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Atlanta Wedding Photographer | LeahAndMark & Co. | Cloverleaf Farms | Athens, GA. | Vintage | Rustic
All Photos by LeahAndMark & Co.
Additional Photographers: Joy Hmielewski & Intern
Venue: Cator-Woolford Gardens
All photos by LeahAndMark & Co.
Additional Photographer: Krisandra Williams-Evans
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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.
Atlanta Wedding Photographer | LeahAndMark & Co. | Classic Vintage Cars | Videography | Videographer | Video
One of the greatest compliments a photographer can ever receive is a recommendation. It’s huge, really. To go out on a limb and vouch for someone, with enough faith in someone’s talent or ability and about something so personal as art, is just awesome… and humbling. I’ve been lucky enough, in my journey as a photographer, to have met such incredible people that turn into clients- fun, funny, kind- and then those clients’ friends become my clients too. AWESOME. To anyone who has ever gone out on that limb for me, thank you. So much.
Alex and Brett are freaking adorable. And they’re having a baby! Alex has the most perfect basketball belly, the two of them are seriously cute as a button together, and when I suggested a sunrise session for their maternity photos (SUNRISE. As in leaving the house when it’s still dark out and readying yourself for photos at six o’clock in the morning.), they were ALL OVER IT. It was actually the first time I ever even suggested a sunrise session to any client, ever, and Alex and Brett set the precedent by being game for anything. And because it was sunrise, the lighting was some of the most gorgeous I’ve worked with in the history of Ever.
Maternity sessions are so interesting to me- especially for first babies. Every couple has a certain dynamic all their own, and when you add a baby, everything shifts. Your whole life- your entire existence, really- is about to change, and in so many bigger ways than just who has diaper duty. For a lot of couples, it’s your first big adventure together. And even if you’ve been adventuring together already- first homes and new careers and travels abroad- parenthood is undoubtedly the biggest, craziest adventure you two will ever tackle. (Really. Even getting out of the house somewhere in the neighborhood of being on time is an adventure. But worth it. Because babies are cute.) I love watching the giddiness of couples who are about to have a baby. It’s this nervous energy, tripping over baby clothes and baby shoes and big decisions. You’re savoring the last few weeks or months of it being just the two of you… and [im]patiently waiting for the biggest, most symbolic marker of your relationship: your baby. I remember those days. And watching the person you love become a mother or a father often brings back that flood of dizzying new love that you first felt way back Before Baby: in the very beginning. It’s kind of cool. You get to fall in love all over again, only multiplied by about a million. (And with extra pints of Häagen-Dazs. Very important.)
Alex and Brett, thank you for trusting me with something so important as capturing the last few weeks while your sweet girl is still cozied up on the inside. Don’t forget to pack a fan for your hospital stay, guys. ðŸ™‚ You. Are. Awesome.
I got married [almost] eight years ago. And all at once, it feels like a long time and about five minutes since that day. Time has this funny habit of slowing down and speeding up at the most inopportune moments. High school algebra class? Time moved at a glacial pace. But the best times, the happiest days, the moments I wish I could live over again and again? Gone in a flash. Among others, from the days my daughters were born to the amazing trips I’ve taken on my quest to see the world… my wedding day. Eight years or eighty, it went by much too fast and even after so many years, I wish I could go back and do it again- because it was really, really FUN. Time makes things more distant. There’s a fuzzier edge now, around memories of swing dancing at my reception, seeing my husband’s face at the end of the aisle, and dancing with my dad. Things kind of become a home movie in your head after awhile- punctuated by Etta James and the Cure and the album of wedding photos that now sits on the bookshelf in our bedroom. And it’s actually kind of awesome.
I love being a wedding photographer. Weddings are, hands-down, my absolute favorite thing to shoot. I get to be there on the most important day of your life, from hair salons and the first sips of coffee (which quickly turn into champagne) to the hand-in-hand dash to your getaway car, amidst sparklers and cheers and a crowd full of love and exhilaration that’s literally contagious. (Seriously. You can’t help but leave a wedding in a good mood, sore feet or not.) I really like being around people in love because it just really makes me happy. See? Weddings and I are pretty much soulmates
Some photographers shy away from weddings. And that’s totally fine. The beauty in having a job like this is that you get to shape it exactly how you want it to be for you. Prefer babies to weddings? Studio only? Nature, landscape, clowns? Whatever works for you– shoot what you love. I love weddings because it’s everything about photography and emotion and life and living, all wrapped up in one day. Wedding stress doesn’t scare me. In fact, I thrive under pressure. You’re trusting me to capture the most important day of your life thus far, and guess what? I’m going to do just that. I get to help tell your story- about your love, your family, your wedding, and who you are as a couple.
Fun, offbeat, unique-to-you weddings are the best. Getting on stage at your own reception to rock out to Bon Jovi? Art gallery, nightclub, the library? Beachside? Mountainside? Barbershop quartet? A Super Mario cake? Cigar roller and a mariachi band? Believe it or not, the best part about planning your wedding isn’t picking out aisle runners or cocktail napkins. It’s taking a wedding and making it your wedding. And while I believe all photographers have their own style to their work, myself included, I ALSO believe in making photographs that capture what your wedding is about. There’s nothing unique about cookie-cutter images, and that’s not why I’m in this gig. I’m here to tell YOUR story- through every aspect of the day, every kiss, every look, every detail, every bar of “Don’t Stop Believin’”. At my own wedding, we were high school sweethearts, ridiculously young and equally broke and just so ready to start our lives together. We danced to Glenn Miller, wrote our own vows, and barely had time to scarf down our really good wedding cake. (Also. Note: why doesn’t anyone warn brides that it will take you ten years to remove the ten pounds of bobby pins from your hair that night? Really. Insane.)
But at the end of the day, no matter how lovely the flowers or delicious the cake (and us wedding photographers do love wedding cake), you’re married to the one you love. All the little details and finishing touches are wonderful, but the real reason why you [and your guests + me] are there is to celebrate the bond between the two of you. And that love- the connection that’s so strong, it literally shows up on film- is what I love most about shooting weddings. Weddings are awesome. And so are you.
– Posted by Mark
Last weekend was Ronnie & Brent’s wedding here in Atlanta! They received the most votes during our WOW Wedding contest and honestly – everything was pretty amazing. Last summer when we came up with the idea of giving away a full wedding to some lucky couple – we had no idea that it might possibly be anywhere near as awesome as what transpired last Sunday.
Now I knew that we had assembled some of Atlanta’s best wedding industry veterans to work with us – but damn – everyone was particularly badass. Honest.
Since we’ve been flying all over the country lately for weddings and engagement sessions – having the best wedding planner/show runner was near the top of our list as far as things we wanted and needed. Fortunately, Leah Bilz of The Whole Shebang ATL took care of everything. And I mean everything. Once it was announced that Ronnie & Brent were the contest winners, Leah took it from there and rounded up all of the vendors, put us in our places, coordinated with Ronnie & Brent on their preferences and all of a sudden, like magic – the wedding day was upon us and everything went perfectly. You know – because that’s exactly why you hire a badass wedding planner right?
Everything – from the venue at 56 East, to the food from Endive Catering, to the DJ and Videography by Lethal Rhythms Entertainment – was perfect and flawless. From the bridesmaid’s hair and makeup done at Van Michael Salon, to their dress and the suits provided by Anya bridal and Saavi Formal Wear – I feel like we all worked really hard to make this the best day possible for Ronnie & Brent.
Oh and hey – ALL of the floral and event design was done by Ciao Bella Weddings – and WOW did it look amazing.
Did I mention the desserts? Sugar Lily bakery provided the favors that you see on the tables in the photos – and Miss Mamie Cakes is responsible for the wedding cake and the ridiculously cool ARMADILLO CAKE! (Just scroll down and check out the photos!)
So even though we’re in Atlanta, Georgia – and the laws are what they are – hey – sometimes dudes marry other dudes. Get over it.
Ronnie & Brent – You. Are. Awesome.
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Yesterday was a super, awesome, epic shoot at the South Eastern Railway Museum with the Alumni Intern Brittany, Current Intern Elaine and a couple models You may remember when we shot there During Season SiX.. I almost shot that day, however I mixed up the times, arrived 2 hours before anyone else and had to go home to relieve the babysitter. It was a bit frustrating, and I was determined to make it back out there to shoot. I was not disappointed. It was remarkable. There were so many cars and trains, and buses that we didn’t see.
The entire museum is a plethora of things to discover, echoes of days gone by, vintage everything, plus a very friendly photographer policy. We were given free reign to shoot wherever our hearts desired. There was a multitude of preschool children as well, which really made me happy as I imagined when I would take my own little boy there and hear him ooh and ahh over the cubbies and crannies, and cool fixtures and furniture. Before cars and air travel was so accessible trains were the solution, and there were trains for everything. Some trains were for sorting and delivering post, others were for sleeping, some were large passenger trains, another train was an entire reading room, yet another was a portable military kitchen!
I have a feeling we could explore and take pictures in the space for days and days to come. I highly recommend a visit, it’s a very cool and informative place. An opportunity to see what life was like in days gone by. As I looked through the photos I couldn’t help but feel they deserved the echo of time, a reflection of the people who may have ridden those trains, lived their lives, shared their love, embraced their sorrows, and pushed social boundaries during the various eras the trains represent.
The initial part of the shoot we worked some basic composition exercises. The challenge was to keep the models in the same pose, same space, and then shoot 360 degrees around them. It’s a great warm up and a great way to force you to look for new compositions, to push out of your comfort zone a bit.
After working through the warm ups, ever notice how we treat photography as an olympic sport. We are in it, to win it. Shooting is an opportunity to improve a skill. Every.Single.Time. That’s also why we shoot everything! Needless to say, we ran around like kids in a candy shop and took lots and lots of pictures!
There was also alot of good natured hair tossing, and laughing, and smiling, and getting to know eachother. As a photographer being able to connect with people, to see them and appreciate them is my calling, and it never ever gets boring. Thank you to the wonderful models who spent the morning with us.
And thank you for reading my blog.
Have an awesome weekend!
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