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First Place: Tyler Edic
Second Place: Diane Dodd
Third Place: David Chalfa
Fan Favorite: Diane Dodd

SAVANNAH, GA – August 23, 2021 – Historic Savannah Foundation has announced the winners of its fourth Annual Summer Photo contest, which ran during the month of July and asked both locals and visitors to showcase their favorite historic buildings or places in Savannah and surrounding Chatham County.

Using the hashtag #SavFave, all contest entrants submitted their photos via Instagram. Each entry had to depict a historic building or place in Savannah or Chatham County, with each photo being judged on its artistic merit and based upon composition, use of color (or black and white), use of light and camera angle. Featured places and subjects were required to be unique or, if traditional, depicted in a new or unique way using interesting vantage points and perspectives.

First place went to Tyler Edic/Visit Savannah, with Diane Dodd placing second, followed by David Chalfa in third. Diane Dodd Photography also was awarded the fan favorite designation, having received the most photo “likes” on Instagram.

The winner will receive a comprehensive catalog of HSF books, including a copy of the extremely popular, Savannah, Square by Square. All winners will receive the honor of having their winning photos displayed in a public venue that is to be determined, in addition to being featured in HSF’s 2021 Annual Report. For the last three years, the winning photos have been featured in the Savannah Hilton Head International Airport.


“This contest is a way for locals and visitors alike to share with HSF the buildings and places that are important to them. We all have a shared love of Savannah, but it is very enlightening and enjoyable to see it from others’ points of view. This contest, at its essence, is a celebration of this unique and marvelous city,” HSF Director of Preservation and Historic Properties Ryan Arvay said.


Using unique lighting to capture the convergence of the Lowcountry’s natural beauty and the historic environment, Tyler Edic snapped this year’s first-place photograph. It highlights the unique and culturally rich, Pin Point Heritage Museum, operated by the Coastal Heritage Society. Pin Point Heritage explores the Gullah/Geechee culture, located inside the historic Varn & Son Oyster and Crab Factory building. Surrounded by the marshes and inlets of Georgia’s tidewater zone, the waterfront location was captured from a bird’s eye view, complemented by a Savannah sunset.


“When I moved to Savannah, I had no concept of how beautiful the city and its surrounding areas are, nor the rich history I would come to appreciate and become a part of,” Edic said. “No matter where I go from here, watching the sun set over the marsh will always hold a place in my heart. I am glad my photograph is appreciated, and I’m honored that Historic Savannah Foundation has selected my work for this recognition.”


HSF’s second-place winner, Diane Dodd, submitted a photo that features Savannah’s famous mature oak trees along Chatham Square. The strong, moss-covered branches reach for the sky, leaving dappled shadows over the historic brick path. Built in 1847 on Barnard Street, Chatham Square was named for William Pitt, the Earl of Chatham, and is a quiet and peaceful location in the Hostess City. This image of Chatham Square presents a bright yet calming atmosphere that Savannah visitors and locals enjoy.


“Chatham Square is quiet, peaceful and packed with history. Being surrounded by the enchanting mighty oaks is so calming, and I am always inspired to snap a few photos whenever I am passing through,” Dodd said.


The contest’s third-place photograph, shot by David Chalfa, presents a moody sunset between two of downtown Savannah’s most notable skyscrapers. In the foreground, the architectural detail on SCAD’s Propes Hall – originally the Citizens & Southern Bank – is featured, and the old Hotel Savannah, now BB&T Bank, can be seen in the background.


“I captured this image right before the sun fell as I was standing on the top deck of the Bryan Street Parking Garage,” Chalfa said. “While taking photos of various downtown landmarks, I couldn’t help but notice how the space between these two buildings resembled the outline of Georgia. The buildings are on opposite sides of Johnson Square and have beautiful decorative elements that helped frame the sunset that evening.”


This year’s fan favorite photograph, captured by Diane Dodd Photography, presents the beautiful Garden of Fragrance at Forsyth Park on a humid afternoon. The Garden of Fragrance was started by the Garden Club Council of Chatham County in 1959 and was dedicated April 3, 1963. The garden was designed by Georges Bignault, renowned landscape architect, as his final commission.


“I love the way the oaks drape over the Fragrant Garden. The columns and wrought iron are so unique, and the inside is just as charming with the fountain, benches and beautiful flowers,” Dodd said. “I heard that it was originally called ‘The Fragrant Garden for the Blind’ which fascinates me! It makes perfect sense. On days when I happen to be strolling by when the gates are unlocked, I will undoubtedly pop in for a boost of happiness. We’re so lucky to live here!”


Arvay said the decision was a tough one to make, as HSF received so many beautiful photographs.


“The jury would like to thank everyone who entered the contest and shared their talent and creativity with us. It really was a pleasure to review so many amazing pictures and see our community in many different lights,” he said.


Historic Savannah Foundation, a leading nonprofit preservation and cultural institution, saves buildings, places, and stories that define Savannah’s past, present and future. Following its formation in 1955, the nonprofit organization started a Revolving Fund to save endangered historic properties – now totaling nearly 400 buildings – throughout several Savannah local historic districts. HSF is committed to continuing to build capacity within HSF’s operations, secure new financial resources, improve HSF’s image and visibility, and increase public policy efforts to protect Savannah’s historic districts.


For more information about HSF, please visit



For media inquiries, please contact Kristyn Fielding at 229-393-6457 or email or Hollie Barnidge at or 912-272-8651, Lesley Francis at or 912-429-3950 or the team at 912-417-LFPR (5377).