RVA Mag came across Ashley Loth’s images by chance and found them powerful, dark, and atmospheric. A dreamscape of anxiety and apprehension drawn across a world both accessible and ephemeral. We asked Loth to explain in her own words what creating this photo series meant for her.
“The Tragicly Poetic” is a series that opens up a closed door, focusing on childhood trauma, young adult life experiences, along with sensitive issues on rape, eating disorders, depression, mental illness, addiction, infidelity and abusive relationships. This series reclaims the power I felt I’d lost. A bleeding heart, I pour everything I have into what I do. This series is a mixture of understanding that everyone has a dark side, and honoring that sometimes playing the villain in someone else’s story is what is needed so they can rise up and be their own hero.
And sometimes redemption is not needed by those who have hurt you and that the only closure you have is by freeing yourself from that hurt.
The second book in the “Tragicly Poetic Series,” is “The Blue Book,” and has separate chapters facing those issues, recreating scenes from both real-world experience and nightmares. Using multiple poems, I included conceptual photography for each poem. The images depict what I experienced or viewed in dreams. For example, one chapter titled “Monster,” dives deep into my mental psych in my young adult years. The relatable chapter brings the thoughts and feelings of being a lost soul into a visual and emotional encounter for the reader.
For years, I have had these dreams that were experiences that happened to me, that were twisted by my mind to make them more dream-like and fictional. I decided to write about them along with trying to recreate those dreams in my reality to further understand the root of that pain.
I hope that people find the same healing and empowerment from the introspective and creative series and hope to shed light on experiences and feelings many people hide from in the dark. In doing so, I and the viewers can “take the power back.”
“The Blue Book” is slated for a fall 2019 release. More work by Ashley Loth can be found here.