my story


“We don’t often recognize life-changing moments right when they happen, but that happened for me that night.”

jan gratz photography - annapolis davidsonville maryland photographer

It all started when my son was old enough to pick up a baseball bat – and decided not to put it down. When he started playing Little League, I started photographing every game. At the end of my son’s last year in Little League, his team won their division and I presented an album to each coach of the best images that season at the end of the season party. I loved telling the story of that amazing season in my photos, and I sat back and watched the players, the coaches and the parents looking through the album with laughter and smiles.

My son went on to play baseball at his high school and became the starting catcher his freshman year. It ignited my passion for the game and my passion for photography. Getting the right shot, timing the next play, catching the emotion of the game – the hunt for the perfect photo became an obsession with me. So I bought the camera of my dreams… my Nikon D3. One of the coaches wrote the following to me at the end of the season, and it was one of the greatest compliments I had ever received on my work. I had touched so many people’s lives with my photos and gave them memories they will cherish for a lifetime.

“Your pictures capture the essence of the game, and bring a single moment to life. You hear the ping when the ball comes off the bat; feel the dirt fly in the face of a player sliding head first into a base; see the determination and effort given in an instant… but most of all one feels the camaraderie that comes with being a member of the team.” – Coach AJ

jan gratz photography - annapolis davidsonville maryland photographer

At the end of my son’s sophomore year, I created a slideshow to share at the end-of-year banquet. I scanned the entire year for the best images and included pictures of every player and every game. I selected images with action and emotion and carefully chose music that tied all the images together. I captured photos of the team in the dugout or on the field that reflected their baseball friendships.

When I arrived at the banquet, I was so excited to share the slideshow – but nothing could have prepared me for what actually happened. Before the awards, the lights dimmed and the show played.

For the next 20 minutes, we all relived the season, and I heard laughter throughout the room. The show finished and the lights came on. The entire audience jumped to their feet and gave me a standing ovation. Moms and even some of the Dads, had tears in their eyes. Everyone was overwhelmed and no one could talk about anything else the rest of the night.

I stood there that night completely speechless. I had intended to share some important pictures with a group of people. Instead, what I did was tell their story and touch their hearts. And I knew almost immediately that this was what I wanted to do with my life’s work. We don’t often recognize life-changing moments right when they happen, but that happened for me that night. I went on to be the team photographer for the next two years, and the slideshow at the end of the season banquet became the highlight for everyone.

Eventually, I decided to focus my photography on high school seniors and families. There is nothing like the connection we have with our children. Being a mom, I can relate to the overwhelming emotions parenting brings from the minute they are born to the minute they make the game ending play at home plate. That drew me to what I do today for other moms, dads and their families. I create images that touch them, that stop time for just a bit and allow them to remember that wonderful time in their family’s life.

That outpouring of love those baseball parents felt so many years ago. I want to do that for YOU.

Bringing joy to your heart and home is my mission statement. It was my mission back at that baseball banquet, and it remains my mission today. When you join our studio family, touching your heart with the photos we create and the service we provide is more than words on paper – it’s what I was personally meant to do and it’s what everyone at my studio strives for every day and with every single client.

jan gratz photography - annapolis davidsonville maryland photographer

If you are not yet a member of our studio family, we hope that you give us the opportunity to tell your story and touch your heart. What’s your story?

My CHILD is growing way too fast!

I can’t believe my little child is now a HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR!

We haven’t had a FAMILY portrait since the children were little!

CALL us at 410.353.1717 or send an email to for more information or scheduling your session!

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