For better or for worse–when most couples stand at the altar and commit to those words, they might not envision that it would include a lifetime of working together in their own business, but that’s exactly what it meant for one Chicago couple. Their love for each other and the lens has led them into the photography business. Together, Matt and Stevi Savage are Avery House. Co-Owner, Stevi Savage, shares some insight on their relationship and their business.
What inspired you to go into the wedding photography business?
In our minds, owning a wedding photography business is the best job in the world. We were inspired to make this our career after realizing how much we loved creating meaningful images for people. A wedding day is one of the biggest moments in peoples’ lives and we share a passion for documenting that special time in a unique way. Every couple deserves to have beautiful images that tell the story of their love and commitment to each other. Nothing brings us greater joy than doing just that.
Looking at your work, it’s easy to see that you have a very creative approach to photography, capturing the subject from unique angles with an attention to detail. You both seem to have that in common. How are your camera perspectives different?
During a wedding, Matt and I have very different and specific roles. After years of working together, this is something that just comes naturally to us. Matt is the lead photographer and takes care of most of the directing during group photos or romantics of the bride and groom. He also focuses on all of the details such as the bride’s jewelry and the reception decor. I am the queen of candids and focus on capturing the mingling, the laughter, the high fives and all of the other small in-between moments. I always keep my eye on Matt from a distance so that I can help out when he needs a reflector, a tripod, an extra battery, etc. We strongly believe in the importance of having two photographers at a wedding and are always excited to bring both of our perspectives to the table. Matt loves shooting the small details and is great at quickly finding the best light to shoot in. I am there to cover the big picture and capture things from a different angle. We make a great team!
You seem to work so well together. What’s it really like to work with your husband every day?
Working as a husband-and-wife team is something we don’t take for granted. Of course there are challenges, but we feel that it has deepened our relationship with each other far more than we could have ever imagined. We make it a priority to take time to ourselves each week so that we also grow as individuals which allows us to bring fresh ideas to the table when are working as a team. There is not another person in the world that I would rather be in business with. My husband is constantly inspiring me to learn and grow as a business owner and photographer.
Being a part of so many couple’s special day must be very rewarding. What is the most memorable wedding you have done?
One of the very first weddings we shot after starting our own business was at Badger Farms just outside of Madison, WI. It was one we will never forget. The weather was sunny and warm; a bit unseasonable for the middle of October and the bride and groom were so calm and so candid. When you get to see a couple’s love for each other up close like we do, you start to feel like you’ve known the couple for years. Jess and Andy saw each other before their ceremony, and Andy said he could remember the sound of the birds chirping and the leaves crunching on the ground as Jess walked up to him from behind to see him for the first time that day. As he turned to look at her he said he loved feeling the sun shining on his face and the coolness of the Fall breeze. It was after this wedding, that we started encouraging our couples to set aside a few minutes alone before their ceremony for pictures with each other before the guests arrive. There are so many sights, sounds and smells that can create an unforgettable experience when a couple sees each other for the first time in a setting where there are no other distractions.
Wow, that’s impressive. It truly demonstrates that this husband-and-wife photography team has an eye for style and they’re in tune with their client’s needs. They have been shooting weddings for six years and are still as passionate about them as the day they first got started.