Today we’d like to introduce you to Taylor Torres.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Taylor. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I’d say my history with photography is pretty cool, especially considering how young I am. I first picked up a DSLR at 15 years old. I was pretty involved with the punk scene, and I began photographing musicians, music events, and all kinds of teenage angsts and adventures I had with my friends. After about a year of really exploring the camera and developing a love for it, I began to shoot for families and friends (pretty much for free). I gained a TON of experience, and in 2012, by the time I was 16, I started my photography business.
My business hit the ground running; I began shooting everything from portraits to weddings, families, and businesses. It was a rush, and I was so in love with it. I taught myself literally everything. I experimented more than anything, but I watched tutorials, collaborated with other photographers, created my own website, and really did anything and everything to better myself.
In 2015, I stepped into a darkroom for the first time and fell in love with film and conceptual art. This began my journey of discovering photography as a Fine Art and creative outlet.
By 2016, I was attending art school at the University of Houston for Fine Art Photography and Digital Media. My business was literally booming (I could have dropped my full-time job and still made a living off photography, but I didn’t). I was getting accepted into art shows around the country, and I was being challenged in ways I never knew existed. It was for the first time I really felt like an artist.
I was later accepted to the School of Visual Art and Design in Manhattan where I planned to further pursue my degree and work alongside some of the most talented artists and creatives in the country. After going through an emotional divorce, falling into a deep depression, and struggling with my life, I failed out of art school and dropped out of college. At first, I thought my art was doomed and I was a failure; I gave up my business, stopped shooting what I loved, and didn’t touch my camera, in any capacity, for an entire year.
Now, I’m here – I’m seasoned, I’m knowledgable, and more than anything, I’m passionate. It took me hitting some of my lowest lows to understand why I love photography. Not only do I need photography, but I believe the photography community and art world need me; I make beautiful things, and my creative absence left me feeling empty. I now have picked back up my camera, and I’m running headstrong back into my business as well as the fine art side.
Has it been a smooth road?
No road to your passion, or success, is ever smooth. Honestly, my biggest challenges were myself. There were times when I really didn’t believe I was that great. There were points where I felt I was just another being with two hands in this endless sea of photography. There were times I felt I was just making things to make them, and not making them because I felt something.
Our world is over-saturated with imagery and, literally, everyone is a photographer nowadays (thanks to the iPhone and Instagram). So, you can imagine how hard it is to believe, “I stand out from the rest.” Self-doubt and comparison are the most dangerous enemies of any artist, no matter what your art is. Overcoming those challenges gave me the ability to do what I love without fear – fear of failure, fear of judgment, or fear of mediocracy.
Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
My ‘business’ or brand is just me – Taylor Torres (no ‘photography’ at the end of that. 😉 ) My background is pretty vast in what I am capable of shooting (portraits, weddings, real estate, newborns… you name it, I can probably do it). Right now, I am focusing on regaining my clientele in portraiture and working with brands. I’m making a conscious decision to shoot what I love because I want to – not because I have to. Whether that’s with couples, fashion portraits, or working with a brand on a photo or video project, I capture images that tell stories.
My drive for any project or session is emotion. To me, photos without emotion are just pixels – and trust me, there are a LOT of images out there that are just another pixel floating on a device. No matter the kind of client I’m working with, I focus on evoking emotion and telling a story.
Outside of my commissioned work, my Fine Art work focuses on the female body, portraiture, and the ever-changing and developing connection between human nature, culture, and mental health. Much of my work dives into the challenges women face with body-image, power, and feminism.
Most people who have worked with me would say I’m known for my artistic take. Because of my background in Fine Art, creativity is always at the center of my work. Whether it’s my personal work, a portrait session, or commercial photography for a business/brand, I ask myself, “How can I use art to influence this piece?” I believe this is evident in my work, and I know others are drawn to this as well.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Man, I could write a novel on why Houston is such a badass city (I hope I’m allowed to cus in this article). But honestly, I love Houston because we don’t have to be cool – we just are. Don’t get me wrong… I love all those boujee, artistic, hip cities like LA, NYC, Austin, Chicago, and all the rest. I can’t even talk shit about them because I almost moved to one. But, I really think Houston has the qualities these cities have except in a way all our own. We boast one of the best food cities in the country, we’re one of the most DIVERSE cities in the country, and best of all we have pride. No matter how much our sports teams lose or how far behind we’ll always be from the ‘cool’ cities, we’re us – and that’s perfect.
Houstonians love Houston, and we strive to make this place better and better. I feel like we have a pretty nice reputation too because every time I travel to a different city, people have nothing but the best things to say about us Houstonians (except how bad we drive).
What’s not to love?
- Website: www.taylortorres.com
- Phone: 832-540-9319
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @taytorres
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/taylortorresphoto
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/user_details?userid=9F-g-Xl_YUUDvTTxUiOJfQ