We had the good fortune of connecting with TA Holmes and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi TA, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I’m not sure there was an initial thought process behind the start of my business. It happened gradually. When I became an empty nester a few years ago, I started getting back into photography seriously. Instead of simply taking random family photos, I started refreshing on all the basics, and practicing in earnest. At that point, I remembered how much I loved the way light can stop me in my tracks. The education process began in earnest then, as well as the gear addiction. Add in some travel, and my expensive new hobby needed to start paying for itself. Originally a side hustle to make ends meet, it evolved into something I knew I’d love dedicating my time to fully. That was when I took the leap.
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.
Prints. I love prints, and specialize in creative and fine art photography that belongs as a statement piece on the wall. None of my images are mass edited. This may not be fit today’s trend of ‘I want it now’, but it means I can ensure each image is special, and the very best I can offer.
The people in my life, both professionally and personally are how I achieved any success. Others adjusted their needs to allow me to grow. And, I am so grateful for the clients who trust me to make sure their photography session is a safe space. That safe space has allowed us to try new things and create some really beautiful work together. I love that my work tends to attract parents with kids who are a bit shy. They are incredible people who sometimes just need to see themselves the way we see them. A camera is a wonderous tool to help with that.
Nothing really worthwhile in life is easy. There are always ups and downs. But ultimately, it’s up to each of us to decide what’s worth the challenge. There’s no secret. No quick path. If you want something in your life, you work hard; take the good with the bad; and trust that in the end, you will make a difference in someone’s life because of something that brings you joy. Remember to give back along the way and to be kind.
What do I want others to know about me and my brand? I want prints on walls instead of digitals in the inbox. Our photos should mean something, not just be white noise on social media. It’s ok to slow down, get creative and make something special that speaks to who we are, rather than simply follow a trend. I’d rather spend a full day with someone, creating one unique image, than just taking a bunch of shots that will look like everyone else’s.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Arizona is amazing. What has always astounded me is we have any climate we want in a few hours drive. As a street photographer, in addition to loving the city as a backdrop for my portraiture, there are a few places that I routinely stalk.
Tempe is where I live and work. The Tempe Center for the Arts, Tempe Townlake, Downtown Tempe and Papago Park are my main stomping grounds. Tempe shows so much love to their artists, and they always have something fun happening. I love their Second Sundays art markets they are currently hosting. Fuzzy’s is one of my favorite places to just meet up with friends, or bring the laptop to work for a couple of hours.
Downtown Phoenix, and the Roosevelt Arts District are my other haunts. The street art and murals always impress me, and are ever changing. Artlink’s First Fridays is one of my favorite times to be there. It’s when I can explore the various museums and galleries for inspiration. I tend to forget to eat when out walking and taking photos, so I’m sorry I can’t help suggest any one particular eatery. I also love a Diamondbacks game, especially when it’s a nail biter! My son has shaken his head at me more than once, and advised me to climb off my seat and stop cheering so loudly.
When I want to get picturesque, Flagstaff, Sedona and Jerome are where you’ll find me. I’ll take any excuse to head north to capture some crazy sunsets, mountains and wildflowers.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Oh my… there are so many who have helped along the way. The adage of “it takes a village” is so true. My parents, Pat and John Holmes, are the reason I discovered photography. They put a camera in my hand at the age of 10. After that, my dad started me on the journey. He took a photography class, then shared what he learned with my sister, me, and our girl scout troop. I was in the darkroom by the age of 12, developing and printing my own photos. Since then, I’ve formed some incredibly important friendships. Ron Yurek, a portrait/commercial photographer in Ohio, became my lighting mentor. We talk photography and life ‘grrr’s’ almost daily. The Creative Live website (creativelive.com) is a staple of my education, even now. And my friends and family who have cheered me on, listened to my rants, and simply allowed me to lean on them for whatever I need, are more important to me than they’ll ever know.