Small Business Spotlight: Ashley Gates 

Small Business Spotlight: Ashley Gates

This series is about various small businesses that I will get to interview their owners. All Everything Entertainment is first and foremost a small business. Every member raised here in America and a few even served in the military to protect us. So it goes without saying we want to help any small business we can and the best way we can is with our ‘microphone’. 

The first person I want to talk about is the small business with someone I had the pleasure of going to high school with. Ashley Gates is an amazing person who helped me when I was going through the worst part of my life and also pushed me to finish my first two books. To be honest with the depression I was going through I may not have been alive if it wasn’t for her.

First and foremost she is a professional artist. In this article will be provided a link if you want to see examples. Personally speaking her talent (or should I say dedication to her craft) has made Ashley one of my favorite artists. The blending of colors and the imagery just reaching out. Not to mention her geek stuff looks really cool.

I could talk about her work. I think her own words from our interview will do better. Since we are separated by a considerable distance, we opted for an online interview in the form of text… and here it is.

(Of course by Geek’s Perspective rules I have to start with the Geek Questions)

1: Who is your Favorite Hero (If you need to give multiple answers go for it)

AG: The Doctor, One Punch Man, Death of the Endless, Morpheus of the Endless, The Crow, and Deadpool. 

2: Who is your Favorite Villain (Same as before)

AG: My favorite Villains are Darth Vader, Poison Ivy, Baby Firefly, Killgrave, and the Master.

3: If you could have a superpower what would it be?

AG: Regeneration

4: Who is your favorite Doctor (If it applies)

AG: I’ll have to give you a split answer for this one, I REALLY love this show and it is hard to pick one favorite. My favorite out of the older episodes is Tom Baker. Out of the new ones, my favorite Doctor is David Tennant (hands down) for acting and my favorite story arcs were during Matt Smith’s tenure. 

5: What is your favorite Manga/Anime

AG: My top five favorite anime shows are Sword Art Online, Soul Eater, Parasyte, Recovery Of An MMO Junkie, and One Punch Man. That list may change though and I’m currently really digging My Hero Academia.

6: How long have you been doing art? What got you into it? What are your goals?

AG: I’ve been making art ever since I can remember and it has always been my passion. My Aunt Gail and my grandmother probably encouraged my art and inspired me the most as a kid. Most of my life I’ve wanted to just do art for a living. I accomplished my original goal of quitting my graphic design job to work on my art full time about a year ago, with the support and encouragement of my boyfriend. He has also really helped my art blossom with his great ideas for pieces and mash-ups. I really appreciate him and all of his encouragement. I don’t know if I would’ve had the courage to take the leap into full-time freelance work without him. My current goal right now is to do art for Magic: The Gathering. I have always loved the art on the cards and have been working my butt off trying to get my fantasy art up to where it needs to be.

7: What is your favorite medium to share your work?

AG: I don’t really have a favorite medium. If we are talking about 2-D media, I had to pick it would maybe be oil or digital, but I’m really enjoying India ink right now. I really enjoy sewing and doing FX makeup too.

8: Is there any medium you want to expand to?

AG: I really want to get into markers and ink mediums more. I’ve been dabbling with them lately.

9: What are some of your works that have been your personal favorite to work on? Which ones are you the proudest that you did?

AG: My favorite pieces are Alien Fossil piece, My Doctor Who “The Doctor’s Rose” Painting, My Faerie Dragon, My Death The Kid, My Maleficent/Vader Mash-up, Indiana Jones/Han Solo Mash-up, and My 5th Element/Pulp Fiction Mash-up probably. It’s really hard to decide. I love all of my mash-ups my boyfriend gives me ideas for a lot of them, which really helps when I am suffering from a block. The art I’m most proud of is probably the one my new Elf Warrior tokens. I made an Elf Warrior token a few years ago as my first digital fantasy art painting and decided to make a new one now that I felt like I was better. Wow! What a difference it was. I kept some of the old ones to compare to the new ones when aspiring young artists say that they don’t like their art and they don’t think it is good enough. It is cool to be able to show them what can be accomplished over such a short period of time with diligence.

10: What projects do you have coming down the pipeline? What shows do you have coming up?

AG: I have plans for some really cool Firefly and Star Trek Pieces, Heroes, Mash-Ups, and more Semi-realistic Anime Art. I have a list I’m working down. Haha. I’m also working on some new Custom Magic Token arts and Fantasy pieces. I’m a third of the way done with an adult coloring book project as well. 

I have multiple shows coming up that you can catch me at: 

  • Plus Ultra Expo (With CCP Comics)- Plano, TX- February 15-16, 2020
  • Golden Comic Con (With CCP Comics)- Port Arthur, TX- February 28- March 1, 2020
  • Permian Basin Comic Con (With CCP Comics)- Midland, TX- March 13-15, 2020
  • CyPhaCon 2020- Lake Charles, LA- April 3-5, 2020
  • Comicpalooza (With CCP Comics)- Houston, TX- May 22-24, 2020

11: If a client wanted to reach out to you, what would be where they could?

AG: If a potential client would like to reach me they can through: 

12: Anything you want to tell to prospective clients? How about people wanting to become an artist, or generally a creative person?

AG: To my prospective clients, I’d like to say this is my dream job and if you have any great ideas for me to do or cool art projects I would love to hear from you! If you are just wanting to buy already made original art, prints, or tokens I sell them on Etsy and my website if you can’t make a show.

To those aspiring artists, makers, and dreamers out there:

Keep up with it and keep creating. Working full-time on my art has been amazing for me and is the best job I’ve ever had but it is also the one with the longest hours and most work. I am working all the time on new content, collaborations, shows, updating sites, coming up with marketing ideas, keeping inventory, commissions, booking shows/hotels, and you have to really push yourself to create sometimes, even when you don’t feel like it. If you really love it keep up with it and all of the other stuff won’t seem so bad because when you love what you do it is all worth it.