Photographer Lauren Larsen sees her life’s work as revealing the beauty and dignity inherent in every human being, whether in the realm of weddings, art or social justice. “I think of what I do as asking questions with my camera,” she says. “What in a moment is true? What can be fixed in an image but remain forever living and breathing?”
While she credits her aesthetic tendencies to a grandmother who was a portrait and landscape painter—and a mother who allowed her to rearrange her bedroom furniture whenever she wanted—Lauren’s journalistic curiosity emerged while studying mass communications in college. It was only after graduating, though, that Lauren discovered her love for the camera while assisting the Dallas-based photographers Jessie Hornbuckle and Lawrence Jenkins on assignments shooting subjects as diverse as super models and the former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev. Lauren soon expanded her storytelling skills to weddings, which she believes combine in concentrated form the live-action excitement of documentary work with the emotional qualities inherent in portrait photography.
Even though she brings more than 11 years of wedding experience into play, Lauren brings a sense of fresh excitement to every shoot. “I love the fact that I can provide people with a sense of heritage,” she says. “I get to point out how truly delightful people are and how grand life can be. How lucky am I to curate that?”
In addition to her work with The Day, Lauren is the event photographer of record for the renowned Yale Art Gallery in New Haven, Connecticut, where she lives with her husband, the Yale scholar Matthew Larsen, and their children Lucy, August and Eleanor.
“Every image is in some way a ‘portrait,’ not in the way that it would reproduce the traits of a person, but in that it pulls and draws…. in that it extracts something, an intimacy, a force.”