Spotlight on Stoli

I promised in my previous post that I’d create an entry just about Stoli’s photo shoots in the last 6 months. Well, there are too many photos to post so I’m going to just add a few of my favorites.

Stoli continues to be my photographic go-to. Previous to moving into this new condo, I almost exclusively photographed him in the studio. I’ve been trying to push myself to do more mixed lighting of flash and sunlight as well as on-location lighting around the house. I also use him to test out new techniques, like high-speed photography.

I’ve got him so conditioned to recognize that photos mean treats that as soon as I snap the clasps to open up my camera bag, he literally comes running. It’s almost hard to photograph other things while he’s around as he thinks it’s his time to shine. I actually had a set-up of roses I was doing macro shots on, and he kept putting his head between me and the subjects as if to say, “hello, I’m here. Why are you photographing that? I’m the real star here!”

Anyway, here’s your serving Stoli.

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Catching a treat

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Stoli loves mistletoe

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Losing a snowball fight…

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Catching a treat

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Modeling our rings

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

Columbus, Ohio pet photography by Holly Hildreth

There will be more Stoli shots, but if need another strong fix between now and then, you can always stop by my flickr for more photos: hhildrethphoto flickr

All photos are © Holly Hildreth |

Spring has Sprung

I named this blog post “Spring has Sprung,” as I feel like I have been really busy photographing all the seasonal flora around lately, but perhaps a more accurate title should have been, “Hey, I’ve totally been slacking with this blog, so here’s 4 months’ worth of Stoli photos”.

I’ve been extremely busy with work and wedding planning these last couple of months. With the wedding, I am actually really far ahead of schedule. That’s one good thing about being 1,000 miles away from everyone you know–you have all the time in the world to plan with no distractions. I have the wedding and reception venues as well as a photographer booked (Photographer was obviously the most important part, haha), I hand made all the table decorations, and most recently bought my wedding dress!!

My parents came out to visit me earlier this spring. It was great to see them again, and I didn’t realize how much I missed my mom’s cooking! They were only in town for four days, so we didn’t get a ton of time to hang out, but it was still nice to be together again. They loved the Ohio weather (it was cold–50-60 degrees everyday, but they left snow to come out here, so they were sweating while I was in my winter coat still!) I took them to Inniswood Metro Park one nice evening and they walked around with me while I took some spring foliage photos.

Tulips © Holly Hildreth 2013

Tulips © Holly Hildreth 2013











Besides photographing the spring flowers, I have been trying to shoot other subjects to widen my portfolio. I still don’t really know anyone out here, so Stoli is usually my go-to model. I recently discovered a dog park about a 1/2 mile from my house, so I started taking Stoli (and my camera) there after work a few nights a week. I always get the weirdest looks from people there, but it’s fun and challenging to try and photograph new dogs.






German Shepherd © Holly Hildreth 2013


I’ve also started volunteering to photograph homeless animals at the local shelter. It can be quite challenging as some of the animals are feral or came from abusive situations. I am happy to do what I can though, to help them get adopted. Plus, it makes me really thankful to have such a patient model waiting for me at home!




And of COURSE I have been photographing Stoli, and he’s been taking it like a champ. I’m sure there’s a large amount of people who think I’m the “crazy dog lady” because of all the photos I take of Stoli. The thing is Stoli loves it (he thinks it’s his job,) and it’s a huge stress reliever for me, so I’ll keep on doing it!












Our Mock "Save-the-Date" cards. My Fiance wasn't too impressed, but the Stoli was just too cute, so I had to share

Our Mock “Save-the-Date” cards. My Fiance wasn’t too impressed to see a giant picture of Stoli rather than us, but I thought was just too cute, so I had to share





Stoli’s faster than a speeding corn dog.

One other piece of good news: I have another Hallmark Card! I don’t know for sure when it’s coming out, so I will pass the details on to you later, but I know for sure it’ll be available to buy online this Summer. As far as an in-store date, I am unsure. They haven’t told me whether it’ll be distributed in stores yet, so I’ll keep you posted.

All Content is © Holly Hildreth 2013 |

No Content may be taken from this page without direct written consent. 

Democrats, Dogs, and 9 more Days

I’ve got nine days remaining on my internship, and it has been 2 weeks since my last post, so I thought I was due for another installment. Time has been blurring by–I have no idea where the month of July has gone. It seems like just a couple weeks ago I was saying a tearful goodbye to everyone in Missouri, and now I’m getting ready to say goodbye to Ohio. I’m bummed to have to leave as I have loved my experience, but it will be nice to see some familiar faces again.

I’ve covered a variety of subjects in the last two weeks–some of them you may just recognize!

Vice President Joe Biden

Vice President Joe Biden

First Lady Michelle Obama

First Lady Michelle Obama

Atticus the cat

A Pulley and weight on a grandfather clock

Oscar the Poodle

A man shears a sheep at the Ohio State Fair

some things are just better in black and white

A double-dapple dachshund

A Doberman does the weave poles during an agility competition

Bokeh the Frisbee Dog

A mother sheep and her newborn lamb

I’m headed out almost every day this week with a lot of new shoots lined up. Stay tuned for new photos.

Photos © Holly Hildreth/McGraw-Hill Companies 2012

T-Minus 4 Weeks and counting

As the title suggests, I am drawing frighteningly near the end of my internship with McGraw-Hill Companies. I honestly cannot believe it’s already been two months, and now there’s only less than four weeks remaining. What direction my life will take after those four weeks are up, I have no idea, (which is absolutely terrifying to put it mildly).

Anyway, on to less depressing stuff. I have been BUSY! Since my last update, I have been working hard on a large variety of photo shoots. Like I mentioned in my last installment, I am able to post a couple images from my shoots as a part of my portfolio. McGraw-Hill Companies own the rights to these images though. I can’t post all my photos, and there are some shoots I can’t show you at all, so here’s just a little sampling of what I’ve been up to since my last update.

My parents and uncle came out to visit me during the first week of July. It was really nice to see them again, and fun to actually have someone I know here to talk to. I had to work during their visit, but we were able to combine some of my work trips with family time, which was nice. On the 2nd day they were here, we met my sister and brother-in-law (who were visiting my brother-in-law’s family in the Cleveland area). We met at Mansfield, Ohio, which is half-way for both of us. My mom and sister took my nephew shopping while my dad, uncle, brother-in-law and I toured the Ohio State Reformatory, better known as the prison where Shawshank Redemption was filmed. I actually own the rights to these images as I didn’t shoot them for work.

© Holly Hildreth 2012

Looking down the row of empty cells


© Holly Hildreth 2012

An actual escape attempt by inmates. They tried tunneling out of the chapel.


Of Course I had to snap a picture of my nephew!


I had to spend some time in the office, but I was then able to go with my parents to the United States Air Force Museum in Dayton, Ohio. Work was happy, as I was able to photograph things for them while spending time with my family. It was a win-win. Museums are pretty difficult to photograph, though. You have a problem with people standing in the way of your shot and you can’t arrange the objects the way you want to. Always a source of pain for photographers!

Naval Medal of Honor



The next morning my parents, uncle, and I took off for Niagara Falls. None of us had been there before, so we were all pretty excited to see the area. I decided that a photographer could easily spend a week there and still not get all the shots they wanted. When we got there the first night, we did a little exploring and my parents and I went into Canada. I was entirely too excited about that. It was the first time I had left the country. I got a passport  5 years ago and never used it until now. Hindsight, I feel un-American for going to Canada on the 4th of July.

Me and the American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and Horseshoe Falls in the background. This is on the Canada side looking towards the US


My parents on Rainbow Bridge, which is the pedestrian bridge that connects the US and Canada.

I spent about 90% of the vacation taking pictures. I wasn’t brave enough to take my camera on the tours with us, as you got soaking wet, and I didnt’ want to risk it, so I took a few images on my mom’s cheap point-and-shoot. I REALLY wish I had brought my good camera though, because the views were absolutely incredible. Next time I’ll know better.

Downtown Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, at dusk. The Skylon Tower is on the right side of the frame.


Fireworks over Horseshoe Falls


The edge of Horseshoe Falls at sunset


Looking down through the mist at the Hurricane Deck at the base of the Falls


Niagara Falls and the Maid of the Mist Observation Tower at sunset



After Niagara Falls, my parents headed home and it was back to work for me. I have been shooting a ton of different things, so instead of listing out everything that I’ve been working on, I’m just going to throw down a few images for your viewing pleasure.

Yellow-Naped Amazon Parrot


Flagship Detroit at the Vectren Dayton Air show


Skywriting at the Vectren Dayton Air Show


Madison County Fair



A cowboy prays before riding a bull


Bull-riding in Ohio–who would have thought?!


Anyway, there are images I WISH I could post, but unfortunately can’t. Stay tuned, as I will hopefully have more shoots to share with you soon.

A close encounter of the Feline kind

Today was one of the rare times where I didn’t have a massive amount of homework waiting for me when I got out of class. After Wedding and Location finished up at 5, I checked out a Canon 24mm Tilt-Shift lens and a Canon 580X ii Speedlite flash unit. I didn’t have anything particular in mind when I checked them out, I just wanted to familiarize myself with them more before I actually have to use them in the field or for an assignment. I went over to let Stoli out and decided that he could be my test subject. Stoli was NOT a fan of the flash and would whimper every time it went off, so that was short lived. I also had a hard time getting him to sit still long enough for me to manually focus the tilt-shift lens. After getting frustrated, I broke out my trusty 70-200mm f/2.8 lens and did some action shots. No sooner had I put on the lens then a stray cat came wondering into the yard. Stoli has never had an up-close encounter with any cats before, so he went berserk. There are a few stray cats that hang around the house every so often. The other night I let stoli out and one of them scampered out from under the deck, and he chased after it until I called him back. Well today this cat just froze and hissed, so Stoli got the opportunity to get as close as he dared. The cat didn’t have claws, so it must belong to someone. I was worried that Stoli would get hurt since the cat was bigger than him, but I figured he would learn. Stoli wanted to go up to the cat and lick it, but the cat would not have that. As soon as stoli would get close, he would swat at him and start hissing. Stoli took this as a game, so as soon as the cat swatted, Stoli took off running around the yard, doing circle laps around me and the cat for a few minutes before coming back for another attempt. Needless to say, he was pooped after it was all said and done. I brought Stoli inside for a water break, and must not have gotten the back door all the way shut, because as I was petting him, I hear a “meow” from the hallway, and there was the stray orange kitty! I felt bad for the poor thing putting it back outside. It huddled up against the house for warmth. I always feel sorry for animals in the winter. (Granted it’s not terribly cold here today, but it was only in the 50’s, and it will only get colder from here.)

Also, I want to apologize for posting so many things about Stoli. I am trying to be pretty regular about keeping a blog. I drug my feet so much with this blog for the first year of its existence, but I realize now that it can be a really powerful tool. Keeping up with the blog requires me to go out and shoot outside of class and its projects. I most often find myself shooting the dog, because he’s always there to sit for me, and his quirky personality makes me try hard to capture his goofy side. So, I’m sorry if you’re sick of dog posts, but it’s really the best way to get me into photo-blogging

Anyway, enough said. Here are some shots from the evening.