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


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Claire & Shira // Madrona Manor, Healdsburg California

October 1, 2019



Gretchen Gause = THE.BEST.EVER Before we were referred to Gretchen, we were thinking about not even doing a photographer and just doing a custom video short of the day. We rationalized our choice with thoughts like: Who even looks at their wedding photos anyway? Why spend all that money for something that is just going to collect dust on your bookcase? Who needs 1k pictures when you’re only going to hang 3 or 4 up in your house? After looking at her website and the couples featured, I immediately noticed her amazing ability to pull the beauty and love of her clients through to the image. I loved that she featured a diverse set of clients. After speaking via email and on a couple calls we were sold on working with her and completely trusted her to capture our special day. After an amazing wedding day and Gretchen’s talent, I can answer all of those above questions with confidence. Who even looks at their wedding photos anyway? I do! They are the background to my Apple TV so also anyone that comes over to my house. I also show them to people that are looking for a photographer for weddings, even if they are out of the area. I say, find you a photographer that can do this (showing the photo) with all of this (hand in a circular motion in front of my face). Why spend all that money for something that is just going to collect dust on your bookcase? I would do it again in a heartbeat. Who needs 1k pictures when you’re only going to hang 3 or 4 up in your house? I do! I need all 1019 of my photos. They are ALL AMAZING!! Literally not a bad one in the batch. I love them all, which is why it’s so hard to decide which to frame. Maybe I will just make a wall paper out of them all.

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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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