Thursday, February 19, 2009

WPPI 2009

Sandy & I returned yesterday from our 1st trip to WPPI and this will not be our last...this will be a yearly pilgrimage.
For thise of you who don't know, WPPI is THE event for Wedding and Portrait Photographers essence, it is a massive trade show/learning/networking/and gathering of the vibes for those of us in the photo industry.
I am so grateful that Sandy was able to get time off from work to spend more than two lousy days at this event and get to see the (almost) entire lecture series and trade show. Sadly, she got sick as soon as we got there, but she trooped along and came away as inspired as me. This would not have been the same for me without her. Thank you ACUSD!
Where do I begin in describing this? we saw so many amazing photographers and learned so much, it is all a blur of information overload. All I can do is say thank you too all the people who put this together and spoke. I will miss a ton of deserving folks in the remainder of this post, so I'll just want to thank everyone who spoke here & shared their knowledge and experience to us all.
The standout speaker for me was 1st and foremost Yervant. His lecture was purely inspirational. Sure, he was ultimately promoting his new album design collection with Graphi Studio but he put on an amazing show, with images accompanied by a live Russian violinist:

At the end of Yervant's presentation he premiered his latest fusion based slide show.
For thise of you who don't know, the term Fusion is a buzz word for the usage of photos and video in a wedding slide show presentation that is now allowed by the introduction of HD video into digital SLR cameras. A problem for photographers with video is that we often love to shoot in a vertical orientation. Video limits us to the standard horizontal format. Yervant circumvented this issue by 'inventing' vertical video by simply importing video into Photoshop, and rotating the video file 90 degrees...then showing the video along with still images...and still images morphing into video images. This must be seen to be understood, just let me say that our jaws dropped as this was the most amazing wedding imagery that I have ever seen and Yervant has latched-on to this "buzz word" and forged the trail for this new genre.
Running a razor close 2nd place for our favorite presentation was fellow Aussie photographer Jerry Ghionis. Jerry is a master speaker, teacher and entertainer. The dude is slick and funny with his presentation.
I'll just say that throughout everything we learned this week about posing, Jerry provided the icing on the cake by providing clever tricks and one-liners to loosen-up your photo subjects that I can't wait to put to use.
He's also a quite friendly guy:

I guess I am quite the photo nerd...I am almost constantly listening to podcasts & blog-stalking some of the top shooters in this business and it was amazing to see these people all around in one location. To see the likes of Yervant, Dennis Reggie, Joe Buissink, Bambi Cantrell, Mike Colon and tons more just walking around and easily approachable is awesome.
We only went to one party this year with Sandy being sick, but had a nice time atthe raging party that Becker threw down at the Real World suite in the Palms hotel.
I want to thank Becker for putting this on and not giving me grief for bringing an extra person, Sandy (long story). Becker's party was the hot ticket in town and speace was limited. I told Becker that Sandy wasn't coming before she got her time off and I think I ticked him off...Becker...if you read this I am so sorry and want to say thanks for being a gracious host.

When in Vegas, I always take time to visit my sis, Rhonda. Actually, we also brought along my mom & nephew to visit Rhonda & stay with her. due to the insnity of all the vents at WPPI, I sadly didn't have a lot of visitation time, but I did get these cute shots of her & her new baby girl ;-) The bitch needs a saddle! (the dog, not my sis!!!)

Some other highlights? watching Denni$ Reggie..the $50k photographer himself, give a demo at the microsoft booth:

Learning some posing techniques by the great Hanson Fong at the Canon booth:

..and briefly meeting with some very inspirational Dane Sanders and Mike Larson, who must have thought it was so cool to see me in the front row of his presentation that he took a photo:

We are already looking forward to and planning for next year's WPPI.

Friday, February 13, 2009


Sandy & I will be attending the WPPI show in Vegas this coming week. I am particularly excited that Sandy has taken some vacation time to stick around a few days as I was originally planning on doing most of this myself. We will be attending numerous platform discussions on everything you need to know to run a photography business and then some, while networking with thousands of other photographers.
I will be posting updates via Twitter and Facebook for this who care to follow.
Stay tuned...

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Not on-board with Amtrak

This is funny, but true... View on:

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Workin' the neighbors

So this weekend we had no plans in store, photographically speaking. Yet we were anxious to play with a large softbox I recently purchased. We currently don't have a studio, but that's OK because our aim is to create location portraiture that with studio-like lighting. So, we wrangled our neighbor's kids and tortured them for an hour to get these results. They were very good sports and excellent models.