Browsing Tag

How To | Great Engagement Session Photos (Part 1 of 23)

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | Engagement Sessions | LeahAndMark & Co.

(Want More Advice? Sign up for our free report 17 Tips on Selecting Your Wedding Photographer)
[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]


Your engagement photos are only as important as you want them to be.

Engagement photos are optional. You don’t need them if you don’t want them. Even if they come with the wedding photography package – you can opt-out. You can say you want something else. A print credit, less hours of coverage. Trade. Barter. Whatever – just know that engagement photos aren’t a must - and that’s okay – and if anyone tells you otherwise or acts like you’re crazy – tell them I said they should go away. Or F*ck off. Unless you want them to be a must-have. Then do it. Go all out – and you might as well decide to have AMAZING ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS!

Whether you want to haul a truckload of items to a field for a styled shoot – or make your friends dress up as zombies and stage a mini-zombie-apocalypse in your apartment – OR even a simple portrait session with the two of you in a location that has personal meaning – IT’S. ALL. GOOD. You can bring your dog, your cat, balloons, swords, whatever. BRING IT ALL.

You can have your engagement session take place in a cave, on the beach, your apartment, on a cliff, in a vineyard, or the industrial section of Newark, NJ. (feel free to use any of those ideas). It doesn’t always have to be the woods, or a field of tall grass. It doesn’t have to be obviously picturesque. It doesn’t have to be anything – except the two of you looking happy, in love, and having a good time – having a moment, or a few moments. It’s going to be a collaboration between you and your photographer. That’s why it’s important you select not only a good photographer – but the right photographer. Because hey – if you have a crazy idea you’d like to try (zombies), or difficult conditions (12pm in the middle of the day with the sun blazing overhead) – or you just aren’t ever comfortable in front of the camera, it’s very important to have a photographer that can GET YOU OUT OF YOUR HEAD.

Because you don’t want to be standing there asking “Where do I put my hands?” for the entire session.

Don’t settle for plain. Don’t settle for good. You want badass photos. You want to be able to say “Yeah! Our engagement photos are badass!” Or Awesome. Or Amazing. Or AmazinglyBadassAndAwesome.

And then you can go have an amazing wedding. AMAZING WEDDING.

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session

Atlanta Photographer | | Engagement Session | San Francisco, California |

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | Engagement Sessions | LeahAndMark & Co.

Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | Engagement Sessions | LeahAndMark & Co.

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | Engagement Sessions | LeahAndMark & Co.


Photos by LeahAndMark & Co – all over the United States.


Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. LeahAndMark & Co. Engagement Sessions. How to. You. Should. Eat. More. Chinese. Food.

The Classic Getaway Car (Your Wedding Exit)

(Want More Advice? Sign up for our free report 17 Tips on Selecting Your Wedding Photographer)
[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]


Your ‘getaway mobile’ is literally the very last photo-opportunity that will occur during your wedding day.

Obviously – some people care about what they drive off in – and some people couldn’t care less.

These are obviously the people that care – because they went to the trouble of hiring not just nice cars, and not just a plain limo – but vintage classic cars. The type of car you don’t normally see driving down the road on your morning commute. Clearly these couples wanted to drive off in style.


Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0012 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0011 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0010 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0009 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0008 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0007 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0006 Wedding-Classic-Cars-Atlanta-0005 Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | High Museum of Art Atlanta Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | High Museum of Art Atlanta Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | High Museum of Art Atlanta Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | High Museum of Art Atlanta

Atlanta Vintage Rides

A Lovely View of Heaven 

All photos by LeahAndMark & Co.
Additional Photographers: Joy Hmielewski, Krisandra Williams-EvansLuiza Chelaru,

Posted by:

Atlanta Photographer | LeahAndMark & Co. | Mark RoX Tioxon

Atlanta Wedding Photographer | LeahAndMark & Co. | Classic Vintage Cars | Videography | Videographer | Video

Photography Interns Wanted | Season [Gold Lion]

We are LeahAndMark – and along with our Creative Director (Joy!) and our team of +Photographers – we operate the largest photography internship in the country. Leah and I picked up our cameras a little over three (3) years ago and started this business with no formal training, a little bit of luck and way too much hard work! We’ve gone from just two people who liked making pictures into wedding photographers that travel all over the United States photographing weddings. A lot of weddings.

We are looking for Photography Interns to be a part of our 11th session, Season [Gold Lion]

We operate our business following three principles:

1. Be Different

2. Do things that matter

3. Show Everyone

This is our Portfolio and this is our Wedding Portfolio.

We’re looking for interns to work with us for three months – and possibly longer.

Here is what our Alumni Interns have to say about how this Internship changed their lives:

Current Intern Joshua 
Alumni Intern Meagan 
Alumni Intern Jo 
Alumni Intern Whitney 
Alumni Intern Raven 
Alumni Intern Gabriel 

You can read reviews of this internship from past Interns here: [Season Three] [Season Two] [Season One]

Our Interns work hard and most of them photographed more in the last three months than they did in the past year.

You should know what’s in it for you. Because if you’re considering working with us, then you should know exactly what you’re gaining – since it’s definitely not money!

Although it’s not really popular these days – we’re ‘generalists’. We don’t specialize in anything and that goes against the current trend of finding your ‘niche’ and specializing in one or two specific types of photography. We run the gamut and we photograph everything from weddings, to parties, to corporate headshots, to family and children portraits, to senior portraits, and even product photography. Without arguing if our photography is actually any good – we can only go on the fact that our clients REALLY like us, they keep coming back, and new ones seem to keep contacting us and asking us to work with them.

We’re very busy and as our intern you will have lots of opportunities to photograph in a wide range of different styles and subject matter.

What we need is for you to have some idea of what you’d like to focus on and learn from us. Some of what we can offer is:

  • How to pose subjects, especially strangers – and become confident at it
  • How to better handle light – off camera flash and natural
  • How to stop taking photos like everyone else (it’s easier than you think)
  • Get away from ‘technically’ perfect photos
  • Photographers learn by photographing – you’ll photograph a lot with us.
  • Stop feeling restricted by the gear you DON’T have

AND MARKETING subjects – because you want to be an actual paid and working photographer right?

AND Even More

  • Build the client base that you want
  • Find out if you do make photographs like everyone else – so you can stop
  • Make friends
  • Have fun
  • Try crazy ideas because no one’s going to stop you
  • Push the boundaries of what your clients think they want – and keep delivering something just a little different
  • Be hired as an artist – and not just a button pusher

We also setup group photoshoots where the ratio is roughly 2-3 photographers per model – and sometimes it’s 1 photographer per model. We believe in getting the best position for the best shot – and you can’t do that if there are 20 photographers shooting 3 models in a group session.

Here is a list of the workshops we have scheduled on our calendar:

  1. Photo 101/Physicality of shooting and Composition
  2. Off-Camera Flash & Lighting
  3. Photoshop/Lightroom editing and digital workflow
  4. Photography Business & Marketing
A few of the scheduled group photoshoots include:
  1. Models in the river at our top secret location
  2. Southeastern Railway Museum
  3. Old-Car City Junkyard


That’s what we think we offer and what we think an Intern can learn from us.

Here’s what we’re asking from our Interns:

  • You own a DSLR camera
  • You have at least a rudimentary understanding of shutter speed and aperture
  • You have your own artistic ideas – even if you’re still working on them
  • You aren’t afraid to try everything
  • You don’t say ‘we can’t do that’
  • You are willing to photograph everything during your time with us – even if it’s not your style
  • You will read any materials we actually give you to read
  • You will be available for at least two (2) five hour photo shoots a month (and possibly more permitting your schedule)
  • You have a portfolio to show us – and you’re proud of your current work – no matter what
  • You are nice
  • You are stubborn
  • You want to learn
  • You can commit to working with us for three (3) months (roughly)
  • Possibly accompany us on photo shoots/weddings out of town (on our tab)

We’d like to make it clear that your progress during this internship is primarily moved forward by you. We work hard to facilitate learning – but we don’t hold your hand, and even though we might cover the basics, it’s on your shoulders as an intern to do your homework and practice on your own – so that we can get to the really good stuff. Also – this internship requires a lot of trial & error learning – so stop aiming for perfection right away.

Please understand, this is an Internship with workshops. It’s not a full blown training program, it’s not a photography bootcamp, it’s not anything resembling a teacher/student/classroom arrangement like you might be accustomed to. This is an Internship. You work along side us, you follow our instructions, and we answer your questions – sometimes (alright most of the time).

If you’ve read the reviews - nothing here is spoon fed. You’re applying to learn things you can’t learn in a book, or for some reason – things that you didn’t learn in class. If you don’t ask good questions, then we’re not giving up answers too easily. It’s your job to ask better questions – and it’s our job to answer the good questions. Remember that.

The internship last during May, June, & July | Three months.



Deadline for the application is Friday April 12th at 12pm NOON.

(Tip: Write as much as you can.)

(Pro Tip: Write As Much As You Possibly Can.)

[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]


Wedding Workshop | by +Luiza

So you already know that being an intern with LeahAndMark is awesome. I tell you this every other time I write. The other +photographers tell you this. Mark tells you this. And the interns tell you this. And show you. All. The. Time.

You see the awesome, creative work that comes out of the internship. The amazing shoots and events interns get to attend. From week to week and blog post to blog post you see consistent improvement. But there’s even more than that. Along with the events and constant opportunities to practice, there are also workshops just for interns where you can ask all of the questions and get all of the answers. Seriously. Mark will just give all his secrets away. Because when you have such awesome ideas, and when you’ve developed such amazing techniques, it would just be selfish not to share them and help someone else improve.

But it’s only a few short months. And you have to shoot and shoot and shoot. And at the end of it you’ll either be burned out from all that work and no sleep, or you’ll be mad at yourself for not shooting EVERYTHING. But no matter what, you’ll know you’ve learned and improved. It’s impossible not to. And at the end of it, the weeks where I went on 3 hours of sleep each night because I was trying to balance a job, school, and the internship, were totally, completely worth it.

And after the internship? It only gets better. Everyone take away something different from the internship. No one has the same exact experience. But many of the interns I was shooting with during my season have since launched a website, started their own company, and are really successful. They’re consistently putting out amazing work.

And me? I’ve decided that I loved it so much I’m doing it again. But as a plus! And it’s just as amazing and then some. Because I’m still consistently learning and improving, but I’m also teaching and helping the current interns improve. They’re coming to me with questions, which is crazy. But what’s even more crazy is that I actually have answers!

Even as a plus, I don’t think I actually stepped out of the “I’m an intern” mentality until Season [X] started to come to me with questions. I still feel like I should be carrying Mark’s gear or getting him coffee or something every where I go. And sometimes I still do.

So with the nights of no sleep and the hard job of balancing work, being a plus, being with friends/family/boyfriend and actually taking some time to myself, I get a little overwhelmed. But that’s okay because I have an amazing time with everything, I’m never bored, I get to hang out with awesome people, I get to photograph people getting married (or fake-married in this case), and it’s always AMAZING.


Makeup: Raney O’Keefe
Reception/Table Design: Roundabout
Ceremony & Portrait Session Design: Project5A Events
Location: Private Residence
Brides: Theresa Weisenberger & Roddas Workneh
Groom: Christopher Bupp


Atlanta. Wedding. Photography. Workshop. Internship. | +Luiza Chelaru Atlanta Wedding Photographer

ZOMBIE Proposal | Vivian + Mike

This is Mike & Vivian. We’ll be photographing their wedding later this year but a few weeks ago we photographed their engagement session.

Below is video of Mike’s 2nd attempt at proposing to Vivian. What’s even cooler is that he setup a couple of iphones to film the whole thing! Check it out – it just might be the most heartfelt and sweet and caring proposal you’ve ever seen.

The Sweetest Proposal Ever! from on Vimeo.






Zombie Proposal Video | Engagement Session | Atlanta Photographer

Vivian + Mike | Engagement Session + Zombies | Part ONE

This is Vivian & Mike. They’re getting married this year and these are preview photos from their engagement session that we filmed last Tuesday. I say filmed because along with still photography – we made video. The video is being edited but none of us could wait to show some preview photos from the shoot! So here they are.

[Update] – Here’s the Video!

Because this is Atlanta and we’re crazy about zombies (Everyone here knows someone who’s been a zombie in the Walking Dead) – so when Vivian and Mike asked me about doing a zombie engagement session, I knew they didn’t want something simple and cute. Well, not all cute.

Video and the complete storyboard will be posted soon. Until then. Check out the stills.

Makeup by Sarah Tso
Creative Director/Camera Operator: Joy Hmielewski
Camera Operators: Krisandra Williams-Evans, Luiza Chelaru
Zombies: Alex Shyu, Angelina Boey, Chad Bishop, Johnny Nguyen, Zachary Gordon


Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session Atlanta Wedding Photographer | | Zombie Engagement Session

Atlanta. Wedding. Photographer. Zombie. Engagement. Session.

Business Investment Decisions

We are often asked the question – why is your Internship so successful? Of course – the real question that’s usually being asked is ‘how do you continue to attract so many interns that work for free, and that seemingly work so hard for you? | Photography Internship Atlanta Wedding Photographer

Although we can easily come up with a complicated answer involving how we manage personalities, projects that we assign, and our extensive interview process – the real answer is simply the amount of energy and resources that we spend on the Internship. Between workshops that we provide (photo 101, lighting, marketing, photobooths, styled shoots,  a two day wedding workshop) and critique nights, and group shoots, and of course the introduction/graduation nights – this current season requires a substantial amount of effort to keep things running smoothly. There’s the time it takes to schedule everything, and get ready for workshops – and then of course the actual duration of the workshops… and online communications, and other last minute projects that come up with each season.

It’s so much work now that we hired our Creative Director (Joy) specifically to make sure everything operates awesomely.

So how much time does it take to operate our Internship? As much as possible. We spend as much time as we possibly can on the Internship because we decided that it was worth it to our business. Not only that – but the effectiveness and success of each Season directly relates to my level of involvement and focus – and past seasons have proved that to be very true.

Deciding to share our knowledge and teach it to others for free was one of the best business decisions we ever made. At least in the top 3.


We don’t spend too much time thinking about our branding, or what gear to buy – more than anything else we spend our time figuring out how we can share what we know. We don’t earn any profit for our workshops and our Internship is free and unpaid. We work very hard at trying to give away what we’ve learned.

It’s odd but yes – giving away as much of our ‘knowledge’ or secrets as we can is part of our business strategy – and it’s worked very well for us.


Weddings | Portraits | Photobooths


Photography Competition

Think the photography market is over saturated? Try being a musician. Or a writer. Or a Chef.

The generic advice is to just be different.

It’s not about being completely different. It’s about being different enough AND finding your audience.

Different work, different personality, different people. You have to make, be, and find those things. We have a nearly infinite number of options – so much music to listen to, so much good stuff to read, so many amazing chefs making great food, but somehow there are people finding success admidst so much competition. Then there are photographers like you and me. The ones that never picked up a DSLR until about 3 years ago. We’re the ones who would have never learned photography if it hadn’t become so accessible to everyone. And now many of us complain there are too many photographers out there. The market is saturated. Everyone just wants a cheap $50 photographer off of Craigslist. Or a $500 shooter for their wedding.

Make different work. Find your audience. Make more work.



Weddings | Portraits | Photobooths

My Top 5 Photo Editing Tips | Part One

1. Make Better Photos

2. Learn how to change and adjust your camera settings for when you’re shooting

3. Check your histogram

4. When there is a water bottle/any ugly object in the background, don’t just say “I’ll fix it later in Photoshop” – get up and remove it from the scene.

5. Take more photos and ACTUALLY EDIT THEM.



Weddings | Portraits | Photobooths