Posted on May 20, 2014


Ella Grace’s family has a history of having professional portraits made when a child turns 10. She is, I believe, the 3rd or 4th generation on her mother’s side to follow this lovely tradition.

I think it’s such a neat idea. I’ve written before about how the years between early teenhood and high school graduation tend to not be as well documented as the younger, chubbier, dimplier years. I love the idea of mindfully commemorating and celebrating a decade of laughter, running, playing-being *them*.

At ten, the jawline is starting to cast shadows, the elbows and anklebones are etched, the eyes are rolling, and the limbs attenuate. But the smiles are still those of our babies.

We started our Charleston portrait session near the Doc Street Theater, and worked our way down to the Waterfront Park.



ten year old portrait charleston alley

charleston child photographer

haunted alley charleston portraits


pineapple fountain charleston



child white dress waterfront park charleston

portrait session alley charleston

near mccradys alley charleston sc

charleston pink roses queen street

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waterfront park pier charleston sc

philadelphia alley black and white portrait charleston sc



Posted on May 8, 2014



This family photo session reminded me of a moment from my own parenting history.

When my middle daughter was two months old, I gently placed her into my sweet two year old son’s lap and snapped a few images of them together. When I announced, “We’re done!” my son nodded with satisfaction, and tumbled the baby onto the grass. There was no malice involved. He was just a roughshod two year old boy who’d been told he didn’t have to hold something anymore.

Jane didn’t even cry, she just lay there, face smushed on the lawn, making this hilarious, confused “Meeeh. Meeehhhhhh” sound as I quickly scooped her up.

The classic posed images are lovely heirlooms, but the images that encapsulate the heartwarming chaos of this era in the Chandler’s life, when the older children are full of love and enthusiasm but age-appropriately short on self-control, are the ones that crack me up. Finger to the eyeball! Yank your brother’s ear! Cautionary parental hands entering the frame!

Love it all. Look at all these beautiful babies. Blessed.

toddler brothers portrait black and white


boy sweater smiling candid portrait

boy candid with plant

The Chandlers’ home in Bell Hall Plantation is stunning. I love that it’s a gorgeous design that still looks and feels homey, and reflects the reality that toddlers live there. (See the crayon on the wall?)

toddler boys at picnic table

belle hall family portrait


mount pleasant family lifestyle photography

charleston sc whimsical family photographer


blond toddler boy soulful candid portrait


candid brothers portrait

toddler smiling candid baby ralph lauren

newborn baby boy wrapped in blue and white blanket

proud older brothers and newborn


mount pleasant child photography


older brother kissing baby newborn brother


charleston black and white siblings portrait

charleston silly child photo


charleston family photography funny

charleston candid family photographer

sweet three sons with mother

charleston family portrait with boxer dog


mount pleasant photograph boy hugging boxer dog

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Posted on June 28, 2013

Check out Jennifer and Mike’s sentimental, eclectic, charming Lake House at Bulow wedding on Borrowed and Bleu today!

handmade wooden wedding sign

Happy Friday!

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Posted on June 11, 2013

Hello world!

First, a few updates.

As usual, I post new images as I’m editing on my Facebook business page, so please head on over there to see my most current work!

I’ve also had work featured on a few blogs lately and wanted to link to those. Almost all of the images featured have not yet appeared on my blog, so be sure to check them all out!

The Wedding Row featured Kate and Blake’s gorgeous Boone Hall Plantation engagement session here

Red Dirt bride, a blog for rustic wedding inspiration based in Oklahoma, featured Jenna and Michael’s lovely Alhambra Hall wedding with DIY accents here.

The Lovely Find featured Kellie and Russ’s beautiful Lowcountry casual meets English garden riverside wedding here.

And look for Jennifer and Mike’s Bulow Landing wedding, coming on soon on Borrowed and Bleu!

On a personal note, I’ve gotten several emails lately from parents wanting their 10-12 year old children photographed. The individual phrasing is slightly different, but the same theme runs through all the requests. They want their children documented during those fleeting moments of childhood. That stage where the knees are extra-knobby but the cheeks, in certain light and angles, still retain traces of chubbiness. That stage before Mom and Dad are, OMG, a Complete Embarrassment!

I was at my older childrens’ elementary school last month, and ran into my son’s 4th grade class, lined up in the hall. He saw me. I’m pretty sure he saw me. But he immediately averted eye contact and froze.

Like I was a T-Rex.

And I realized that I probably do some freezing and averting of my own. Sure, we’re great buds, and I spend lots of time with him, and I’m not afraid to discipline him and be active in his life, the good and the bad. But with the camera, I’ve definitely backed off. Part of it’s that he’s less into it, and is on the threshold of some serious orthodontia. Another reason is he’s entered that universal photographic wasteland, from which kids typically emerge around JV sports, and for awkward prom photos.

But I don’t want his tween and teen years documented only by goofy faces, images involving shin guards, or, God forbid, 500 mirror selfies of him trying to look tough with his hand thrown in a sideways V. (What IS that, anyway?).

So I’m going to get better about taking pictures of him. He deserves it. He’s pretty awesome. He’s the only person in the whole wide world who thinks my nonsense song lyrics when I change up or forget the words are hilarious.

If you feel the same way about your child, contact me and we’ll set up a session! I make it painless on them. Promise.

charleston boy

laughing boy

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Posted on April 15, 2013




So Sabrina and Jason are fabulous. I actually booked their wedding through Sabrina’s wonderful mother, so I didn’t get a chance to meet or talk to them until their wedding day this past fall. However, I could tell right off the bat that they had this great, witty,  shared sardonic sense of humor. I’m all about that.


They had a destination wedding in Charleston, with the ceremony at St. Johannes Lutheran Church and then another Indian ceremony at the reception. It was gorgeous, and I was so honored to have the opportunity to be there.


Getting ready at Stella Nova salon in Mount Pleasant:


stella nova salon mount pleasant















Lots of family flew over from India, and they all stayed in a wonderful beachfront home on Isle of Palms. Hurricane Irene tried to derail the festivities, but we all just went with the flow.


bride red lipstick

bridal portrait indian american hybrid wedding

The whole family blessed the bride before they left for the ceremony.

Blessing the bride


My second shooter for the day, Bridgit, slowed down her shutter to capture all the graceful whirlwind movement prior to departing for the church.

It started clearing up almost immediately after this. Yay!

Boutonniere charleston

St. Johannes Lutheran Church

St Johannes wedding Charleston

bride from balcony st johannes church

Groom tying necklace on bride Indian wedding

st johannes church charleston

bride and groom portrait birdcage veil

bride and groom hasell st charleston

On to the Mills House!

flowers indian wedding

bride and groom under umbrella indian wedding

indian wedding ceremony charleston sc

indian wedding ceremony coconut

The bride’s sisters organized a surprise flash mob. Every guest was sent a video of lyrics and dance moves to the Muppets tune, “Life’s a Happy Song”.

So much fun to see all those smiles and reactions!

flash mob at wedding

kids dancing at wedding

Posted on March 26, 2013




I love this image from last Sunday’s Boone Hall engagement session. So dreamy!




Head over to my Facebook page to see a few additional images from this session, as well as some cute family sessions I’ve shot over the past few weeks.   I’m also still newly enthralled with Instagram, and I’m enjoying learning more about shooting in a new medium.


If you want to check out some fabulous inspiration from some of the most talented names in the photography field, check out the new SWPB Pinterest Boards.  Now is the perfect time to follow along and see how these collectively curated boards unfold.


Speaking of Pinterest, we’re sort of on speaking terms again. During the fall wedding and portrait rush, we had to part ways. There was just no time for that fabulously addictive yet time-sucking nonsense. Now, though, I sneak in occasionally. I try to Pin Responsibly. It’s what the Surgeon General would want.

Anyway, as stated on my bio page, I think my Pinterest boards are a great and fairly comprehensive way to get a sense of my personality and style, especially for destination wedding couples who want to see if we’re a good fit.

So imagine my surprise when I got home from a wedding a few weeks ago to a facetious Facebook message from a friend that said, “Those are some beautiful dolphins on Pinterest, Sally!”


I logged on to find that my 7 year old daughter had been assiduously pinning to my boards in my absence, so to someone perusing Pinterest at the time, my activity looked something like this:




Sea World Dolphin

Tacky airbrushed dolphin under the sunset scene

Fantasy island and dolphin scenario with glitter



Even tackier airbrushed dolphin

Seriously, this one leaped right off of a Myrtle Beach t-shirt



I need to look into making her cute little self a private board. Really, no one over the age of 12 needs to be subjected to that.


Let’s erase those images with another dreamy one, shall we?




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Posted on April 19, 2012

I have been woefully remiss in updating my blog.

My wonderful father passed away the Tuesday after Easter. Even though he’d battled leukemia for almost 13 years, it seemed so sudden and entirely too soon.

I photographed some of the indirect activity surrounding his death and funeral, particularly the incredible outpouring of kindness, support and solidarity our family received from my parents’ family and friends.

I thought I’d compile them for publication (not here, but somewhere) at some point, but right now I can’t bear to look at them.

I’ve found comfort in getting back to work and all the never-ending but somehow soothing minutiae that accompanies daily life.

And I understand my wonderful clients’ positions too. You sympathize and pray for me, but fact is you’ve still entrusted me with the honor of capturing some of the most important moments of your life. And I can truly say that I’m more than up to the task. I look forward to it.

Perhaps my feelings are best expressed in Annelle’s quote from Steel Magnolias:

“Miss Truvy, I promise that my personal tragedy will not interfere with my ability to do good hair.”


Much love,


Posted on February 27, 2012

Patty and Grant got married on 11/11/11, which was a Friday.

There was something extra festive about shooting a wedding on a weekday.  It felt like playing hookey or something.

Add an adorable puppy, a gang of lively nephews, and fun, very  sweet friends who rocked the portraits and the dance floor, and it was the perfect way to kick off not only a weekend but Patty and Grant’s  lovely life together.

maggie sottero wedding dress charleston sc

Matron of honor makeup

"I do" rhinestones for bride's shoes

bridesmaids tying sashes

Ring bearer and bride charleston wedding

Cohiba wedding groom cigars

charleston yacht club

Black and white wedding charleston yacht club

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bride lip gloss

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Charleston wedding wedding party on dock

piggyback bride

wedding fruit and cheese platter

Grant’s father is a florist. He shipped all the flowers for the wedding in and did the arrangements himself. One hard thing about weddings is watching all the food and flowers get tossedat the end of the night.

Someday I’d love to arrange some sort of 11 pm posse that would head downtown every Saturday night at 11 pm and round up all the gorgeous flowers and deliver them to…somewhere. Maybe retirement homes?

My husband, who assisted me with this wedding, and I ended up taking home the majority of the lillies. (With their blessing and at their urging, of course!) The next day we divided them among several neighbors and they stayed fresh and beautiful for days.

calla lillies charleston wedding

I love this. So cute.

wedding cupcakes charleston sc

wedding the shoe game

Posted on February 22, 2011

When Katie contacted me about a 1940’s travel themed engagement session in Charleston, I was really excited. I tend to shoot candidly, and have never done a stylized couples shoot before, but I was game to give it a shot.

Matt is in the Air Force, stationed in Sumter. Katie is in California, and when she came to South Carolina to visit, they made the trip down to Charleston.

I chose North Charleston’s historic district for the session because of the cool locations, vintage feel, and relative lack of traffic. Katie loved the vibe of the area, and said it had the feel of a Brooklyn to downtown Charleston’s Manhattan.

We topped off the shoot with a trip to Madra Rua for a round of black and blues, and baskets of what Matt and Katie pronounced to be some of the best chicken fingers they’ve had.

Congratulations, guys!

Hairstyle by Chelsee at Stuart Lawrence Salon on King Street

Accomodations NotSo Hostel

Red dress and travelling coat sewn by the bride’s Mom!

Charleston engagement photos train vintage modernCharleston vintage engagement photo 1940's Air Force NoisetteCharleston train station photo Air ForceNorth Charleston E Montague Av couple photographer


Charleston train station Amtrak sign engagement photography

Train station engagement photos Charleston SC

Charleston vintage photo engaged couple hairstyle Liberty rollCharleston wedding photographer green eyes red lipstick Air Force

Posted on December 13, 2010

I had a beach engagement shoot scheduled for today, but mother nature had other ideas.
WIth a dreary afternoon freed up, I went through some of the snaps I’ve taken around the house in the past week.
Insert a decadent dinner break at the Fat Hen (Flounder Nicoise? Yes Ma’am!)
and now I’m home and cozy, ready to update the blog with new images.

These days, I spend a lot of time each day tidying up behind the swath of destruction that this imp cuts through the house.
Coffee cups on countertops, lip gloss, Febreze bottles, dog food, folded pillowcases, half-empty bottles of Pinot Grigio–nothing is safe from her fat, fervent little fingers.

Here she is, assaulting a (cooled, thankfully) saucepan of boiled eggs

Silly me, thinking I could saute some onions and leave the butter out for a few minutes

She charms me, even with one finger shoved up her nose

Charleston child photographer

This is her new chastened stance. I have to admit, it’s much more effective at tugging my heartstrings than crying ever was

Charleston child photographer

Freelensed (don’t try this at home if you only have one nice camera body)

Daddy’s home!

Charleston child photographer


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