We had the good fortune of connecting with Ashley Scott and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ashley, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
I think right now “balance” is a bit of a buzz-word. It’s incredibly important, don’t get me wrong, but I think when you’re a business owner (and a parent!) it’s always going to be difficult to get it right. I have tried working on a more structured schedule, having clear and strict boundaries regarding work hours and many other approaches, but the thing that makes me the happiest and the outcome the best is just pushing through when inspiration strikes and allowing my creative energy to flow when and where it needs to. When I follow my intuition and work in this way, I feel more fulfilled, my work is better, and my clients are happier. The thing about best practices is that they can be a great place to work from, but if they don’t work for you or help you achieve the best result, you can totally make up your own unique way to do things. My day to day is mostly spent answering client emails, sending proposals, and invoices – more of the administrative work – while I find my creativity peaks most often in the evening. Some nights I may stay up until 2 am because I’m really finding my way through a project, so maybe I balance that out with going to bed a little earlier the next night. However, I used to grind and grind and grind but I found that approach unattainable and unenjoyable; i.e, complete burn out. Sometimes I need a break from my computer screen, so grabbing an impromptu coffee with a friend, going on a hike or even just a walk around the neighborhood helps and this is where I find a lot of my inspiration – in those moments when my mind is free to wander. I do love and need a getaway here and there to feel refreshed, and to reset, but in regards to a regular work-week, I just like to let it flow.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I started my business in 2016 and it has been a really busy and interesting road from then to now. I wouldn’t say it has been easy, but there has always been a driving force pushing me through to each new challenge and success. I’ve learned that the age-old saying is true: nothing good comes easy, and because of that, I don’t take any of it for granted. I think what sets us apart, at Scout Modern, is that we are fascinated and driven by design, at the core. We aren’t overly concerned with trends or fads or what others are doing. But, we stay focused on the important things; shapes, lines, colors, textures, and function. If I had to pass on one word of wisdom, it would be to listen. If the universe is calling you towards something, there’s a reason for that. If you feel pulled and passionate in a specific direction, follow it! There is always something for you there.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Well I’m an Eastside girl (I live in Pasadena) so we’d start on this side of town. Most likely a hike at Eaton Canyon, followed by coffee at Lavender and Honey. Then we’d visit some shops along Figueroa in Highland Park – Sonomama, Cookbook, Nonna, Prelude & Dawn to name a few… then a bite at Cafe Birdie and a cocktail at Good Housekeeping. Another day we might have a staycation in downtown – I’m a big fan of The Nomad, though there are plenty of other boutique hotels I’d love to visit! We would feast at Grand Central Market and scooter down to The Broad Museum, bop around at The Row DTLA and finish the day by picking up a bouquet of fresh flowers at Flower Boy Project and then grab a drink upstairs at The Broken Shaker all before heading to Silverlake, for dinner at my very favorite spot in LA, L&E Oyster Bar. There’s plenty we could do on the Westside as well, but I’ll leave those recommendations up to someone else. *Sidenote that this would be a pre-covid itinerary!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
It really comes down to my community and support system. I am so grateful to know so many wonderful people who lift me up, support my business, and inspire me to keep going when times feel difficult. Outside of my personal life, I really look to the design community. There are so many wonderful, inspiring artists, makers, designers, and creators who open up my mind each and every day. When you widen your circles, you widen your perspective, and I think that makes our art even better.
Charlotte Lea Photography