As I write this I find myself still recovering from our whirlwind trip to Las Vegas for the 30th annual WPPI conference and trade show. This was the first year that both Spring and I attended. I knew that we were going to have late night and early morning, have our brains stuffed with information and inspiration and have a non stop schedule. I guess I just wasn't prepared for how tired I would be afterward! I am looking forward for tonight to go to bed early and just rest. Hopefully tomorrow will be a new day of energy!
There were some great highlights to our trip. To many to write them all down, but Ill try to recap the very best of our time in Vegas.
The first thing I found to love was our little window seat in our room. It really wasn't a window seat but it was just wide enough to sit out and watch the world go by outside. It was a great place to retreat from all the hustle and bustle of the conference. It also provided awesome views of the surrounding mountains.
Thanks to Becker we had the opportunity to have our head shots taken just outside the hotel. In just an hour Becker managed to photograph a bunch of photographers eagerly wanting to have their head shot taken by him. He was patient, funny and moved things along smoothly. I can't wait to see the photos!
Monday morning was the first platform class to attend. We chose to go to Jerry Ghionis' talk and it was a FANTASTIC way to start off the week of learning. His presentation was top notch and offered so much insight and information. I can't wait to take what I learned about album design and apply to my couples' wedding albums!
On Tuesday morning, instead of going to an early morning class, Spring and I decided to attend one on one sessions. The first one we went to was with the Youngrens, a talented couple out of California that I have been following for about a year. I was SO excited be finally to meet these two. They were so friendly and generous with their time and knowledge. We talked about workflow, business books, life, portfolios and more. Even Dane Sanders stop by to say hello. It was such a great way to connect with other photographers on a more intimate and personal level!
After we hung out with Jeff and Erin, we headed over to a Q&A session with Showit where Katelyn James and Nick Haskins welcomed a handful of photographers and talked life, photography and business. I've followed Katelyn for about a year, partly because her images are beautiful, partly because she has beautiful red hair, like me! The night before, while waiting for Jasmine Star to begin her presentation, I turned around to find Katelyn sitting right behind me! I immediately introduced myself and we began chatting. She invited Spring and I to come her Showit Q&A and I am so glad we had the chance to attend! Again it was great to be able to connect with other photographers on a more personal level
Another highlight: the [B] School Party at Mandalay Bay. Here is Spring and I enjoying ourselves:)
Look who we found:) Becker!
As part of WPPI, besides the conference, there is a three day TWO room trade show. While we were wandering the trade show floor we ran into several photographers that I love. The first person we caught up with Jessica Claire who was at her Shootsac Booth. She was a sweetheart and put up with my crazy blog stalker ways!
We also caught up with the Boudoir Divas at their booth just a few more down. I LOVE these ladies and was so excited to get to meet and chat with them in person!
Last but not least, I met these two lovely ladies during a Photographers Unite meeting Wednesday morning. I've been following Jamie Delaine and Melissa Jill for the past year or so and when I saw their lovely faces I bee lined right to them. They were very gracious with me and I got a photo with them.
WPPI is a great place to learn. But more than just a place to learn it is a place to connect. Meeting with these photographers gave me just as much or more than the classes I attended. I got to meet, shake hands with, hug, and laugh with people I only knew previously through the internet. I can't wait for next year to reconnect with those I met this year and to meet a whole new slew of photographers as well. Here's to building relationships!