Hopper Stories: Interview with Taryn Weitzman, Founder of Her Travel Style
February 22, 2021
In case you missed our first guest on our Instagram series, The Creative Commune, we caught up Taryn Weitzman, Her Travel Style founder and creative director, to continue our conversation. Her words captured below echo Dennis’ values of living creatively and truly. Taryn’s perspective as a creative continues to resonate with anyone aspiring to actualize their dreams. To read more from Taryn, check out her website or follow along with her adventures and photography on Instagram.
Q: For those who may have missed your Creative Commune discussion with Evan Eneman in December 2020, please tell us a little bit about yourself and Her Travel Style.
Hi there. I’m Taryn. A photography and dog-obsessed solopreneur dedicated to all things creative and kind. After nearly 14 years in a traditional corporate career, I left it all to travel the world solo for nearly a year and a half and it helped birth my desire to create a platform and community to support people (namely women) to assess the life she truly wants to live and through the primary vehicle of travel, actually live it.
Q: We just closed out a year where we’ve been called to be more fearless and open to change. How have you embraced life out of the box since the pandemic began?
Admittedly, I’m tremendously grateful for the skillsets solo travel taught me because I’ve had to lean into them and use most of them during the pandemic to stay productive and healthy; from entertaining myself, to finding creative connection to the outside world, to being resourceful, asking for help, and engaging with mother nature for inspiration.
Q: What inspires you about Dennis Hopper and his work?
To me Dennis is an original rebel heart. From what I’ve learned about him and observed in his work he acted on his creativity constantly and did whatever the hell he wanted, always staying true to his Self. In a world full of so much noise it feels so important to figure out how to turn the volume down and be both your own muse and artist.
Q: Do you have a favorite Dennis creation – film, photo, or otherwise?
My favorite photo is of his black and white Jane Fonda shooting a bow and arrow in a bikini on the beach. It really doesn’t need any further description. And his film, The Last Movie. It was hard for that piece to not leave an impression on my creative boundaries.
Q: Where do you draw creativity from?
Nature, observing people, long car rides, listening to string instruments, movement – especially dance (my first love).
Q: How does cannabis play a role in your creativity or in your life more broadly?
If my normal means of drawing creativity don’t come through, cannabis can help me make a 180 with my processes – like a re-set. It can give me space to turn my patterning upside down and inside out.
Q: At Hopper Reserve, we believe in the power of art and conversation to drive change and destigmatize cannabis use. How does this align with your values and vision for what our society could look like if cannabis were more widely embraced?
I think in the world we live in today we need to build more bridges and less islands. Whatever tools we can use to help share and understand each other’s perspectives, the better. Being divisive is proving to get us nowhere – especially during all of the sheltering in place and being different can be very interesting. Art and cannabis can be tools to find our intersections of our humanity.
Q: What does authenticity mean to you and how do you know when you’re being authentic to yourself?
Authenticity means listening to what it is I really need and following that messaging, even when it is unpopular. And simultaneously assessing if it is coming from a place of love for everyone involved. When the whole world wants to go right, but I feel drawn to the left… when someone wants more of you than you can give, drawing those boundaries and sticking to them… standing up for what you believe in and telling your truth even if the people listening don’t want to hear it… Authenticity may not make me popular, but it’s my head I have to lay on the pillow at night and I want to feel good about the choices I made that day.
Q: For those who may be feeling uncertain of the path they’re on, can you describe what it looks like to cultivate life for yourself?
First I sit and re-visit the question what is my greatest aspiration in life? Right now it is still freedom. Then I ask myself what am I doing and how am I living today to find as much freedom in my life as possible? For example, I still love travel and mobility. I like working for myself and creating a community that feels genuine and deeply connected. What steps am I taking in the day to nurture those connections and provide for myself so I can remain flexible and free?
Q: What’s one piece of art that really moved you over the last year?
Normally I am extremely moved my sculpture. Seeing what is not yet materialized through a piece of stone is a wonder to me. But 2020 didn’t allow for me to sit face to face with any of that kind of art. I can’t pick just one movie, but film certainly moved me in 2020. It was my way of escaping to both distant lands and into other people’s journeys. In fact, I was so motivated by them, I created a list of films to support one’s wanderlust when she couldn’t travel on my website a few months into quarantine.
Q: List 3 words that describe your intentions for 2021.
LOVE. PIVOT. PEACE.