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Rising Stars: Meet Alexandrea Leigh

Today we’d like to introduce you to Alexandrea Leigh.

Hi Alexandrea, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Formerly a barista turned portrait photographer turned student turned wedding photographer in OC. How did I get here? Honestly, it’s a whirlwind. I first picked up a camera back when I was 15 and it was where I felt most free and creative. But whoever really knows if they’ll be doing what they’re doing for the rest of their life? I decided to put the passion on hold while working and being a full-time student.

Fast forward to last year, I turned 21 & graduated school in the middle of this pandemic. (Before I continue, lemme just say how much I value security & peaceful decision making.) I honestly felt lost throughout those few months, but eventually just decided to take a step back from work and see if this was still something I could see myself doing. I took an LOA at my job and focused 100% on traveling, learning about myself, and teaching myself photography in different elements and industries. I’d never done a wedding until last year- they seemed intimidating, especially considering the introvert in me! All of that being said, I was blessed with people willing to take a chance on me and decided to leave my ‘security’ in January of this year.

Brief moment to appreciate this year. It’s been rough. Aside from some personal struggles & being in a bad headspace, I didn’t know if I wanted to relocate before I’d tried out all of my options.

……SO I drove to Florida. & lived with some family out there, tried out a new coast, and….ended up driving back about three months later, at which point. I was committed. Committed to this coast, this profession, my people, here.

This year, I’ve shot about 17 weddings and still have about nine left. I couldn’t be more grateful for everyone that’s helped me get here.

Those people that took that chance on me, my communication professors in school, my managers that never expected anything less than 100%. And my mom who said, ‘you can’t make any bad decisions anymore. You’re past that point. You did the ‘normal’ for anyone your age. You finished high school, you have your bachelor’s, you’re not tied down anywhere or to anyone. Go make those decisions.’

I can’t express how those words impacted me. So here’s some motivation for you: Just go do it. Do all of the things and do them well & no one can expect any more of you. I think as long as we do things with everything we have, they mean everything and results- good or negative- can just be added to your experiences. I don’t consider trying new opportunities as a loss cuz you always gain something from them one way or another.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Struggles along the way have 100% been the commitment factor. I think I’ve lacked self-confidence in that regard. I know I have a lot to offer people, but it’s always been more about the piece of paper or certificates to prove to people that I can do something or have those specific skills. For my own self-worth, it’s definitely been a struggle, but I’m confident in where I am and aware of the impact I can have on someone’s life or life stories with my work.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I’m a wedding & event photographer for the warm and authentic. What does that mean? I have a passion for documenting your moment & your special day in a personal, intimate light no matter how big the party. My approach to your day is celebrating you through a creative and wholehearted spirit. I am a natural light, natural queues photographer- my promise to you is that I will capture photos of how the moment felt and memories that never go out of style.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
First profile image by Savannah Banton

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