Tara became interested in photography in her senior year of high school. She continued to take photography courses while attending Oakland Community College in 2000. Tara also started her first professional employment as a photographer in 2000 on the Michigan Star Clipper Dinner Train (Walled Lake, MI) where she shot portraits of guests for 5 years.
In 2001, she transferred to Michigan Technological University (MTU) to study business. Even though Tara was unable to take photography classes at MTU, she took a job as a staff photographer for the MTU newspaper, The Lode. After a semester working for The Lode, she then worked as a University Photographer for MTU Photo Services. During this time she photographed student life and her work was displayed on the website and other print materials.
After graduating from MTU in 2005, she pursued a photography degree from Oakland Community College. She graduated Cum Laude with an AAS in Photographic Technology in August 2007. Since graduation, Tara has begun expanding Sweetwater Photography from her personal expressions to a business.
Sweetwater Photography was established by A. Tara Botero in 2006.