Laurie Weaver Chosen to Document Operation Smile Mission

headshotWhen Laurie Weaver packs her cameras to leave on an Operation Smile mission later this year, it won’t be the first time that she has used photography to spread the word about important charitable causes. In fact it wasn’t until 2007, when Laurie was asked by a friend to photograph the local Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, that she was forced to acknowledge her secret desire to become a professional photographer. “I nervously showed up at the media tent with three times as much gear as I needed hanging from my body, wearing some really cute sneakers,” she explains. “Twenty thousand runners and walkers later my photographs were moving across the Jumbotron screen, and I was hooked.”

Her new photography career was quite a change from her former life, which had been spent as an architecture student and then an architectural design engineer at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “I always had a camera nearby and stuck my nose in the activity of any photographer I saw,” she recalls. “I was especially impressed by the photographers on NASA’s zero-gravity plane who could shoot and film while floating inside the cabin of a KC-135 aircraft.”

Today, Laurie’s feet are planted firmly on the ground in her Austin studio. Her photography style aptly represents the sentiment she expressed on the home page of her website: “A memory is a painting dabbed with streaks of intense light and color; yet empty without the softer, muted tones of everyday life.” Little did PPACH know how lucky Operation Smile would be when Laurie’s name was drawn from the hundreds of photographers who qualified for the mission opportunity by donating to Operation Smile in 2009; in only a few words, she tells visitors to her website all they need to know about her motivation as a photographer and why she is so well-suited to document an Operation Smile mission:



I love imagery and movement,
the complexity of light,
and the
brief sparkle of a connection.
People are intriguing,
their potential energy, amazing.

I have degrees in Architecture &
Extreme Environmental Design.
I love my 3 kids,
and they make me crazy.
I played at being a writer,
tumbled down ski slopes
& ran marathons.
I am in love with my
high school sweetheart.
I designed space habitats at
NASA and believed in dreams.

Photography has been my
passion throughout.

You can visit Laurie’s website by clicking here.