Ashley: @msashq

Creative Collaborations is all about sharing with you all the inspiring and talented people I see kicking butt around the world through their chosen social media channels. Like the look or sound of these creatives? Give them a follow!

Today we meet Ashley who you can follow on Instagram!

Let’s start with the basics, who are you? Where are you from?

I’m Ashley, 33, married and an avid traveller. I’m originally from Louisville, KY, but currently living in Mississippi.

Is your social media your day job/side income or hobby? If a hobby, what do you for work?

Right now it’s just a hobby, but I’m hoping to build it up to a larger platform. I work part time as an emergency dispatcher

What is your favourite thing about yourself?

My humor. I love laughing and making others laugh.

What is one goal you have for the next year?

Of course to travel more! My goal is to travel to 12 countries in 2019

What’s one way you’ve been challenged in the last year?

This might sound silly, but downgrading from larger luggage to just a backpack. Finding cheaper tickets without adding the luggage fee definitely outweighed packing a larger bag and it’s just easier to get around with.

What is the main focus/topic of your content?

Basically sharing my life – being black, plus sized, and a traveller

What influenced you to start your page?

I’ve always had my page, but once I started traveling I put more work into my it. I’d say traveling has definitely given my page some direction and focus.

How have you improved the quality of your content since you began?

Absolutely! Better photos- I never realized the importance of a GOOD photo and making sure to capture the essence of the moment

Who or what inspires you the most?

My grandmother (who has passed away). She absolutely loved traveling whether it was aboard or stateside. She instilled in me the importance of travel and experiencing other cultures.

Who are some of your favourite Instagram accounts?

@blacktravelgram @fatgirlstraveltoo @bigsizetravel @roadto100countries

Who are some of your favourite bloggers?

@garnerstyle @chasijernigan @simplycurvee @nikkiworldboss

What’s the best piece of advice you have gotten in regards to your account?

Better picture quality- what to and not to capture in photos

What’s your advice for the solo traveller who still wants great shots of themselves on the road?

Don’t be afraid to ask others to take photos of you. You may make a friend in the process. If that’s not your style- a tripod and remote always do the trick.

What would be the ultimate end goal with your social media? Is there something you want to work towards?

Encouraging others to travel and realize it’s not as expensive as some might think. People need to know there’s a big world to see and you shouldn’t limit yourself to your own back yard.

What’s your opinion on selling and buying Lightroom presets?

Lightroom has so many features that you can learn your own presets without having to purchase them from others

Have you met anyone through your social media? How did that go about?

Yes. I found @chasijernigan through a post on IG and found out she teaches a Zumba class in my area. I reached out to her and have since gone to a couple of classes and made a new friend. I also had an opportunity to go to the 2018 TCF Expo in Atlanta (it’s a plus size fashion blogger expo) there I got to meet Ashley @simplycurvee and also made another new friend!!

What camera do you use?

My iPhone X and I’m #teamnikon

What software do you use to edit your photos?

Lightroom

Which account would you love to collaborate with?

@fatgirlstraveltoo

Where is your next travel destination?

Naussau, Bahamas

Are you trying to spread a message with your social media? If so, what is it?

That traveling isn’t as expensive as people think and with the right budget you can go anywhere.

What destination is still on the top of your bucket list?

The Maldives. The villas on the water are calling my name.

What is one piece of advice you have for someone who wants to travel but is overwhelmed by the process of planning and choosing the right trip?

Don’t be afraid to reach out to fellow travellers when you have questions. I’ve gotten some of the best info from my travel blogger friends; whether it’s where to stay, a car service to pick you up, where to eat or even what to see. It has definitely made traveling easier and less stressful

What is your top travel hack?

Using packing cubes. They help organize your clothes and fit easily into your backpack.

What is one thing you take with you on all of your travels?

My blue jean shirt! It’s super versatile.

What has been your favourite destination so far? Why?

Ahhh that’s hard to pick, but I’d say Iceland. The nature is unreal! It’s so beautiful and pure. The waterfalls were breathtaking. We were even lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights (which was my main objective for going) Reykjavík is a cool city with a laid back vibe. I can’t wait to get back to visit!

Travelling solo or with friends?

Traveling with friends for sure. It’s always fun to have some familiar faces to share memorable experiences with.

Group tours or your own itinerary?

That depends on where I am and what I want to see. I also take in to account which is more cost efficient at that time.

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