Person of the Week
Amy Trahant: Seeing the Good in People
As a photographer, Amy Trahant has been there for many important moments for area residents, including fundraiser photo shoots during the pandemic. (Photo courtesy of Amy Trahant )
When Amy Trahant was in college, she considered signing up for a photography class but was talked out of it by a friend.
“I heard the photography class was so hard I decided to drop it,” Amy recalls.
That news might surprise people who have had their special moments captured by Take Aim, the photography company that Amy has run in Clinton for the last 18 years.
If you have a child that went through the Clinton school system during the last 18 years, there’s a good chance, they participated in some event that Amy helped photograph. While Amy’s kids were in school, she would attend their events, camera in hand, and begin snapping photos of her kids.
Eventually she began volunteering to shoot all kinds of events and that has led to her becoming a part of so many people’s favorite memories.
“What’s so cool is as my kids grow up, we’ve been to a lot of graduations and at those all the moms will come up to me and say ‘Oh remember you took this?’” Amy says. “That’s the best part of my job. Being a part of these intimate moments, I didn’t even realize.”
“I was just volunteering in the schools...I was making people happy because I was happy,” Amy adds.
Amy started Take Aim 18 years ago, shortly after she moved to Clinton. Amy says her partner in the company, Lisa Bousquet, has played an instrumental role in making the company what it is today.
Amy’s journey to photography traces its roots to her first job after college, which was being an intern for Katie Couric on The Today Show.
“For a young girl having a first job like that was really powerful for me,” says Amy.
In fact, it was at Couric’s baby shower where Amy felt the first spark of interest in her future career. At the shower, there were large blown-up pictures of Couric that showed Couric at various stages of her life. Amy recalls being amazed by the photos and what they revealed.
Amy remained working as a page at NBC for several years where she got to help work on NBC Nightly News and Saturday Night Live before jumping ship to MTV and eventually the Oxygen Network. While at the Oxygen Network, Amy was assigned to do a story centered on music through which she says she had the surreal experience of introducing Alicia Keys to the network’s part-owner, Oprah Winfrey.
While she enjoyed TV, it during this time that Amy had another skillset she was working on and people were taking notice.
“Just for fun I’d take my own camera to weddings and things, this was at a time when all my friends were all getting married and it was more what they saw in me,” Amy says.
Not only were her friends telling her how great the pictures were coming out, more important, she was having fun doing it. Amy began attending seminars and teaching herself more about photography.
Shortly after she and her husband moved to Clinton and she gave birth to their third son, she decided it was time to start her business.
“I knew I had to put my energy into something and photography was it,” says Amy.
For Amy, her favorite part of photography is “getting an intimate look at people.” She also enjoys getting to show people who may be too hard on themselves how they really look to others.
“People generally do not see how cool they are. I noticed that with the tool of the camera I can see that,” Amy explains.
Amy says it’s too hard to pick a favorite shoot, but she’s particularly proud of the work she has done taking pictures of the Necker Cup, a charitable tennis and golf event held annually by Richard Branson. While at one of those events, Amy ended up being selected to take pictures of the Branson family, which was quite the memorable experience.
“I was like, ‘I’m just a Clinton mom, what the hell am I doing here!?’” Amy says with a laugh.
Another important aspect to Amy is the ability to give back to people through her work. “
Besides donating her time taking pictures in the school, Amy has also helped charitable efforts like the Cerebral Palsy Society and hospice. She even taught a summer photography class for Clinton Youth & Family Services.
“The kids learned so quickly what it took me 10 years to learn,” Amy says with a laugh.
When the pandemic first hit the area in the spring, Amy realized that food security would become an important need for so many families so she and Lisa organized a charity photoshoot that raised $3,000 for the food pantry in 24 hours.
Amy originally grew up in Queens, New York and lived for a time in California before she and her husband decided to move east.
“We wanted a New England town to raise our kids in to give our kids a foundation of a New England childhood,” says Amy.
The search for a traditional town led the family to Clinton.
“I like the small-town vibes and if anything goes down somebody is always there for you. Your neighbors are everywhere,” says Amy.
In her spare time, Amy enjoys being with her husband Tim, and their kids Quinn, Liam, and Owen.
“I feel like this pandemic gave me a blessing where I get my teenagers home with me an extra year,” Amy says.