After close to 30 years in the photography business, Joyce and Tom Schulke have retired.
They found the perfect people to purchase their business in Jamie and John Klesmith.
“God put this together,” Joyce said. “Over the years, people have come into the studio and said, ‘If you ever want to sell, let us know.’ We wanted it to go to someone good and talented and to someone we feel would continue the business successfully.”
Jamie said, “We went to talk about the opportunity and knew it was a good fit.”
On Aug. 29, it became official.
The studio at 422 School St., that was formerly called Classic Photography, is now called Della Vita Portrait Studio.
In Italian, the words “della vita” mean “of life.”
Jamie chose that as the name for the business because she sees life as a work of art.
When it comes to photography, Joyce and Jamie share much in common.
The Schulkes, who were in business for 29 years, worked out of their home the first two years.
Up until the Klesmiths bought the business, Jamie worked out of their rural Weyauwega home under the business name “Jamie Lynn Photography.”
Both photographers began their careers working with film.
For Tom and Joyce, Classic Photography was actually resulted after he bought an airplane.
“I said, ‘How are we going to afford a plane?'” Joyce said. “Someone said, ‘You could take pictures from the airplane.'”
That is how it started for them.
It did not take her long to realize that she enjoyed working with people and capturing perspectives.
She started attending seminars about photography, eventually getting a master photography degree.
Tom managed the business, while she handled the photography.
Jamie’s interest in photography began when she was a college student.
“I did a lot of drawing and sketching,” she said.
She was interested in the human sculpture and in how low lighting affected a portrait.
After graduating from college in 2000, she began thinking about an avenue to go down with her art skills.
Jamie found photography to be the natural avenue for her due to her love of people and an environment that would allow her to be creative.
For the last eight to 10 years, she has built her portfolio.
“I primarily worked on location,” Jamie said. “It’s been fun. I’ve photographed everywhere from Green Bay to Racine. My studio has been portable. It’s been an incredible experience, because every environment is different. Creativity is fresh.”
Her husband John works full time and will assist her in this new venture as needed. They have two children: Anamarie, 8, and Jacob, 2.
Jamie had been dreaming about expanding her business and is holding an open house Oct. 4 to 7.
She can be reached at Della Vita Portrait Studio at 715-258-5000.
The Klesmiths have purchased the rights to Classic Photography’s imagery. This means that at Della Vita, clients of Classic Photography will be able to find images from past sessions.
Jamie’s photography includes weddings, maternity, infants, families and graduating seniors.
She loves to be creative with lighting and props, while keeping to the fundamentals of photography.
Tom and Joyce are ready for a change in direction.
Both are firearm safety instructors. “We will be doing more of that, but not full-time,” she said.
She also has experience in underwater photography and has been involved in fish research.
During her photography career, she went from taking head and shoulder photos to taking them outside.
“We’ve just enjoyed the business, Joyce said.”