About the Photographer
Welcome to HHG Photography!
I would like to tell you a little about myself and about my studio, HHG Photography. I came to photography as a second career having owned and run a gift shop since 1993. I have a Bachelor of Science in Textiles and Clothing and finished all the course work for my Master of Arts of Merchandising, Apparel and Textiles. You may ask, "Where does photography fit into this background?" Well, photography has always been a part of my life. Growing up my parents were always making home movies of my sister and me with grainy reels of movie film. My father always had a nice camera and my parents have hundreds of slides of us in our Easter dresses, sitting in a pumpkin patch at Halloween, pictures as a record of our history was always present growing up. My Mother always "set up" pictures by clearing a space in a room in our house, setting up scenes with our little rocking chair, or having us kneel down and pick flowers in our Easter dresses in the front yard.
I received my first good point and shoot Olympus film camera when I was in high school and I kept up the tradition of recording the history of my friends and me in high school and college during special events, vacations and day to day living. I think photography has always been in my blood.
In 1993 my husband and I started a gift shop called "Holli's Housewarming, Gifts for the Home." Just like the name said, I primarily sold home goods and gifts. I loved this business, but as many small businesses in small towns do, I went through a slow period when a large shopping center opened in Lexington, very close to Paris. At this same time, the photographer who had always taken my children?s pictures decided to leave the photography business. At first, I bought his medium format camera and lenses. I originally thought this would be a great way to continue my love of photography by having a better camera to use to photograph my children. Then, I bought his studio lighting and other equipment, with the goal of expanding the gift shop into an online store and maybe even a catalog business. I thought with this equipment, I would be able to use my merchandising skills to photograph products for the gift shop website. As word got around town that I had bought this equipment, I started receiving phone calls for photography work. I tried it and found that I loved the creativity of photography so much more than running the gift shop. Over the last fifteen years, I have gradually closed the gift shop and expanded the photography business until now that is my primary focus with HHG Photography.
Over the last few years, I have taken countless classes in photography to hone my skills in lighting, posing, digital imaging and the business aspects of photography. I have taken classes and attended seminars to help me in all aspects of photography. I primarily devote my skills to maternity, babies, children, family and High School Seniors. I am also available to photograph a limited number of weddings. I am not just a photographer, but a recorder of history. I am able to join my customers as friends during the happiest of times. I celebrate new life with maternity and baby photography. I am privileged to photograph babies and children to commemorate their birthdays. I enjoy times of wonder with children interacting with our live Easter Bunny and record the wonder in their eyes as they tell Santa and Mrs. Clause what they would like for Christmas. I am making family history by photographing family groups whether to celebrate the family with their new baby or by photographing a family whose children are getting older with missing teeth or with a pre-teen's big smile with braces showing. I am there to take a family's portrait whose oldest child is going off to college...or war. I am the history recorder for so many happy times, but then also with some sad times as well. I have unfortunately seen my portraits now being used in obituaries, both sorrowful, whether it be of a grandfather, a mother whose teenage daughters have lost her much too young, or a baby taken so unexpectedly and heart wrenchingly from her parents.
Photography is so important to our lives. It is what people will take first from their burning home, the record of the beautiful wedding when the wedding cake has long ago been eaten and gone, a record of history to pass down to their children, and to look at in quiet moments to serve as a happy reminder of their lives.
Now that I have given you a bit of my history, I would like to invite you to let me share my gift for photography with you and your family. Don't wait for the perfect moment or when you have lost ten pounds to take that family picture. Don't wait until your twelve year old gets her braces off to have that perfect photograph. Now is the time to record your history, for tomorrow this moment will be gone. As my Mom has said, "I thought I looked so awful in that picture. I thought my hair looked bad, I could have been thinner in that picture taken twenty years ago... if only I could look that good now!" Sieze the day! I hope that I can count you as my client and friend and that you will let me help record the history of your family which is something that I so enjoy!
Holli H. Gibson
The Art of Photography