Hey there! I’m Lauren Gray, a newborn and family portrait photographer based in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney. My partner, Rob Gray, who is also a photographer and I grew up in the east and can’t ever see us leaving this beautiful place. I’m also a proud mum of two young children who keep us on my toes and constantly learning.
I’ve been a photographer since 2010 and have always been drawn to capturing the playfulness of children. Their candid and wild ways never cease to amaze me, as they always show up as their authentic selves. When it comes to my style, I love to keep things natural, fun, and relaxed. I believe that the best moments happen when people are just being themselves, and I strive to capture those genuine moments that will be cherished for years to come.
When I’m not photographing families I love spending time catching up with friends and family over dinner and drinks, and enjoying Sydney’s beautiful beaches. We love Sydney but also love a bit of adventure and enjoy spending weekends away at our rural property in the Southern Highlands, and taking our caravan on road trips during summer and exploring the new beaches.
Where and how long have you lived in Sydney’s east?
My whole life! I grew up in Maroubra, spent my 20’s living in Bronte with my Rob. Now we’re living in Botany and raising our family here. We love Botany, the community and friends we have made here. I love being able to walk everywhere.
Three words that describe what it’s like to live in the eastern suburbs?
Fun, bustling, beautiful
How many children?
Two kids, a 6-year-old daughter and a 4-year-old son who keep me busy.
I can’t go past Centennial Park for my favourite park. I spent many weekends as a kid as my grandparents’ house was around the corner and it will always have a special spot in my heart. I love the big beautiful trees, kids’ bike track, wild play, the walking track and cafe is great for catch-ups with friends. I love it so much we even had our wedding ceremony there.
Don’t make me choose! We are spoiled for choice in the east with good beaches. Bronte will always be one of our family beach. The kids love the bogey hole and exploring the rocks with their cousins. Yarra Bay is another favourite, it’s great for swimming in the flat water and we love taking our stand up paddle boards there.
Favourite kid-friendly cafe:
Cosi Nero, Botany’s best kept secret. My son loves playing in the kids’ cubby house in the courtyard.
Favourite Coffee Spot:
Hands down Bogey Hole Cafe at Bronte Beach. It’s the perfect spot for a coffee after a post beach swim.
Favourite date night place:
It’s been a while! When we do get around to scheduling a date night we tend to try out new restaurants. A favourite that we always come back to over the years is Buffalo Dining bar in Darlinghurst. The Cacio é Pepe pasta is delish!
Where in the east have you yet to explore and would like to?
Cooper Park is one spot I’m yet to explore and it’s been on my list for a while now. Might need to make it happen the next sunny weekend we get.
What would you like to see improvements in the eastern suburbs? Parking & traffic! Environment? Ideas… community events?
Upgrade and better maintenance of playgrounds. Built with adequate shade and multiple swings for little and big kids.
Favourite Local Shop:
Humble Beginnings in Randwick is my favourite local shop. Paula stocks the most beautiful homewares, gifts & artwork. My home has been slowly filling with her things and it’s my go-to shop for birthday presents.
Favourite wet weather location:
Art Galleries! We love getting on a bus or train and exploring Sydney art galleries and museums. The new Art Gallery of NSW is great and the kids love the Australian Museum. They usually have some great exhibitions for the kids and craft activities that keep them entertained.
Favourite Local family Weekend Activity?
We enjoy going up Botany pools with family and friends. The outdoor pools are great in summer when the beaches get too busy for parking.
Work or SAHM?
Work. I’ve been able to continue working alongside having my kids as I am a self employed photographer. Like anything it has its challenges that come with juggling parenting and running a business but I am thankful that I enjoy my work and have some flexibility to make it work for me and my family.
Ask for help when you need it. There is no shame in asking for help, whether it’s your partner, family or friends. Remember, you don’t have to be a superhero and do it all. Also find your village. Joining a mums group, reaching out to friends and making new friends can be a great way to find that village. Having friends with kids of similar age can be especially helpful and makes catch ups and playdates easy.
You can find me on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/laurengrayphotography/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/laurengrayphotos/
My website – https://laurengray.com.au/