+Raven was an Intern during Season Three. She actually applied twice before but after making the first cut, we would never receive her 2nd application (it’s a two round selection process). When I received her application for Season Three, I emailed her to ask if I would finally receive a 2nd application this time. We did eventually receive that 2nd application and finally, Raven came into our lives. I cannot express how awesome, how amazing, and how much we appreciate +Raven for everything she is, and everything she’s done with us here at LeahAndMark.com. Only at this point in time, looking back, do I realize how much we’ve needed her more than she’s needed us. Thank you Raven. You’re the best.

-by Mark


– Posted by +Raven

If you know anything about me, you know that I couldn’t find my way out of a paper bag.Or at least, that’s how I used to be.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding PhotographersI used to cry every time I had to drive around Atlanta. Or anywhere not Gwinnett County, really, where I grew up. The roads didn’t make sense to me, nothing was where it was supposed to be, my GPS would take me in endless loops. It was a mess.

A few weeks ago, I had a boudoir session in Atlanta. Right in the heart of the city. I needed some things from a grocery store while on my way, so I asked my GPS to take me. And it did. To a non-existent store. But, instead of panicking – because I was going to run late if I didn’t find a store soon, and I had no idea where I was or if Atlanta even HAD regular grocery stores that weren’t Trader Joe’s – I looked for a grocery store. And just happened to drive past one.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding PhotographersThen, a week later, when I needed a grocery store stop again, I found my way back to that exact. Same. Store. And even parallel parked. BOOM, BABY.

I’m no longer terrified at the thought of driving in Atlanta, or any strange or new place, for that matter. I’ve done it so many times, I’m almost able to get around without my GPS {almost}. And in case you don’t know, that’s a really, REALLY big deal for me.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding PhotographersI like being a part of the LeahAndMark team. Or group. Or Army. Or Family.Whatever you want to call it.

People still question my decision, but I don’t care. I’m stupidly happy with where I’m going in life.Two years ago, I never thought I’d shoot a wedding. Now, I’ve shot over 35 in one year.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding Photographers

One year ago, I never thought I’d shoot a boudoir session. Didn’t know how I felt about shooting them, even. Now, by the end of this year, I’ll have over 10 under my belt. {No pun intended.}

I love being a +. Half the time, I don’t even notice when Mark or someone else calls me “+Raven” out loud, because it just feels like part of my name.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding Photographers

I get constant help, whenever I need it. {No, really. Mark and +Gabriel are ALWAYS on GChat with me.} I have a huge database of photographers, interns and alumni interns alike, to pull from when I want help on a shoot. I’ve been told that I’m a good teacher, and I’m getting better ever time we have our editing class. I’m developing ideas at the drop of a hat. I feel creative, competent, strong, intelligent, needed, sought after.

It’s powerful.

+Raven | LeahAndMark.com | Atlanta Wedding PhotographersEven if and when, one day, I decide that it’s time to be pushed out of the nest and pursue my things on my own, I’ll know that I can do it, because I have this experience behind me. This group of people behind me, telling me I can do it. That they believe in me. That I’m awesome.

And now, I know it’s true.


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