NEW YORK, New York - No matter what your dreams are, you can make them come true. Take it from Will Taylor. He is "a self-confessed gentleman hooked-on-hue" as he describes on his popular lifestyle blog Bright Bazaar. He is proof that what some people can consider a setback, can be turned into an opportunity.
Taylor always loved to write. He graduated from college with a degree in Journalism and got a job at the BBC, but when the recession hit in 2009, he decided to take matters into his own hands and create his own blog. His subject matter? Design.
"Design is the fabric of our life. If it's not done right, it can ruin a multitude of experiences," said Taylor.
He focused on his blog for 4 years, trying to build a fanbase and making his presence known online. Living in London, that was hard. However, after teaching himself photography, making editorial timesheets and catering his content to American audiences, his popularity began to skyrocket.
7 rounds with Will Taylor: a bonus session with the social superstar
7 rounds with Will Taylor
Now, Taylor lives in New York City, published 2 home design books and has over 2.6 million followers on all of his growing social networks. And don't forget his tens of brand campaigns and television appearances.
"It's kind of crazy to me that something I started in a tiny, rented bedroom living in London has now afforded me the ability to move to a country I love, the city I love and doing a job I love from something that literally just started as a hobby," said Taylor.
Taking the leap to follow his dream was not easy. In fact, it was terrifying for him. While he was gaining an audience, he was simultaneously working a job in corporate communications. It was a gradual discovery that his blog could grow to become his career. He describes the entire experience as "a baptism of fire."
"My family all grew up doing very comfortable jobs. My father was a doctor, and my mom was a nurse, and so for them the idea of me going out alone was kind of terrifying," he said.
As a lifestyle blog, BrightBazaar contains tips and tricks about everything design and style-related such as home décor, fashion and travel. The blog's motto is "Make You Smile Style," and the hashtag has garnered over 600,000 images on social media from his followers.
"The idea of this hashtag is to encourage people to share and seek out the everyday moments that make them smile in their life," he said.
And the goal of Bright Bazaar? To be a lifestyle site accessible for everyone--a space where all types of people can meet and connect together.
"I wanted to have this space where really everyone felt like they could connect to and relate to," he said.
Part of achieving this ethos is Taylor's incredible eye for design, specifically color. He believes that design inspiration can come from all different aspects of one's life. You could find color inspiration from something as simple as the types of food you buy or even vacation photos.
Travel is also a great way to gain inspiration, he says, whether it's from a simple morning walk or a trip abroad.
"To me, there's nothing more exhilarating than taking yourself out of your everyday and finding a new perspective," Taylor said.
Taylor has also campaigned with plenty of brands that help his followers achieve their own style and design. Some examples include Coca-Cola, West Elm, Pottery Barn, and Nespresso.
"To me, with brand campaigns, it's fascinating how you can talk about a product in a way that engages your audience if you show how it genuinely makes an impact on your life," he said.
For Taylor, being a social superstar is a dream come true but also a big responsibility. Not only is he a social influencer through his blog and curated social media accounts, but he also considers himself a content creator due to his television and video work.
"There's so much more to being an influencer than the pretty pictures that you see on social media." he said, "There's a business operation going on behind to get that content live. There's a lot of people behind the scenes making that happen."
And Taylor is showing no signs of stopping his incredible career. His advice to his former self?
"Be determined, have patience, and realize that some things take time."
You can find him at Bright Bazaar.