James Island Town Hall Opening | The Marshlands House

The Town of James Island has moved into their new town hall building on Dills Bluff.  Earlier in the year they were accepting photo submissions to decorate their new space.  Although I’ve lived on James Island for 14 years, I don’t have that many photos on the island.  After scouring my hard drives I found some of Pinckney Park and some of the Marshlands House on the SC-DNR (South Carolina Department of Natural Resources) property at the end of Fort Johnson Rd where I used to work. You could only submit one image so I entered the one of the Marshlands House, and it was accepted.

The Marshlands House serves as the educational headquarters at SC-DNR.  It is a beautiful Federal-era mansion built around 1810 by planter Edward Ball.  It was originally built near rice impoundments on what is now the old Charleston Naval Base and Shipyard where it used as officer’s quarters.  In 1961 the Navy planned to tear it down, but in the end it was floated down the Cooper River to its new home at Fort Johnson.

Marshlands House at Fort Johnson in Charleston, SC.

I’m so glad this photo of the Marshlands House will be displayed at James Island Town Hall for years to come!

Here are some photos from the Grand Opening:

James Island town Hall (8)

It was great to see my friend (and wildlife photographer!) Keith McCullough and his bluegrass band playing some tunes and to see yummy cupcakes by my favorite bakeshop, The Cake Stand!  It was a great event – congrats to the town!

Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.


Sunrise Cotton Field Session | Woodrum Family

The early bird gets the worm (and the beautiful morning light)!  Thanks, Woodrum Family, for coming all the way from Charleston to spend the morning with me.

family sitting in a cotton field in south carolina

family standing in a cotton field with baby


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.

Mother Daughter Session in Hampton Park

Tayler’s family got her a gift certificate earlier this year for a session with me.  She brought baby Emma, looking cute as a button in the most darling little outfit. We met in Hampton Park, one of my favorite family photos locations in Charleston!

family in hampton park in in charleston, sc

sunset in hampton park


Sarah Goldman is a family photographer in Charleston, SC.

Back to the 80’s with 34 West

Get yourself to 34 West Theater Company ASAP!  Their current show, Uptown Girl, is a hilarious romp through the 80’s.  This show is almost sold out, and runs through November 10th!


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.

Cotton Field Sessions | Lone Star, SC

For the first time ever I’m offering Cotton Field Sessions during a special 2 day event!

cotton field in south carolina

There will be 6 time slots available on October 20th and 21st: 1 sunrise session and 2 sunset sessions each day.  The cotton field is located in Lone Star, SC – less than an hour from Columbia and about an hour and 15 minutes from Charleston.



30-minute session, $100 print credit

Oct 20 – 21, 2018

To book, contact me here.


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.

Vacation in Idaho |Middle Fork of the Salmon River

My husband and I just got back from an amazing rafting trip in Idaho.  We went with a group with Rocky Mountain River Tours.  It was 5 days and 4 nights in the Idaho wilderness – The Frank Church River Wilderness of No Return to be exact. It’s the largest wilderness area in the lower 48 states. We had never done an overnight rafting trip – I had barely been on a raft at all!  But it was truly amazing – the guides awesome, the food was great, and the views were breathtaking!  I wanted to share a few of my favorite photos from the trip.  If you want to learn more, please feel free to send me an email!

Idaho (150)

You could see the Milky Way with your naked eye!  So beautiful, stretching over our campsite each night.


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.

Fresh 48 | Baby Ryker

I have photographed this family for the past few years, and they recently added a sweet little bundle to their home: Baby Ryker!  I was thrilled to capture this special time for them during a Fresh 48 Session.

Charleston Fresh 48 (12)

Charleston Fresh 48 (51)


Sarah Goldman is a newborn photographer in Charleston, SC.

Container Bar Charleston

Today I visited Container Bar with my blogging partner, Katie McCabe of The Pulse Charleston. Container Bar is a new food truck hub in downtown Charleston.  The same folks that brought us Rutledge Cab Co. (Bill Murray, Brad Creger, and Mike Veeck) opened Container Bar last month.  The concept is a cool one:  Re-do an old office building, add shipping containers, provide an indoor/outdoor bar, and provide the city with a permanent food truck venue.

We tried the portobello sandwiches from Cast Iron food truck; me with seasoned fries and Katie with potato salad, which tasted like something your mom made.  We’ll definitely be back!


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.




Beach Session Winner | Isle of Palms

To celebrate the end of summer, I gave away a free beach session to one lucky Charleston family.  The Calderon Family was my winner and they chose Isle of Palms as their beach.  We met near Breach Inlet to capture some portraits of their girls at sunset.

Now I’m ready for cooler temps and fall family portraits!

Isle of Palms Family Photos (31)

Isle of Palms photography


Sarah Goldman is a family photographer in Charleston, SC.

2018 International Photographic Competition

The International Photographic Competition (IPC) just ended and I wanted to share my experience.  The IPC is a fierce competition  where photographers from all over the world compete for a coveted place in the Loan Collection – the best of the best! There are 2 intense rounds of judging that anyone can watch in person or live online.  A panel of jurors select the top images from thousands of entries each year.  The standard they use is called the 12 Elements of a Merit Image:

  1. Impact
  2. Technical Excellence
  3. Creativity
  4. Style
  5. Composition
  6. Presenation
  7. Color Balance
  8. Center of Interest
  9. Lighting
  10. Subject Matter
  11. Technique
  12. Story Telling

This year there were 5,077 images entered, 2622 of those were “merit” images scoring an 80 or above, and 513 images “went loan” and will be featured in the Loan Collection book by Marathon Press.

This was my third year entering, and I’m finally starting to feel like I have a handle on how it works.  Last year I got a bronze medal, meaning all 4 of my images merited.  I was hoping to get the same this year, but alas I got 3 out of 4.

Here are my entries:


“Oh So Grand”

Score 80.

Originally entered in a state practice competition, it scored an 81. I got feedback from the judges, made some changes to the crop, clarity, and presentation, and it scored a point lower!

This was taken (you guessed it) at the Grand Canyon in April when I was there with my mom. I was at this spot for about 3 hours waiting for sunset, watching the light creep across the canyon. Beautiful!

0.6 sec
ISO 100
Natural Light

Image2 - Sealed


“Rub-a-dub-dub Two Frogs in a Tub”

Score: 81

I’ve been photographing amphibians for a few years now. It’s been a fun project, and I decided to enter one in IPC in 2016 and got my first Loan Collection Image! I knew I had something special at that point, so I’m still working on my frog collection.  This is Rico and Keith, 2 pet tree frogs belonging to my cousin’s kids.

1/160 sec
ISO 400
Natural Light


“Workshop Daydreamer”
Score 84.
My only “human” portrait to merit in a competition. Also my highest scoring image ever!

This is Bill Mayes in his workshop in Brevard, NC. Bill ran a summer camp – Camp Deerwoode – for boys here from the 1960’s to 1990. My husband (also Bill) went to camp here for many summers and eventually became a Junior Counselor. Last fall we stayed at Deerwoode and I got to see the magical place for myself.

While the 2 Bill’s were catching up, I worked a lot of different angles to capture a portrait. I love the sense of place and his organization.

1/100 sec
ISO 1250
Natural Light



“Gently Down the Stream”
Score 78

This one did not merit. In retrospect, I think the title was maybe not a great one for this very contrasty image. Or maybe the judges didn’t like the composition.

This was taken in Gatlingburg, TN along the Roaring Fork Nature Trail.

2 sec
ISO 100
28 mm
Natural Light

I’m already working on my 2019 competition images and trying to challenge myself to be more creative!  Congrats to all the photographers that entered this year!


Sarah Goldman is a photographer in Charleston, SC.