Fall Recap, Part 1

I’ve been terrible about keeping up with my blog this Fall! I apologize, but life has been pretty hectic. Now that my fiancé is out here and the wedding is getting closer, it’s become crunch time. But, despite all the craziness, I have still been able to get in some fun shoots.

I’m breaking my Fall recap into two posts. The 2nd post will be all Stoli photos, since I seem to have a million of those. This one will be certainly more eclectic!

Things have been so busy, I’m not sure where to start!

In September I photographed a wedding here in Columbus with the amazing Mrs. Anneka DeJong. It had been quite a while since my last wedding and I was a bit nervous, but the couple was great to work with and it ended up being a lot of fun! The ceremony and reception were at the Grand Valley Dale Ballroom. These are just a couple of my shots from the day. Its hard to pick just a few to show!

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

Father/Daughter Dance ©Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

Father/Daughter Dance © Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

Cake Cutting © Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

The First Dance © Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

The First kiss © Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Wedding Photographer © Holly Hildreth

The beautiful bride © Holly Hildreth 2013

I also had the opportunity to photograph a former coworker’s daughter, Peyton, for her 3rd birthday. We headed to Westerville’s Inniswood Metro Park and got some nice shots with the fall foliage.

Columbus Ohio Photographer © Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Photographer © Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Columbus Ohio Photographer © Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Of course I kept busy photographing basically anything and everything that caught my eye this Fall. I have entirely too many photos to choose from for this post, so this is just a little taste of what I was up to.

Carolina Mantis

Female Carolina Praying Mantis I found on my window © Holly Hildreth 2013

Carolina Mantis

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Westerville Ohio Photography

Inniswood Metro Park ©Holly Hildreth 2013

Also now that Andy is out here with me, I have someone to accompany me on adventures. There were lots of things I wanted to try out here, but never got around to, because they were not as fun to do alone. One thing I had been really wanting to see was Hocking Hills. Hocking Hills is a state Park that is Southeast of Columbus, in an area of Ohio that is considered to be a part of the Appalachians. It’s not mountainous, but definitely hilly country with tons of photo opportunities.

Hocking Hills photography

Devil’s Bathtub, Hocking Hills, Ohio ©Holly Hildreth 2013

Hocking Hills

©Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

My hiking buddies! © Holly Hildreth 2013

Hocking Hills

© Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

© Holly Hildreth 2013

The seasons change came way too fast for me. I hardly got in any Fall photos because I was so busy with everything else, but I made sure to get out there a few times anyway. Every year my mom asks for a  calendar of my photography for Christmas. Keeping that in mind throughout the year is always helpful in getting me out to take some scenic shots–that way come December I’m not scouring my hard drives, looking for something that could work.

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Outside our Condo © Holly Hildreth 2013

Sharon Woods Metro Park

Sharon Woods Metro Park © Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

Westerville Bike trail © Holly Hildreth 2013

Westerville Ohio Photographer

Everal Barn, Westerville, Ohio © Holly Hildreth 2013

Westerville Ohio Photography

Westerville © Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

©Holly Hildreth 2013

One last piece of good news: My SIXTH Hallmark card is on sale online currently. It can be purchase HERE

Here’s a sneak peak!

Holly Hildreth Hallmark Card

Stay tuned for Part 2, coming soon! It’s bound to be chock-full-o’-cuteness and Stoli photos!

All photos and content are © Holly Hildreth 2013. According to the DMCA, it is unlawful to use any copyrighted content without direct written consent. 

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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

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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.

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German Shepherd © Holly Hildreth 2013

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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!

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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!

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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

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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 | http://www.hhildrethphoto.com

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

Autumn’s Arrival

It’s been about a month since my last post, so I thought it was time to bring you some brand-new eye-candy. I have kept very busy with my job, and I now live in a new area of Columbus, so I haven’t done a lot of exploring/photo adventures lately. I do, however live about a mile from one of Columbus’s Metro Parks, and I have stopped by a few times on nice nights with Stoli in tow for a couple quick on-the-go photo shoots. I haven’t been able to shoot as much at work, so I need to do some shooting on my own to satisfy my inner photographer. The leaves are just changing now, so I hope to get out and take many more Fall pictures before the beautiful color is all gone.

Sharon Woods Metro Park © Holly Hildreth 2012

High Banks Metro Park
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Sharon Woods Metro Park © Holly Hildreth 2012

Sharon Woods Metro Park
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Sharon Woods Metro Park © Holly Hildreth 2012

Sharon Woods Metro Park
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Inniswood Metro Gardens

Inniswood Metro Gardens
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Fall foliage can make for some interesting black and whites
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio © Holly Hildreth 2012

Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio

Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Sunset at Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio

Sunset at Inniswood Metro Gardens, Westerville, Ohio
© Holly Hildreth 2012

…And what blog post would be complete without a few Stoi pictures. Since moving into my own place in Columbus, Stoli hasn’t had another dog to keep him company. He’s not a fan of having no partner in crime while I am gone during the day, but he finds ways to entertain himself, like sitting on top of the laundry basket, looking out the window, and half-barking at the people (and other dogs) who walk by.

And other times he just gets lazy

And other times he just gets lazy
© Holly Hildreth 2012

Since I really don’t know anyone yet, I don’t think I’ll really be celebrating Halloween like I did in Missouri, but while at the pet store, I saw a costume that I just had to get Stoli. Charlene Champion, who is one of my good friends from college, is obsessed with gnomes, so I couldn’t pass up this gnome costume, complete with an attached beard.

gnome corgi

© Holly Hildreth 2012

gnome corgi

© Holly Hildreth 2012

gnome corgi

© Holly Hildreth 2012

But of course if the gnome idea doesn’t work out, there’s always the classic ghost costume…

ghost costume, corgi

© Holly Hildreth 2012

All Images are © Holly Hildreth 2012. Do NOT use without direct written consent | http://www.hhildrethphoto.com

Movin’ on Up

Well, lots of things have happened since my last post, and instead writing of some nice introduction, I’m going to just jump right in.

My internship with McGraw-Hill Companies School Education Group ended August 10th. BUT, I signed a contract as an image specialist with them, so I am full-time now! During my internship I was subleasing a place in the Short North area of Columbus. My sublease ended September 1st, so I needed to find a new place. As just a heads-up, if you ever plan to move to the Columbus area, DO NOT do so when Ohio State is moving back. I checked out over 30 apartments, and all but 2 had waiting lists to get in backed up until the end of October. As a result I didn’t have a lot of choices for apartments. I ended up finding one–it’s more than I wanted to pay, but like I said, it was slim picking! I am now 10 miles closer to work which is nice, but it takes me twice as long to get to the office, which is not so nice.

Since I was subleasing, when I came out to Ohio in May, everything I brought fit in the trunk of my car. I only brought Stoli (plus his things,) my clothes, and a rubbermaid drawer for toilertries. This meant that moving into a new place, I needed to get all of my belongings out here to Ohio. The problem was that 1/2 of my stuff went home with my parents to Iowa when I graduated, and the other half stayed spread out between my boyfriend’s house and my friend’s garage. So, in order to recover my things, I took my very first plane ride (shocking, I know. I lived under a rock for 20-some years though,) back to Kansas City.

© Holly Hildreth 2012

The view on my connecting flight from Philadelphia to Kansas City. We wre flying above a rain storm.
© Holly Hildreth 2012

My first time flying was only mildly traumatic, but that’s another story. It was great to be back in Kansas City. Even though I had only been gone for four months, I missed it (well, mostly I missed the people.) My boyfriend worked every day save for two and was on the opposite sleep schedule from me, but it was so good to see him again! We were able to go to our favorite restaurant, Fogo de Chão on the Plaza in Kansas City. While we were there, I took a few pictures to remember KC by.

© Holly Hildreth 2012

Union Station, Kansas City, MO
© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

Union Station at sunset
© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

Liberty (WWI) Memorial
© Holly Hildreth 2012

The rest of the week was spent packing boxes and trying to see friends while I could, as I have no idea when I’ll be able to make it back to the area. One of my good friends adopted an English Mastiff named Baby-Girl. Although she’s gigantic, she’s a giant teddy bear, so of course I had to take a few photos.

© Holly Hildreth 2012

Baby-Girl
© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

© Holly Hildreth 2012

At the end of the week, my dad and uncle came down to Kansas City from Iowa with a trailer and we loaded up most of my stuff. The drive from Kansas City to Columbus is about 12 hours. With help, I was unable to move and unpack almost everything.

180 degree view of the kitchen and living room at my new place

The bathroom.

My new bedroom

I got crafty. I know it’s hard to see, but on the left I cut out the shape of the state of Ohio from a Columbus map. On the right we have the state of Missouri I cut out of a Warrensburg map, and the middle it says, “Home is where the heart is”.

Living room

Kitchen and breakfast bar

My door is on the left-hand side. I live under the stairs like a troll

My building. The bottom right is my little patio

One of the entrances to my apartment complex and the tennis courts

No Apartment is complete without a pool

Things are still a whirlwind. I have been super busy at work–I photographed Mitt Romney and President Obama before going to Missouri. I am trying to shoot outside of work so I have new photos to post. I’ll keep you updated.

All Photos and Content are © Holly Hildreth 2012 | hhildrethphoto.com

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

Life as a so-called, “Adult”

I started my third week of my internship with McGraw-Hill today, and I have to admit, it doesn’t seem like I’ve been here that long already. I’ve been moved out of Missouri going on 4 weeks now. The time has been flying by. During my first week of my internship, I was sent out to photograph an Asian Festival and Dragon Boat races. I can’t post the photos here as they are property of McGraw-Hill. I got SUPER sunburnt while out shooting, but it was really a unique experience. I am glad my job requires me to get out and explore Columbus, as I have seen a lot of neat places I wouldn’t have otherwise stumbled upon on my own. After the dragon boat races, I came back and photographed the park on my own time. (Since I wasn’t on the clock for McGraw-Hill, I am able to post these images here as I own the rights to them).

Proof that I really DID get sunburnt

Scioto River © Holly Hildreth 2012

Panoramic of Genoa Park, which is where the dragon boat races were held. The river you see is the Scioto River which runs through downtown Columbus.

Scioto River © Holly Hildreth 2012

Fountains at Genoa Park. Taken from the south side of the river, looking towards downtown.

The second week of my internship was busy with taking photos in the studio, shooting video on location, and doing a whole lot of editing and metadata entry. On May 31st, Stoli celebrated his 2nd birthday. When I got off work we walked downtown to Three Dog Bakery, which is a sweet shop making treats just for dogs. I got Stoli two cupcakes to celebrate.

Stoli's cupcake © Holly Hildreth 2012

Although they look good enough to eat, these treats are made specifically for dogs with pet-safe ingredients

Stoli's cupcake © Holly Hildreth 2012

At first Stoli wanted nothing to do with these treats. He turned his nose up at them…

Stoli's cupcake © Holly Hildreth 2012

Once he tasted the frosting, he changed his mind. He devoured the first cupcake and began licking the pavement for crumbs, so I decided to give him the 2nd then as well.

Stoli and cupcake © Holly Hildreth 2012

He was devastated when he “spilled” his cupcake. I flipped it back over and he was a happy camper. He inhaled the 2nd cupcake, and I’m not sure if he chewed or not. All-in-all, I think he was a happy birthday boy.

This past weekend I got to experience my first “Gallery Hop. I live in the Short North district of Columbus. The Short North is a very hip, artsy community. There are tons of shops, cafes, and art galleries everywhere. On the first Saturday of each month, all the shops and galleries open their doors and people explore the area. There is live entertainment, street art, musicians, food, etc. It goes from 4-10 (sometimes later,) but I walked around starting at 5pm, and I think I missed all the crowds. I heard later that it, “doesn’t get good until sundown”.

Short North © Holly Hildreth 2012

View form the Short North looking south

Shops in the Short North © Holly Hildreth 2012

I was glad I went, as I got to explore little shops I would have otherwise never stopped by.

Shops in the Short North © Holly Hildreth 2012

A small gardening store

Shops in the Short North © Holly Hildreth 2012

A gourmet chocolate store was too enticing. I had to leave quickly, otherwise I would have walked out of there dramatically heavier with a wallet that was much lighter.

The next day I decided to explore more of downtown Columbus. I was driving around and spotted an impressive building. As it turns out, it was the state capitol. I had fun checking it out and snapping a few shots.

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

Front of the Ohio Statehouse

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

A monument at The Capitol. It was a wall full of letters from Ohio soldiers that had been killed in action.

Ohio Statehouse © Holly Hildreth 2012

Looking northeast from the capitol

Bicentennial Park © Holly Hildreth 2012

Across the street from the statehouse is the Bicentennial Park, which is a nice multi-purpose green space.

Bicentennial Park © Holly Hildreth 2012

Panoramic of Bicentennial Park at dusk. Click the photo to see a larger version.

I know this post has been all over the place, but so much is happening so quickly that it’s hard to keep track of everything and then blog about it! That being said, to summarize: I’m really liking my job, Columbus is great–there’s so much to see! Things are going well here. I’ll try to keep everyone posted with what I am up to as often as I can.

Why I’ve Been Missing

I’ve been dreading writing this post, as I knew that there was no efficient way to summarize everything that’s been going on in the last couple months. As you may have already noticed, I have kind of disappeared for  while. It’s not because I wasn’t doing any new work, but rather because I have been overwhelmingly busy. I’ll try to summarize the best I can, as I’m sure many of you don’t want to read an anthology of my life.

To start, I “graduated” from the University of Central Missouri. I have that in quotes, as I don’t officially graduate until August, but I only have one credit hour to fulfill this summer. As a result, I was able to participate in the commencement ceremony this past Saturday. I graduated Magna Cum Laude (and still have a chance to graduate Summa Cum Laude, as they haven’t calculated my grades from this last semester into my final GPA.) Since I didn’t get my photography talent from my mother, here is a photo a friend, Andrew Mather, took of me becoming an official alumna.

Photo by Andrew Mather

Photo by Andrew Mather

The next big piece of news is that I accepted a photography internship at McGraw-Hill in Columbus, Ohio. I’ll be assisting in their photography department, shooting and cataloging images to be used in text books. It’s a 10-12 week program (depending on workload,) and it’s 40 hours a week. My first day is May 21st.

Everything is quite overwhelming. Today is my last day in Missouri, and it hasn’t really hit me yet that this may be one of the last times I will ever be here and see these people. I don’t really feel like a college graduate yet–I keep thinking I’ll just be back in August. It’s very surreal and bittersweet; It’s strange to be leaving this place, yet exciting to move forward and start the next stage of my life. I guess I get to be an adult now and learn scary words like: “mortgage,” and “401k”. I leave Missouri tomorrow, head to Iowa to see my family one last time, and then leave for Ohio on Friday 5/18.

In order to commemorate this place that I’ve called “home” for the last three years, I did a small photo excursion through the country, snapping a couple sunset pictures, getting into a patch of stinging nettles, and picking up some ticks along the way.

Sunset © Holly Hildreth 2012

 

Sunset © Holly Hildreth 2012

 

Sunset © Holly Hildreth 2012

 

Like I said, I’m trying to keep this short and sweet, so I’ll leave out all of the “oh my gosh, what am I doing,” panic out of here. I’ll try to keep you all updated on what I’m doing in Ohio, but I may not be able to post photos and what I’m working on in the internship, as McGraw-Hill retains rights to the images I create while at my internship. I’ll be able to put them in my portfolio, but they don’t want the images getting out before the textbook’s official publishing date.

So, until next time.

Two Kinds of Stoli

First off, I want to apologize for not posting in a month. Things have been absolutely hectic around here, and as a result, my blog got put on the back burner. (I’ll go into all the fine details in the next post. This post is mainly about showing some old work that got hidden in all the hustle ad bustle of this semester.)

In one of my last posts I promised you more Stoli pictures. Well, now I’m giving you two types of Stoli. The first type of Stoli is a last minute photo shoot in the studio. I had a model booked, but she didn’t show up, so I used my studio time to do one last Stoli shoot just for fun. Stoli has a love/hate relationship with the studio. On the one hand, he knows he gets a car ride, gets to see people who fawn over him in the equipment check out area and print lab, and if there’s anyone else in the studio while I’m shooting, they usually give him some belly rubs as well. Stoli also knows that the studio means he gets a ridiculous amount of treats and peanut butter straight from the jar. Now on the other hand, however, Stoli knows he’s got to be a good boy in the studio and listen to me while I take forever getting “the shot”. He is also subjected to being dressed up, and he is definitely not a fan of that. All things considered, he usually likes getting his photo taken. Our dog is a bit of a diva. So without further ado, here is our little ham.

Stoli's unhappy birthday © Holly Hildreth 2012

Stoli’s not excited for his impending 2nd birthday on May 31st.

We have the world's most patient dog © Holly Hildreth 2012

We have the world’s most patient dog…

Happy Birthday, Butthead.  © Holly Hildreth 2012

Happy Birthday, Butthead.

My favorite shot of the session   © Holly Hildreth 2012

My favorite shot from the session.

Surprise!! © Holly Hildreth 2012

Surprise!!

Stoli belongs in Grease © Holly Hildreth 2012

Stoli belongs in Grease. Also, despite looking angry, he’s actually just licking peanut butter off the roof of his mouth.

Cool Kid Stoli © Holly Hildreth 2012

Now onto the other type of Stoli. For one of the last assignments in my advertising class, we had to shoot something and make a billboard advertisement out of it. I wanted to do a product since my portfolio has a lot of animals and people but is thin in the still life part, (not because I don’t enjoy shooting product! It’s because my style of photography is so clean and often minimalist and many times advertisements require a well-designed and hand-built set, which I struggle with on occasion.) Since I am a dreadful cook, I decided to just buy something to shoot instead. I also wanted to try something a bit different. I found flashing LED light sitting around at my boyfriend’s house and decided to use it. It was originally a part of his roommate’s beer glass that lit up and flashed, but I just took the bottom part and played around with it. Here are some of the results:

Before the party light  © Holly Hildreth 2012

Before the party light

After playing with the party light  © Holly Hildreth 2012

After playing with the party light.

Favorite shot of the session.  © Holly Hildreth 2012

Favorite shot from the session. © Holly Hildreth 2012

For the ad we needed to design a piece that was 12’x48′. This is such an odd ratio that it was really difficult to design something that looked half-way decent. Also, we were limited to ten words or less of text, as when you’re driving down the interstate, you only have 8 seconds to read something. We had to design absolutely everything on the billboard from the image to the slogan and beyond. Here’s my submission:

Stoli ad  © Holly Hildreth 2012

Stay tuned for a big update on what’s going on in my life and more photos!

All Images  © Holly Hildreth 2012 | http://www.hhildrethphoto.com

My Love/Hate Relationship with Photoshop

Photoshop is probably the greatest asset and one of the biggest downfalls of photography. On the positive side, it allows you to fix anything and everything that might be wrong with a photo. Dust on your sensor, no problem–Spot Healing Brush to the rescue! Unwanted items in your shot? Never fear, that’s what the clone stamp was made for! But on the flip side, any amateur can take a mediocre photo and jazz it up in photoshop. The only thing that deters some amateurs from using Photoshop is its mass complexity. They’re much more comfortable messing around on sites like Piknik.com, where you don’t need any photography training to edit your photo. Photoshops absurd price is another deterrent, but only to those who either don’t know how to or are too honest to pirate.

As a photographer, you’re taught to get everything right in-camera. The phrase that gets slung at you in the photo department is, “You’re only making money when you’re behind the camera. When you’re wasting time editing in Photoshop, you’re losing money”. It makes sense, as when you charge a client to do a shoot for them, you charge for the images, not the countless hours you spend in a darkened room, hunched over a computer screen.

So why all this rambling about wonderful, horrible Photoshop? Well, because I’m an addict. My favorite thing to do is take pictures, but my 2nd favorite is to spend hours editing them. Sometimes I get more excited for the editing than I did for the shoot. As a result, I signed up for advanced digital imaging at UCM this semester. Mostly we’ve been focusing on the artistic side of Photoshop. At first I was upset, as I thought it’d be more important to learn the intricacies of photo editing not covered in any of my other Photoshop courses, but now toward the end of the semester, I am beginning to have fun with the assignments.

Today we were assigned to do a “Levitation Portrait”. I have had some people ask me how I pulled these photos off, so here’s the short explanation. We had to take a photo of someone in an odd position, balancing on a chair. After we took that shot, where we were to remove the person and chair and take a photo of the scene empty. Through the magic of photoshop and a lot of squinting at the screen while masking the two photos together, we were able to make images look like someone was levitating in a scene. Normally you’re supposed to use a small stool, but I didn’t have one, so I had to use a folding chair, which proved to be much more work for me to do in Photoshop. I actually really enjoyed putting these together, and  I think this may be an idea that I continue to explore. Here are a couple of my self-portraits.  (If you’re interested in the more technical version of how to create these images, let me know.)

Levitation © Holly Hildreth 2012

Levitation © Holly Hildreth 2012

Another Photoshop Leviathan I tackled today was my ad campaign series for my advertising class. An ad campaign is a series of similar-looking images that are all trying to pitch the same thing. Each ad is different, but as a whole, they are cohesive and resemble one another. For my ad campaign, I did a series for Petfinder.com. For those of you not familiar with the site, Petfinder is a website animal shelters and rescue groups use to post pets looking for homes. I tried to make my series lighthearted and fun and went with the idea of “personal ads”. Here are my 3 ads.

Campaign series © Holly Hildreth 2012

TEXT READS:
Name: Macy
Likes: Long walks on the beach, cuddling on the couch, rolling in roadkill.
Dislikes: Thunder, the mailman, cats.
Could YOU be my soulmate?

TEXT READS:
Name: Stoli
Likes: Table food, commandeering dirty socks, and the poodle down the street
Dislikes: Being called fat, the strange man who brings the pizza, and the vacuum
Could YOU be my soulmate?

Campaign series © Holly Hildreth 2012

TEXT READS:
Name: Harley
Likes: Car rides with the windows down, peanut butter, and playing catch
Dislikes: Squirrels, high-pitched noises, and bath time.
Could YOU be my Soulmate?

If you couldn’t tell, I spent all night on Photoshop, but I consider it time well spent! It’s not work if you enjoy doing it.

Oh, and if you didn’t notice, my URL has changed! I bought a domain, so there is no more .wordpress! It’s just plain old http://www.hhildrethphoto.com . (If you type the old URL : http://www.hhildrethphoto.wordpress.com, it’ll still route you here, don’t worry!)

All Images © Holly Hildreth 2012 | hhildrethphoto.com

Spring Break, Part I: Des Moines

UCM’s Spring Break was this past week, and my boyfriend, Andrew, and I had big plans for a busy break. The first stop on our trip was in Des Moines to see my sister, brother-in-law and new nephew. Kristin wanted new pictures of Cade, and I hadn’t taken any since he was born. Cade’s 1-month “birthday” is today (3/27/12). I have never photographed newborns in a home environment before, so this proved challenging. Cade was not a happy camper. He does not like to be undressed, placed on his tummy, or be left somewhere where he’s not being held. Since Cade was so fussy, I tried to not use any flash and only utilize natural light. This made the process more difficult, because my style of photography normally utilizes flash (either direct or bounced off something). I find that without using flash for a fill you get a lot of contrast and dark shadows, which isn’t the best for newborns.
Kristin had a lot of ideas of what she wanted, but Cade had other plans. We did a few outfit changes and shot quickly. If Cade doesn’t like his Aunt Holly now, what’s it going to be like when he’s actually old enough to know that every time I come over I make him take pictures?

View the whole set here: HERE

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade's first St. Patrick's Day

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

One Unhappy Easter Bunny

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Greg and Cade

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Kristin with Cade

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

Cade Kapusinski © Holly Hildreth 2012

All Image © Holly Hildreth 2012 | hhildrethphoto.wordpress.com