Bio - JohnAshleyFineArt
John with a juvenile Harlequin Duck

In 1977, John’s grandmother gave him $200 to start his college fund. Instead, John used the money to buy his first 35mm camera, and then he used the camera to put himself through college. He earned a biology degree from the University of Montana, and became an award-winning photojournalist at newspapers in Florida and Montana. By 1982, he was ranked by the National Press Photographers' Association as one of the top newspaper photographers in the United States.


But the frantic, deadline-driven lifestyle lost out to the more humble call of the natural world. Along this path, John worked as a biologist for many years – mostly with the National Park Service – working to conserve California Condors, Bald Eagles, and his favorite -- Harlequin Ducks.


John completed the circle by combining both of his passions -- photography and conservation -- in the form of Fine Art Photography. His images remind you of the natural beauty and humor that is inherent in wild places and wild critters.


He lives with his wife and business partner, Tracy, and their two dogs at the end of the road just past the town of Kila, in northwestern Montana.


(Click on images below for a short, erratic history. Read more history here.)


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Before Photoshop...

People used to believe that "the camera never lies." And I used to work hard at making creative images to make people scratch their heads and wonder just what the hell was happening. (Still do, actually.) Here, I had an assistant hold up a big cardboard cutout, hanging from fishing line, to create the extra shadow. My child model lasted for exactly one frame before throwing a fit and refusing to play any more. But that one image told the story.