Meet Leslie, Owner and Lead Photographer for Leslie Nichole Photographer! With her refreshingly easy-going personality, Leslie has the experience to help make your wedding day a huge success. From how she got started to her go-to dance move, meet Leslie today!

What makes you or your business stand out and why should a couple hire you?
Without question, it is my ability to build relationships. I’m not afraid to share about who I am, things I love and all the quirks that come with “me.” I am fun (sometimes funny), easy-going, relatable, and I’ve been told that my personality is refreshing and inspiring. These traits allow my couples to be comfortable and more relaxed in front of the camera. When couples feel this way, they are more playful, less stressed and the result is amazing, natural, and emotion-filled images! Of course, the ability to help keep the wedding day going smoothly is an added bonus! I once had to redo a bride’s hair because when she arrived from the salon to the venue, she was nearly in tears because she was unhappy with how her hair looked. Growing up I was a pageant girl and if you’ve never been behind the scenes…it is chaotic! I’ve always used those experiences to help keep the wedding day calm, happy, and organized! I’m also amazing at bustling dresses!

What’s a weird/unusual tip you tell your couples?
I have a few but this is definitely my favorite! I’ll have the couple face each other, arms around each other’s waist. I’ll have the bride look at me and then tell the groom to put his mouth on her cheek and laugh. I usually get some funny responses from the grooms at first but it always results in them laughing naturally and once I share a sneak with them, they love it!

What’s your favorite thing about what you do?
Making new friends! I’ve had the honor of photographing couples all around the country and I’m still friends with so many of them! One couple actually started as my daughter’s PA at her pediatrician’s office when she was only two years old. When she started searching for wedding photographers, she first saw a picture of Kaydence on my blog and then realized who I was. Almost ten years later, they have two beautiful boys and a baby girl on the way! It’s these relationships, that I get to continue to be a part of for years to come, that makes my heart happy!

How did you get to where you are now?
While in college, I got tired of waitressing and started looking for other options. A local studio photographer was hiring for an assistant and I got the job! In the two years I was working with her I became obsessed with wedding photography. When I welcomed my daughter into the world in 2007 I was terrified to put her in daycare and decided it was time to be my own boss! Six years ago, when I met the love of my life I started training him as my second shooter! Now 12 years later, I have photographed well over 300 weddings and thousands of lifestyle sessions!

What’s something every couple should know before getting married?
You know all the time, effort, planning, and preparation you’ve put into planning your wedding day? You should stay equally, if not more focused, on putting the same thing into your marriage! I saw a shared post recently that said, “Divorce rates are so high because people are ready for weddings, not marriages.” It may sound cliché to say that marriage takes work but it is so true. Make sure as you take this next step in life that you put in the time and make the effort for your marriage. Having a healthy marriage is a conscious and daily effort to choose one another no matter what life throughs your way!

What’s your go-to spot to eat in RVA?
Oh my goodness! Being the major foodie that I am, I have two! 821 Cafe on Cary Street and Brunch on W. Main! The second my daughter ate vegan cake at 821, I knew it would be a regular favorite! I just recently tried Brunch when I met up with a friend/client and it was simply delicious and the atmosphere was perfect!

What did you want to be when you were little?
I always wanted to be a teacher! Growing up my best friends and I always played school and I did student teaching all through high school and college! Obviously that changed when I accepted my position as a photographer’s assistant. To this day, I have never regretted my career change!

What was your first job?
Growing up close to the Gulf of Mexico in the Panhandle of Florida, my first job was a shrimp batterer! I laughed out loud just typing that sentence because to this day I will never forget what it was like going home late at night smelling like fried seafood! I eventually worked my way up to serving!

What did you eat for breakfast this morning?
Coffee! That’s a food group, right?! I know there is some controversy over breakfast but I don’t usually break my fast until lunchtime! However, I could eat breakfast tacos at any meal and never get tired of them.

Where is your happy place?
My happy place is on the boat with a fishing pole in hand or by a fire eating s’mores with Eric and Kaydence!

What are you currently binging on TV?
I’m obsessed with The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu and really wish the next season was already out! While I’m not so patiently waiting, we are watching Yellowstone. I could also edit with the Food Network or HGTV on ALL DAY! I love cooking and DIY projects so it only adds fuel to the fire!

What would be in your dream sandwich?
Umm, have you never had a Primanti Brother’s Sandwich!?! If not, I suggest you take a trip to Pittsburgh, PA and try the Pastrami Egg and Cheese! Eric was born and raised in Pittsburgh and I got hooked when we lived there! Every trip back, it’s our first stop!

What about Nachos?
Sometimes, I’m basic. Tortilla chips with melted cheddar and jalapeños!

What’s your go-to dance move?
The wiggle? The shimmy? Seriously though, I can wiggle and shimmy with the best of them but I’m pretty sure I look like a flailing fish if I go too far beyond that!

Learn more about how Leslie can perfectly capture your big day on her website! Blog photos courtesy of Leslie Nichole Photography. Featured Photo Courtesy of Laura Hoyle Photography.