Saavedra Photography, a photographer based in NYC bio picture
  • Welcome to the website of wedding photographer Saavedra Photography (formerly known as Shang Chen Photography) Enjoy your stay, I'm glad to have you visit! I photograph couples who love life, each other, and express it through genuine, energetic personalities.

    Don't know where to start? Read more about me, see more wedding photos in my portfolio. Want to say hi? Drop me a comment or email me!

Maggie and Dan | Anniversary Photos in Williamsburg

Compassionate, understanding, artistic, humorous, romantic. Maggie wrote me and told me about how she and Dan eloped, but would like to have some beautiful portraits done of her and Dan in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. What is so cool about Maggie and Dan is their diverse yet shared interests. It’s very clear that they are mission oriented with their careers, hoping to improve people’s lives. Dan is in medical school, and also is a competitive power lifter. They both sing, and share warm smiles as they talk about music and favorite performances. They brought their unique style to the session and we had a blast. I really loved how real they are as a couple, their chemistry is incredible, and it’s clear that the two of them have a lot of fun.

Dan’s suit was entirely bespoke, down to the beautiful paisley lining. He cleverly paired it with apothecary cufflinks. Check out Against Nature if you’d like one too!

Thank you Maggie and Dan for a positively magical afternoon!

Dan’s suit is from Against Nature. Maggie’s makeup was done by Erin Chaney

You don’t have to be engaged to have a photo session. I photograph couples from all walks of life. Inquire if you’re interested – April, May, and July Sunday slots are currently booked out, but June, August, and beyond are available. Weekday sunrise slots have much greater available. Contact me here.

If you want to have early access and a promotion to my mini sessions this June in Central Park, be sure to sign up for my monthly newsletter

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life

Sample engagement guestbook

For those of you who have your engagement photos taken by me, you have the option to create an engagement guestbook. Engagement guestbooks are press-printed books (pages are thinner than an Heirloom Album). The pages lie flat with hinged binding. About half the pages are left blank so that your guests can sign them. I highly recommend providing a couple of thin sharpies on the day of. I help you by pre-designing the first version, and then you have one round of unlimited changes. Email me to get started!

This is a standard 8×8″ guestbook

On both ends there will be black paper, and your first page starts on the right. I usually fill this with an image

Some sample pages where you can see where we leave spaces for well wishes

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life

You are beautiful

We are all our own worst critics. And we all see things in our own heads that no one else sees. Sadly, unrealistic, photoshopped images and the general media have distorted the way we are seeing our own bodies, and it is not healthy.

I was born with cleft lip and cleft palate. I’ve been lucky to have it surgically corrected when young, and what remains are some scars and a slightly crooked nose. For years I was conscious about that asymmetrical, flat nose. I was made fun of for it. And to make matters worse, I wore braces for 8 years, had thick glasses, and did not wear makeup. I did not have a lot of self esteem as a teenager. And yet today, no one would ever know that was the case.

That’s because I grew to love myself. Sure, I have a husband. But, before I even met him, I chose to see myself as beautiful, unique, and awesome. I happily posed for photos. If I cannot see myself as beautiful, how would I convince anyone else of doing the same? And I often joked, “I’m not getting any younger!”

Many of my clients come to me with insecurities, and I will address them through the angles and posing that I will choose. I do strive to create a picture that is well lit and well composed, and flatters my clients. I also believe that each of my clients is an amazing human being deserving of love, and that there is beauty in each person. In sum, if I have done everything I could to photograph you in the most flattering way, I am still not a magician, I am still not a therapist, and I cannot make your insecurities go away instantly. If you do not believe in your own beauty, then you will never be happy with your photographs.

Last week I wanted photographs of me and my husband with some of the blossoms in Central Park. I was still very sick from a respiratory infection, and my hair was flat and unshapely. I fretted about how I’d look on camera. Still, I asked my friend Harris to help take a couple of photos I set up. My favorite one ended up being this one, where I was laughing at a joke I made (yes I’m a dork). And honestly, if I’d been worrying about how I looked, this wonderful moment would never have occurred.

When you and I embark on our adventurous shoot together, I ask you to let go, and have fun. Don’t worry about the crowds around you, forget them. Don’t worry about always looking at the camera. Be in the moment. Let go and have fun. Bring your personalities. If I’m bringing my A+ game to the session, I ask that you bring your most positive, open mindset. You are beautiful because someone loves you – there is always someone who loves you, even if you can’t see it now. And when you believe, that’s when the best photographs happen.

If you’d like to learn more about how a photography session with me can change the way you see yourself for the better, email me and let’s chat!

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life

June Mini Portrait Session Marathon

I’m so excited that you’re interested in my Mini Portrait Session Marathon! These sessions are a great way to get to experience my personal approach to lifestyle photography. They are meant to achieve one GREAT photo, they are not a substitute for my longer bespoke sessions. 10% of the proceeds from this marathon will go on to benefit Operation Smile, a charity I care deeply about as I myself was also born with cleft palate and cleft lip.

When: Sunday, June 7, 2015, start times of 9:00AM to 11:40AM, and 2:00PM – 4:00PM
WhereCentral Park. Locations will vary depending on time of day
What: 20-minute mini sessions. Perfect to get an updated headshot, a family photo, a couples’ picture, or just because
Cost: $100 for up to 2 subjects

The Session Includes:

  • The Saavedra touch: upfront planning via email where I will learn about what you’d like to achieve in the photoshoot and how you’d like to be photographed
  • Tips for how to prep and dress for your photoshoot
  • 20 minutes of my time – 5 minutes to set up, and 15 minutes to shoot
  • An online viewing gallery to see your photographs within 2 weeks
  • 1 high-resolution digital file, no watermark, yours to keep and share

Optional extras:

  • $25 extra per extra subject. The 20-minute sessions are best for one family, if it’s a large group, I may recommend that you purchase 2 slots back-to-back
  • $20 for each additional digital file (can be purchased after seeing the gallery)
  • $100 for digital files of the entire gallery (can be purchased after seeing the gallery)

Frequently Asked Questions

How many photos can I expect?

It will really depend on conditions and cooperation of everyone involved, but you can expect around 20 – 30 photographs from each 20-minute block in your gallery

Can I see some samples?

Of course, see images from my last mini portrait session marathon in Boston here. See a Central Park session at one of the marathon locations here.

Can I book more than one 20-minute block?

Yes! Please indicate on the form that you’d like to have more than one block.

What if it rains?

- If there is terrible weather (raining cats and dogs) the entire day, I will be rescheduling everyone to a later date in summer
- If it is only rainy weather during your block, you have an option of rescheduling to a later date
- If you are not available for the later date and it was due to rainy weather, your retainer will be returned to you

What if I’m late?

Please try to arrive early! Your session cannot be extended due to tardiness

Do I get extras if I refer a friend?

Yes! For every successful referral, you get another high-resolution file, a $20 value! Refer 5 friends, and you get all the files from your session free!


I’m in! How do I book you?

1) Fill out the form below. I should respond within 1 day (with the exception of Friday sundown to Saturday sundown)

2) Pay your non-refundable $50 retainer within 24 hours after I’ve emailed you with your time slot. If the retainer is not paid within 24 hours, your slot will be released to the next person who has requested it