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


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Caitlin & Robert // Romantic SF Botanical Gardens Elopement

January 25, 2021

Romantic SF Botanical Garden Elopement // Gretchen Gause Photography #sfweddingphotographer #winecountryweddingphotographer #bayareaweddingphotogrpaher

Caitlin and Robert are one of the many couples that have had to adjust and then readjust because of COVID-19. And then on top of that they were faced with spoke from the nearby fires on their wedding day! These two are one of the many couples that have faced wedding day challenges with grace, patience and kindness. This is a team effort between us all, client and vendors and we have to work together, giving each other enough space to hold truths dear when it comes to health & wellness mentally, emotionally, physically & financially.

These two have shined bright as warm hearts and I was absolutely thrilled when they told me that while they did want to postpone their wedding and that they also wanted to have a small elopement in the meantime. Yes! They always visit Botanical Gardens when they travel so they brought the best of their loves together in one mini ceremony (despite the smoke) and I was lucky enough to be there 🙂

Thank you Caitlin & Robert! See you in the Summer!

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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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