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Wedding Planning

How Many People Should You Invite to Your Wedding?

Figuring out where your wedding is taking place (the venue(s)) generally requires that you have an idea of how many guests you’ll be having attend. So. How many people should you invite to your wedding? How do you figure out how many people?

You could just pick a number from your head – how about 50? Or 100? What about 150? Too many? Too little?

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How Many Wedding Guests Should You Invite?

Start from the biggest number and then work your way down. Basically – first write down everyone you can think of that you may have to or want to invite. Family is usually easiest to write down first. Get all those names and count. Oh and are you allowing children to attend? Make sure you count all the kids too. Then your closest friends and even some of your work folks (if you like them.)

This first count would include all the people you ‘should’ invite – even if you don’t necessarily want them to attend… like distant relatives… or co-workers. Don’t worry – when it comes down to it – you can just cut them from the list. But get that initial count and make it as high as you can. It’s often much easier to take away people from this imaginary list than it is to add them later.

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So that’s your initial guest list – and it’s BLOATED. Now. The other thing you may need to take into consideration is anyone that your parents may want to invite to your wedding. Of course this depends on your relationship with your parents and then their relationship with your wedding budget. If they’re providing a portion (or most or all) of the budget for your wedding then honestly – they get to invite a few people of their choosing. Of course – there are always exceptions to that guideline. But tread lightly… and do ask your parents if there are any of their friends that they would like to have as guests at your wedding. Even if you already know the answer – it’s still a nice gesture to ASK your parents and include them. Trust me, they’ll really appreciate the effort.

Alright! Now you have a giant giant guest list with way more people than you ever wanted, possibly attending your wedding. How does that number feel to you? Too high? Surprisingly low? Strange? Well here – let me tell you that there is no ‘right’ number for how many guests you should have at your wedding. So get that out of your head. Your wedding is YOUR wedding.

I’ve had weddings with guests numbers as small as 3-5 and then upwards of 400 people. Of course the 400 people is on the extreme side. Wedding attendance between 40-150 people is probably the most common range. I know – that’s still a big range. But because of spaces and blocks and how things work out – the ranges of guests counts are more like this:

  • 40-80
  • 80-120
  • 120-150
  • 150-200

Right. So making the list. You have the big BIG list of EVERYONE. Now pick a number range you like. Okay. Now be ruthless and remove all the people you would like to remove. I mean it – be ruthless.

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Now what’s that number? Is it really low? Still too high? You may realize that you have some wiggle room and you can add a few back. You may realize that you really do want some of those people attending and it would be strange that they weren’t there.

The thing is – you don’t save too much money in the difference of feeding 20 less people. So if you have the room – and you actually like those people – feel great that you can invite them to your wedding and put them back on the list!

Now add spaces for 10 more people to that list. Especially if you’re at the early stages of your wedding planning. You’ll need that extra unreserved space. Because inevitably you’ll forget someone – or more family will appear out of nowhere or or or. But go into your venue hunting and planning with a slightly larger guest count and see how that count can be accommodated. You don’t want to be AT YOUR LIMIT right from the start. It’ll hurt later on – trust me.

Alright! Get to it!

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How to Choose the Best Time for Your Wedding Ceremony

No really - when should your wedding ceremony time place? I mean – I know some of you will consider your wedding ceremony as nothing more than the ‘break in between drinking’ – but still, you need to set a time for the ceremony so that people have an idea of when they should actually show up.

How to Choose Your Wedding Ceremony Time

Of course – what time you should have your wedding ceremony also depends on a few factors (Or a few many factors. Like that?) For example – what day of the week is your wedding?

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If you’re getting married on a Saturday then you reasonably have most of the day available for your ceremony – definitely all of the afternoon. Now if you’re getting married on a Friday, your ceremony should generally be 6pm or later. Especially if some of your guests live locally. Because people will attend work AND THEN attend your wedding. Unless they’re in your wedding party – they’ll at least go to work for half the day. None of them will take the entire day off (well probably not) – which means yeah – they’ll be battling afternoon traffic to get to your wedding ceremony. So make sure you provide enough buffer time and make your ceremony a little later than afternoon rush hour traffic. That’s a Friday wedding day.

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Sunday? You run into a different problem. People are going to work the next morning – so they won’t want to be at your reception until midnight, which means that you may want to push your ceremony a little earlier in the afternoon than you normally would. This will enable your reception to be a normal 4-5 hours without it going on until 11pm or midnight.

See? Totally easy right? Ha.

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But really – what time should your wedding ceremony be?

  • Friday – 6pm or 6:30pm
  • Saturday – anywhere between 4pm -6pm
  • Sunday – no later than 5pm

Of course – this totally doesn’t take into consideration if you’re having an earlier ceremony and then a later reception. Some churches only allow you to have your ceremony in the window between services. So you may be getting married at 1pm and then have a reception a few hours later at 4 or 5pm.

Adjust accordingly.

This is all pretty normal and regular talk – what if you want to have a morning or brunch ceremony? That’s cool too. But you know what’s not cool? A SUNRISE CEREMONY. Well – I mean it’s not cool if you’ve invited more than maybe 20 people. And even then – it’s still kind of cruel to those 20 people. Unless they’re cool with it. But ummmm. Oof that would be rough. Ha. Still – apparently it does happen.

Right. So. Standard times for your wedding ceremony? Anywhere between 4pm – 6pm. Simple right? Right. So just do that. OR. Oh I just remembered this too.

Just work backwards from when your reception MUST end.

It's your wedding! Have a drink!

Say you have to end your reception at 10:00pm. Working backwards – you have 4 hours for the reception, that’s 6pm. And before that you have a cocktail hour. So that’s 5pm. And then you have 30 minutes for your ceremony so that would be… 4:30pm. Confusing? Well that’s because that was backwards.

Going forwards –

  • 4:30 – 5pm – ceremony
  • 5:00 – 6pm – cocktail hour
  • 6:00 – 10pm – Reception

See. Done. Congratulations.

 

How to Start Planning Your Wedding

Once you’re engaged and you’ve started to come down from the high of the proposal – you may start to think… well f*ck now we have to actually plan a wedding. (Please note the ‘we’ and not an ‘I’ in that sentence – as in the both of you and probably anyone else you can con into helping you!)

Or you can skip all of this do it yourself business and hire a great wedding planner/designer.

How to Start Planning a Wedding

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It’s easy to get overwhelmed. There are too many options. Too many choices – and it starts to get considerably worse when you realize that you don’t even have any idea about what you actually want. I know what you’re thinking. You’d like a small wedding with just your closest friends and family – maybe 10, maybe 20 people – 30 TOPS. But then you started writing out all the people that you might invite and realize again – F*ck. Some of these people I have to invite. (Although I’ll tell you right now – no you don’t.)

So. Where do you start? How do you even begin to start planning your wedding? Easy. Just imagine things.

Wedding Planning In Atlanta

Imagine what your wedding might look like. Don’t imagine how it has to be – just how it can be. So imagine that your ceremony is in a church. How’s that feel? Great? Awful? Weird? Write that down. Imagine your reception being indoors in a hotel ballroom. How does that feel? Write that down.

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When it comes to wedding planning – everything is not a linear straight line process. Sometimes it’s all-at-once. Like the venue. You may like a certain type of venue – like a farm barn (I just like how that rhymes and it’s annoying that it rhymes) – so with a farm barn you also want one that can accommodate the number of people you’re going to have  - so you need to come up with a rough estimate of that number. And with that you probably want it to be in a good spot not too far of a drive for people from their homes/hotel wherever. See – all-at-once.

The Best Wedding Venues in Atlanta

But really – venue and number of guests are generally the first decisions when it comes to starting your wedding planning. Location – location – location. Right? Right.

Maybe you don’t want to get married in church. What about a park? Or a museum? Or the above mentioned farm barn. Or. Or. Or…

  • Converted warehouse
  • Converted factory
  • Old Historical Home
  • Hotel Ballroom
  • Restaurant property
  • A neighborhood park
  • A state/national park

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  • Someone’s amazing backyard (not someone’s ugly backyard)
  • Science Museum
  • Botanical Gardens
  • UnBotanical Gardens
  • What’s an UnBotanical Garden?
  • Art Museum
  • Children’s Museum
  • Theater
  • Destination hotel/resort

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  • Beach
  • Rooftop of something with a roof
  • Sports arena
  • Ancient Ruins
  • Abandoned buildings
  • Haunted buildings
  • Cemeteries
  • Old Hospitals

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  • New Hospitals
  • Haunted Hospitals
  • Someplace with a waterfall
  • Someplace with a great big cliff/canyon
  • Golf course? (please no)
  • My back yard
  • Your back yard
  • We all scream for back yard
  • Vineyard

See. You have a plethora of options when it comes to the location of your wedding venue. There are also other considerations in picking your venue – other than just what you like (although that’s a big one.) Now – after deciding on your venue (and we’ll get into that process a little later) – what’s the next step?

Your photographer of course! (Atlanta Wedding Photographers)

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And also – here’s a short list of a few of the things we’ll cover in the new few weeks. Because you know – planning a wedding is bonkers.

  • Budget
  • Size
  • Location
  • Time of Day
  • Ceremony
  • Reception

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  • Photography
  • Wedding Party
  • Rings
  • Dress
  • Food/Catering
  • Alcohol
  • Entertainment
  • Cake/Dessert

Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark, Wedding Planning Atlanta Venues

  • Communication
  • Rehearsal Dinner
  • Honeymoon
  • Legal Considerations

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C + P | Flying Caballeros Ranch | California Wedding Photographer

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Flying Caballeros Ranch Wedding

A few months ago I had the honor and fortune to fly out to San Luis Obispo, California for Caroline and Paul’s wedding. It’s actually been a while since I last photographed a wedding out in California – but of course it’s always great (mostly because it’s not Georgia.) (ha but don’t get me wrong – I love Georgia weddings – duh – and I’m not just saying that because I’m SO RICH FROM ALL THE GEORGIA WEDDINGS) – but you know. California is so awesome! And I’m not just saying that in some kind of desperate wedding photographer sort of way (you know – when on their website they’re like, ‘available for destination weddings WORLDWIDE.’ – uh. That’s like DUH. Of course you’re available for weddings anywhere people will pay you. Stop begging.

Oh right. Caroline and Paul’s wedding – it was at the amazing Flying Caballeros Ranch out in San Luis Obispo, California. SO AWESOME. I actually flew into LAX and then drove up the coast to get there and aside from the traffic – it was a great drive… IDK. I like the beach. I didn’t get to go to the beach and I barely saw the ocean but ummm, okay maybe I’m desperate for the beach and even driving by it made me happy. Okay. Right. Where was I?

Oh yeah. Caroline is Andre’s sister and Andre is an amazing photographer (artist) that worked with me a few years ago here in Atlanta. So. It was great that Andre referred Caroline to me because that’s FAMILY. And you don’t refer someone to your family unless you think good things about that someone. Plus. Photographers – we’re awful petty people so a referral from another photographer is a BIG COMPLIMENT. You know what I mean.

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Right. See? Wasn’t that awesome and amazing? Look at that landscape. Look at those people. Look at those… IDK – all those wedding things in the wedding photos! So pretty! So… awesome! So… oh yeah I was also fortunate enough to work with my friend Markie Jones on this wedding – she actually flew down from Washington state to help me out so yeah – all kinds of AWESOME RIGHT?! YES.

Now if you follow me on Instagram or if you’ve kept up with us over the years – you know that we’ve been fortunate enough to photograph weddings all over the country semi-regularly. Like more than I EVER thought I would. Seriously. Especially for wedding photography – cause come on – there are AMAZING wedding photographers EVERYWHERE. And these people could always hire someone closer to them than hiring me to fly out of Atlanta all the way to… wherever they are. Right? RIGHT. In fact – most of the time these days whenever I get an inquiry from some far away state I’m usually like… are you sure you haven’t look around locally? Because I’m sure I can find someone pretty awesome that’s RIGHT THERE.

And then sometimes they still hire me. I know. Crazy right? I don’t get it either. But I do appreciate the f*ck out of it.

AND HEY! 500 words! I’m OUT.

 

Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. California. Flying Caballeros Ranch. San Luis Obispo.

V + T | Trees Atlanta | Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Atlanta Wedding Photographers, LeahAndMark, Trees Atlanta, Weddings, Black, Mexican, Multi racial, Multi Cultural

Trees Atlanta Wedding Ceremony

We recently photographed Val & Tim’s wedding at Trees Atlanta. Tim is an amazing videographer that works with us from time to time on weddings (that’s him below on the right!) – so it was really special that Krisandra (that’s her on the left!) and I were able to photograph Tim’s wedding! Like – the band’s back together! Sort of.
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Atlanta Wedding Photographers, LeahAndMark, Trees Atlanta, Weddings, Black, Mexican, Multi racial, Multi Cultural

So. Trees Atlanta. Now – for those of you who don’t live here or haven’t spent any time here – as you go around the city you’re bound to run into these signs that say “Another Planting by Trees Atlanta”. And then in your head you’d say to yourself – oh that’s cool – an actual organization dedicated to planting trees around town. Because trees are SO IMPORTANT. I’m glad SOMEONE is doing that work. I should do work like that. Because trees are like the planet’s lungs and stuff. And we need more trees. They help fight global warming – I mean climate change. But yeah trees are so pretty and way better than all of the generic evil development that keeps popping up. Who needs MORE bland apartment complexes? Or more boring condominiums. We need MORE TREES. So it’s great that Trees Atlanta exists. And I’m glad they have all these signs around town to let me know they exists! Oh but now I have to go to the new Target that just opened up.

Right. Oh yeah – so Trees Atlanta. They replace trees lost to development (evil condominiums!) conserve existing trees, and protect green spaces. That’s what they do. Check them out.

Also. Who knew you could have weddings at their headquarters? Right? RIGHT?! But apparently it’s a thing – and look – they have a cool metal tree right in the center of their reception space. Cool right? And look at that outdoor garden green space area! And look at those plants! And trees… although you’d expect that there would be lots of trees over at um, you know, TREES Atlanta.

Oh hey. SEO. Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark & Co.

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Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark & Co.

So Val. And Tim. Awesome people and their wedding was a whole lot of fun for me and Krisandra to photograph. I mean – it’s almost always fun to attend your friends weddings (I say almost always because you know… some people are crazy and that’s why they’re your friends but that doesn’t mean that their wedding will be fun – fortunately Tim’s wedding WAS fun and it was beautiful – but I’ll give most of that credit to Val since well… WE KNOW.)

Oh – and having weddings at Trees Atlanta is great too because I’m sure the money helps them plant more trees and you know we all need more trees because climate change. Right? Right.

Also… now I’m thinking about all of the other not-for-profit type organizations with nice headquarters that would probably totally let you have your wedding there as long as you paid them money. And how cool and different it would be vs yet another (insert cliche wedding venue that I will not name because I don’t want to offend anyone because I need work because work = money.) SO YEAH!

Oh and hey – I see the 500 word count as been reached so I. Am. OUT.

 

 

Atlanta. Wedding. Photographers. LeahAndMark & Co. Trees Atlanta. Wedding Venues. Ideas.

 

 

 

C + J | Ponce City Market Engagement Session | Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Atlanta, Wedding, Photographers, Ponce City Market, Engagement Session, Atlanta Beltline, PCM,

Ponce City Market Engagement Session

This is C & J.

I’ve recently spent a lot of time at Ponce City Market – photographing weddings (Chelsea and Walt) – headshots… and about 78 other engagement sessions. (Like this one.) And the thing is this – THEY’RE ALL AWESOME. Sure there’s always the very high chance that you’re going to get kicked out (especially now – because you know – we photographers RUIN EVERYTHING) – but Ponce City Market really isn’t like any other development in town. (And I’m not just saying that to kiss up to them because we all know they don’t care and yeah yeah yeah.) There’s just a lot to work with AND it also connects to the Atlanta Beltline – so you can stroll along that and get more shots as well.

But really – the trick is to know what shot you’re trying to make, work fast, and then get the f*ck out of there. Well – I haven’t had any real problems but mostly because I’m really damn fast (at photography okay. Not like, everything. Okay?… nevermind.)

See. Engagement sessions at Ponce City Market right now – are still ridiculously awesome.

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Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark & Co.

Every year is different in this business – and this year (really this Fall) I’ve had more engagement sessions than the last three years combined. SO. Here’s the thing with “engagement sessions” – they don’t have to be that. They don’t have to be super cheesy we’re in love generic photos. Actually – I dare say that most engagement sessions aren’t that at all. An engagement session is really just a regular portrait session – except adult couples don’t get professional portraits so it might seem a little weird/strange/different. And you’re right. It IS.

But it’s always an easy way to get good photos of the two of you – not in wedding clothes. (By good photos I mean professional photos not taken with a cell phone camera.)

Right. So. Engagement Sessions at Ponce City Market. Where was I?

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Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

Oh yeah. Something I’ve really, really, really been enjoying lately is COLOR. You may have noticed it from the photos I’ve been posting lately – it’s a literal color explosion. Bright Bright Bright colors! Everywhere! At least whenever I can you know.

So hey. I’m an Atlanta Wedding Photographer and one of the things that I’m supposed to know – is where the best locations are for engagement sessions. And people come to me for engagement sessions – I ask them what kind of session do they want. Basically – do you want something in the city, or in a park, or further out and wild nature? or river? Or mountain? Or OR OR Or in your home and then other places? Yeah. All that. And then I go and just MAKE AMAZING. Right?

No matter the location. Sometimes I have a little bit of say – and sometimes I don’t have any – but I’m ALWAYS supposed to bring the Awesome. It’s kind of my job.

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Alright Team. That’s it. Let’s do some of that SEO Service.

Atlanta Wedding Photographers. Ponce City Market Engagement Session. LeahAndMark & C0.

Goodnight!

 

S + R | Backyard Ceremony & Reception | Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Atlanta; Wedding; Backyard Wedding; Photographer; LeahAndMark & Co.; Buckhead; Fall Wedding; Summer Wedding; Planning

Alright! It’s Halloween night as I write this and my son’s full of candy but still somehow he’s asleep now. So I’m writing this blog post – while Ash Vs. Evil Dead plays in the background and I myself have consumed way too much coffee. Am I foreshadowing how much this post is going to go off the rails into who knows where? Probably. Definitely. Maybe. Who Knows. What I do know is that 500 words is a lot of words and then not a lot of words but OH MY GOD WHAT IS GOING ON IN THIS SHOW?! – (sorry watching Ash Vs. Evil Dead remember?)

Right. Back to it. Backyard weddings. That’s what this was! That’s how S & R celebrated their wedding – in a big backyard here in Atlanta – and WOW. It. Was. Awesome.

Like really awesome. Like not the ‘backyard wedding’ where it’s just picnic tables and cheap barbecue and people that feel like they don’t need to dress up. Oh yeah – FOOD. S & R had Thai food catered and YEAH. I totally ATE MY WEIGHT in pad thai. They basically could’ve paid me in pad thai. And coffee. And maybe fried chicken. Probably fried chicken. What else…  oh Sesame chicken too. That’s good stuff. Right. Okay – back to this.

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Atlanta Wedding Photographer – Backyard Wedding

Check out that backyard! It’s SO AWESOME! You wanna be like – WHO HAS A BACKYARD LIKE THAT? Apparently people here in Atlanta. Definitely no one in Phoenix, Arizona (where I grew up.)

Oh yeah AND another thing about backyard weddings – decorate. Look – just because it’s a backyard wedding doesn’t mean that you can be lazy about things. Decorate – that’s what makes it more of a wedding ceremony in a backyard and not just… a conversation in a backyard. Right? Right. So decorate. It doesn’t take too much. Seriously. Pick up a book. Do a Google search. Check out Pinterest or something. I bought a book on kitchen spaces and now my kitchen looks ALL KINDS OF BADASS! I got one of those cool magnetic knife rack things – and then I installed some other bars and hooks and instead of everything being in a drawer they’re hanging and being all show casey. And my cutting boards are all made of wood and are GIANT (except you know, the one I use for cutting meat cause that would be unsafe germ and bacteria-wise.)

Oh. Right. Let’s keep moving along.

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No seriously – I’m watching this Ash Vs. Evil Dead show and it just keeps getting more and more impressive when it comes to the gore and blood – but not in a sick sad HOSTEL or SAW movie type of way – more of a… well, slapstick EVIL DEAD kind of way.

Oh – nevermind – that show ended. Switched over to Black Mirror. Now if you haven’t seen that show – WATCH IT. It’ll make you want to quit social media and technology and things like that. Because dammit – my happiness/meaning in life is not measured BY MY INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK SCORE!

Wait. I hit the word count.

Atlanta backyard weddings are often times the most beautiful and most amazing kinds of weddings. Just make sure you put a little effort and a lot of love into your ceremony and reception and you’re guaranteed to have an amazing wedding day.

Nailed it!

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Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

Backyard wedding. Planning. Ideas. Tips. Atlanta. Georgia. Fall. Outdoors.

H + J | Red Top Mountain State Park | Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Atlanta; Wedding; Photographer; Engagement Sessions; Red Top Mountain; State Park; Camping; Paddleboard; Standup; Fall;

Red Top Mountain Engagement Session

This is H & J and they wanted something a little different for their engagement session – and you KNOW that I’m generally sometimes almost always usually forever interested in making some new photos. The tricky part with engagement sessions is that you want them to be YOU. I know that’s a simple sentence and it seems like DUH. But if you look around – and I’m sure you have – you’ll find a lot of people… trying a little too hard. Too hard as in what the fuck is this/that?! Who ARE THOSE PEOPLE? Oh you know what I’m talking about.

But how do you show your personalities during your engagement session and avoid being inauthentic or fake or not you guys? I don’t know. I don’t have any good advice. That’s not really why you’re here. You’re here for the photos and photos and well alright – some advice. Okay. Basically – just show what you’re interested in. Your hobbies or your favorite things your likes – basically WHAT YOU DO when you’re not being in front of everyone else. Okay maybe not that – but the things you love. Like really LOVE. Because your engagement session is a portrait session of you and your partner (I’m going to assume you love them) – and you should do what you can to incorporate other things you love. Things that you both love. Whatever that might be. Seriously – because I’m not judging.

Your engagement session documents your love right? RIGHT FUCKERS THAT’S WHAT IT DOES. Now look at some photos.

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Red Top Mountain State Park Engagement Session

Alright maybe I was a little harsh earlier. Or strangely aggressive. I mean – we’re talking about engagement sessions right? And weddings and fancy things like flowers and dresses or simply – love. Here’s the thing – your engagement session can be whatever you want it to be. You just have to be the one to make it happen. I’m not saying that your photographer can’t or won’t help you… ah nevermind – I was about to go on and on about you being you and #LiveAuthentic and #HashtagSomethingCool but whatever.

Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark & Co.

The point is that your engagement session doesn’t have to be an ‘ENGAGEMENT SESSION!’ – it doesn’t necessarily have to be cheesy or uncool or generic or something unrelated to you and who you both are and what you both mean to each other. It’s about YOU TWO PEOPLE. So show that. Really show that. Do you like to drink? GET DRINKING. Do you like to watch TV? Incorporate that. Seriously – I once had a couple start their engagement session in their living room, in PJs, reading a newspaper and drinking coffee – like it was a regular Saturday morning because THEY LOVE DOING THAT. See how easy it is? What do the two of you love to do together – and maybe do THAT for your engagement session.

Well – um – maybe not THAT – but you know what I mean. Do you? Nevermind it’s all good.

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Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark. Red Top Mountain State Park. Engagement Session.

C & W | Ponce City Market | Atlanta Wedding Photographer

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The Carter Center Wedding Ceremony

This is Chelsea and Walt – two ridiculously amazing people that somehow found me (actually their friend referred me and you know it’s ALWAYS nice when someone refers a client to us… because that’s just… AWESOME!)… where was I… Oh yes. Chelsea, Walt – amazing – people – their ceremony actually took place at The Carter Center and then the reception was on the roof at Ponce City Market.

I first talked to Chelsea… over a year ago – in fact we were traveling the country in our RV for two months when she and I talked. So we never actually met until a few weeks before their wedding – lots of trust with my clients because I rarely take meetings anymore and most of the deal making is thru phone calls, emails, and text (I like text cause then I can send all the crazy emojis I like πŸ˜‰

But YES! Wedding! Ponce City Market! Carter Center! Let’s refocus here.

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Look – wedding vendors come in all… well there are many different kinds out there. Some are beginning, some are so-so and some are properly respectable. I probably fall somewhere in between all that mess and I probably slide up and down the scale – but for this one, Chelsea and Walt definitely hired proper villains. Er – I mean wedding PROFESSIONALS.

The team of wedding vendors they put together – well – we were all amazing and everything went off flawlessly… and even when it didn’t – Chelsea and Walt were super super SUPER about it all. (Because there are always hiccups on a wedding day you know.)

Ponce City Market Wedding Reception

What’s great about Ponce City Market is that it’s basically a mini-city. Seriously. So you can wander all around it and never get ALL the photos. There were photo ideas/locations I came up with that we just didn’t have time to get to – and we still covered a lot of ground! Of course – Atlanta in general is a great city for locations because it’s… endless really. Right? Wedding Photographer! (that’s just SEO junk right there – pay no attention.)

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You know what else really participated that day? The weather. Ridiculously good. It got a little warm for a second – but that’s about it – we were able to get so many outside photos because there was a breeze and none of us were melting our faces off. (Always a good thing when you have people getting married you know.)

Oh yeah – and another thing about having a wedding at Ponce City Market – they have lots and lots of people to help you get around the property. I mean… you probably have to have those people (security) especially since we went through all these hidden back corridors and things that I’m sure I’d normally get arrested for going thru – and it’s always nice to not get arrested. Trust me on that. Wait. What am I talking about?

Atlanta Wedding Photographer

SO basically my job the entire day as a wedding photographer is to see photos and then capture them in my camera. Right? Right. Obviously (or not so obviously) – the more there is to work with, the easier my job is. But what there is ‘to work with’ is different for every photographer. Some photographers like… boring things. Others like interesting things. (I’m totally throwing shade.)

But now I see that I’ve hit my SEO 500 word count so let’s finish this thing.

Chelsea and Walt. You. Are. Awesome.

 

Wedding Ceremony Venue: The Carter Center

Wedding Reception Venue: Ponce City Market

Atlanta Wedding Photographer: LeahAndMark & Co.

Wedding Planner/Designer: Britain Lamont Events

Wedding Videography: Trumpet Bird

Wedding Cake: The Cake Hag

Florals: Candler Park Flowers

DJ: Mike Zarin

 

Atlanta Wedding Photographer. Ponce City Market. The Carter Center.

Kristen + Martin | Las Vegas Destination Wedding

Las Vegas; Destination Wedding; Hartland Mansion; Golden Nugget Hotel; Fremont Street Experience; Atlanta; Wedding; Photographer;

I’ve literally known Kristen for something like 47 years – so it was a real honor to be there to photograph her destination wedding with Martin – IN LAS VEGAS, NEVADA! We (me and Kristen) grew up in Phoenix – so Las Vegas was never very far – but I actually haven’t ever photographed a wedding there – until now!

Kristen is actually one of my oldest friends (because you know – I don’t have many friends and that’s a whole other story) so… I honestly would’ve attended the wedding anyway – even if she hadn’t hired me to be her photographer πŸ˜‰

Las Vegas; Destination Wedding; Hartland Mansion; Golden Nugget Hotel; Fremont Street Experience; Atlanta; Wedding; Photographer;

BUT – if you’ve ever heard me talk about it – I would always rather be photographing a friend’s wedding than simply attend it. Because come on! If I’m photographing the wedding then I get to hangout with the couple ALL DAY LONG. Not only that – but I get to pull them away from people, I get their attention, ME ME ME ME. Right? ha.

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Compared to if I just attend the wedding – sure I get to eat the food and party and stuff – but I maybe get 3-8 minutes talking to the couple. And that’s cool…. BUT NOT AS COOL AS BEING THEIR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER!

Las Vegas, Nevada Destination Wedding Photographer

Insert Photos

It was only a few months earlier that I photographed Kristen’s sister’s wedding (Melissa + Dan) down in Phoenix, Az. – so it was also an added bonus of getting to hangout with her family twice in a short span of a few months. And any wedding photographer will tell you that it’s always great to hangout with clients that you already know. Because… you really do end up feeling like a part of the family. We stayed at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino – and their wedding took place at The Hartland Mansion and Wedding Chapel. Now that venue – it’s… all kinds of amazing. A total ‘Classic Vegas’ vibe circa Elvis circa Liberace feel – complete with lots and lots of candelabras…

Of course – being an Atlanta Wedding Photographer – it was a real treat to be able to fly out and photograph something a little different than what I’m used to – specifically photos on Las Vegas at night time! After their wedding we headed over a few blocks to Fremont street for the Fremont Street Experience (which is like… day time at night) – so lots of lights, lots of loud music, lots of drunk and not drunk people – you know – downtown Las Vegas. And that’s where we did another portrait session with the two of them because come on – when you have a destination wedding in Las Vegas – you NEED those night time portrait session photos right? Or else it’s just… desert photos, or casino photos or… IDK – but it seems like any wedding set wouldn’t be complete without some night time photos with all the lights and the lights and the lights. Did I mention the lights?

Kristen and Martin – You. Are. Awesome.

 

Wedding Photography: LeahAndMark & Co.

Videography: Indie March Film

Venue: The Hartland Mansion

 

Atlanta Wedding Photographer. Las Vegas, NV. Hartland Mansion. Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino. Destination Wedding.

 

Vegas Wedding? Make Time for The Strip

If you’re having a wedding in Las Vegas, NV. – you’ll want to make time for a portrait session down on the strip – or downtown on Fremont St.

Let me say that again – MAKE TIME FOR YOUR PORTRAIT SESSION. Whether you have to do it the day before or the day after or the same evening – after your wedding reception and before the after party – MAKE TIME. It’s worth it. If you have a great photographer – it’s DEFINITELY WORTH IT. Don’t settle for only photos at your hotel – get out there and get some photos that LOOK LIKE VEGAS.

You won’t regret it.

Alright – if I don’t see you on your day – have a great wedding and I’ll talk to you later.

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Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. Las Vegas. Nevada. The Strip. Planning. Advice. Tips. Vlog.

 

Don’t Focus on What If | Vlog

Don’t focus on all of the horrible possibilities. What if you fall while walking down the aisle? What if your dress catches on fire? What if you’re mom gets sh*t-faced drunk and says the most awesome things to everyone?! (Okay that would be amazing for the rest of us) – honestly – those things are probably not going to happen.

In my experience (literally hundreds of weddings) – no one has ever caught on fire, no one has ever tripped and fallen while walking down the aisle. Most of the things that could go wrong – won’t – they just don’t on wedding days. Of course you can do what you should to prepare and make sure they don’t happen – but really that’s mostly done by just hiring a great crew and vendors.

Don’t obsess. Don’t worry. It’s going to be okay. And amazing.

Alright. If I don’t see you on your day – have a great wedding and I’ll talk to you later.

Atlanta; Wedding; Photographer; Sugarboo Farms; Blairsville, Ga.; LeahAndMark & Co.

Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. Vlog. Tips. Planning. Advice. Don’t Worry. How to. Don’t Stress.