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30A Family Photographer - Desiree Gardner

Not many individuals have the privilege of turning their childhood dream into a reality, but Desirée is one of the lucky few who did just that. "Honestly, I still can't believe how fortunate I am," she admitted, reflecting on her journey to becoming an established photographer and successful business owner with over 12 years of experience. Growing up in the 90s, Desirée's first camera was a typical disposable one, loaded with 35mm film and probably picked up from the corner drugstore for a few bucks. However, even as a young child, she was captivated by the art of composition and used her cameras not just for documentation, but to create beautiful works of art.

30A Family Photographer

Roughly three decades have passed since Desirée first started capturing moments with those early cameras. Looking ahead, she marvels, "It's almost surreal that this is my career now, and I am incredibly thankful for all the clients who have entrusted me with their memories. While I once dreamed of being a photographer for National Geographic, I've stumbled upon something even more fulfilling than I ever thought possible."

After years of being behind the lens, Desirée has come to understand the profound personal and intimate nature of what may initially seem like lighthearted moments. "Like many, with age comes a heightened awareness of the preciousness of time, particularly the time spent with our loved ones - it's the most valuable thing we possess. The saying holds true: the days may seem long, but the years pass by in a flash. Change is the only constant. I am acutely aware that one day I will take my final photograph... a thought that feels unimaginable, yet undeniably real. Until then, I intend to dedicate my days to bearing witness and preserving memories for my clients, capturing the fleeting passage of time. They, unknowingly, gift me with something invaluable in return."

30A Family Photographer

"There's a reason why parents go through all the effort of packing up the car or boarding a plane to head to the beach... it's something magical about these places. However, what truly makes it special is the families themselves, not just the picturesque beaches (although they are undeniably stunning). Looking back, it's these simple moments in the sand that will stand proudly alongside the major milestones in life. Being a part of these cherished memories is a genuine blessing, one that I increasingly appreciate with each passing season."

30A Family Photographer

Desirée is predominantly known as a photographer on 30A, dividing her time between the stunning Florida Panhandle and the bustling Washington DC area. With almost two decades of calling this region home, she proudly hails from the Florida Keys, embodying the spirit of a true native Floridian. However, for her, home transcends physical boundaries and is wherever she can feel the sand between her toes on the shoreline. A staunch advocate for preservation, particularly of the fragile ecosystem and dunes along the Florida Panhandle, she urges individuals to support professionals who prioritize environmental respect in their work.

30A Family Photographer

Although Desirée's primary locations are the Florida Panhandle and Washington DC, she is a seasoned destination photographer who is willing to travel to meet her clients wherever they may be. With a passion for film photography, she provides her clients with a distinctive and nostalgic experience through her analogue sessions. Surprisingly, even today,

you might spot her with a disposable camera tucked away in her bag, a nod to her enduring love for capturing moments. To get on her calendar, please visit her website:, or email her directly:


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