Ashley Gieseking: Gift Wrap for Clients

Jan 8, 2018
Photographer Spotlight

Often, creatives like to tuck away the little inspirations that they come across in everyday life until they can find a way to incorporate it into their chosen medium. St. Louis based photographer Ashley Gieseking had been holding onto some vintage 50s gift wrap that packaged a present she received a few years back, and this holiday season, the remnants of that gift wrap finally translated into a fun project: wrapping paper bundles for clients.

I wanted to give clients something that was visually exciting, made them smile, but also could be used practically or hung as art. 

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 1

With the holiday season underway, the timing couldn’t have been better to gift someone wrapping paper. Wanting a second visual storyteller to help make the tough design decisions for this project, she enlisted the help of Creative Director and fellow St. Louis resident Dan Brindley of Paradowski Creative to bring her ideas to fruition.

As a vintage pattern aficionado, Ashley wanted to utilize this graphic element to show off her images on the gift wrap. After examining a selection of her photos, including pictures of matchbooks and food items, she and Dan developed a retro diner concept. Dan crafted art deco designs as backdrops for the images, drawing on vintage Formica tabletops to create the look. From there, everything really came together.

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 2

I loved how the paper took on this “after the after party” vibe, it makes you picture co-workers sharing stories about their boss over coffee and eggs at 3am in some obscure diner, just off the highway. You know, the best kind of holiday party!

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 3

The gift wrap was printed in Ashley’s studio, producing high-quality results. This also yielded its share of anxieties, such as the amount of ink required and the time it would take, but in the end, Ashley had nothing to worry about. She created a total of 34 packaged presents, made from 100 embossed prints that were hand-rolled onto paper cores. Adding an extra element, old-fashioned guest checks acting as the “To/From” labels tied it all together.

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 4

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 5

Ashley was elated by how the wrapping paper gifts turned out and intends to pick this up again in the future. She notes that, as a photographer, these moments of holding a final product are pretty rare, and she enjoys how dreaming up client gifts give her opportunities to do something different.

There’s nothing like having a tactile product at the end. It’s one of the greatest feelings to work on something digitally and see it carried out to its tangible form.

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 6

For these gifts, not only was it the thought that counted but the presentation and creative elements as well! Clients on the receiving end were impressed by the design, printing, and imagery, and many reached out expressing their appreciation for the one-of-a-kind wrapping paper. As creatives themselves, the unique and memorable gift made a pretty big impact, much like the original present Ashley received that inspired this project.

Ashley Gieseking, St. Louis, Missouri, Still Life, Still Life Photography, Client Gifts, Wonderful Machine 7

See more of Ashley at agieseking.com.

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Tags: ashley gieseking missouri st. louis still life photography wonderful machine