Interview with photographer, Taha Muharuma

Taha Muharuma Photography
 Photo by Olivia Fernandez

Follow Taha at @tahaphoto and visit tahaphoto.com.

What do you do?
The simple answer is I’m a freelance photographer. However, today it’s not enough to just be one thing and frankly, it’s not that fun either! I also teach photography, I’m a content creator and an ambassador for brands that align with my style and values.

How long have you been in this field for?
I’ve always been in the creative arts and entertainment field. I spent around 15 years modelling, in film and TV and then music. But it wasn’t until finding photography that things started to click. I’ve been doing this freelance gig, professionally now for six years.

What inspired you to pursue this career?
There came a point while I was creating music when I realized that things just weren’t fun anymore. I was burnt, uninspired and to be honest I wasn’t getting the reaction that I expected towards my songwriting and producing. So I felt a little lost inside. What was my trajectory in that industry. Do I continue songwriting and producing? Do I take a break or just flat out quit? While you’re living it, it’s hard to step out of the situation and make those clear decisions. It wasn’t until I came back from Atlanta (I was there for a few months songwriting) that I finally took a break. It was late Spring going into Summer in Toronto and I had just got a new phone. It was the newest one on the market and the camera, at that time was pretty impressive. I downloaded my first photo app called Hipstamatic. About six months later I got on Instagram and then started a Tumblr page. I would go out daily to shoot with my phone, it was therapy and practice. This is way before I even thought of buying a DSLR or semi-pro camera. I just felt rejuvenated, I felt like a new artist at the beginning of a new career.

What was the biggest hurdle in attaining your career goals?
The biggest hurdle was getting out of my head, putting my work and essentially myself out there for the world to judge. It’s actually an ongoing hurdle and one that I manage from time to time.

What do you like most about your work?
There are two things I like the most — 1) The freedom to set my own schedule, answer to myself first and 2) the challenge that it brings. It’s all about creating new work for myself and building relationships with clients and constantly creating a path based on the things that make me happy.

What do you find most challenging about your work?
Time management is number one! With so many projects, clients and deadlines on the go – you can’t be a success without strong time management skills.

If you weren’t a freelance photographer, what would you be?
I think it would be fun to be a music consultant / A&R (Artist & Repertoire). It’s essentially someone who finds great musical talent / potential and polishes them up by connecting them with the right people and opportunities.

Name one hobby you have that’s not related to your work.
I love history and learning about it through documentaries, archives, books. I like it all — local and world history. Archival visuals take me to different time, it gets my imagination running.

What’s the first thing you do in the morning?
I’m an early riser and also someone who loves my routine! The first thing I do is have a cup of tea and some oatmeal while taking in the news of the day before I jump into my inbox.

And last thing you do at night?
I listen to a lot of podcasts.  Many are hosted by comedians and entreprenuers. You can really get lost in them… you can also fall asleep, quick!

On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you enjoy your work.
A solid 8.

Are you passionate about your work? Inspire others by sharing your story. Get in touch.