We had the good fortune of connecting with Erik and Kellyn Sandquist and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Erik and Kellyn, what do you want people to remember about you?
Social media would have you believe that everyone’s relationship is flawless. But the reality is that at the same time as the quality of wedding photography has increased, the longevity of marriages has decreased.
As photographers we are inspired to create and driven to make beautiful art. In this day and age there is no lack of stunning photography.
But we seek to go beyond the art. We want to be remembered as photographers who honor each client by telling their story exactly as it is. Every relationship is unique. A smile or a tear tells more of a story than the perfect dress or magnificent vista as a backdrop ever could.
We want to leave a legacy as artists who captured beautiful stories just as they were. Stories that still ring true the day after the wedding and two months later and even fifty years down the road when the photos on the wall are yellowed and the pages of the wedding album are tattered.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
We’re super proud of how we’ve grown our photography business as a couple. There have been some real challenges as we’ve fought each other for creative control, but we’ve come out better for it and have hit our stride with our style and the way we work together. I always say if you want to test a marriage then start a business based on something subjective like art. We’ve been strengthened by it.
We’ve gotten here by learning from everyone around us and practicing a lot. People believing in us has been big. When covid was first raging we had a couple tell us last minute that their photographer assumed the wedding was called off so he bailed on them and decided to get married the same day as their wedding. So we stepped up to the challenge of our first full day wedding and just sent it. It’s still one of my favorite weddings. That helped build our portfolio a ton.
It’s been challenging learning to work well together and develop a unified style. Kellyn is very consistent and I am all over the place stylistically. She’s had to gently remind me when my editing looks nothing like our style. I’m loud and assertive and sometimes step on her toes when doing a shoot. We’ve learned to communicate better now. Editing photos till 2 or 3 a.m. some days has been rough. We’re still figuring out how to balance photography as a side business.
We’ve gotten to know our strengths personally and how to work together in those rather than let them cause tension.
We want people to know that their story and their relationships are more important than the photos. We want to fight for them to have a healthy marriage and provide photos that reflect their love and commitment, beyond just how they looked and felt on one particular day.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We would hit up a different coffee shop every morning. Especially Everyday Joe’s where we fell in love, and got married and where we go to church. It’s a pretty rad coffee shop and really cool venue. We’d go trail running or hiking near Horsetooth. It’s a big rock outcropping above a beautiful reservoir. We’d probably tube the Poudre River. We’d definitely eat some Jordanian food at Petra Grill. They’d hook us up with some free tea because we’re regulars. We’d get so much Krazy Karl’s pizza. They’re the ones who popularized cream cheese on pizza. We’d go to the Keizer’s house and stay up way to late playing Rock Band, talking about movies and Russian politics and God.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Stephanie and Nick Hanson over at Honor Club Photography! When we got married we were working for the same campus ministry Nick and Stephanie worked for. They shot our wedding and we felt so cared for by them as photographers and were inspired by people who worked as a couple running a photography business on the side. After that we just couldn’t help but follow in their footsteps. Big shoutout!