Early Morning Beauty

Downtown Charleston
Beach sessions


Learn more

New Yorker turned Charleston, SC portrait photographer. Obsessed with the beach, good food, and exploring around town!

Hey! I'm Lindsay

Love this even morning light on one of my favorite Houses in Tradd Street.

When it comes to answering the questions of “When is the best time of day for our session?” The answer is pretty simple. It doesn’t get much better than sunrise or sunset. Period. With beach we have no option but to be on the sand for these exact times. While locations like Downtown Charleston and local parks offer us an abundance of shade and give us more flexibility on timing, I still like to try and stick to just after sunrise and just before sunset if we can.

Sunset is usually everyone’s top choice. I am here to show you what a secret gem sunrise can be though. While I am FAR from a morning person… I am so game for having a chance to explore Downtown Charleston just after the sun comes up. Here are a few of my top three reasons why.

Morning light tends to be very soft and flattering, and sometimes just flat out magical!

1. Perfect Lighting

I am a sucker for good lighting. I can so easily get lost behind the camera when the lighting is magical and it’s sessions that are lit just perfect that I am often reminded of just how much I love my job and why I do what I do! While we can shoot Downtown almost any time of the day theres a gorgeous warm glow that we can get between the buildings just as the sun is coming up over Charleston Harbor. The later it gets in the day the harsher this can become, and while we can get a similar look at sunset the next two reasons are why I love sunrise most!

Rainbow Row is so pretty and pastel in the morning, and did I mention completely quiet? This is one of our biggest tourist attractions, it’s never completely quiet!

2. Quiet Streets.

Shh… Don’t wake everyone up so we can explore this beautiful city alone! Seriously though, the streets are so quiet just after sunrise. It is such a teat to be able to shoot in the middle of the street and not be dodging anyone, except maybe a sweet golden retriever here or there being walked by their owner, and I am all about that! Our city streets are ALWAYS bustling with people. We have locals going to work and tourists exploring the beauty that is Charleston. While our city looks so quaint and perfect on a post card, which it is, it’s often forgotten that it is still a real city. Getting up early allows us to have this gorgeous backdrop chaos free.

The street right behind them is one of the busiest streets in Charleston but there’s not a car to be seen!
Not another person to be seen!

3. The Heat

We live in South Carolina, it gets hot. It gets humid. It gets just flat out gross in the summer. While it matters less in winter, sunrise is our saving grace for photos in the summer. Before the sun gets too high and the humidity starts to wreck havoc on our hair for the day we have a chance to sneak in a gorgeous session. I get some many out of town clients that I am sure think I am over-reacting when I tell them it gets HOT! I am from New York, I get it, We had hot-ish summers. We had some humidity. I didn’t quite believe just how bad it could get until I moved. Charleston is a completely different ball game though!

Early morning tends to be on the cool(er) side in the summer and calmer. Even on the beach I find it to be a much calmer time than sunset for wind etc.

Look at this gorgeous soft glow surrounding them! This one location alone makes me want to wake up early to shoot it!
Quiet corners everywhere.

So now that I have listed my favorite reasons for sunrise sessions, as a Non-Morning Person. Let me share more about this magical session. I met Jennifer and Tyler at 7am (see not CRAZY early!). We literally had the streets to ourselves and had the most amazing light. We also did pass not one but a handful of sweet golden retrievers on our walk which made for even bigger smiles. This session was a DREAM! From the moment Jennifer contacted me she told me she would be on board with whatever time was best, she trusted me to say, let’s get up early and do this! I am so grateful she did!

Check out the rest of their gorgeous Charleston Sunrise Session!

Always looking for spots with my favorite shade of teal in them!
This little area was so quaint it felt almost European.
Blue and white always make for a gorgeous backdrop.
Soft lighting hi-lights these two so perfectly.
The warm glow started to get even more intense as we got close to wrapping up our session.
Aren’t they just adorable?