We had the good fortune of connecting with Tammy Horton and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tammy, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I think the one thing that has helped with my success and the success of my brand the most is just staying true to myself, my creative vision and what truly interests me as an artist. It’s easy to get distracted by what everyone else in your industry is doing, especially now with so much imagery and information available on so many different platforms. The temptation to stray from your vision or follow other molds when you have insecurities creeping in about your business can be very real, especially when you’re first starting out. But I have to say, it’s when I’ve really listened to my heart and kept things honest and true to me is when I’ve had the most success. And in an industry that’s relationship driven, that type of honesty and passion goes a very long way. My couples see and feel that in my work, they value it and they want to be a part of it time and time again.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I think what sets me apart from most is that my approach is honest and real. When I document your day I’m looking for those big moments as well as the subtle ones. I want to capture the little things you didn’t even know happened in between everything else, really tell the whole story. I don’t do awkward poses or contrived situations, I document your day as it unfolds truthfully. I want my couples to look back on their day and remember it exactly how it was, not how it was organized to be. How I got here? I like to say I accidentally got a business. I was working as an associate photographer for a studio and when word got out amongst friends and family, I started getting asked to photograph their weddings and portraits. Well, one thing led to another and eventually I was like, “I should probably get a business license”. That was 17 years ago. Don’t get me wrong though, I didn’t accidentally get a successful business, that part required a lot of hard work and determination with many failures in between. Throughout my career there have been lots of learning curves and lessons. Luckily though, I’ve been able to surround myself with other talented creatives who’ve guided me along the way. We lift each other up and help each other out. Having that kind of community has been a crucial part of the success and longevity of my business.
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?
Oh my gosh, where do you even begin on exploring Southern California? I’m a nature lover and explorer so I would most certainly start outside. We are so lucky to have so many beautiful landscapes at our fingertips. Definitely the beach should be first on the list, I love Malibu and the rocky coastline it offers. Next maybe head out to the desert one day and take in those magical Joshua Tree vibes. And since you’re there you should absolutely pop into Pappy and Harriets and catch some music while eating some incredible bar eats. You should stay the night at the Pioneer Motel because it’s the cutest thing on the planet. And after that if you want to keep exploring, head to the mountains and pitch a tent or stay in a cabin in Big Bear. On your way back west, make sure to stop in Downtown LA for some ramen or dim sum, you won’t be sorry.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I one hundred percent would not be here without the love and support of so many people. I feel incredibly fortunate to have had some very strong and talented women who’ve cheered me on, pushed me and continue to lift me up every step of the way on this journey. At the forefront is my friend and mentor, Jenny Patterson. She believed in me and gave me an opportunity to work in her studio when I barely knew how to use a digital camera. I will forever be grateful for her encouragement, guidance, generosity, kindness and friendship. She’s a one of a kind and my heart wants to explode when I think about what she means to me. And there are so many others who’ve been beacons of inspiration as well, way too many to name. I’m very luck to have such backing and it’s not lost on me for one minute how special that is. And any chance I get I do my best to pay it forward.