If you’re planning a Kiawah vacation or own a home on Kiawah, you’re probably looking for a Kiawah family photographer. We’re glad you found us!
We’ve been photographing families during their Kiawah vacations for many years. One thing we love about Kiawah is that it’s close to Charleston, but it’s also a world away. When you enter Kiawah, you leave the busy day-to-day behind and let yourself be enveloped by the tranquil, peaceful, natural surroundings of this beautiful place. You’ll see relaxed families riding by on the ubiquitous bike trails; golfers taking advantage of the world-class golf course; and beach-goers showering the sand off their feet at one of the many beach accesses. In the evenings, you’ll see freshly showered families heading to the resort restaurants for dinner. You’ve been planning for this week all year, and you should have the best photographs to capture all the happiness you feel during this time with the people you love most.
Where to Take Family Photos in Kiawah
Kiawah isn’t just a beach resort. It’s a huge, sprawling preserve with so many good locations for taking family photos! The beach is definitely a popular spot, but you also have the beautiful marsh areas, areas around The Sanctuary hotel, and even the backyard of your vacation rental house.
- The beach: For many people, the beach is their happy place. You feel relaxed here. The kids can run around and play and just be themselves. The beach is also a neutral backdrop where we can focus on your family and all those joyful, loving expressions you share with the people who make you happiest. Beach photo shoots tend to be more active because we have space for you to walk together by the water, to run and splash through the waves, and to spread out along the sane when the tide is low. Our beach family sessions are ALWAYS fun.
- The marsh: If you do your photos in the early morning or later afternoon/evening, the marsh will light up with the glow of the rising or setting sun. It makes for a beautiful photo backdrop. One reason the marsh is good for photos is that it’s off the beach, and hence away from the wind and sand. For people who don’t want to risk their hair blowing around and the kids getting sandy, the march is a great option. The only potential downside is mosquitoes in summer evenings. So if we do photos by the marsh in the summer, we’ll likely just do a few and then move on to another spot. But it’s worth it even for just a few photos!
- Your vacation home: Many times we will start our Kiawah family photography sessions at the family’s vacation rental home. Because the homes are spaced far apart with property all around, we can usually find good spots in the backyard, or even on the front steps of the home. When the weather is iffy, your house makes a great backup location because we can always work with beautiful window light while we wait for the rain to pass. Plus, it’s nice to have photos of yourselves in the context of the home where you made such great memories together!
- The Sanctuary: The Sanctuary resort inside Kiawah makes for a beautiful photo backdrop. We’ve done photos around the green areas surrounding the hotel, and even inside the hotel, then continued on the beach from there.
What to Know for Your Kiawah Family Photos
- The majority of Kiawah is a private resort and residential area restricted to homeowners, renters and their guests. There is ONE public beach access – Beachwalker County Park which is located on the west end (West Beach) of Kiawah Island and is operated by Charleston County Park & Recreation Commission. If you love the look of our Kiawah family photos but do not have access to Kiawah, we can recommend similar beaches accessible to the public – just ask!
- You’ll need to call in a pass for your photographer at the gate, since Kiawah is a private, gated community. You can do this anytime from when you first check in to the day of your shoot.
- Dress comfortably! Dressing casually for your Kiawah photos not only makes you more comfortable for the outdoors, walking the beach, etc., but it also fits the feel and mood of Kiawah. Kiawah is a very relaxing, dressed-down kinda place, and you’ll fit right in with beachy, comfy clothes for your family photos. Most importantly: dress the kids comfortably so they’re happy! And here’s a pro tip: people are not matching anymore for their photo shoots. But they ARE often choosing colors that look great together such as blues and yellows, pinks, and shades of white and cream.
- Treat your family photo session as a fun adventure for the kids. The only thing they need to know is that they are going to have a fun day out with their parents, and your fun friend who has cameras will be joining you!
- Bring snacks for the kids. They will feel better if they can munch on something in between photos. And, as a last resort, have popsicles back at the house as their reward for afterwards!
- Let us worry about everything else! We’ll make sure everyone’s expressions look great, and we will give you prompts and guide you throughout. And we are all very, very good with kids. But if you’re feeling the need to loosen up a bit, one more pro tip: Have a glass of wine before we arrive 🙂
Staying in Kiawah but want family photos in downtown Charleston? Check out our family photos from the Downtown Charleston Historic District. After your family session with us, stay downtown for a nice dinner out. Need recommendations? Check out our favorite Charleston restaurants.