Ashley Johnson is a visual artist working at Exchange Studios in downtown Buffalo, NY. She expresses her creativity most through painting and illustration, though her desired medium changes.
As a single mom, her life is a balance between motherhood and making the time to create. You can find her son, Chasyn, with her most days at the studio.
AJ is most passionate about connecting people and collaboration in the creative community. She is currently working on a one-on-one coaching program to help other artists present themselves professionally and authentically on social media.
How long have you been an artisan? How did your particular skillset develop over time?
I took the full leap into exploring visual art in 2017. Prior to that I was in school for a general art degree. It wasn’t until after my son was born that I started taking my craft seriously and wanted to pursue it as a business. Since then, I’ve spent a lot of my time learning as much as I can about being a small business owner and experimenting with finding my signature painting style.
Please describe your work / product.
I create a lot of my work without using a paintbrush, relying on gravity and movement to produce my paintings. The process means the most to me — each painting is an exploration of my emotions, laid down in colors and geometric elements.
Who are some of your favorite artisans / makers in the region? Who amongst your peers inspires your work?
There are so many amazing creatives in our community! I admire so many people and what they do. My studio mates offer plenty of inspiration: Christina Laing, Stephanie Dubin, Rich Tomasello, and Chuck Tingley.
How long have you been a business owner in WNY?
It’s been official for 2 years!
How long have you been a part of Buffalo Women’s Gifts?
This is my first time vending at BWG, and I’m very excited to be in such great company.