Born in Baltimore, Maryland, he entered the field of portrait photography as an apprentice for the Bachrach Photographic Studios. He soon was named Photographer-In-Chief, supervising the work of more than 50 Bachrach studios located across the nation.
In 1928, he went to Texas to establish Bachrach Studios in Dallas and Houston. In 1932, during the Great Depression, Gittings bought the two studios and proceeded to build them and his company into one of the country’s largest portrait operations.
Gittings’ photographic excellence in black and white portraits and advancements in color work, along with his ability to give back to the profession some of his expertise, brought him a great many professional honors and along with it a world-wide reputation among his peers and the general public.
Included in his honors and awards are past-president and George Harris Award, Professional Photographers of America; Fellowship, Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain; Fellowship, Photographic Society of America; Fellowship, American Society of Photographers; and First American Licentiate member, British Institute of Photography.