Ashlynn Topper

Photo of a bottle on the edge of a sidewalk

Ashlynn Topper, My City, 2022

Photo of the side of a building with beige siding and red trim

Ashlynn Topper, B.I.T.S (Beauty in the Struggle), 2022

Artist Statement

I am driven by music, culture, and most importantly my family. I love capturing images that relate to where I’m from and represent my people. I grew up in an apartment on the third floor, which wasn’t the biggest. A young child doesn’t look at how much space she has; she just works with what she has. So when taking pictures I always try to preserve the small things, especially with what some people would call “run-down” buildings. I believe everything has a story to it. I challenge myself to see something new and find the beauty in something others wouldn’t think about twice. Where I live, many homes need repair and there is trash on the ground, but that doesn’t mean the community should be written off. There is beauty in the trash and especially in the homes. 

For any piece I make, the goal is to make it personal. I won’t put out a work until I feel a connection. My art needs to represent me and express the connection between me, my life, and my world. My process is always to work to improve a picture, and I don’t believe in giving up on my work. I keep working since I know there is great potential, and near failures can become some of my best pieces yet. My family, specifically my grandmother and my mother, taught me not to give up. 

—Ashlynn Topper, Hamden High, 2023

Photo of a girl wearing large hoop earrings

Ashlynn Topper, Self-portrait, 2022

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