It’s no secret that Tia Taylor is a woman who goes after what she wants and does it successfully. American-born with Jamaican and Nigerian roots, Tia now calls Italy home and has carved out a space for herself in the digital talent industry. Tia is a longtime friend of All the Pretty Birds, and helped facilitate the inaugural Digital Creatives of Color event along with Jordan Anderson and our Chief Lover, Tamu McPherson. The event was a standout in helping shine a spotlight on creatives making waves in Italy, way before the Summer of 2020 reckoning had industries under scrutiny for their lack of diversity. For us, by us.
Meet Tia Taylor
You may have first seen Tia on Youtube, where she uploads content on her channel about life in Milan. Here she engages us in her experiences as an American citizen abroad with entertaining and educational lifestyle content. If you check out her social media, she’s candid about making Italy her home, her skincare journey, and routinely shares style snippets.
Seizing the opportunity to help others enjoy travel and living around Italy, Tia offers a unique perspective as a Black American living abroad.
Tia shares, “ I think everyone should have the eye opener that their reality is not THE reality, that the world is one giant gray area.” She explains, “ I think that as soon as it becomes the norm to understand this, we can start moving forward as societies and a world.”
Social media can be fickle, and sustaining longevity is a key balancing act. Tia explains, “If I’ve had success though it’s because over the years I was able to acquire some depth, nuance and figure how to communicate with the public.”
I think like a lot of people from my generation, I got involved in social media quite young, which meant shooting images and videos for social media. As we grew together with the platforms, the professionalism also improved until where we are now. – Tia Taylor
Pivoting During a Pandemic?
As we all know, 2020 was the year that everything changed. The COVID-19 pandemic swept through Italy with devastating results. The country known for being a tourist destination shuttered to stop the spread of the virus. Many content creators and digital talent faced uncertainty and employed many changes to adapt throughout the crisis. Travel has slowed down to a halt and tourism is a fraction of the past. As Tia mentions, “A lot of my content was contingent on going outside and exploration. From the moment the pandemic hit, I had to reposition myself in new markets to secure my livelihood.”
No stranger to change, Tia’s content befit current events to embrace the global climate.
It was quite scary and a huge challenge. I’m just happy that it ended up working. This restructuring set me up for a lot of new opportunities. For now, my plans are to remain in Italy. As soon as it’s safe to travel, you can count on seeing me as one of the first taking off. – Tia Taylor
Italy has been home for Tia for over half a decade and living abroad has come with wonderful highs and dips.
As she explains, ‘At this point I’ve spent basically all of my adult life in Milan and so the overall experience itself has a lot to do with who I am. It’s been really revolutionary living outside of a context that is your own and I think learning how to live as an ‘other’ has been a character builder.’
If you can’t find it, make it happen.
Social Media has become our everyday medium for sharing and gathering information. On YouTube, Tia wields her background in economics to share sharing quick, useful financial advice and insights to her followers. It is an industry lacking representation for women of color who talk about money. We’re all trying to make better financial decisions. After buying a house in Italy, Taylor continues to share her experience on making money work for her. You can follow this journey on instagram at @casatiataylor and join our celebration of her success.
On the subject of content, the entrepreneur also curates a series called, Una Donna Che Conta (I soldi) which roughly translates to ‘A Woman Who Counts (Money)’. Taylor explains, “As a country, Italy still lags behind on gender equality. Statistics show that economically, women are extremely disadvantaged.” These statistics are revealing about where the gender inequality lies. In 2020, around 444,000 people lost their jobs in Italy and the breakdown was: 132,000 men and 312,000 women. Furthermore, Taylor exclaims, “It’s important for girls my age to see someone like them taking control of their financial situation. I am pushing a narrative of financial independence.”
For us, by us
Being a person of color around the world is a varying and complex experience. Ultimately, the spotlight is on amplifying diversity. Early in 2020, Tia worked alongside Tamu McPherson and Jordan Anderson to create exposure for digital creatives of color living in Italy. The result: Creatives of Color Italy (#COCI2020). A cohort of over thirty diverse professionals living in Italy with incredible content who get a chance to share their experiences. The official launch supported by Camera della Moda was a success, although COVID-19 impacted many events thereafter.
The best part about being a creative is seeing your ideas take shape into reality and then impact people’s lives. Anytime I read a message from someone who says that my work has impact on their lives or way of thought process…That’s a stand-out moment. I’m humbled to say they are consistent. – Tia Taylor
Just months following #COCI2020 we saw a global reckoning around systemic racism with the Black Lives Matter movement. Finally, the world stopped to engage in a global conversation about the black experience. Tia mentions, “There has been a shift. People are much more aware now than when the event took place. It was a presentation to the Italian fashion industry that digital creators of color are right in their backyard.”
In the wake of an ongoing pandemic, Tia launched Colory, a platform aimed at sharing the plethora of multicultural stories within Italy. She explains that Italy has changed in the last two decades, but that the media doesn’t reflect any of this globalization. There is a misconception that Italy is a monocultural society when it so much more.
Tia further shares, “Colory’s tagline is ‘Italy has changed, it’s time to tell that story.’ Despite the fact that Italy’s cities and schools look more multicultural every day, we don’t see this multicultural Italy shown in the Italian media. Usually, the media spotlights the negative tropes which accompany immigration.”
And in the midst of all these exciting ventures, Tia has a few surprises in store for 2021.
We’re thrilled to see what she’s up to next.
All images shot by Tamu McPherson.