Sarah Hadley was born in Boston and studied both art history and photography at Georgetown University and the Corcoran College of Art in Washington, DC. She spent time in her 20’s studying and working at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and the Biennale in Venice, Italy, where she first started photographing seriously. She worked at the National Gallery of Art and the Library of Congress and as a photojournalist for a newspaper in Virginia before moving to Chicago in 1996, where she founded the Filter Photo Festival. During her time in Chicago, she received Illinois Arts Council and Chicago Artist Grants, as well as several Fellowships to the Ragdale Foundation. She collaborated with Susan Tillett, then the Director of Ragdale, on a book called The Ragdale House Speaks, which was published in 2012. In 2008, she moved to Los Angeles to photograph the Time Out Los Angeles Guidebook.
Recently, Hadley’s photographs have been exhibited at the Lishui Photo Festival (China), Fotofever (Paris), PhotoLA, the Worldwide Photography Biennial (Buenos Aires) and the Ballarat Festival (Australia), as well in galleries and museums around the US. Her work is held in museums, corporate & private collections, has been published in Photo District News(PDN), The Oxford American, B&W Magazine, SHOTS, Lenscratch.com and The Sun and been licensed for use in numerous books, magazines and websites. In 2017, Hadley was named one of the top 200 by Critical Mass.