We had the good fortune of connecting with Amber Rainey and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Amber, what’s one piece of conventional advice that you disagree with?
Growing up, I was told, “experience is the best teacher.” I personally feel that education is the best teacher. Learning from your failure works for some people, but in my life I learned that knowing how to prevent failure is even more important. That’s why I am adamant about surrounding myself with people who are educationally successful, emotionally intelligent, and aspirational. Learning from their failures, whether big or small, has helped my path in life plain sailing.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I was introduced to photography my freshman year in high school. I took the class as an elective thinking it was a class that I would get an easy ‘A’ in. And let’s just say, I was humbled very quickly. Our teacher instructed us on how to use a camera manually. After we learned how to shoot in manual, the next step was to learn how to develop film in the dark room. Another very humbling experience. And finally, we used oil pencils to color the black and white photos we printed out in the dark room. This entire process was not east at all which is what made me fall in love with it.

The very first camera I shot with was a Canon AE-1. That camera model doesn’t have a screen that shows you what your image looks like. Modern day Canon cameras show you if your image is too light, too dark, blurry, or out of focus. That privilege was not afforded to me until I took the more advanced class, as this one was a beginner class. This class introduced me to the history of photography, and literally put me in the shoes of those who had to shoot with predated cameras and develop their own film. It gave me a further understanding and appreciation for the art, and it is the reason why I am a photographer, today.

Special thanks to my photography teacher R. Rango.

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.
If I had a best friend who was visiting, I would take them to Lake Tahoe. We would catch a flight to Reno, rent a car, drive to South Lake Tahoe, and stay at Basecamp Tahoe South. We would visit a new beach every day, hike, zipline, ride bikes, jet ski, paddle board, kayak in a clear boat, and rent a boat so we can visit the North side of Lake Tahoe. We would most likely ask the locals we encounter, “what are the best restaurants to eat at?” and try to visit as many as we can.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My parents. They have never discouraged me from doing anything I wanted to do in life. They have always been supportive of my endeavors.

Instagram: @am_beyy

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.