Patrick Robinson/nset photos by Harald Sund. Copyright © 2009 Harald Sund
Harald Sund is a world class photographer with West Seattle roots. His career has taken him around the globe to shoot such varied assignments as the entire "Iron Curtain" to the "Largest Ship in the world," but he has always called West Seattle Home.

Personal Profile: Harald Sund sees the world from a West Seattle perspective


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How do you see the world? A lot of it depends on where you begin.

For famous photographer Harald Sund, a West Seattle native, it began here. His career has taken him to many nations, but he has always looked to come home to West Seattle.

"I guess we're becoming a rare breed a true West Seattlite. I grew up down by the Morgan Junction, went to Gatewood, James Madison and West Seattle High School," he said.

He joined the military for three years came back and went to the University of Washington.

"When I graduated, I started freelancing as a photographer," Sund said.

In 1967 he was mentored by his next door neighbor Steve Marts, a professional photographer, who was also a world class mountain climber.

"He was kind enough to show me some of the pictures he had taken and I instantly knew that's what I wanted to do," Sund said.

He worked locally for a short period and went back to New York impressing the editors of Life Magazine and for whom he shot stories, such as covering the entire length of the "Iron Curtain" to the largest ship in the world.

Sund is a broadly experienced photographer whose images were used for the book "Over Washington," an aerial view of Washington State published in the mid 1980s. He still accepts photo assignments but does not travel as much as he once did. His work is now licensed by Getty Images where he has more than 2,300 photographs on file.

If you ask him if he's been somewhere, chances are he has. He has enjoyed Paris, Hong Kong, and New York City. Yet, West Seattle remains his home.

"I can't think of any place in the world that is more special to me," he said. "I've had the great privilege of traveling all over the world. And I've found some wonderful places I could actually live in but in the long run I think you come back to where your roots are and my roots are in West Seattle in particular."

You can reach Harald via email at

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