Ashley Hodder

David Smith

May 28, 2022

Bringing Love and Hope Through Art Therapy and Education

While Ashley is very prominent with creating murals in Pittsburgh, (mostly through education and therapy within the community) it can be hard to find out detailed information about her and also her mission statement. Ashley's murals are not only beautiful, but provoking and speak of the communities for which they are created in.


Ashley Hodder obtained a B.S. in psychology from the University of Utah and an Art Education Certification from Carlow University. Creating and teaching art in neglected and unexpected places is what Ashley enjoys most. She has taught for the Allegheny Intermediate Unit's Alternative Education program, Shelter Schools, the Shuman Center, and currently teaches adults at the Allegheny County Jail, as well as art therapy at Children's Hospital. As education director of KH Design, she has designed the youth program to not only hone the budding artists' skills, but also to foster a sense of pride in themselves and their community.


Not only are figures hard for myself to paint, but reflections are even harder. Ashley transmits the image onto the wall so flawlessly that it feels real. The detail on the hand and clearness of the crystal are impeccable. She is able to reflect the flow and gracefulness of the neighborhood so that it feels welcoming and inviting.


Here Ashley is able to capture the power and beauty of the black woman. One is able to strength and determination in her eyes. The lighting is provoking and gives empowerment to her/them. She was able to blend the multiple red and purple colors in a way so that the clouds seem natural to be those colors.


Not only does this mural show her skill further with the blending of colors within the clouds, but it helps to highlight this urban garden that gives free and healthy nutriment to a food desert within Pittsburgh. I appreciate her use of the wall in it's state to add texture and balance with this mural.


Not only do I appreciate the action and busyness of this mural, but it feels my heart because this is a collaboration with her students with art education and therapy. She helps to bring hope to people who once lost it and bring new light to their fading star.