Today we’d like to introduce you to Katie Taylor.
Katie, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up the daughter of two British immigrants who were both directors. My father directed music videos in the 80s and my mother directed animated commercials. So I grew up on set.
I went to school to become a preschool teacher and taught for three years while taking gymnastics classes for fun – a hobby I had picked up as a child. Eventually, my gymnastics friends starting taking me along to auditions for stunt work and I fell in love. I quit teaching and went full force into the stunt business. I trained in circus skills, high falls and precision driving and got certified at the Motion Picture Driving School. After three years, I got injured and was unable to work for a long period of time and took a job doing “real people” casting research in a commercial casting office. I loved it so much I never left. And three years later, I started up my own casting company and haven’t looked back since. That was back in 2000 and since then I have cast thousands of major advertising campaigns and continue to cast about 100 projects a year.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
When first starting out, I did a lot of low and no budget projects. I invested time and money in helping build the careers of others with the hope that if they made it big, they would bring me along for the ride. Most did. Some didn’t.
This is also a business of feast or famine. So learning to have faith in the ebb and flow of how things work was a challenge to get used to.
Please tell us about Taylor Casting.
We are an advertising casting office. We find talent for commercials and print campaigns for directors and photographers. We use talent agencies and also scout the streets and internet for real people who’ve never acted before but fit the specifications. We specialize in hard to find roles and categories, kids, athletes, beauty and the ever-popular “hip, edgy, cool and unique” category that sells a lot these days.
As for what I am most proud of and sets me apart? I guess the fact that I still do all the work myself. Many big casting directors hire staff to run things for them. They become an assembly line like factory. I could never do that. I still select every face myself. I do all my own scouting and select each talent who comes in. I often joke that I will never become like Betty Crocker. I still bake all my own cakes from scratch.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
Running through the woods in England as a child picking wild berries and finding fairy dust. Riding horse in the rain and buying chocolate at the local shops
- Address: Taylor Casting
12401 Wilshire Blvd #110
Los Angeles CA 9025
- Phone: 310-313-2090
- Instagram: @taylorcasting
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/taylorcasting2
- Twitter: Taylorcasting
Production Credited (not photographer)
Spectracide ads- Bruton Stroube
Honest Beauty- Zambezi LA
Uniqlo- AOI Pro
Unitron, Pepsi, Google Plus, Airwalk, Disney and Nike- Kim Lansill Production
AARP- conscious minds
Kohler- Marc Holthusen (photographer)