>> to prove i’m not winging it

Hey, I’m Carolyn! If you’re looking for a place to read a bunch about me, this would be it. I always find these pages a bit awkward to read, but I can tell you that they’re even more awkward to write. That being said, let’s get immediately into the awkwardness so that it’s over quickly. Here is a summary of all of my parts:

BORN IN: Pittsburgh, PA

LIVES IN: Durham, NC

IS IT CAROLYN OR CAROLINE: It’s Carolyn (“kair-uh-lin”… rhymes with gin)


SURPRISING HEIGHT: 4’10 (Might bring a ladder to your shoot)


BACKGROUND: Elementary Education

ARCHITECTURAL FANDOM: Mid-Century and 80s Contemporary

BEST MOVIE WITH BATS: Tie between The Lost Boys and What We Do in the Shadows

HOW MANY CATS: Geoff did not want them to outnumber us, but 3

HOW MANY HOUSEPLANTS: Definitely outnumbering us

SIDE GIG: Making paper mache wall art at @familiardolls

HOBBIES: Sewing, paper mache, travel, playing piano, Halloween enamel pin collecting, painting, digital art, keeping plants alive and then accidentally killing them, playing ukulele, home improvement, deck sitting, eating cheese, asking to watch a scary movie and then watching it through my hands, video games, worrying about cats, hiking, gardening


MUSICAL GENRE APPRECIATION: Always and forever 90s alternative, indie, dad/yacht rock, emo, historical middle school background in punk and ska

MARRIED TO: Geoff (It is just “Jeff,” don’t overthink it)

OFTEN SEEN WEARING: Mismatching prints, black, Halloween shirts in June, overalls to all shoots where I have to chase kids around

And there you have it – that’s me in a nutshell. Photography speaking, I’m entirely self-taught since picking up my parents’ Polaroid and precariously carrying it while cruising around in diapers. It was a long-time hobby of mine which I honed alongside several photography major friends in college. During this time I went through many photography phases such as “taking way too many pictures of your cats”, “artsy photos of rusting things in fields”, and “posting a cringeworthy amount of selective color photos to Flickr”. I was quite proud of myself. But, through these embarrassing phases I did improve significantly, and in 2008, after a brief stint of teaching after graduation, I left behind my elementary ed background and started Carolyn Scott Photography.

I then embarked on what would turn out to be a 10+ year career as a wedding photographer with my husband Geoff that would span many states and several countries. We took part in a New Orleans second line, met Flavor Flav in the Rochester airport at 5am, stepped into knee-high sink holes during North Carolina hurricane weddings on farms. But, after we realized we were suddenly in our mid-30s and hadn’t had a weekend in 10 years where we could utilize our pool membership, Geoff and I decided to retire from wedding photography. In 2019, Geoff went back into his full-time job of software engineering in an entirely Star Wars themed home office and I transitioned into full-time portrait photography, which was then immediately ruined by the pandemic. But after a long time of sitting at home, I was thrilled to return to my photography business in 2022 and to reunite with all my old clients who graciously welcomed me back with open arms.

Today, my portrait business focuses solely on lifestyle family and editorial small business photography. With my background in elementary ed, I love working with families because their small children can tell me facts about sharks and I’m genuinely excited about it. I also love looking through old photos of my own family, and hope to give this gift of total embarrassment to another young adult someday. The lifestyle aspect of my family work speaks a great deal to me as my own favorite family photographs are ones that aren’t staged, but show my parents interacting with my sister and I in a real, genuine way (whether they look juuuust a little annoyed with us or not is beside the point). My love of small business photography stems from (surprise!) running my own small business. I thoroughly enjoy meeting other business owners in the area, whether or not they come equipped with facts about sharks. Doing editorial work for other biz owners is enormously fun for me, and allows me the creative freedom to tell the story of a subject within a space (and calls back to my day of Flickr glory, only better this time).

So – that’s it. That’s all I can think of. If you have any other pressing questions or want to book me for a shoot, please reach out and say hello. You can also follow me on social media (where I still take an absurd amount of pictures of my cats and use too many emojis). In closing, I have always wanted to have a client just like you. Would you be mine, could you be mine, won’t you be my client?

Not sick of me yet?

Follow my half-hearted attempts at being social.

I haven’t responded because there are no words. So I’ll use emojis: 😥😍😥😍 – me, reading the blog post ❤️🙌🔥💯 – my thoughts on the photos. In short, we love you and you are amazing and we are in Colorado on vacation while our house is at risk of flooding and the only things we took out of the house for safe-keeping before we left were all the pictures y’all have taken of us and Cam’s first birthday guest book. You have documented our little family from right after Cam came home from the hospital to the wild toddler he is now. We cherish the photos you’ve taken of us and consistently get compliments on how wonderful our family pictures are. So, yeah, super grateful for you as friends and photographers.

Cat + Mitchell Nelson

Carolyn’s professionalism, talent, and genuine enthusiasm is unparalleled. I trust her implicitly with all of Gilded Bridal’s branded photography. And the bonus? She’s a straight up bad ass and a delight to work with!​

Zan langford of gilded bridal​

Even though I follow you on multiple social media platforms, I somehow don’t get sick of you. Impressive.

Anna Totten

Carolyn is professional, approachable, and full of life! Let me also add that she is such a joy to work with from start to finish. I could tell that she loves her work from her thoughtful and organized website to her prompt correspondence via email and the smile she wears as she met us as her new clients for the first time. She captured the sweetest and most loving pictures of my family. I adore her lifestyle approach to family portraits as she does not stage you and allows you to be your full self in photos. I can proudly say that these are my favorite pictures of all time! I highly recommend that you have Carolyn take your professional photos!!! She is THE best!

Flare Brown

Thanks so much for yesterday. I’ve never felt so comfortable just being me in front of the camera, and I’m so grateful for you guys!!! I swear to god your pictures were the best investment I made in my business this past year. I USE THEM EVERYWHERE and I love what they capture about the business 😊 You are literally the best.​

janice smith of big dog little bed productions​

We had a blast with you and just spent some time pouring over the photos in the gallery and they are amazing. It didn’t feel like anything super special was happening during the shoot but then *poof*, magic. You caught so many great moments that we will treasure! Thank you so much for capturing where we are in life right now in such a tender, playful way. You’re the best!

Elaine Newell

Think I made these up?

Need printed proof?

Find my work published in these books and magazines:

  • Durham Magazine – Best Of Durham “Professional Photographer” 2023
  • Durham Magazine – Best Of Durham “Professional Photographer” 2020
  • Where Goodness Still Grows – Book by Amy Peterson, Thomas Nelson Publishing 2019 // Book jacket author photo
  • Fangoria Magazine – October 2018
  • Where I Live – Book by Brenda Rufener, HarperCollins 2018 // Book jacket author photo
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Spring/Summer 2018
  • Southern Bride & Groom – Winter/Spring 2018
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Spring/Summer 2017
  • Durham Magazine – April 2017
  • Southern Bride & Groom – Winter/Spring 2017
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Fall/Winter 2016
  • Fun Size Weddings: The Simple Guide to Planning a Tiny Wedding You’ll Love – Book by Maggie Gaudaen, published 2016
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Spring/Summer 2016
  • Durham Magazine – Feb/March 2016
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Spring/Summer 2015
  • The Knot: Special LGBTQ Edition – digitally published 2015
  • The Inspired Wedding – Book by Emma Arendoski, published 2014
  • The Knot, The Carolinas – Fall/Winter 2014
  • The Knot, North Carolina – Spring/Summer 2014
  • Whirl Magazine – February 2014
  • Cary Magazine – February 2014
  • INDY Week – Finalist // Best Photographer in Raleigh 2014
  • INDY Week – Finalist // Best Photographer in Raleigh 2013
  • Cary Academy Magazine – Winter 2013
  • Raleigh Downtowner – Best Photographer in Raleigh 2012
  • The Handcrafted Wedding – Book by Emma Arendoski, published 2012
  • Durham Magazine – Feb/March 2011
  • Cary Magazine – Sept/Oct 2011
  • Luxe Mountain Weddings – Premiere Issue