We had the good fortune of connecting with Taylor Claiborne and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Taylor, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
The thought process behind starting my own business was my own drive as an artist to earn income from what I love doing as well as branching out into paths to being more self reliant. It is easy to work for a company, do you job, leave and have a paycheck, but as a creative it isn’t something I can do for years on end and be happy about it. For me, starting my own business selling jewelry, doing photoshoots and working as a creative has a lot of merit in making myself happy and hopefully the good experiences flow into my clients’ lives as well. I also wanted my hobbies and interests to have a way into intersecting what I do to earn a living and do what I want to do. So becoming a small business owner to a degree is a way to have the freedom to do what I want and if I feel like moving to a new state have a source of side income or main source of income that can follow me.
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.
How I got to where I am today. I started my career as a photographer doing e-commerce and lifestyle photoshoots for a company in San Francisco. We sold wholesale womens clothing and it helped hone my photoshop skills and my professional skills in that environment. Eventually my wife and I moved back to Arizona where I was raised to start our own family. Getting back here though there aren’t as many promising career paths for photographers if you aren’t running your own business.While it does take a while to start a business, I still needed to have income so I started working at a bead shop that did lost wax castings, along with other jewelry making which kind of launched off what I am doing now. I wouldn’t say it was “easy” to get to where I am, not that there are always difficult challenges in life but everything can be done if you take things step by step. Beyond the pandemic slowing some stuff down it gave me the ability to look inside and figure out what I want to do, as well I think it did a lot for other people as well. If I were to give advice to anyone that wants to start a business or wants to focus on one thing is to have some decompression hobbies that can be wrapped together with what you love. Being able to combine multiple things you love together makes it less work and more fun. Life is all about having fun and being able to enjoy yourself.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Grab some Mexican food, hit up Zia to get some new CD’s for a drive and head out to Antelope Canyon. Sure you can hit up old town, go to tempe town lake, or head over for food in West Gate. That stuff will always be around in some form or another. Seeing the wonders of Arizona and what sets it apart is what is important. Without our connection to where we live it is easy to overlook the natural beauty around us.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
A person who I would say has helped me a lot would be one of my teachers from when I went to college, David Wasserman. He has always gone above and beyond for his students when we were in class and even after I graduated we have kept a healthy relationship. In a sense it feels like a mentorship but we have enough common interests that he has been able to help me relook at a lot of things that I have done in the past. With the insight he has given me it really has helped me get to where I am now as an artist.