Video: UM student turns photography passion into profit

Katherine Johnson
Oxford Stories

Every college student is searching for ways to earn money. Ole Miss student, Lauren Murken, found a way to tie her passion to income. She is a professional photographer specializing in senior portraits, engagement shoots, family sessions and more.

Hailing from Denver, Colorado, this business marketing major pursues her interest “and [might] make it [her] job in the future…if [she’s] lucky.”


Lauren Murken can usually be found behind the lens of a camera. Photo by Katherine Johnson.

Murken enjoys capturing the beauty of the world, which is prevalent in her photos taken at home in Colorado. However, she mostly adores taking individual portraits, for “the one-on-one personability” is unique and leads to the best results, in her opinion.

Her talent is evident in the photos displayed on her website,, but there is an additional skill involved in being a business woman in college: time management.

Murken said “school and work are both very important to me,” and continues on to say “[working] keeps me busy, but it helps with time management and balancing my priorities.”

The photographer joked that it was her mother, Amy Murken, who accidentally got her into the art. Murken received a camera for Christmas years ago from her mom, but the two didn’t know how to work it.

After learning camera basics, she became the default family photographer. She “just picked it up” and, from there, her passion continued to flourish, eventually leading to her current business.

Murken is showcased during a shoot of two friends. Photo by Katherine Johnson.

Now a sophomore at the University of Mississippi, Murken books photography sessions for Oxford locals. At home, she still serves Colorado natives, but her business is more Oxford-based since enrolling in school.

On average, Murken books around four sessions a month. The shoot style usually depends on the time of year. As winter approaches, her schedule involves more family portraits as people gear up to craft holiday cards.

Her busiest season comes as high school students begin to book their senior portraits. These examples are popularly found on her portfolio website. is full of beautiful images from different client sessions. Photo by Katherine Johnson.

Murken credits her adventurous personality to some success in the creative field. On the off chance that she is not behind a camera, she can be found “exploring Colorado on hikes or drives.”

The beautiful place she calls home and her artistic mind pair together to make her an unstoppable force in the photography industry.

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