Putting passion to work
SANTA ROSA BEACH — Russell and Michelle Harris are passionate about what they do.
The couple moved from New Orleans to Santa Rosa Beach in April to find a better life and launch their new company, Love Travel Film. The company is a mixture of the couple’s three passions: travel, filmmaking and giving to charity.
“We both do what we love," Russell said. "My wife is a travel planner and I’m a filmmaker and we give 10 percent of whatever profit we make to charity.”
As far as choosing Santa Rosa Beach as their home base, the Harrises said it had become their happy place after visiting the area for the last seven years.
"Every time we came back we kept falling in love with it more and more," Michelle said. "As soon as we knew were going to have a little girl we started to think long-term where we wanted to raise her. We kept spending our money here so we thought, ‘Why don’t we make this permanent?’ ”
The couple set a goal of “30 on 30A,” meaning they would celebrate their 30th birthdays together on 30A. To meet their goal, the Harrises rented out their New Orleans home, sold most of their belongings and moved in with Michelle’s parents for a few years. The couple made their goal almost to the day.
“We actually moved right between Michelle’s birthday and my birthday because we are only 11 days apart,” Russell laughed.
Love Travel Film is a home-based business. The couple said they chose that model to spend more time with their daughter, Luna.
As for the business, Russell said his favorite type of video work is showcasing new small businesses with big hearts.
“My forte is with small businesses and content creation,” he said. “The trend now is you are your brand, and people know what you sell but we help them tell why they did it."
After Hurricane Michael, the couple decided to focus the charity portion of their business toward storm relief through Fit For Hope, which their neighbor founded.
"Fit For Hope is working with families that are willing to open their homes or short-term rentals and fits them with people that are in need of it after the hurricane," he said.