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Lola Studios Mixes Photography with Theater and Adventure

By S. Mathur

Her portfolio is versatile and compelling: fashion shoots, vintage clothes and accessories, professional portraits, weddings, babies, pets and events. Lauren Lear, Owner/Photographer, says that she does many types of photography but her favorite shoots are those that mix photography with adventure and theater.

She got an early start photographing her own adventures, she says, and this influenced her work: "I've always had a love for photography- my mom always took photos of me so I think that is what piqued my interest. It became a way for me to explore my surroundings. I went on photo adventures by myself as a kid photographing architecture and capturing unique shadows cast from structures."

Lear established Lola Studios in 2010 to share her two loves with clients: "My love for theater is also about adventure and exploring new things." While her shoots cover the full range from portraits, weddings, events and food to fashion, most of all she enjoys turning dramatic concepts into stunning and memorable photographs. These are what she calls the Fantasy shoots, where costumes and make up come into play to tell stories, or just to leave them to the viewer's imagination.

Fantasy Photography at Lola Studios takes off from the client's vision, which could be anything: exploring childhood dreams, creating alter egos, or stretching reality. Lear and her make-up artist Caylee Patenaude really get into the spirit of things with makeup and hair styling as well as props and costumes. For a recent Powered with Veggies shoot with Girl Gone Raw, a healthy lifestyle site, Lear chose vegetable tattoos, a bandanna and a Rosie the Riveter theme to celebrate the raw power of vegetables.

Lear's pet and baby portraits are also much in demand, as are her photo booths. Photo booths are great ice-breakers at parties and corporate events, and Lear has the props to suit every event, from clown noses and Christmas accents to superhero and circus costumes.

As a female entrepreneur, Lear uses her successful career to inspire other women, participating in local startup events and networks. Her work and portfolio also connect her to other women entrepreneurs and professionals in the area, in fields as different as fashion, spirituality, organic farming and medicine.

As a new member of the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce, Lear's advice to new members is to "be as active as possible and not be afraid to reach out to new people even if you don't think you would have anything in common. You might be surprised."

Lear launched her food focused photography website at last year. Lola Studios will change its name to Lauren Lear Photography later this year.

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