Lara Grauer

Fabulous People: Lara Grauer

Lara Grauer is the owner and lead photographer at Seattle’s Lara Grauer Photography LLC, a luxury portrait studio. “Whether it’s for work or for life, we provide a fun and full-service experience that ends with show-stopping photos to display with pride.” Learn about Lara Grauer…

Follow at: @lara_grauer

Hometown: Prospect Heights, IL (a Chicago suburb)

First job: I went through a series of jobs before landing on photography. I was a babysitter for the small kids in my neighborhood starting at age 11, but my first official position as an employee was between high school and college. I sold luggage and gifts at a small travel store. Thanks to that job, I know lots more than I need to about zippers and rip-stop fabrics! 

Favorite ways to spend your free time in WA: I love spending time at the beach. Richmond Beach in Shoreline is one of my favorites, along with the waterfront in Edmonds. Puget Sound is so beautiful.

Your biggest accomplishment and why: I’ve done some cool things in my life, but my biggest accomplishment is becoming a successful business owner. I dream of a world where all people feel their value, and this business lets me help move things in that direction. Entrepreneurship takes a special kind of work and dedication, and I’m thankful for the opportunities it brings. 

The biggest obstacle you overcame: My family moved to Seattle from Chicago in 2007. I didn’t realize what a huge challenge it would be to live so far from everything I had previously known. We had no friends or family to speak of in the area, and we moved with two little kids. With no built-in child care, we were thrown into the deep end of navigating the kid-friendly side of Seattle. I have countless cherished memories from that period of our lives, but there were also some big emotional obstacles to overcome before I could get back on my feet as an individual (separate from my kids). It really brought the importance of friendship, love and human connection into focus. We eventually found contentment here, and we try to pay it forward by offering warmth and friendship to others.

Someone who inspires you and why: My maternal grandparents and the challenges they overcame serve as a big inspiration to me. Each of them lost their parents at a young age, so they had to trust the guidance they found within themselves. The values they lived continue to inspire me to make decisions with confidence. They gave me so many words of wisdom that I carry with me on my journey every day.

Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: Pursuing your art is wonderful – and if you want to keep doing it, your financial foundation is of utmost importance. Even if it’s a drag, find someone to help you understand your finances as soon as you can! Whether you work for yourself or someone else, confidence in your finances will allow you to keep doing what you love.

Favorite quote: “We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be?” –Marianne Williamson

Something someone would be surprised to learn about you: Between my theatre studies and opening my photography business, I earned a degree in dental hygiene.

What makes someone fabulous: A zest for life! If you’re having fun and appreciating your time on earth, then you’re fabulous to me.

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