smile and made me think too because I knew there was often a fine line between the two.

Still, as Henry Ford, a man who I greatly admire for his words of wisdom when it comes to business, also once said:

“Business is never so healthy as when, like a chicken, it must do a certain amount of scratching around for what it gets”.

So I guess that’s really what I’m rambling on about here this morning, as I sit here typing – while trying to think of what we should do next.

Looking for the best way forward and new opportunities, at the start of a brand new week… plus a good reason to load up my new wagon and take it for a drive, of course smile

So always looking for new opportunities… to produce some great images for others to use – which hopefully they will want to use enough, that they will be prepared to pay for – as that’s obviously our goal.

Any & all suggestions are therefore always most welcome – being the main reason behind this post today – as it is time to move things forward once again Smile


October 19, 2013

The head or the heart…

Filed under: Travel,Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 5:03 pm
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.. are often the two main things that it comes down when making a buying decision.

The head is the logical stuff which one’s accountant will talk about.

The heart … well, it’s often not logically at all, but it’s like the stuff that dreams are made of – which in my line of work, is often what it’s all about – as they do say: “Image is (almost) everything”.

And so for me over the past weeks, I tried to let both have their say – but when I saw this…
Black 2002 Land Rover Discovery TD5 ES Auto
.. the heart won hands down smile

Still, there was some logic behind my decision, as I know quite a bit about these wagons now – having owned one and having had to do a lot of work to it, over the past 3 years.

So I asked all the questions about what had been done to this one – going through the full list of things that I had to do to mine – and naturally had a real good look at the chassis too.

“Better the devil you know than the one you don’t” they say – so here it is…
Black 2002 Land Rover Discovery Td5 ES Auto with black leather interior.
.. a top of the range model this time – which has been fully kitted with just about everything Land Rover could offer at the time:

Black Leather interior.
Electric seats, windows, twin sunroof & door mirrors.
Heated front seats.
Reserve parking sensors.
Centre diff lock.
Traction Control.
Active Cornering Enhancement.
Harmon Kardon amplified audio system.
Cruise control.
Drivers & passenger airbags.
Anti-lock braking system.
Traction control.
Remote central locking.
Alarm + Immobiliser.
Dual zone climate control.
18 inch alloys.
Front fog lights.
Headlight washers.
Heated windscreen.
Rear step.
Side steps.
Extended roof rails …

… and most importantly of all, it’s been Waxoyled underneath…
Waxoyled underneath the Black 2002 Land Rover Discovery TD5 ES Auto.
.. which the previous owner didn’t seem to be aware off – nor to the fact that it had had a spring conversion done too – which was one of the first things I did with my last one, as I got tired of sitting at the side of the roads, waiting for the air suspension system to sort itself out.

Oh, I could write a book about all the problems and things I had to do to my last one – but it’s like none of that really mattered – because I just loved it so much.

This one is however slightly different – in that it’s much smoother and less Defender like to drive, for some strange reason – even though it’s basically the same wagon.

A ‘work horse’ that’s also a bit of ‘show horse’, is how I’d describe it.

Anyway, I managed to stay within my budget, which the head told me I had to do no matter what the heart said – and I think this is a pretty good one too for the price I paid. Time will tell of course – but for now this is the new wagon, which will hopefully transport me & the ampimage team safely, to some wonderfully places across Europe, over the years to come.

So there you have it – the headaches and the heartaches of my recent buying decision smile


A few days later…

.. and still no real joy in finding a new wagon – but I have at least narrowed it down to either an estate or another Land Rover… if I can find one in good shape.

The big estates, like the Volvo V70 or Audi A6, tick all the boxes – but there’s just something about the Land Rover that tugs at my heart strings.

Which in a way, I guess, is a bit like this stuff we are currently shooting – people will buy it based more on what their heart says than what their head says.

And so with that in mind, our aim here was more to do with selling the Sizzle than just showing people the Steak.

As a result, Marie set-up another area in her house…
.. where we produced a series of images like these…

.. as well as shooting some paintings from a new artist to the team – to be launched next week…

.. and finally the first of a series of hand painted vintage furniture items…
.. before deciding to call it a day.

Now back to more important things – the hunt for a new wagon – which is really all that I’ve been thinking about over the past few weeks, while poor Marie here has been busy focusing on the thing that is most important to her – which is the launch of Natural Calico.
Which I must say, she has done an amazing job on, so be sure to check out her website sometime – as well as her Blog.

October 18, 2013

Shooting products.

Filed under: Photography — Ashley Morrison @ 3:09 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Been busy over the past few weeks, not only looking for a new wagon, but also shooting with Marie too…
.. as she prepared more sets and fluffed more cushions…
.. to create some new banner images for her Natural Calico website, like these…

.. as well as more product type images too…

.. which are always shot square.

Plus Marie decided to go for something a wee bit different on a few of them – by placing the items against a grey wall…

.. to see how that would look.

Looked very well in my opinion – but the real test is, of course, to see how well that looks when placed alongside the other images on the website.

Anyway, a few days later…. more to follow, so watch this space smile

October 17, 2013

No.1 in Europe…

.. and 4 in the top 15.

Yes the results are in from the latest CondĂ© Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards – and so we would would like to say a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to 4 of the hotels in the Top 20 Resorts in Europe:

Top 20
.. whom we have had the great pleasure to worked with over the past few years – providing images for them to use to show the world what they have to offer.

The Lodge at Doonbeg
.. who we last talked about shooting for here: Nothing between here and America & here in September of last year.

Dromoland Castle
.. who we last talked about shooting for here: Capturing the atmosphere and also when they won the 2012 Fodor’s top 100 hotels in the world Royal pedigree award.

Ashford Castle
.. who we last talked about shooting for here: Welcome to Ashford Castle as well as back in July 2010 when we first meet.

.. and Mount Juliet
.. who we talked about shooting for in May of this year as well as back in November 2012.

Plus an even bigger CONGRATULATIONS to Ray and everyone at the Lodge at Doonbeg for not only being ranked number one here in Europe, but for also being ranked number 20 the Top 100 Hotels & Resorts in the World:
Top 100

“What appears to be an aristocrat’s stately nineteenth-century seaside manor was in fact built in 2006 by the developers of South Carolina’s Kiawah Island and designed entirely by Americans. But what is very real about Doonbeg (and all that really matters) is its stunning setting on a remote whitecapped bay in west County Clare, the perfection of its every detail, and staff who are easily among the most welcoming in Ireland. Accommodations are in one- to four-bedroom suites with high ceilings, gas fireplaces, kitchens, and sumptuous beds. The centerpiece of the resort is the Greg Norman–designed course mowed through the rolling marram grass dunes.”

Which as you can see from their most recent ad…
.. they are extremely proud of too – and rightly so, as that is an absolutely astounding result.

So a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to each of you once again – a fantastic result indeed – and thank-you too for choose us at ampimage to capture you’re places – which we’d obviously like to think, (greatly) helped add to your success here smile

From Marie, me and the rest of the team @

It’s time to say good bye to an old friend.

Filed under: Work Rest & Play. — Ashley Morrison @ 10:27 am
Tags: , , ,

Well this old Land Rover served me well over the past 3 years, as I recorded it on a number of occasions – from the day it arrived in the rain…
XLZ 1904 arrives
.. it’s first outing in the snow…
The Land Rover out in the snow in front of the studio.
.. side steps & roof bars fitted…
Sidesteps & bars
.. then the roof rack which we picked up on our first trip down to the south of England…
Roof rack
.. and then it on the way back from shooting another job in London a week or so later…
.. loading up to going to collage with my daughter Chloe…
Of to collage
.. at Mount Juliet County Estate with Marie & Stuart…
Mount Juliet
.. and at Doonbeg Golf & Spa resort at the start of the year…
Land Rover sitting outside the Member's Club house at Doonbeg Golf & Spa Resort in County Clare.
.. and so on.

It was my work-horse over the past 3 years, as it was great for carrying not only the crew & the gear, but all sorts of other stuff too…
Loaded up
.. which I need to carry while working on renovating the Hen House studios.

But then a few weeks ago I noticed this underneath…
.. which at first I thought could be repaired, until I saw this crack…
.. which unfortunately went all the way around – meaning the chassis was actually split in two here.

So after talking it over with a few different car body repair companies – and weighing up the cost involved in fitting a new chassis – it was clear from what they all said, that it was time for me to say goodbye to my dear old friend icon_cry

A major blow for sure and very sad to see it go – but anyway… 3 weeks on, it’s now time to say hello to my new friend – so more on that later smile

October 16, 2013

A Dream Come True.

Is the title of our latest published work in the November 2013 issue of Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine…
The cover plus pages 68 to 78 in the November 2013 issue of Ireland's Homes Interiors & Living magazine featuring Patricia and Paul Abbott's detached cottage in the County Down town of Bangor.
.. on pages 68 to 78, plus on the cover too – featuring Patricia and Christopher Abbott’s detached cottage in the County Down town of Bangor.

“Patricia explains how she and husband Christopher found their dream house – a 1920s seaside cottage in Ballyholme, Bangor, Co Down – just a few doors down the road. ‘You hear such awful stories about people’s property moves, but when we went house-hunting it couldn’t have been easier !'”

Which I talked about shooting here: How beautiful images – back in January 2011.

I loved this place and I loved how it had been styled & decorated too – so yes for me, this was also a dream home too.

Anyway, a huge thanks to everyone involved for their hard work here – and a huge congratulations to Patricia & Christopher – especially for making it onto the cover too, of this beautifully printed magazine.

From Marie, Mandi & me @

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