The Gecko Guru

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Teri Gagnon and one of her photogenic geckos

When Teri Gagnon retired from being a police officer in East Palo Alto in San Mateo County, California, Gagnon realized the extent of her exposure to the dark underworld of society throughout her career. Once she retired, she moved to Kapoho, a town located on the island of Hawaii, where she found laughter and joy as a well-received balance through geckos. Yes, geckos. One morning while sitting on her lanai eating breakfast, a gecko approached her. She fed him a little bit of banana and quickly made a new friend. He began to return more often and brought friends along with him. Teri thought it would be cute to take a pizza saver (the tiny little table that comes on a delivered pizza) and prop it up on the table on the lanai. The heartwarming laughter that was discovered through watching the geckos stand up at the table was enough to make Teri curious about using other small miniature props for these geckos to play on and discover. She soon introduced a miniature laptop that resembled her own laptop and began taking photos of the geckos interacting with their new miniatures. What started as a couple of props with a couple of geckos soon grew into many props and newfound friends, at one point befriending 60 different geckos who all became little celebrities through Teri’s photography. 

Teri has always had a love for geckos, having them as pets since she was 16. She made one observation about the geckos near her home that opened the doors to a hobby that now brings joy to people all over the world. The type of gecko that make up Teri’s modeling group is known as the Madagascar Gold Dust Day Gecko. Teri has observed that this specific species of gecko is very intelligent, interactive and social. This makes them easy to work and bond with. After creating scenes with miniature props, taking photos and sending those photos to friends and family, Teri realized how much joy something so simple can bring to others. She then decided to launch Gecko Greetings. Gecko Greetings is an online store where you can purchase calendars and greeting cards with the now-iconic images of her little geckos living their best lives. Whether it is a gecko eating birthday cake, surfing or even ironing, there is a card to bring a smile to everyone’s face no matter what the occasion.

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