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Ashley Ippolito Interview

The full version of this interview with accompanying spread was featured in Issue 1: Bloom.

Interview/Design by: Isabella Vega

Art by: Kristina Marie

In the over saturated world of Youtube, Ashley Ippolito is a rare mix of being refreshingly authentic and fearlessly herself. Known for her music reaction videos that combine in-the-moment slapstick comedy with thought provoking analysis, Ashley has carved quite a name for herself in the creator space. She has amassed a total of 287,000 subscribers on her main channel, Reacts by Ash, been dubbed the “Internet’s Mom” due to her caring nature, and uses her various platforms to amplify the current issues facing our society, all while still remaining true to herself as a content creator. In her first ever interview, Ashley and I spoke about her journey through Youtube, the beauty of the music as an art, and remaining true to yourself.

Isabella: In 5 words, describe yourself! Ashley: Forever growing, hopefully never slowing - I constantly want to evolve, not only as myself, but also in my career and whatever path this takes me. The world is so big and time is so limited, so I want to experience as much as I can.

Isabella: How did you first know you wanted to be a Youtuber? What were the creators/artists that inspired you to make reaction videos? Ashley: I’ve always known I wanted to be an entertainer. When I was super small at daycare, I would put on shows for the little kids when they waited for their parents to pick them up. I was introduced to Youtube by my cousin, who showed me Jenna Marbles. I watched a lot of YouTube and loved how personal it could be, but it didn’t hit me that I could actually do it. I saw on Twitter someone posted a link to a reaction video to a Fifth Harmony song. I had no idea reaction videos were a thing, so I decided to try it! I filmed, edited, posted, and boom! I found my niche and started doing more of it.

Isabella: Why is music so important to you? How do you find authenticity in the music industry?

Ashley: Music, as I will say until my dying breath, is free therapy. The escapism that it provides for me when I want to forget about the world will always be there. It’s never rude, insincere, or has the threat of disappearing. When you have trust issues that stem from a hard childhood and daddy issues, it really does become the most important and stable part of your life. With everything being sampled, originality in my opinion really comes from other factors. Music is essentially just 12 notes played back and forth, but what artists do with production, lyrics, and visuals makes a difference. Also, in a world that is so heavily present on social media, how artists use their platforms & interact with their fans is super important to me.

Isabella: The theme of this issue is “Bloom”, and it’s about thriving in quarantine; how are you feeling? How do you cultivate your soul right now? Ashley: These times are really tough, especially when you deal with mental illnesses. I have learned through the years how to control my anxiety, but it has definitely hit a peak right now. I am learning to feed my soul right now by giving myself a sense of normalcy. I still get up in the morning, make breakfast, film, edit and try to work out. I also take this time to grow and do things I have always wanted to do. I have a guitar and piano in my room that I have always wanted to learn so I plan on doing that. I have also been keeping an art journal. Anything I watch, hear, feel, think, I put it in the journal. It helps me a lot mentally because I have a creative outlet that I don’t make money off of. It is just for me.

If anything, I hope after this time I can come out more determined to live my life. I have always wanted to travel and do this and that, but never really made the time to do it or found an excuse for it. Now being restricted and feeling like I am wasting the year, I am having a reality check of if I want it, I gotta go out and get it. I hope everyone reading this will have some inspiration to do the same thing and really live their best life. We all deserve it.

Find more of Ashley here:

Instagram @ashley_ippolito

Twitter @ashleyippolito

Reaction Youtube = Reacts by Ash

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