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October 31, 2014

Portland studio stands out with 'fantasy photography'

Photo / Lauren Lear Maureen Roy, a masseuse in Portland, shows a less tame side, thanks to the efforts of Lola Studios.

Lauren Lear is among many other photography business owners in Maine, but what makes her stand out is her “fantasy photography,” giving subjects a chance to immortalize a different and sometimes otherworldly version of themselves. Maybe even a Halloween feel.

Lear, a former sales manager at Kennebunk-based Stockfood America, told Mainebiz she finally made the dive into running her own photography studio full-time in March, after being a professional photographer for four years. Her studio, Lola Studios, is located in the State Theatre building on Congress Street in Portland.

“It was now or never so decided to do it now,” she said this week. “It’s going a lot better than I could have imagined.”

While Lear brings in some work with business portraits and event photography, working for two local business chambers among other clients, she said her fantasy photography is unlike anything else being provided in the area. And every session has a premium, starting at $199.

Combining her backgrounds in photography and theatre, Lear said the service gives people a chance to portray themselves through makeup and costume in a way may have always dreamed of. WIth the help of makeup artist Caylee Patenaude, she said can give them new form of expression that can be framed or uploaded as a profile picture on Facebook, for everyone to see.

The themes have ranged from sea sirens to “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Great Gatsby.” One woman (pictured above) wanted to show people, including her coworkers, that she had a less tame side by creating the appearance that she had a layer of green underneath her skin.

“[My clients] love the idea that they can take some time out of their day and be anything they want,” Lear said. And not just for Halloween. “I can bring that kind of creativity throughout the whole year.”

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