Leigh Taylor was born in Sydney, Australia in 1972. She has spent 20 years working in all areas of the Entertainment Industry. From a performance career as a child to Advertising, Journalism & Artist Management as an adult her experience has moulded the perfect base from which to form "Sugarlove Pictures". As Photographic Producer, agent and co-director of the company her role is ensuring clients are given the most professional service possible.
SugarLove Pictures was formed in early 2000 with 1 photographer & 1 photo producer to focus on Stills Photography within the Arts & Entertainment industries. The SugarLove team now split their time between Sydney, Los Angeles & New York specializing in Portraiture, Films, Editorial & Advertising assignments.
In 2003 their website won "Best Photographers Site" in the PDN Self-Promotion awards in NYC and their client base includes MIRAMAX, DREAMWORKS and VANITY FAIR Magazine. They have worked with celebrity clients such as Elizabeth Taylor, Morgan Freeman, Renee Zellweger, Uma Thurman, Will Smith and Sir Michael Caine.
In 2003 they expanded their operations to include a Corporate/PR division along with a Wedding & Events service to cater to their growing list of clients in these areas. In early 2004 their online profile of SUGARLOVE INC will be launched to showcase their new team of Australian & International Advertising Photographers. In just over 4 years they now represent an established team of 12 photographers in 5 countries with offices in Sydney & Los Angeles.PERSONAL QUESTIONSFull Name:
Leigh Anne Taylor
Place of Birth:
Pickles the Cat
Lobster, Mushrooms, Mangoes or Chocolate
Where did you grow up?
Sydney & Central Coast, NSW
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
The boss of everything (only child trait I guess) otherwise an actress, photographer, advertising director, reporter, interior designer or scriptwriter.
What was your first job?
Part Time; Model and Full Time; Advertising Account Executive
Person You Would Most Like to Meet:
My children... one day in the future.
What is a dream day for you?
Sleeping in, reading for an hour in bed, home cooked breakfast with fresh juice and papers. Walking along the beach, swimming or a good movie (depending on the weather), late lunch by the ocean with friends followed by more sand, sun and good laughs. Afternoon siesta followed by cuddles with my cat and hours of conversation over dinner with my husband.
Movies, Dancing, Reading, Music, The Beach
Are you a Pub, Bar or Club kind:
Bar - anything non-smoky
What Can You Never Leave Home Without:
Phone, Keys & Credit Card
SugarLove Pictures, Managing Director
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Living in a beach house in Sydney, happily married, fit & healthy, 2 children, cat, dog, Director of SugarLove Pictures, traveling regularly and enjoying all life has to offer including that dreamy white stone villa in the Greek islands.
What is the most rewarding aspect about what you do?
Seeing my photographers move forward with their career goals along with gaining the respect & support from some of the top creative & art directors in the country for the work/service we provide.
Do you think others have any pre-conceived ideas about working in the Entertainment industry?
Yes - this usually relates the Celebrity side to our business though. It normally relates to how much money you earn in the Entertainment industry and how difficult most people are to deal with. Almost all of the time they are very charming and a great deal of fun and the money is not the reason you work in the industry.
What's next for you for SugarLove Pictures?
Moving SugarLove Inc into Melbourne & Asia in 2004 and expanding our staff & operations so I can spend more time in the US overseeing my business partners career over there.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced along the way to success?
Trying to resist every client/account in the first 12months of the company.
How hard is it running a company living on the other side of the world to your partner?
The physical separation is hard but mentally & spiritually we are in the same place. To both be extremely focused on the goals we have for our lives together makes the choice to be apart easier. Being in daily contact either via email, phone or letters is very important.
What's a typical day like?
Always different. No two days are the same and the best laid plans can change on the day. A typical day is up at 7am followed by an hour of replying to emails from US & UK correspondence overnight. 8am; Breakfast, preparation for the day. A walk or swim. 9-5pm; meetings, portfolio presentations to clients, proposals/quotes, briefing with our photo rep, dealing with our suppliers, photo shoot co-ordination which could include assembling crew, attending a shoot, meeting with one our photographers, portfolio reviews and up to 50 phone calls. Around 6/7pm I like to end the day with a dance class, swim, walk then drinks or dinner with friends. Each week normally has 1-2 social work events to attend. Dinner 8/9pm followed by a few hours of email correspondence. Jumping into bed with a good book (or) the man of dreams when he is in town!
What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning?
How lucky I am to be living my dreams and I wonder what magical things are going to happen today.
How did you get to where you are now?
Qualification wise every position I have held has led me to what I am doing. Working as an Advertising account manager, General Manager of an Acting school, working in the newsroom of a radio station and even acting/modelling all combine skills that I use to this day in running SugarLove. Running a company boils down to personality traits and really defining what you are best at and what others could do better. Making the decision to start SugarLove came out of seeing a gap in the market for the type of photography my partner does in Australia. The other areas we have expanded into are more traditional but the same philosophies are behind how they are managed personal service with the quality of imaging that exceeds clients expectations. Keeping a team of loyal suppliers and contractors is very important.
How many hours a week do you work?
What is the best piece of advice anybody has given you?
It is nice to be important but more important to be nice.
What are you reading at the moment?
"You Inc" by John McGrath and "Bacall, By Myself" - by Lauren Bacall
What are you really proud of?
1) Building the business from the ground up. 2) Meeting all our goals and dreams each year. 3) Maintaining a winners mindset from the very beginning (even in times of struggle & hardship) and lastly 4) maintaining a calm acceptance that results are produced by having a clear vision with a true belief that things will work out for the best even if they dont always happen as you expect them to.
What advice would you give to somebody embarking on their first business or aspiring to achieve extraordinary career goals?
Be very clear about what you love to do, have a business plan but be flexible enough to accept change because this is the only guarantee. Hire the best people you can afford to for your inner network (bookkeeper, mentors, business partner/s and staff) as these people will be the most important part of what you are building. To achieve extraordinary goals you must have written down and you must truly believe in yourself & visualize yourself achieving them. Our SugarLove motto is the 3 "p"s' - persistence, passion and positivity. Armed with these and a truckload of confidence and inspiration our goals are always in sight. And finally, life is all about risk - the greater the risk the bigger reward there is on the other side.
What 3 people living or dead would you most like to invite to dinner?
Frank Sinatra, Humphrey Bogart and my husband (photographer, Bradley Patrick). Why? Witty, cheeky, funny and all class - you cannot fake those things. They inspire me to live for myself and no-one else. I would love to learn how to play chess with Mr. Bogart, to have Frank serenade us throughout the evening and to dance with my husband while the night is still young.
Your favorite place in the world, and why?
Home of course....or Santorini - the Mediterranean, the food, the sunsets and memories of falling in love.
Can you tell us 5 things required for a happy healthy & enjoyable life (important to you)
1. To travel & open our mind to new cultures/tastes & experiences regularly
2. Spending special moments with family and friends
3. Solo time for reflection, to read, dream & ponder in your own world
4. Healthy, fresh food and enough movement to balance those choices
5. Enjoying art & expression with dance, cinema, music & theatre.