Vendor Spotlight: Leigh Hayward Photography

    How did you get into photography?

    My interest in photography started when my grandfather gave me two of his vintage, manual Olympus cameras. At the time, I was in art school at The American Intercontinental University in London, England. My interest grew into a passion and I received a BA in Visual Communications, majoring in photography. After graduating, I worked extensively in fashion portraiture in the UK. Homesick for the United States after 11 years abroad, I returned and started my photography business in sunny Charleston, SC in 2006.

    Describe your style in one sentence.

    I would describe my style as being a light and bright, down to earth wedding photographer.

    What’s been your favorite experience as a wedding photographer?

    Documenting the raw emotion of a wedding day. I tear up quite a lot now since I’ve had children!

    What do you love most about photographing weddings? Why do you photograph weddings in particular?

    I love providing timeless images of people’s love stories for them to share with family and friends. Plus, the details and newlywed shots!

    Where is the most interesting or unique place you’ve photographed a wedding? Was there anything especially challenging about it?

    I would say the most challenging was The Carolina Girl Yacht, it has super tight quarters for group shots. My favorite would be a sunrise wedding on the beach. We started off in complete darkness!

    Do you have a favorite, must-capture moment for every wedding?

    When the father of the bride sees his daughter for the first time.

    As a photographer, what has been your biggest wedding day challenge?

    Brides running late while getting ready so we are in a time crunch to get all of the shots before the ceremony! Also, bridesmaids that don’t get that the day is not all about them. 😊

    What piece of advice would you give brides and grooms to ensure that they get wedding photos they love forever?

    Definitely take your photographer up on the offer of a free engagement session. It helps us get to know each other better so everyone is more comfortable, at ease, and knows what to expect on the wedding day. For photographers, we learn what poses our couples can rock naturally, if someone is a blinker, or someone has any interesting habits.

    What are your favorite wedding trends to photograph right now?

    Moody rich jewel tones.

    How do you think an app like Joy can help make weddings better?

    Brides are stressed with working and planning a wedding. Anything that helps make life easier and more calming for them is amazing in my book!

    If you weren’t a wedding photographer, what would you be doing?

    I would be a yoga teacher.

    At Joy we believe that even though a wedding lasts a day, joy lasts forever. What does that mean to you?

    You can look back at your wedding photos and feel those nervous butterflies walking down the aisle, remember the all-consuming love you have for your partner, and remember all of the love and raw joy that surrounded you that day. I have a canvas of my husband and I walking down the aisle on our wedding day hanging over my bed, we have looks of sheer joy and exhilaration on our faces. It’s a great reminder of our love when the daily grind gets to be too much!

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