Now booking photo & video 2020 + 2021

Hey hey, photographers! Let’s dig into your biz!

We’re Mersadi and Kerri, two full-time photographers who met and became BFFs at something just like this! We are passionate about doing what we love (sound familiar?), with really cool people like you...and living our very best lives along the way!

The Narrative Retreat was born from our love for storytelling and building next-level client relationships. We’ve come to realize that we are at our best when we have been filled up first. We even shaped our workflows and client experience to stay true to this reality. And now, we want to share that reality with you!

We believe that we were all created to laugh ‘til our stomachs hurt, cry ‘til we feel clean, and enter into genuine encounter with everyone we meet. We believe that we were all created to be storytellers, both behind the camera and after we’ve set it aside for a rest. We connect, feel, and learn through stories...but we need to live them, too. 

Stories are moments in time, and a narrative is the connecting thread that strings them together. It’s the bigger picture. It’s the intersection between the stories you tell and the stories you live. And it’s the voice you use to tell both. During the Narrative Retreat, we want to share with you our journey to fiercely living our stories and transforming them into narratives. Then, we want to help you find joy in your own! Together, let’s enter into the intersection between the stories we view through a lens and the stories that linger in our hearts. Let’s enter into that overlap and shape your narrative.   
So, whether you’re in chapter one, eight, or fifty-freakin’-two of your journey as a photographer, we can’t wait to meet you and learn your story! 

meet the hosts

aloha, i'm mersadi!

Hey Hey!! I'm Mersadi. Wife + mama to three littles. I am an intimate wedding and elopement photographer + videographer based in Hawaii. When I am not documenting insanely beautiful stories of my couples, you will find me at the beach with my crew (yes I am photographing those moments too!) 

I am a huge believer that what you put out into the universe you will receive back + connections are huge.  So,hosting retreats with amazing women from all over the world, in amazing locations only makes sense!
One thing that is so important to us is WORK LIFE BALANCE, we build our entire weekend based off this. You should live to work, not work to live. 
Sending you Aloha + Sunshine for now, & can't wait to hug you soon!

heyyyyo i'm kerri!

HEY PEEPS! i’m kerri!!! a full-time wedding photographer based here in chicago. you can find me either sippin’ coffee, in the sunshine, with a camera in hand, orrrrrr all 3 at the same time!! i’ve found that building on my own life experiences + building my portfolio quite literally go hand in hand, so hosting these retreats is the best thing in the worlddddd to get to experience weekends of work, life, balance - TOGETHER.

i won’t pretend i know all the things, but what i DO know is this!!! you can do what you love and be successful doing it if you surround yourself with GOOD PEOPLE. so let’s freaking go do what we love with good people, work on a vacation + vacation on a work trip. can’t even freaking wait to meet you!!!

a glimpse into chapter 2 - big sur, california

chapter 1 - kauai, hawaii

stories from 1.0 attendees

“I loved everything about this retreat! The quality of the styled shoots was superb with professional florals, planning, design, gowns, hair, and makeup. I also loved that we got to work with real couples rather than models, it made everything feel so much more natural and authentic. It was amazing learning from all of the talented ladies at this retreat and getting to watch everyone work their magic. I learned so much just by watching everyone and also gained confidence in my craft. 

The boat tour we went on was incredible and it was so great to spend a little time on ourselves and to just relax and have fun. I really liked the fact there was some downtime for us to just hang out, get to know each other, and build genuine connections.

Mersadi and Kerri were an absolute joy to work with. They genuinely cared about every one of us and did a great job making sure that everyone got a chance to get the shots they wanted during our shoots. The number of photographers that attended was perfect, and Mersadi and Kerri took special care to direct everyone so that it wouldn't be too crowded during shooting. Everyone was also able to practice posing and I learned a lot not only from Mersadi and Kerri but also from the other girls. I appreciated that they left space for everyone to learn from each other in addition to learning from them. They were considerate and aware of everyone's needs at all times. I left not only with some great material for my portfolio, but even better, with new friendships. I love these ladies!! If you're considering going to this retreat I would highly recommend it!”

“A few months back, I stumbled across a photography retreat and one word immediately caught my eye - “Kauai” (DREAM destination, am I right?!!) I hopped on the waitlist IMMEDIATELY and then came time to pull the trigger and book it! I’d love to say that I threw caution to the wind and jumped without a second thought but y’all.. I overanalyze everything. Here’s the thing though - all the analyzing in the world couldn’t have prepared me for what was to come.
Simply put, here’s what I expected: Visit a place I’ve dreamed of going to for way too long. Meet some like-minded women. Take some incredible photos. Leave motivated with awesome memories. Here’s what I got: From the moment we walked up the drive to the house where we were spending the weekend, I felt at home and inspired. It’s hard to describe it any other way. I was met with open arms, authentic excitement and a feeling that you only get when you’re exactly where you’re meant to be & with people who you genuinely connect with. 
During intros on night one, I expected that we’d do what I’ve done dozens of times at other photography related gatherings… “name, length of time in business, specialty, etc.” But this was different. We were asked to share our “30 second life stories”… They wanted to know WHO we were, beyond the photographer.
When it comes to events like this, the host(s) set the tone for just about everything.. and that rang so true here. Mersadi & Kerri far exceeded any expectations I could have dreamed up. They poured into us. Taught us. Encouraged us. Transformed us. Cultivated REAL connections. Even in their moments of exhaustion (this retreat was no easy feat to plan & execute!!), they always went out of their way to make sure each of us was ok.. no not just ok, AMAZING. 
I could probably write a novel about the intricate details of the whole experience. The connections I made with the other women who attended - it was like all of our paths were meant to cross and two people curated the perfect platform for it to manifest. The way every single shoot was managed with such intentionality that ensured each of us walked away feeling fulfilled (& these shoots were STUNNING!!!). The boat tour experience that was planned for us and will forever be one of the coolest things I’ve ever done. The spontaneous questions asked throughout the weekend that prompted us to stop and reflect - “What’s the last thing you did that you felt insanely proud of yourself for?” Two women set out to create an experience with one thing in mind- How can we get these women to leave this weekend as better humans, not just better photographers. And you guys- they freakin did just that!!! Not only did I experience Kauai… it’s become a part of my story.”

“I’ll never forget the day I booked this workshop... before, I always thought I’d have to be on my honeymoon to visit Hawaii and boy was I wrong. No lie this was the most romantic place I’ve been to, but what I really needed in my photography business was connection. A likeminded group of women to come together and share stories and learn/grow from each other. Kerri and Mersadi did more than that though - they planned and executed some of the the most scenic, incredible shoots I’ve ever been a part of. PLUS every couple was genuine, authentic, and so happy to be there. Emotion and authenticity are really important in my work and I’m so proud to have been apart of this workshop. 
Beyond amazing photo shoots, Mersadi and Kerri welcomed each of us with open arms, answered all our burning questions, and planned some amazing ( non photography related) activities for us to enjoy together on the island. I will 100% be attending more of their workshops and consider them and the other attendees life long friends!!!!!!”

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