Located in Healdsburg, Northern Ca.
Documenting wedding days throughout wine country, the Bay Area and worldwide.


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Cara & Alison // Berkeley CA Backyard Wedding

October 28, 2020



When reflecting on the experience of Gretchen, the words that come to mind are MAGICAL and WARMTH! Working with Gretchen was an absolute dream! From our first phone call, and every single communication after that was deep, thoughtful, and warm. When my partner and I were looking for a photographer for our July 2020 wedding, we both wanted someone who captured a romanticism with a photojournalistic approach and someone who is warm, honest and embraced a level of vulnerability. Gretchen is all those things and more!

When we stumbled across Gretchen’s website, we were struck by and drawn to her level of vulnerability and depth. Her photos reflect honesty and intimacy that are true extensions of herself. When we spoke for the first time, it was clear that she was the right fit for us. She held our hands each step along the way, embraced an open partnership of collaboration, and honored our values. Each leg of communication was reflective and rich with kindness and integrity. On the day of, we felt held by the experience and a natural trust in her ability. Gretchen is like a ninja — seamlessly weaving in and out of encounters effortlessly — A true professional!

And, when we received our photos, we were blown away! My wife and I had to shift our plans because of COVID-19. We could not get married at the Berkeley Botanical Gardens as planned and pivoted to an intimate backyard ceremony. We are so grateful that Gretchen was still able to photograph our day because she captured the most beautiful and intimate moments, exceeding our expectations despite the limitations and circumstances. Unequivocally, Gretchen is our photograph for LIFE!!! Mutually, we cannot wait for other milestones simply so we can be graced by the gifted and soulful nature of Gretchen’s presence. Like others have said, HIRE HER — immediately if possible. You will be glad you did and feel enveloped by her warmth and talent. PFL — Photographer for life <3

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In my house I print everything. I have stacks of prints that have yet to make it into albums but to me, the organization isn't what's important, it's having the prints to spread out on the floor and talk about with my two children. We've been doing that since they were tiny and the stacks just grow and we share more about what they remind us of and laugh together and sometimes cry a little too.

My son Dorian is 16 and my daughter Hazel is 18 and when they were 3 & 5 their father, my husband Igor, died of suicide. I hesitate to share this with you all because it's kind of heavy but I want you to know where my value in photographs comes from. My prints, those ones that we spread out on the floor, are the stories that they have left and are what keeps my memory fresh. We get to see his happy grin, his dance folly and the hugs he gave his loved ones. There are no possessions I treasure more than those images and there is no gift greater for Hazel and Dorian.

As we print new photographs of our lives, our story unfolds before us. We can map our journey as a family now of three. We can see where the images that include him stop and where our smaller team began and we have hand held evidence of our joys and our adventures reminding us always of the meaning and humor, regardless of loss, in life. 
Wedding days are such precious crowns of tenderness and hope. They bring people together that might otherwise never see one another. They can build bridges and mend broken hearts. I want the experience for you, of spreading out your images, picking each up and being reminded of that moment's joy and the people you shared it with over and over again. 

I photograph weddings because when memories fade, as they eventually do, what you have left are the photographs; physical, celebratory and lasting evidence of what was a magnificent coming together. Wedding days are for laughter and promises and gathering and they are an example of all things good in the world. If that's not worth documenting with full heart I don't know what is.

I'm eager to learn about you, your journey here & your wedding day dreams.


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