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Meet Ashley Jacklyn of Jacklyn Lune Photos

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ashley Jacklyn.

Ashley, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I’ve always been interested in photography since I was a child but I was unable to fully commit to photography until I graduated from college. When I did graduate in 2014, I became extremely depressed and filled with extreme anxiety, which made me unable to get out of bed. I spiraled quickly in a deep dark place where my confidence was ripped away. I was desperate to try anything and decided to start posting photos more frequently on my personal account (@ashleyjacklyn.c) and started expressing how I lived my life with anxiety and depression. From there, I was able to find my passion for photography again and created my photography business (Jacklyn Lune Photos). Both of my accounts allow me to connect with people through my photographs but also my words. I talk freely about living life with a mental illness and using fashion as well as photography as a bridge to connect me and the world. Because I am Latina/Taíno, mental health is extremely taboo and growing up, it was painfully difficult because nobody listened. Even when I did see a therapist they did not culturally understand the life of someone from a Latino background and their insensitivity made it even more difficult for me to heal. But rather than giving up on myself, I use my accounts to keep myself accountable,self-aware and somehow doing what is best for me, has also helped thousands of other people. That’s a blessing that I would have never thought I could receive and I never take it for granted.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Smooth roads? There are no such things. The biggest struggles that I had to face and still do sometimes is having the confidence within myself to keep photographing people and talking about my mental health. I have lost quite a few opportunities because I have been “too real” for people. I can’t give them that sense of escapism most people receive while scrolling through Instagram; I am raw and honest and heavy. With my photography account, people don’t respect that it’s a job and a lot of people want photos for free from me and expect me to be okay with exposure. I can name so many things that I still deal with from day to day that I have to overcome: comparison, imposter syndrome, people not taking me seriously and not believing in myself. There are so many more struggles that challenge what I am passionate about. In the end, we’re all going to feel this way at some points in our journey but as long as we keep moving forward through the uncomfortable, we got this.

Jacklyn Lune Photos – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am a Latina female photographer in the NJ/NYC area. I shoot a lot of editorial work, portraiture and small business content for the stores in my area. I shoot mainly womxn of color and plus size womxn but I love to photograph it all. I think because I am known also for my mental health advocacy, people shoot with me and they gain so much more. I treat the people I meet with kindness and give all of my heart into what I do. I think what I am most proud of is that I created my business all on my own. Everything I’ve learned, I learned through my own abilities and Youtube university, shout out to Tony and Chelsea Northup. No one in my family ever owned their own business so I came into this world blind and terrified but I. DID. IT. ANYWAY. I’m also proud of the journey my photography is flowing to, it’s more personable and filled with heart, it’s empowering for womxn and all alike. I think what sets me apart is that I photograph with my heart, each person who is in front of my camera will NOT feel insecure and will come out of our shoot feeling like the Goddess they are.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I think working with Savage x Fenty was a proud moment for me, socially at least and working with the beautiful models but for my spirit, it’s truly creating and being part of a community of people who support and encourage each other. My proudest moment is doing what I love and having people support.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
1st photo – model is @wafeeqaswardrobe; 2nd photo – model is @Brightdollface; 3rd photo – model is @_est.90s_; 4th photo – model is @aglimpseofmaria; 5th photo – model is @Jaelahnicole; 6th photo – model is @Kaiatimes; 7th photo – model is @lykaday; 8th photo – is me @ashleyjacklyn.c at a mental health event. All photos were taken by @Jacklynlune.Photos

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