McGraw Photography Blog » Charlotte, NC | Pet & Dog Photography

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Cosmo’s session was scheduled for a “warmer” day – about 43 degrees – which, at that time, was warm for the weather pattern we were having. Yeah. Well, turned out Mother Nature wanted to bring along a crazy wind chill with that so it wasn’t so “warm”. I’m talking, bundled up and still freezing kinda winds. Obviously, little Cosmo is a Chihuahua and they are very sensitive to the cold. We would go out a shoot a picture and then come right back in to get her warm. It was pretty obvious that it was going to be stressful on her so we scrapped the session for the afternoon and decided to try again the next day. It was probably the best decision because we lucked out with a very pretty evening and Cosmo was much more comfortable. She certainly got to show off her sweet little personality! :)

North Carolina Chihuahua Portraits
This is Cosmo to a T! She is a little superstar!!!
Pet Photographer of the Carolinas
Pet Photographer in North Carolina
She loved my liver treats and wanted to let me know! 
Charlotte NC Pet Photographer
Charlotte NC Pet Photography
Cosmo likes to be transported in her fashionable animal print bag. It doubles as a body warmer and it looks so chic (as does her mom)!
Charlotte NC Dog Photographer
Modern Animal Photographer
Modern Images for Posh Pets
Cosmo’s different faces crack me up! I don’t think I’ve ever seen this many different expressions from a Chihuahua!
Charlotte NC Dog Photography
This one is the killer for me. It looks like someone drew a smily face right on her mouth. I just wanna grab her and give her a big kiss!
Lake Norman area Pet photographer
Thanks to Cosmo for being such a patient model and hanging in there for our second day. I look forward to seeing your supermodel poses in the studio! :)

Cosmo – Studio Session » McGraw Photography Blog - […] few weeks ago, Cosmo did her thing for me during her on-location session. Her next step in the spotlight? Well, a studio session of […]

Rocky – Beach Sessions

I’ve been a little down lately and I think the cold temps are making me a little cabin fever-ish. I really despise cold weather and it’s been way colder than normal here in Charlotte this winter. I mean, I used to live (and love) Phoenix and I’d take 120 degrees over 20 degrees ANY day! Ugh!

Fortunately, Spring is just around the corner which means it’s time for my annual Spring trip to the beaches of North Carolina. As I was putting this post together, I already felt better remembering and seeing the warm sand, the smell of the bursting flowers, and the welcome rays of sun shining down on my head. Spring is one of my absolute favorite times of the year – especially when I get to celebrate it with sand in between my toes.

That being said, I’m excited to announce the dates for my Spring trip to Emerald Isle, NC. I’ll be there from March 19th-23rd and I’ll be offering a handful of beach sessions (and Moving Pet Portraits). This is a great opportunity to capture your pups romping on the beach without having to pay for my travel expenses.



  • 1-2 Hour Session for up to 2 dogs (from same household)
  • 30 Fully-Edited High Resolution Digital Files w/Print Release
  • 3-Day Online Proofing Gallery
  • Skype or In-Person Ordering Consultation

Pet Portrait Beach Sessions

And because I’m sure you’d like to see what Spring looks like in Emerald Isle, here’s a little peek from last year’s session with Rocky…

Usually the fields of wildflowers are in full swing in March. They are magical and make for some of the most brilliant and spectacular images. I haven’t found anything like them in the Charlotte area. So if you want this, you gotta have a beach session (it doesn’t always have to be only beach images)! ;)

North Carolina beach dog photography
Pet Portrait Beach session
Dog photo shoot on beach
Morehead City, NC Pet Photographer
Of course, you gotta have some beach shots, right? After we photographed the in the flowers, we loaded Rocky up and headed to one of the largest beaches I’ve ever seen.
Crystal Coast pet photographer
North Carolina Dog beach photo shoot
Emerald Isle Pet Photographer
And Rocky went crazy!!! The water is still pretty chilly in the Spring so he decided to steer clear of it.
Boxer running on Emerald Isle beach
And he wore himself out pretty quickly. What a tough life…
Boxer on Beach with goggles
If you are interested in booking a beach session with your pup, please contact me right away. Booking will close several weeks before the session dates.

Charles - These photo’s of Rocky are fantastic! I remember how much my boxers loved the beach, and wish I knew Sarah when they were still alive.

admin - Awww, Charlie. I wish I had the opportunity to meet them too. I’m sure they are having a blast being goofy together over the Bridge. They are passing time until you are happily reunited. <3

Murphy – The Goldendoodle

I’ve been excited to photograph Murphy since his family bought a gift certificate last year. As some of you may know, I kinda have a thing for Doodles of all sorts. If anything ever happens to one of my pups (which will never happen, right?) I want to find a Doodle to rescue. They are just so fluffy, goofy and full of personality. I must say, Murphy was no exception!

Murphy grows his hair out super-long for the winter and it made me so jealous! I mean, why can’t my hair be that long, flowy, blond, and wavy? Yeah, I just admitted I’m jealous of a dog’s hair. Anyway, I almost think his long bangs make him look like Sam Sheepdog (please look it up if you don’t know who that is). So funny!

Davidson NC Pet Portraits
Murphy was so good and patient! He’s used to getting his picture taken though – he manages his own Facebook and Instragram you know. Look at that big smile on the right! :)
Charlotte NC Dog Photographer
With all that hair, we knew some action shots were a MUST! Not sure how Murphy could see…as happy as he was, I don’t think he cares if he could!
Goldendoodle running with ball
There’s an eye poking through! ;)
Charlotte NC Animal Photographer
Goldendoodle Photographer
I can’t say enough about the day we had. It was chilly but the sun was shining in full force casting beautiful light on us…
Charlotte NC Pet Photography
Goldendoodle Portrait
Charlotte NC Goldendoodle Photographer
Oh my Dog! That shaggy face just get me!!!
Charlotte NC Pet Photographer
Charlotte NC Dog Photographe
Pet Portrait Photographer in North Carolina
One of my favs! Shaggy dog? Check. Gorgeous background? Check. Head tilt? Absolutely!
Modern Images for Posh Pets
If you want to see more of Murphy, check out his Instagram at @must_b_murphy. :)

Jackie P - He is soooo cute, handsome, beautiful, fun, fluffy, and he has a new IG follower! Beautiful photos!

Becks, Ellie & Sienna

I’ve very excited to share my latest Moving Pet Portrait of Becks, Ellie, and Sienna…

This footage was shot back at the end of September for a fabulous pet photographer from Atlanta, Leesia Teh. She, her husband, and her three pups made the 4-hour trip up to Cornelius (where I was living at the time) just so I could shoot this video. I was very nervous as Leesia was one of the first photographers I learned of after I started my pet photography business. I really wanted to impress – even though I was still very much a newbie at the whole video thing. With all the pressure I put on myself, I was so embarrassed when they had to come to our apartment! We had sold our house, was waiting for an updated closing date on our new place and we were living among stacks of boxes. So much for first impressions! Ha!

That aside, we lucked out with an absolutely gorgeous sunny afternoon to shoot with. We hopped over to a huge abandoned field where the dogs could safely be off-leash (there’s no Photoshopping out leashes in video!). I had a shoot-list written down that I generally went by. However, these dogs were so good and had so many tricks up their paws that I kinda threw the shoot-list out. Becks, Ellie and Sienna totally blew me away! They were seriously a dream!

Just over 3 months later, I finally have Leesia’s video complete. Yes, she knew it would take a while – I had to move my house, my studio, and get through the Fall/Christmas season. I certainly hope the wait was worth it!!! I think this Moving Pet Portrait capture these dogs (and parents) in a way stills can’t.

I hope you enjoy!!!

Becks, Ellie & Sienna – Moving Pet Portrait from Sarah McGraw on Vimeo.

Technical info: Shot with a Canon 5D Mark III, 35mm f/1.2, 50mm f/1.4. Supports: Handheld, tripod, and Fig-Rig. Editing: iMovie (although I hope to upgrade to Final Cut before the next one). Song: Little Red Bike by Mindy Gledhill licensed through Triple Scoop Music.

Moving Pet Portrait
Charlotte NC Pet Photographer
Charlotte NC Dog Photographer
Charlotte NC Pet Photography

Sandra Noble - I especially enjoyed the set of photos, Becks, Ellie and Sienna. Their expressions are endearing.

Beth - I love the photos and the video!

Patty - Sarah, this is really, really wonderful! Just lovely. This si why you are my favorite portrait photographer. Keep up the fabulous work.

Patty Mac

Mary Maier - This is so beautiful! The video is absolutely adorable and totally captures their personalities!

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