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We’d looked forward to this late-summer session for weeks, and I was eager to capture some sisterly moments in the golden afternoon light of their favorite place. Mother Nature had a different idea for this Edisto Island family photography session, but we rallied! After all, it was our only opportunity between braces removal and the eldest heading back to college. Following the meandering hourlong drive, my daughter (trusty assistant) and I were greeted by sprinkles and an impressive shelf cloud moving across the marsh darkening everything in its path.

Knowing afternoon showers were a possibility, we showed up early in hopes of having a bigger window between potential downpours. We knocked out a family photo with the dog, bolted to the dock and snapped a couple more before the sky opened up and inspired Lulu’s amazing giggles. Then we all ran for cover.

Fun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonEdisto Island family photography on a stormy afternoonFun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonEdisto Island family photography on a stormy afternoonFun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonThe first splats of supersize raindrops helped me capture her cracking up before we sprinted to the house!Edisto Island family photography on a stormy afternoonFun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonFun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonThis adorable boat was mom’s birthday present. We couldn’t travel too far since lightning was popping in the distance, but we got what we came for. Fun family photos on stormy Edisto Island afternoonEdisto Island family photography on a stormy afternoonTeenaged sisters boating with their old dog on Edisto IslandStormy afternoon on Edisto Island for family photosReward for our dodging storms. Shrimp, sausage, corn, oh my! And rain on the tin roof. Heaven.Teenaged sisters boating with their old dog on Edisto IslandDoes your family have a favorite place where you laugh on a screened porch or take in sunsets? I hope you’ll share my name with your friends who need family photos or wedding photography. Thanks, and happy weekend!

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  • Jessica Schilling - Adorable family session, and love that you embraced the rainy weather and got cool stormy skies as a backdrop!ReplyCancel

Did you hear? It’s National Dog Day! With the magic of the Internet, we are treated to almost-daily reminders of the significance of certain things. Hashtags abound, reminding us to celebrate cousins, oysters, grandparents, donuts, siblings, craft beer, oceans and watermelon, which are all good things.

As the saying goes, every dog has his day. Guess what, faithful and furry friends, today is your very own national dog day! Sure, you may share it with Women’s Equality Day, but really it’s a time to beg for an extra treat, nap on the humans-only sofa or cruise the open road with your gaping drooly mouth delighting in the breeze.

To honor some cute dogs, I scanned some photos of happy clients who included their cuddly canines in their photo sessions. As you enjoy the dog days of summer, you might be intrigued to learn the real origin of that term has to do with stars and not Fido. (I’m Sirius! Celestial humor…) So hug your loyal pal and take a look at some of fun friends I’ve met along the way. Happy National Dog Day and bon weekend!

Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate your furry friends on National Dog Day. Charleston phoWhiskey (above) is such a sweetheart. And you can follow the dapper dude below on Instagram (@booththelab).Celebrate your furry friends on National Dog Day. Charleston phoCelebrate your furry friends on National Dog Day. Charleston phoCelebrate your furry friends on National Dog Day. Charleston phoLots of yellow Lab love in these photos! Atlanta, Charleston, DeBordieu…
Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Matt & Tracy love their pit bull. I think they adopted another one recently!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Boxers are so loyal and fun.Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Destination weddings don’t mean you should leave your pooch in the other Carolina. Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Posey and her posse (above) are always this mellow 😉Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Some brides are giddy to have their dog pose with them on their wedding day, but it can be dicey if your playful pal considers giving you a bear hug in your wedding finery!
Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Some dogs take ferry rides to Cumberland Island weddings. Others, like sweet Bella, hang out with the groom before he heads to the altar.Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Sweet Matthew and his beloved Buster. Celebrate national dog day with a photo by Carolina Photosmith!Faithful furry companion on a boat. National Dog Day!Happy weekend! If you like furry friends, I hope you’ll recommend this post. And if someone can tell me why they call the yoga pose “downward dog” when cats clearly are more skilled at this, I’d love to know. Otherwise, reach out when you need pics with your pooch. Thanks!

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Now that the munchkins are back in school, I’m catching up on editing family sessions. I’ve met so many fun families from around the country the past few months! Anyone else been staying up too late watching the Olympics? I wanted to share a glimpse of what’s been on my monitors. Here’s an assortment gold medal family photography of those who have excelled in events not yet recognized in world-class international athletics.

What a summer for Team USA!

Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Goofy Facemaking

The competition in the cousin class is always robust!
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Lowcountry Fishin’

This category no longer requires a bamboo pole, and this young chap has elevated pond fishing with newer technology and a megawatt smile.
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Lawn Twirling

Color, curls and whimsy from this duo inspired a new high score from the Mt. Pleasant judge!
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical ©

Furry Photobombing

This dog made record time from ocean swim to befriending strangers and shaking wildly before retreating back to the sea.
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Parental Tot Launching

As usual, there was stiff competition (and belly laughs galore) in both the pool and ocean categories.
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical ©

Family Wave Jumping

Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Synchronized Swinging

These girls nailed it and incorporated an impressive triple twist, with a dog, in their dismount. You should have seen it!
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical ©

Sassiest Posing

This crew’s score was boosted with the added difficulty of ditching crutches after a skimboard injury earlier in the week. Flamingo-hopping to ocean’s edge (at low tide) required incredible focus!
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Mom Squeezing

Perfect form and stellar execution in hug quality and mama’s haircut.
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Team Color Scheme

Only this mom would be savvy enough to anticipate a passing container ship and have her family sporting a matching color palette. Gold!
Need a Charleston photographer for your beach vacation? Carolina

Ensemble Vibrance, Men’s

Competition is more heated in the women’s race, but this father-sons team has raised the bar!
Need a Charleston photographer for your beach vacation? Carolina

Finally, some gold medal family photography starring my own clan! Like the cobbler’s kids who wander shoeless, the photographer’s family remains pictureless until this gal catches up on her work. Thankfully, the Hudson team’s expanding teen population and a hardworking batch of iPhones ensured some instant gratification. The adult family members are a well-rounded crew, scoring well in spike ball, bocce ball, beach frisbee, paddleboarding and wiffle ball. Sadly, my green jacket at Pirate’s Cove mini golf is undocumented, and my cartwheeling skills did not result in a medal.

Lifeguard Stand Commandeering


My kids and their cousins excel in this, year after year. This event is followed by Lifeguard Stand Leaping, which results in squeals of delight followed by twisted ankles.
Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Artful Beach Leaping

Charleston family photographer's colorful family beach vacation.

Boogie Boarding, Execution

Charleston family photographer's colorful family beach vacation.

Boogie Board Modeling

Charleston family photographer's colorful family beach vacation.

Synchronized Bubble Blowing

More colorful and skilled each year, the dozen cousins win the best all-around!Gold medal family photography is fun, colorful and whimsical

Keep bringing those medals home, and contact me when your athletes are ready for a gold medal family photography session.

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  • Ashey - how. much. fun. is. this?!?! Love the idea – so very creative! thanks for sharing this sweet idea!ReplyCancel

It’s been a busy summer chock full of family sessions, which are always fun. But it’s time to share a favorite spring affair. I absolutely loved documenting Déla and Joe’s intimate island wedding! She’s a graphic designer for the Charleston City Paper, and she met her Irish husband at a conference in Belgium. This pair is so gracious and low-key, and I love how they chose quality over quantity.

About 25 of their favorite people traveled from Ireland, Kansas and places in between to witness this enchanting international wedding in the warm, salty air. Friends strung garland and soaked up sun while mingling with family members. The caterers from Divine Catering took over the kitchen and set tables for a delicious porch supper. Other than her hair appointment and the ceremony time, the day flowed effortlessly with little concern over timelines and compulsory elements. So completely refreshing!

Intimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PAfter being separated by an ocean for a while, the couple had no qualms about seeing each other before the intimate island wedding ceremony.Intimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaDéla, a graphic designer, created the invitation, map and reply card based on floral envelopes by Rifle Paper Company that she flipped for as the inspiration on a trip to Mac & Murphy.Intimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiIntimate island wedding near Charleston, SC © Carolina PhotosmiJoseph’s beautiful sisters looked right at home in this oceanside setting.Irishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CIrishman weds Kansas girl on an island near Charleston, SC © CSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaDéla’s beautiful bouquet was created by her friend, Kimana Littleflower.
Charming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithJoseph and Déla’s mothers in their charming floral dresses, perfect for seaside!Charming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithCharming, small barrier island wedding © Carolina PhotosmithIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PShe found her dreamy Justin Alexander gown at Bridal House of Charleston. Joseph’s suit is from 319 Men on King Street. Hair and makeup by Salon Latitude on Isle of Palms. Intimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PIntimate island wedding with Atlantic Ocean views © Carolina PBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestHer gown was made for twirling, right? She wore two rings: her engagement ring and an Irish Claddagh on her right hand, symbolizing love and loyalty.Beach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and candlelit supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestBeach twirls and supper on a screened porch by the sea. CharlestA guest helps prep the floor for dancing by trying to work magic to break down the tables in the blink of an eye. Simple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaYes, there was stargazing. Every wedding make room for this in the timeline!Simple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSimple, lovely small island wedding near Charleston © CarolinaSo there you have it. Less can indeed be more! Didn’t you love this intimate island wedding? More time interacting with the special people you invited; more time to soak up wedded bliss without being ushered from one timeline element to the next; more time for your photographer to document your surroundings, create portraits in lovely light and capture candids. If you know of someone planning a small wedding, please share my name and this blog post with them. Thank you, Déla and Joe, for trusting me to photograph your easy, breezy day!

For another take on a small wedding with big style, see Mandy & Brandon’s rooftop wedding in an historic building on King Street, and reach out when you’re in need of  wedding and family photography. Cheers!

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  • Alyssa - What a lovely wedding! Love the stargazing 🙂ReplyCancel

This couple is planning their wedding in Ocean Isle, North Carolina. Since they were engaged here, they had their hearts set on Charleston engagement photos.

We started at Boone Hall Plantation under iffy skies, and the bottom fell out just as we left. Despite the rain delay, we met up the next day to finish our plan for making some Charleston engagement photos in the historic district.

Boone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithKalli is an elementary school teacher. I bet her kids love her radiant smile! Josh is a police officer, who possibly tickets people speeding along in red convertibles. (They were given this one while Kalli’s car was in the shop.)Boone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall engagement photography by Carolina PhotosmithBoone Hall Engagement photography by Carolina Photosmith of MounBoone Hall Engagement photography by Carolina Photosmith of MounBoone Hall Engagement photography by Carolina Photosmith of MounWhen the rental car company chooses a shiny red convertible for your Charleston weekend, you make the most of it! Time to cruise back down the dirt road and head over the Cooper River. Boone Hall Engagement photography by Carolina Photosmith of MounJosh proposed to her on Philadelphia Alley, so we started there and wandered over to Waterfront Park where my bright idea to stand near a popular fountain went awry when a kid put his hand on one of the streams, directing it sideways and showering these two. Oops! Thanks for being such good sports, y’all.Boone Hall Engagement photography by Carolina Photosmith of MounHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithHistoric Charleston engagement photos by Carolina PhotosmithI hope you’ll recommend this post and my name to your friends looking for vibrant photography for their upcoming weddings. Kalli and Josh, I’ll see you next spring on the NC coast!

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