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Meet Gabriela Gandara of Gabriela Gandara Photography

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabriela Gandara.

Gabriela, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve been told that I have always had a creative eye, so I guess its not a real surprise to many that have known me through the years that I ended up finding my passion with photography. I attended FIDM right out of HS and graduated with a degree in Visual Communications, deciding to continue my schooling in Interior Design.

Right before I graduated in the summer of 2011 with no such luck in finding work in the interior design industry due to the effects of the recession, I decided to apply for an internship with a local LA wedding photographer. I cannot tell you enough how much of an impact that internship has had in my life as it opened my eyes to a whole new field in which I could express my creativity and tell a story with. I was clueless how to even work a camera, so I was lucky to have a great teacher and mentor that had the patience to teach me how to use a camera and not to be afraid in pursuing photography.

I started from the ground up, learning the craft, shooting anyone who would allow me to, lots of assisting and eventually moving my way up to second shooting (even 3rd shooting!) with her and other wedding photographers in hopes of building my portfolio.

It was not until 2013 that Gabriela Gandara Photography was born and I took my first paying customer. For a few years after that, I was working full time and pursuing the side hustle like many of us do, but eventually, I decided to take a leap in faith and pursue my passion. Its been over 3 years now and have yet to look back!

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Its definitely not been a smooth road! Many times being part of a creative field you forget that your craft is not the only thing you need to learn to perfect but also how to become an entrepreneur and run a successful business. I’ll be honest, at the beginning, one of my biggest struggles was dealing with rejection.

The moment I would hear friends or acquaintances that got engaged I would reach out hoping I could shoot them for free in order to build my portfolio but many times I would not hear back from them.

Working in LA the competition is fierce with other amazing photographers around, so it’s hard not to get overwhelmed or even compare yourself with others. To this day I think that’s something I struggle with since my work is so personal to me.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Gabriela Gandara Photography story. Tell us more about the business.
I specialize in wedding and lifestyle photography. I am definitely a storyteller and a believer that there is no better story to tell than that of your wedding day. My goal is always to capture a wedding (or any session for that matter) as real and beautifully as possible in a way that’s classic, artistic and a little modern. Years from now I don’t want my clients to have any regrets and feel they went with a trend rather with something timeless that they are proud to show off to their grandkids one day.

I am known for my natural light shooting, bright colors aesthetic. I am a proud Latina, so when I have clients come to me wanting to incorporate their cultural influences into their wedding day or their engagement I take pride in that and delivering images that they will love.

I think what I am most proud of is being able to be part of peoples greatest life milestones. I can’t tell you what great joy it brings me to have clients come back to me shoot their new stage in life, from their engagement to the birth of their first child or even wanting a great headshot for their new adventure.

I recently started shooting more women entrepreneurs and have really loved building a new chapter in my business where I can help them with what I can and build a community where we can support one another vs more unneeded competition.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I think the main foundation for a successful business will always be hard work but luck is definitely a key ingredient. I think I’ve been lucky to utilize social media as an outlet to grow my business over the years.

Pricing:

  • Full Wedding Coverage begins at $3,000
  • Engagement Sessions – $500
  • Lifestyle Portrait Sessions begin at $450 (maternity, branding, family, etc)

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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