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Wedding

Simple & Intimate Decatur Square Weddings

There is something to be said about choosing to have a smaller, more intimate wedding near Decatur Square in downtown Decatur, Ga. Sometimes you don’t want or need a venue that can hold 200 guests. Sometimes you just want a more relaxed atmosphere without all of the usual trappings of a WEDDING. Sometimes. And even then – you might want a small wedding but you still want it to feel like a wedding and not just a party or random dinner. You know what we mean?

Decatur Square Wedding in Downtown Decatur, Ga.

So you figure out what that compromise looks like to you and your partner. A great option that we recently photographed was this wedding that took place at the Iberian Pig restaurant right on Decatur Square in downtown Decatur, Ga. The couple confirmed the complete upper loft level for their ceremony and their guests. It was a simple and easy ceremony – and once that was over with – they got on with the  evening and enjoying their time with all of their friends and family that were in attendance. It was almost… too easy I suppose. But it was just right and perfect for them. And that’s really what we always hope for our couples. We want you to have the wedding that’s perfect for you

Iberian Pig Wedding in Decatur, Ga.

Whether that does mean renting out a banquet hall, or an entire farm, or just a medium sized room in upstairs of a restaurant. Have the wedding that you want to have and then get on with enjoying your lives. Right? Right. Perfect.

Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

Hightower Falls Wedding Venue in Cedartown, Ga.

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls is a wedding venue located in Cedartown, Ga. and WOW. It basically has everything you’d ever want from a countryside wedding venue. It’s about an hour away from Atlanta. It has a waterfall. A real waterfall, not just a baby pretend 10 ft trickle of a waterfall. It has a barn (which is kind of required these days for countryside venues right?) It has RUINS. And not just the foundations and some pillars. It has an entire building structure of ruins. (Very stable too so don’t worry.)

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls Wedding Venue

What else… oh yeah it also has a few horses and a giant open grassy field and forests and trees. And a decent river creek area. OH and a wooden bridge. So yeah. Hightower Falls is kind of the perfect wedding venue if you’re looking for ANY of those things – or if you just want ALL of them. Because it’s nice to have options right?

Atlanta Wedding Photographer LeahAndMark & Co.

One thing you’ll want to make sure you do – is schedule plenty of time for your photography. I’m not just saying that because I’m a wedding photographer – I’m saying that because you have SO MANY different and great backdrops for photos that you’ll want to spend more than 15 minutes on your portrait session. SERIOUSLYYYYYYYY. Look at this place! 

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Hightower Falls, Wedding Venue, Atlanta, Wedding Photographer, Ruins, Waterfall, Barn

Countryside Wedding Venue with a Barn & Waterfall

 

S & S | Georgian Terrrace Wedding | Ponce City Market Wedding

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

Planning a wedding in Atlanta while you live in New York can be very challenging – ha – it’s probably closer to being difficult than challenging. BUT – it can be done! What’s great about Atlanta is that there are SO MANY wedding vendors (well, that’s good and bad for different reasons) – which means that you CAN find all of the people and help that you need; even if you don’t live here.

Georgian Terrace Atlanta Wedding

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

That’s what Sadio and Siedric did – and wow did they plan a great wedding day. They started their day getting ready at the Georgian Terrace hotel – and then we did their first look/portrait session at Ponce City Market – AND THEN the ceremony took place at Agnes Scott College AND THEN back to the Georgian Terrace for the reception at the Livingston restaurant. SO yeah – we made a good trip around Atlanta and back that day.

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

Among all the things that they did right was that they made PLENTY OF TIME for their photography and videography. I know – of course I’m going to stress making time for your photographer (since you know – I’m a wedding photographer) – but really – if you’re planning a big day, with several locations – AND you want it documented well along with your own portrait photos; definitely schedule enough time for the photography. I’m not talking about hours and hours (because come on) but enough time. That will vary depending on who you hire for your photography but also on what you’re planning for your photos.

Ponce City Market Atlanta Wedding

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

For example – even if you’re not going to multiple locations across town – say you’re at a farm or country club with 50 acres of lush land and gardens and fields. If you don’t want all of your photos to take place 10 feet from your ceremony location, MAKE TIME to travel out to the fields, or hills, or rivers or whatever. If you have to walk – make sure you bring along some flats to walk in so that you’re not hiking in high heels the entire way. Your photographer can absolutely help you out with the logistics (and if they can’t – well, fire them.)

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

But YES. This wedding was GRAND. And these two were great the entire day. I’m not even saying that through gritted teeth – they literally were GREAT the entire day. Putting up with me, with my crazy ideas, but also having their own ideas as well. Because you know – at this point, 8 years into this wedding photography thing – I’m totally open to any and all ideas for the photos as long as we have time for it (cause you know, time is the most valuable resource we have and it’s the only thing that’s limited and blah blah blah).

Agnes Scott College Julia Thompson Smith Chapel Wedding

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

Now – small segue – I’ve noticed as a general rule – the smaller the wedding party (bridespersons/groomspersons/ wedding party persons) – the more flexibility or even open time you have for other things like photos, or relaxing. It’s just easier to have to hang out with 3 close people as your wedding party than 10. And you don’t have to split your time with as many people during the getting ready process. Having said that – sometimes I’m completely wrong and it’s absolutely AMAZING having a big wedding party getting ready with you and celebrating your morning. It just depends on the people, your schedule, and other things that I couldn’t even quantify that probably don’t matter in the end anyway.

Right? Right. Yes. 

Ponce City Market Wedding | Georgian Terrace Wedding

But these two? Seriously, considerably, absolutely, full of Awesome.

 

Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. Georgian Terrace. The Livingston. Agnes Scott College. Julia Thompson Smith Chapel.

2017 Top 10 Best Destination Wedding Locations in the U.S.

First – this list is the MOST OFFICIAL of Official Lists EVER in regards to the Top 10 Best Destination Wedding Locations in the U.S. for this year of 2017. 

2017 Best Destination Wedding Locations in the U.S.

So. Here are the best cities and/or locations for destinations weddings in the United States? Easy. We got this. 

  • Atlanta, Georgia

    • Okay – I’m completely biased here. But really – Atlanta is a great destination wedding location! In fact – many, many, many of our past couples that have gotten married here in Atlanta – don’t actually live in Atlanta. Why? Because it’s a great central location – with an amazing airport that everyone can fly into very easily. Plus – the food is crazy good. The city is super, SUPER. And you have about a billion amazing wedding photographers within walking distance of any area of the city. Seriously. I should know – we compete with ALL OF THEM. And honestly – they really are ALL AMAZING. 
    • But more so – the night life here is great (not that I know) and the food amazing (have I said that already?) and well – the rates for everything here will save you a good bit over the wedding rates in places such as New York or Southern California (well, really ALL of California). 
    • Also – no matter what kind of wedding venue you want (farm, mansion, museum, industrial warehouse, etc.) – you can find that in or near Atlanta. Okay except a beach.
  • Sea Island, Georgia

    • Hey! You wanted a beach wedding? SEA ISLAND, GEORGIA is your place. 
    • Because Sea Island is basically a private island and you can only stay there if you’re at one of the two resorts, OR you happen to own a house there. So you’ll be avoiding all of the crowds of people that are visiting the nearby public beaches… alright that totally sounds bougie and elitist – but come on – it’s YOUR wedding. You’re not inviting EVERYONE anyway. 
    • Oh yeah – and from the chamber of commerce – tourquoise waters and pristine beaches – it’s like the Carribean except, not. And you can do all the cool beach resort things. 

  • Florida Keys, Florida

    • It’s still technically winter and I’m still absolutely wishing I was at the beach. SO. Another beach destination.
    • Because COME ON. It’s the FLORIDA KEYS. You KNOW it’s super cool down there. And your wedding will be super beautiful. And you don’t know anyone else that’s even had their wedding down there. You will literally be THE ONLY ONE you know who’s ever gotten married down in the Florida Keys.
  • Aspen, Colorado

    • Seriously. Pick a medium to small town in the mountains in Colorado and done.
    • So we picked Aspen. Because HAVE YOU EVER BEEN TO COLORADO AND SEEN THOSE MOUNTAINS?
    • It’s F*cken AMAZING.
    • Now your wedding will automatically be F*cken Amazing just because of those mountains and all the mountain-y things 
    • People at the office will be bragging about how they got married at their Farm Barn and you can be like F*CK YOUR FARM. I got married at 8,000 feet. (or 13,000 if you get married at the top of a ski resort)

  • Las Vegas, Nevada

    • You know why you pick Las Vegas for your wedding destination? Because all you do is tell people when to show up and you’re done. 
    • Literally – pick a hotel/venue, buy their package where THEY DO EVERYTHING – and then you’re done. People won’t even be bugging you about what they should be doing because it’s Vegas and they won’t really want to see you until your wedding day anyway. UNLIKE other resort destination weddings where you basically have to babysit the whole group to make sure they feel welcome or some other BS. 
    • And if anyone asks you where you got married you can just say Aspen, Colorado.

  • Jackson Hole, Wyoming

    • I don’t know. I saw a photo and thought it would be a cool place. 
    • Maybe it’s too much like Aspen, Colorado.
    • Ah forget it – just get married in Aspen.
  • Coronado, California

    • I grew up there. (Silver Strands military housing yeah!) And it’s winter right now. I miss the beach. 
  • Wisconsin/Michigan

    • For us liberals that grew up on the coast – we would never, ever, think about having a wedding in Wisconsin or Michigan
    • But that’s too bad because it’s totally cool and beautiful there 
    • I know – Wisconsin and Michigan are two states and probably different from each other
    • But are they really? I don’t know – I’ve pretty much lived along the coastal states my whole life (except that part in Arizona – but even then everyone just escapes to San Diego whenever they can.)
    • So Wischigan. I’ve actually photographed 4 weddings there and one thing I can say is that THOSE PEOPLE ARE F*CKEN AWESOME. They love them their beer and I love them for loving their beer. 
  •  

  • Hawaii, Hawaii

    • Pick an island
  • PNW (Pacific Northwest)

    • If you like trees they have lots. Pick a state up there. Make some #LiveAuthentic #Kinfolk #GetOutside Instagram posts 
    • You can visit my cats that live with my sister in Portland, Oregon
    • There are a lot of waterfalls apparently
    • But no really – visit my cats in Portland.

2017 Top 10 Best Wedding Destination Locations in the U.S.

THE MOST ULTIMATE Wedding Planning Calendar Schedule and Timeline

If you’ve never cracked open a wedding planning book or guide – most of them are geared around a planning time frame of 1 year. For example – what should you be doing 12 months away from your wedding day? What about 9 months? Or 6 months? Or 2 months? Yeah. Stuff like that. But really – it’s like this. You start out thinking – great – a whole year. PLENTY OF TIME. Plenty. So much time I’m just going to throw away half of it and do nothing. And then all of a sudden 2 months away from your wedding you’re freaking out, vomiting tulle and champagne and wishing that you had at least glanced at what you were ‘supposed’ to be doing over the past 8 months. You can avoid all of that vomit. Well – at least some of it.

SO. Lets get to it right?

Atlanta; Macon; Georgia; Wedding; Timeline; Schedule; Photographer; LeahAndMark & Co.

Sample Wedding Planning Timeline – ONE YEAR

12+ Months

  • It’s all fun at this point – one of the first things you should do (if you haven’t already) – is start day dreaming (envisioning) what your wedding could look like. Simple things – think in broad strokes and ideas. Outside? In a church? 
  • Get your budget numbers sorted out.
  • Book your venues. All that envisioning and day dreaming you did up above? Start hunting down the reality version of those things. Find that perfect farm barn. Or that perfect industrial warehouse. Or that perfect… whatever…
  • Hire the wedding vendors (pros) that you MUST HAVE. Like if you need an amazing, ridiculously good and silly wedding photographer – hire them. ASAP. If you want a specific band to play your reception – book them NOW. YES – you can always find wedding vendors for your wedding – but if they’re GREAT – they might get booked by other people first.
  • Start searching for your wedding dress/wedding suit/wedding outfit

Atlanta; Macon; Georgia; Wedding; Timeline; Schedule; Photographer; LeahAndMark & Co.

9-11 Months

  • Order your save the dates (you can go through a designer and have them personally, custom made or you can order them thru templates online. 
  • Propose to your wedding party – I know – WTF “propose”. Basically – ask people if they would be in your wedding party. Sometimes it’s an honor, sometimes it’s a big fucken hassle. Whether it’s an honor or a hassle is largely dependent on you.
  • Create a wedding website. Because it’s 2017 and even hamsters celebrating their birthday have websites.
  • Book your photographer, florists, musicians, and any other vendors for your wedding.
  • Did I mention that you should book your photographer?
  • Order your wedding dress (or suit) and schedule fittings
  • Choose your bridesmaids dresses/bridesmaids suits – and get the groomsmen/persons suits in line as well (make sure people order them!)
  • Start registering (that means you’re supposed to go to 2 stores and ‘register’ – make a list of things people can buy for you as gifts for your wedding! – and totally put everything on there.)

6-8 Months

  • Plan out your ceremony – talk with your officiant and of course your partner – and plan out what all will go on during your ceremony.
  • Book your honeymoon trip! (cause that part is AWESOME)
  • Send those save-the-dates out to people!
  • Order your invitations and then also your thank-you notes
  • Find and hire a day-of coordinator for your wedding (or a wedding planner if you’ve gotten this far and you’re going CRAZY)
  • Schedule beauty trials (hair and makeup) – guys too if you want. 
  • Start planning out your rehearsal dinner. Where and who and when.

Atlanta; Macon; Georgia; Wedding; Timeline; Schedule; Photographer; LeahAndMark & Co.

4-5 Months

  • Confirm and/or finalize your floral design with your florist
  • Send out your wedding invitations
  • Go through all of your wedding contracts and refresh yourself on what you’ve hired people to do 
  • Complete and confirm your wedding cake or dessert order
  • Buy your wedding rings 
  • Setup and plan your transportation for your wedding day (often overlooked)

Example Wedding Planning Schedule and Timeline 

3 MONTHS!

  • Look up and Find out what the process is to acquire a local marriage license – local to the city/state/country where you will be getting married
  • Finalize your ceremony (what is actually happening during your ceremony) with your officiant

2 MONTHS!

  • This is when you mail your wedding invitations! (usually 6-8 weeks away). 
  • You’ll want to send out invites much earlier if you’re having a destination wedding or at least letting people that live FARRR away a bit more time to do some travel planning
  • Work on your wedding vows – write them – copy them – steal them – whatever. Work on them.
  • You’ll be having your first dress fitting around this time (oh and apparently you’re supposed to bring undergarments and shoes)
  • Get your reception food menu finalized with your caterer
  • Create a timeline for your wedding weekend (or at least the day before, and the DAY OF) – and then give/share that with your wedding party and other vendors (this is where having a planner can make EVERYTHING easier)

Atlanta; Macon; Georgia; Wedding; Timeline; Schedule; Photographer; LeahAndMark & Co.

1 MONTH!

  • If you have MUST-HAVE photos – make a list and send that over to your photographer (we actually have people do this at the two month mark – but we’re open to all suggestions from our couples at any times. Suggestions from uncles, cousins, and other people at your wedding?… we’ll humor them… and then tell them to go to the bar…)

1-2 WEEKS OMG

  • You should have a FINAL HEADCOUNT of guests – share that number with your caterer and planner
  • Complete and finish your dinner seating chart 
  • Go to your last dress fitting (YES!)
  • Designate specific people for specific task – give them JOBS. Because that’s what friends and family are for right?
  • Make sure all of your beauty appointments and planning is… planned and scheduled.

2-3 DAYS (WUT)

  • Steam your dress(es) and/or suit(s)!
  • Tell your Planner that they’re doing an amazing job
  • Tell your Photographer that they’re talented and amazing people (they’re artists so you know they have self esteem issues)

1 Day BEFORE! 

  • Give the marriage license to your officiant (or put someone else in charge of that – seriously)
  • Rehearse your ceremony with all the participants
  • Have dinner with your family and close friends!
  • Try to get some sleep okay?! YEssssssssssss. 

See? That’s all there is to it. One year OF YOUR LIFE. 

Also – Thanks.

 

Sincerely,

Mark Tioxon

 

How to have a completely stress free wedding

Weddings are bonkers. I’m not sure they were always this way – but today – they’re often just flat out crazy bonkers full of bonker balls and more bonker bonkers. (Say bonkers again! I dare you!)

SO. You want to have a stress-free wedding. Is that possible? I mean yes – of course it’s possible. But how do you do that? I googled it. And many of the tips consists of basically doing as much planning up front as possible. And/or paying someone else to take on the stress so you don’t have to stress – which means that you hired a great wedding planner to do everything for you. 

How to have a Stress-Free Wedding

That’s just transferring the stress. Unless you don’t have to stress out about money. Many of us do. We’re not supposed to because ‘money isn’t real’ – but it’s real enough to our tiny brains that it might as well be real. (I’ve been listening to too much Alan Watts lately so bear with me.)

Oh yeah. Back to it. How do you have a completely stress free wedding? IDK. Be dead. That’s about the only way to be completely stress free. (But even the dead don’t seem to be stress free sometimes – that’s why they’re like, haunting us or you know, hanging out around.) OH. Right. Focus. 

Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

OKAY. The way to have a completely stress free wedding IS……. to just get married and then have your wedding later. (Like elopement style.) BOOM! Take that! Ha! NO seriously. It’s totally a viable option. What’s getting married anyway? I mean – ‘legally’ it’s some paperwork. Spiritually it’s two people being all I promise these things to you. Community-wise it’s people around you that celebrate your Union and LOVE… Arguably – it’s NOT most of what the wedding industry and magazines are selling. Unless you’re talking about amazing wedding photos. Those are ABSOLUTELY REQUIRED or else you’re just not really getting married. (I kidddddddddd. No I don’t.) (Yes I do.)

SO. You get married. And then you’re like – aw yeah f*ckers try to stress me out now! I’m already married! HA! 

Okay. Sure there are logistics – but much fewer than all the planning that goes into the BIG GIANT IDEA OF A WEDDING. And you might get some blowback from your family – but come on. It’s your life. 

IT’S YOUR LIFE. (Both of you.)

Simple Wedding Ideas With No Stress

And that means that other people will just deal. They will. And you know what. No one is going to kill you. They’ll still want to celebrate with you somehow – but they won’t kill you. 

But really. As I write this – I’m asking myself WTF AM I DOING. I basically have a job because people spend A LOT OF MONEY on WEDDINGS. There aren’t any real photographers that make an actually good living off of just ‘elopements’. (I know I know – sure there are. They’ll email me. But come on – we know they’re not making a living off of just elopements.) 

Maybe I’m just… I like you to have options. All of them. I want you to have all the options you want and not think that you have to go through with some kind of wedding that you don’t want. 

But if you don’t want amazing wedding photography – then you’re dead to me. DEAD TO ME.

Sincerely,

Mark Tioxon

 

Affordable Wedding Photography Atlanta

Atlanta Wedding Photographer, Monday Night Brewing, LeahAndMark & Co.

I know. You’re looking for an affordable wedding photographer in Atlanta. What IS affordable? Obviously – it varies. 

Now I’m not about to write an entire blog post about how you should pay photographers what they’re worth – because honestly – many photographers aren’t worth much. BOOM! SNAP! OH YEAH!

Affordable Wedding Photography Atlanta

Atlanta New Year's Eve Wedding | NYE 2017 | Wimbish House

And then there are some that are legitimately PRICELESS. In the best way. Because they’ll take care of you – and take care of things you’ll never see them doing. Whether it’s setting the pace of the day (because your planner does this a bit – but many planners are more hands off until the ceremony and reception) – or if it’s just making sure that people get the f*ck away from you. A great wedding photographer is really protective of their clients. And the energy of the room. Your energy. Especially on your wedding day. 

We know that you need to be in a good mood. You need to have great energy. WE NEED YOU to have great energy. It’s not required for us to do our jobs – but it helps. So we’ll protect you.

Of course if it’s your mom that’s just totally screwing everything up – well – you’re kind of on your own with that. ha!

Right. SO. Affordable Wedding Photography or Photographers in Atlanta. That’s totally us. Totally. I mean it. You can afford us. I don’t even have to put down a price because I know that you can afford us. Why? Because THIS IS MY JOB. And I like to work. You need a wedding photographer? ME. US. Let’s DO THIS. We’re never offended by a number – we’re only offended when people don’t ask nicely. You know what I mean? Like with anything – just ask nicely.

Atlanta Wedding Photographers

Flying Caballeros Ranch, San Luis Obispo, California, Wedding, Photographer, LeahAndMark, Atlanta Wedding Photographer,

That’s it. And if you’ve been asking other photographers and they respond with a f*cked up attitude – well – really – f*ck them. Because this is your wedding and they don’t get to be there. WHATEVS. 

Honestly – it’s 3:55am as I write this because I’m currently almost dead sick from a cold and I can’t sleep. So I’m blogging. Productive RIGHT?! I KNOW! Where was I?

Oh yeah. Affordable Wedding Photography Atlanta 

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

Don’t mind the odd phrasing – that’s all just for SEO points with Google because they said that was a highly searched term and we all want to bow down and do whatever Google says to do right? Right. SO. How about you? And your wedding? And Us. And your Wedding Photography? We’re affordable – and you’re looking for an affordable wedding photographer. That’s US! *raises hand! Now – while I’m at it. It’s weird to me that I ended up here – a Professional Wedding Photographer. Because never would I have thought that this would be what I’M MEANT TO BE DOING. Apparently, literally – this is what I’m meant to be doing. Trust me. I’ve tried to get a different job and somehow – THIS IS IT. So. It’s a good thing that I like making BAGS FULL OF AWESOME for our wedding clients! YEAH! Hi-FIVE! 

Anyways – drop us a line and let’s DO THIS THING! And hey. Thanks.

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Atlanta Wedding Photography Packages

Ponce City Market, Wedding, PCM, Carter Center, Atlanta, Wedding, Photographer, Roof, Skyline, Rooftop,

There are SO MANY Atlanta Wedding Photography Packages. 

Math-wise it’s like 3 packages per photographer x 1 billion wedding photographers.

HOW ARE YOU GOING TO SORT THROUGH ALL THAT? It’s okay. You don’t have to. I’ll do it for you. No, just kidding – I’m not gonna do that. But I can tell you a whole lot of information about wedding photography packages. Because over the 45 years that I’ve been a wedding photographer* – I’ve tried every wedding package imaginable. Basically – it all breaks down to this:

  • Fancy/Handmade/Artisanal package name
    • Number of Hours
    • Number of Photographers
    • Engagement Session
    • Album Included
    • Prints Included

And that’s the rundown. Seriously. That’s it. More hours, more photographers, and an engagement session.

Atlanta Wedding Photography Packages

Ponce City Market, Wedding, PCM, Carter Center, Atlanta, Wedding, Photographer, Roof, Skyline, Rooftop,

 So. What do you want? Or rather – what do you need? I’ll tell you.

You need at least 8 hours of coverage – probably closer to 10 if you’re doing a full wedding day and you have a decent size wedding party. I know – you’re thinking EIGHT HOURS? OMG THAT’S SO LONG! But honestly – it’s not. Check out this sample timeline and watch how the day just flies by. WITH WEDDING THINGS.

SAMPLE WEDDING DAY TIMELINE (8 hours of coverage)

  • 1:00 PM                YOUR PHOTOGRAPHERS ARRIVE & BEGIN MAKING AMAZING PHOTOS
    • Your wedding photographers will photograph “details” such as the dress, shoes, jewelry, bouquet, and of course cover all of your preparation process such as getting your hair & makeup completed, and having a great and relaxing time with your bridesmaids as they get ready as well.
  • 2:00                        BRIDE GETS DRESSED
    • Now is the time to finish getting ready. Don’t worry, your photographer doesn’t have to photograph EVERY part of putting on the dress. What we like to tell brides is “We’ll be right around the corner. Go ahead and put your dress on, but the moment you feel comfortable and covered enough – but not “finished” – let us know and we’ll come in and start photographing. What is comfortable is different for everyone, some people are VERY comfortable and others want to be more covered. We leave it up to the bride to decide.
  • 3:00                        GROOM MAKES FINAL PREPARATIONS
    • It’s at this point that we’ll move over to the groom’s side of things. Since we generally don’t need or want photos of the groom and his groomsmen literally putting their pants on, we’ll arrive when they’re nearly finished getting dressed and just start photographing everything – quickly. Same as the bride’s side, we’ll capture all of the “details” and then also group photos of all of the groomsmen.
  • 3:30                        FIRST LOOK (and then bride & groom portraits)
    • You won’t have to worry about planning this at all. We’ll find the location, set the groom up in position, and then bring the bride in to surprise him. We kick everyone out of the area so it’s a private moment between the two of you… and your photographers…
  • 4:00                        WEDDING PARTY PHOTOS
    • After your first look and portrait session, we’ll bring in your wedding party to complete all of the wedding party photos with the two of you.
  • 4:30                        HIDE THE BRIDE & GROOM
    • Of course – the groom doesn’t always stay hidden and often times will walk around greeting guests – but generally this is the time for the entire wedding party to relax, get a drink, or cool off/warm up if the weather’s being crazy. Your photographers will take this time to finish photographing the ceremony site and ceremony details. They may also sneak in and photograph the reception space if it’s ready as well.
  • 5:00                        CEREMONY
    • This is where you get married!
  • 5:30                        FORMAL FAMILY PHOTOS & COCKTAIL HOUR BEGINS
    • We RUN the family formal session like we’re on a crazy mission to get them finished in record time. We do this EVERY TIME too. Literally. I don’t care if you have 100 people or 10 people for the family photos – we will GET. THEM.DONE. and then you can still get to the last part of your cocktail hour. We want you to be able to spend as much time with your guests – this is about you and not us stealing you away just for our amazing photos (well, it’s not ONLY about that…)
  • 6:00                        PHOTOGRAPHERS PHOTOGRAPH RECEPTION SPACE (before guests enter!)
  • 6:30                        RECEPTION BEGINS!
  • 6:45                        GRAND ENTRANCE ANNOUNCEMENTS & First Dance
  • 7:00                        DINNER IS SERVED
  • 7:30                        SPEECHES & TOASTS
  • 7:45                        SPECIAL DANCES (Father/Daughter, Mother/Son, etc.)
  • 8:00                       OPEN DANCING
  • 8:15                        CAKE CUTTING
  • 8:30                        BOUQUET TOSS
  • 9:00                        PHOTOGRAPHERS CONCLUDE THEIR COVERAGE

SEE. And that was JUST 8 HOURS. All those wedding things happened! You won’t even remember anything – so thankfully you hired some amazing photographers to capture it all. Right? RIGHT.

Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

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Now – some practical advice. I know some wedding photographers like to post ALL of their ‘options’ like it’s some kind of menu and you’re picking things ala carte. That’s them making YOU do all the work. F*ck that. Your photographer should have their uh, sh*t together and they should know what you need after you tell them your wedding ideas and plans. You know – like a Professional. Because THAT’S WHAT YOU WANT. A Professional Wedding Photographer.

Now send us a message! And LET’S DO THIS!

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Atlanta Wedding Photographers Under 2000

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Here’s the thing with Atlanta Wedding Photographers Under $2,000 – they may or may not be pretty awesome. Actually – that’s also the thing with wedding photographers that are over $5,000. Heck – that’s also the thing with wedding photographers under $1,000. Basically – everyone at all price points can be great or not so great. 

Atlanta Wedding Photographers Under 2000

Now – we all know that wedding planners are a special type of people (because come on, only the truly crazy would decide to plan weddings for their job) – but wedding photographers are truly a different breed of bonkers. They like people but they don’t like people – which is why they like to keep that barrier of the camera between you and them. But then they also just desperately WANT TO HANG OUT WITH YOU for 10 hours on your wedding day. Who does that? 

Wedding photographers that’s who!

But let’s talk about YOU. You may have arrived here because you were looking for a wedding photographer under $2,000. I’m writing this because I may be a wedding photographer that you can hire for under $2,000. Possibly. Maybe. Bjork. (nevermind.)

The point is – all things are possible and depending on your wedding date, depending on how nicely you ask – I might totally be like – aw F*ck yeah let’s do this. (But really you should be asking everyone nicely about many things, anyways.)

Affordable Wedding Photography Atlanta

I mean – it’s all in the asking right? Look. $2,000 is on the lower side of things for photography budgets for us – but it’s not impossible. I photograph a billion weddings a year and (not literally) – and some weddings are more, and some weddings are less. At least when it comes to our fee. Maybe you can be on the less side of the fee. Clear? No? Well – if you’ve stumbled across this blog post where I’m basically saying – YES I WILL DO YOUR WEDDING FOR UNDER $2,000 – then you’re who this blog post was written for. Other people who want to pay more than $2,000 probably won’t find this blog post. Because I’m going to BURY THIS F*CKER so deep that only the truly committed to saving money will find it. Like you.

Now – obviously you’re going to want to say that you read this blog post so that I can be like aw hellz yeah they found the blog post! YESSSSSSSSSSSssssssss

Atlanta Wedding Photographers Under 1000 (yeah no)

I mean. That’s kind of cool. Besides. Realistically – honestly – there just aren’t too many really great Atlanta wedding photographers under 2000. (don’t worry about that phrasing there, that’s just for SEO stuff). But THIS IS MY JOB. I’m a Professional Wedding Photographer and I gots bills to pay. Lots of bills to pay. So how about you and me make a deal where you pay me what you can, I make you ridiculously amazing wedding photos – and no one else needs to know any of the details. Right? Yeah! Hi-FIVE!

Boom. So. Atlanta Wedding Photographers Under $2,000 – okay that’s probably ALSO me. 

But hey while we’re at it working on the SEO terms – Atlanta Wedding Photographers Over $7,000 – that’s DEFINITELY ME TOO.

Hey. Send me a message and let’s do this thing.

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The Top 10 Best Atlanta Wedding Photographers

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Here’s the thing right? I’m a wedding photographer. So of course I’m going to include myself on this list – and that’s not just some crazy amount of pride. It’s just… well… why wouldn’t you include yourself in the top 10 of your profession in a specific category? Why Not. Besides – maybe we ARE one of the top 10 best Atlanta wedding photographers. Maybe not. It’s not exactly a science that can be measured with math and more math. 

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The Top 10 Best Atlanta Wedding Photographers

It’s art right? That’s what we’d all have you believe. Wedding Photography is art and so you’re hiring an artist along with a professional. Because you definitely want a ‘Professional’ wedding photographer and not just a talented every now and then wedding photographer. I’m not talking about everyone – I’m talking about YOU. I’m talking about YOU and what you want. There’s a reason you’ve spent more time searching for a wedding photographer than your officiant. There’s a reason you’ve spent more time looking at wedding photo gallery after gallery and more galleries. Because you’ve seen SO MANY bad wedding photos. You’ve experienced so many bad wedding photographers – and now it’s your turn and you want great photos, a great experience, and… all around awesome from your wedding photographer.

But how do you find them? How do you find these elusive amazingly talented wedding photographers that aren’t a scam, that aren’t jerks (well, jerks in a way that doesn’t rock with how you’re a jerk) and that can be the ONLY person you’re paying to hangout with you for 10 hours on your wedding day. I know – you might be paying for a planner as well but honestly – they’re busy planning and running your wedding. While you’re photographer? They’re busy… watching you guys. ALL. DAY. 

Well, now that sounds creepy. AND IT COULD BE.

The Best Wedding Photographers in Atlanta

SO obviously you’ll want someone you’re comfortable with. Someone who doesn’t creep you out. Along with them being able to make ridiculously amazing photos. Right? Right. 

Now. Who are these people? Maybe you know someone already. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you know someone but they’re already booked. NOW WHAT? 

Keep searching. There are about 9 billion wedding photographers out there in the greater metro Atlanta area – so I’m sure you can find one that IS available and happy to be there with you. 

And now. We come to the list. Well. In a little bit. Because obviously I have a pitch. You know. A Pitch. Because obviously we would like to be your wedding photographer. We want to be there making all the amazing photos on your wedding day. Right? Of course. It’s practically why we exists. We’re full time wedding photographers and THIS IS WHAT WE DO. We don’t dabble. We don’t only do this on the weekends while we go back to our day jobs on Monday.

This is our profession. Wedding Photography is OUR JOB. Your wedding photography IS OUR JOB. 

Atlanta’s Best Wedding Photographers 

And that’s why we’re all here. You. Us. Me. We. That’s why we’re here. Because you’re searching for that special wedding photographer that will flat out KICK ASS at your wedding while being all kinds of Ninja and not weird and not creepy or lame – and still delivering bags full of AWESOME PHOTOS. You know. You’re looking for that wedding photographer that will BRING IT and make magic that just shows the world HOW F*CKEN BEAUTIFUL YOU ARE!

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Alright! YEAH! Hi-FIVE!

Let’s do this.

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSssssssssssssss Thank you.

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The Best Atlanta Wedding Venues (that I’ve photographed)

There are literally hundreds of wedding venues in the metro Atlanta area. Probably even more if you count all the venues that aren’t ‘wedding specific’ but could and can still provide more than amazing services for a wedding. While there are obviously some that are better than others – and some that are AMAZING – these are the absolute hands down best Atlanta Wedding Venues that I’ve photographed weddings, at. (I know – a poorly written sentence that ends with ‘at’.)

The Best Atlanta Wedding Venues

Oh I know! These are the best Atlanta Wedding Venues where I’ve photographed at least one wedding. (Aha, much better… not amazing, but it doesn’t end with the word ‘at’.)

So hey – let’s begin.

  • Summerour
  • Ambient + Studios
  • The Tent at Park Tavern
  • The Trolley Barn
  • The High Museum of Art
  • The Millennium Gate
  • Rhodes Hall
  • The Wimbish House
  • Monday Night Brewing
  • The Ventanas
  • The Georgian Terrace
  • Piedmont Room at Park Tavern
  • Greystone at Piedmont Park
  • Magnolia Hall at Piedmont Park
  • Callanwolde
  • Cator-Woolford Gardens
  • Swan House / Atlanta History Center
  • The Foundry at Puritan Mills
  • Kingplow
  • Old Fourth Ward Park
  • Somebody’s nice backyard
  • Paris on Ponce
  • Ponce City Market
  • Museum of Design Atlanta

I know – that’s a lot of wedding venues here in Atlanta. And in fact – there are easily so many more in the ‘Atlanta area’ that aren’t technically in the city boundaries – but this list – we’ll limit it to just Atlanta. BUT. If you need help narrowing it down – if you need help picking a specific kind of venue for a specific number of guests – drop me a line. We can help. Or at the very least – we can help you find someone who can help you. Right? Right.

The thing with a big city like Atlanta is that you pretty much have your pick as far as MANY different kinds of wedding venues to choose from. A church? An old warehouse? An old mansion? A beautiful park? A museum? Something more eclectic and interesting? (Paris on Ponce/Moulin Rouge)

Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

Obviously – prices will vary – but you can work around that. Pick a less popular date. Find one where you can bring your own alcohol (saves you LOTS of money) – or pick one that just takes care of EVERYTHING (saves you a lot of effort planning). Depending on how involved you want to be – or how uninvolved you find out you want to be – there is a venue and wedding team out there for you. Some venues literally take care of everything – and of course they have a list of recommended vendors to work with. 

Now if you’re looking for a wedding photographer… I might have one or two that I would recommend. 

But if you’re looking for a wedding venue – definitely start looking up the names up top. Those are literally some of the best in all Atlanta – and if you want any more advice or opinions about them – let me know. I’ll tell you exactly what I think and what to expect from them. I’ll admit though – none of them are ‘bad’ so don’t think that I’ll tell you anything negative. Besides – I didn’t put any bad wedding venues on that list (of course not!)

 

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How to Plan an Elopement Wedding

Here’s the thing with elopements – people usually elope and get married quick(ly)(er) specifically because they don’t want to deal with actually planning a WEDDING. So when you ‘plan’ your elopement – you generally want things to be as simple as possible.

Wait. No. You want things to be SIMPLER THAN POSSIBLE. (At least that sounds cool right?…)

How to Plan an Elopement Wedding

Okay! So you don’t really want to PLAN plan your elopement – but you want a few things to actually happen and generally not have it be some kind of sh*tshow right? Yes. Right. Probably. I hope so.

SO first – what do you need for your elopement?

  • Rings! – it’s nice to still exchange wedding bands/rings – so have some and bring them to your ceremony
  • Vows – even if you’ve chosen a super simple courthouse wedding, it’s nice to be able to say a few words of your own to the person you’re promising all your love.
  • Photographer – Amazing photographers are super easy to find now – and there are millions of them. Literally, millions. And TBH you can always find one that will work with your budget and still do a great job. Especially if you’re eloping on a weekday. Seriously – email your favorite wedding photographer and see if they’d be interested in photographing your ceremony, some family formals, and a short portrait session of the two of you – and they’ll give you their fee – which should be considerably less than their full day wedding package. (So you’l want to ask for 3 hours of coverage tops, and during a weekday.)
  • Hair & Makeup – hey you still want to look GREAT
  • Outfit! – See above – you still want to look GREAT – and your photographer will appreciate it!
  • Travel Plans – now that you’re saving a ton by not paying to feed and entertain 150 people – you can spend that money on a great TRIP. So get that wedding ceremony out of the way and plan a great honeymoon – or just get married ON that trip.
  • Flowers! If you want flowers – just go buy flowers. Seriously. I know you were already going to do that anyway. Grocery store or actual florist shop – just go buy a bundle of flowers you like, wrap the stems in some ribbon and pins and DONE. (but don’t tell any florists I said this.)
  • A plan to party with everyone later… – oh yeah – so tell people that you’re eloping right now but you plan on having a BIG actual party with everyone later. That’ll make most people feel better (because you know, what they think about YOUR wedding is Soooooooo important…) and then you’re actually off the hook for the most part. I mean… you don’t actually need to have that big party 6 months down the line. You’ll have been married for 6+ months at that point and you’ll have other things to spend money on/do than feeding and getting 150 people drunk. Or not. Whatevs. It’s cool.

And there you go! How to plan-ish your elopement! Done. Now go do everything else.

Atlanta Wedding Photographers LeahAndMark & Co.

 

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