To Top

Daily Inspiration: Meet Arizona Graves

Today we’d like to introduce you to Arizona Graves.

Arizona, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
In March 2020, like many others, I was laid off from my regular, unfulfilling office job. In June, it was apparent they would not be hiring me back, so I had to figure out a way to support my family! I had always had a reserved passion for photography so I picked up a camera and started doing free sessions to build my portfolio!! Before long, I had flourished and decided to move forward with creating my brand; and Darany Taylor Photography was born!

Within a few months, I had tested the waters in several different genres and decided that my heart was calling to boudoir. So, I found a mentor, buckled up and dived in headfirst. Now, I have an empowerment community that I’ve created (called the Vixen Society) filled with people who are on their own journey to self-love, and I get to help them document the journey along the way! It’s literally a dream for me.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Absolutely not!! I had to stumble a few times and learn a lot of lessons along the way. From the logistics of a photoshoot to editing, to learning manual, to the whole beast that is the business side of things. I would say my biggest struggle was self-worth. I am such a people pleaser that sometimes it can be difficult for me to treat myself with the respect that I deserve, but I am so much better at it now and my business has continued to grow because of it!

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I do boudoir photography, specializing in empowerment and self-love! Most of my clients seek me out for my use of light. I don’t use artificial lighting very often (no hate to those who do though, I’ve used them before and loved them) as I have a certain knack for playing with natural light to create dramatic, sexy, sultry images. What really does it for *me* though, is at the beginning of the session when I have a nervous, maybe even uncertain client; and I get to help break them out of their shell and watch the phoenix rise from the ashes. To watch them literally rewire their brain and view themselves through the lens of my camera, and then they leave my studio loving themselves. It’s a lasting effect, for both of us. It’s a type of high that lasts forever and no one can ever take that away.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
I’ve learned to be a lot more perceptive. Our country has definitely suffered and become much more divided since COVID began, but in my studio, there is no division. We’re all humans and we’re all here on our own journeys, suffering through this same pandemic together. When people come to my studio, we can turn that off for a few hours (sort of just forget the world), and once you meet enough people under that tone, you learn a lot of things about them that you wouldn’t otherwise. That really humbles me.

Contact Info:

Suggest a Story: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in Local Stories