Tag Archives: WPPI

We’re BACK!

24 Feb

Betties return from Vegas!

It’s back to the east coast for the Betties who attended WPPI - and we’ve got so much to share! To say that the tradeshow and conference was phenomenal would be a gross understatement – with amazing speakers, classes, new products and enthusiastic photogs everywhere, it was truly a remarkable experience.

Although we had hoped to update posts real-time on all that was happening, we ran into major snafoos with internet at the Signature Grand so we’ve compiled our thoughts on the experience and plan to roll it out on the blog in the coming weeks!

Be on the lookout for:

  • Betties sharing their personal experiences
  • Hot product reviews from the tradeshow floor
  • Snappy Hour recap – Vegas Style!
  • Tips to live by on work/life balance, creativity and business/marketing

    So stick around as we decompress and reflect upon one of the most exciting trips in the world of photography!

    Explore off-beat Vegas!

    19 Feb

    Killer gambling, world-class dining, shopping galore, luxurious spas, theme parks, aquariums, round-the-clock places to get hitched… Las Vegas offers limitless fun for all ages!

    Hopefully you’ll find some time to steal away from WPPI and enjoy this sinfully fun city. If you do, we’ve got a few interesting, wacky, off-the-beaten path deas on where to go that are geared more towards you creative types:


    Legendary Downtown Vegas

    Where all the glitz began. Have a drink fireside at the Peppermill, or dine at Golden Steer Steakhouse, circa 1958, once frequented by Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr.
    (Shuttles available. Or rent a car to explore.)

    The Liberace Museum

    Neon and rhinestones. Need we say more? (closed Mondays)

    Neon Boneyard

    Where Neon goes to be even more fabulous. Oldest signs circa 1940. (Reservations required. Make them in advance; you won’t be the only one interested.)

    Pinball Hall of Fame

    10,000 square feet of good, clean fun, for pocket change. Free Admission

    Lake Mead

    Instead of Red Rocks and the Grand Canyon, check out the source of The Bellagio’s fountains and The Wynn’s waterfall.


    Bathhouse Spa

    Zen minimalism. A four-hour champagne body-wrap/facial/man-pedi. And a hangover recovery detox. Wow.

    Luv It Frozen Custard

    A Vegas sweet spot since the seventies. Sundaes, cones, shakes, malts and floats made with fresh custard made daily.


    The Attic

    “First rate second hand.” The worlds’ largest vintage clothing store. (Dozens more, plus antiques here.)


    Vintage Eames and so much more. The home store to make all others weep.

    Eat & Drink

    Big Mama’s Rib Shack and Soul Food

    “Honey, if the Colonel could have fried chicken like Big Mama, he would have been a General.” Enough said.

    Double Down Saloon
    Originator of the Bacon Martini…this dive bar is known as “The Happiest Place on Earth.” A far cry from the Disneyfied Strip.

    Hofbräu Haus

    A Vegas legend. Every day’s Oktoberfest starting daily at 11am! (Reservations recommended. Hours: Sun-Thurs: 11 am – 11 pm, Fri-Sat: 11 am – Midnight)

    WPPI Platform Picks: Post Production & Business

    18 Feb

    Only a fraction of our time as photographers is actually spent behind the lens; the majority is taken up with business-related tasks and post production. If you’re looking to streamline or implement new processes, or are just curious about new ways of doing things, there’s a lot of great vendors, companies and classes at WPPI that can lend a hand. Here’s our picks for Platform classes that are sure to teach you a thing or two!


    Sal Cincotta

    What? Creating Wedding Packages that Sell
    When? February 20, 12:00-2:00 pm
    Why? Pricing, packages, communication, profit, consumer behavior

    Julieanne Kost

    What? Harnessing the Power of Lightroom 3 Develop Module
    When? February 20, 12:00-2:00 pm
    Why? Adobe Lightroom 3, edit, enhance, stylistic effects, seamless integration with Adobe Photoshop CS5


    What? The [b]ig Picture
    When? February 20, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? run a successful boutique wedding photography studio, referrals, business


    Greg Gibson

    What? Lightroom 3 for Wedding and Portrait Photographers
    When? February 21, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? business, pricing, sales, ordering, working with your client, close the sale, achieving your financial goals

    Sarah Petty

    What? Sell Your Butt Off
    When? February 21, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Adobe Lightroom 3, workflow, time saving, nondestructive editing, Adobe Photoshop CS5, showcase your work on multiple platforms

    Bryan O’Neil Hughes

    What? Delivering Stunning Black-and-White Photographs
    When? February 21, 3:00-5:00 pm
    Why? Adobe Lightroom 3, Adobe Photoshop CS5, gorgeous black-and-white images, shortcuts and methods, business

    Craig Heidemann

    What? Law School for Photographers: The Essential Business Law and Tax Workflow
    When? February 21, 6:00-8:00 pm
    Why? Business, success, techniques, tips, setting yourself apart

    Kevin Kubota

    What? You Can’t Create In a Vacuum, Unless You Want to Suck
    When? February 21, 6:30-8:30 pm
    Why? Legal, taxes, Q&A, proven business workflow, contracts, protecting your rights and assets


    Beth Forester

    What? How to Make Money in Any Economy!
    When? February 22, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Economy-proof success strategies, business, marketing, sales, tips,increase profitability

    Beth Forester | http://foresterphoto.com

    Julieanne Kost

    What? Stylized Effects with Photoshop CS5
    When? February 22, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Adobe Photoshop CS5, enhance your photography, creative tips, overlays, textures, effects, composites

    Jules Bianchi & Joy Bianchi Brown

    What? How to be a Rockstar in your Own Backyard
    When? February 22, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? Business, marketing, sales, pre-visualization, pleasing your clients, new business

    Jared Bauman

    What? The Nuts and Bolts of Pricing and Packaging
    When? February 22, 6:00-8:00 pm
    Why? Business, pricing strategy, packaging, upselling, tips and tricks


    Kay Eskridge

    What? Upbeat Strategies in a Downturn Economy
    When? February 23, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Business, marketing campaigns, return clients, new business, setting yourself apart

    Eddie Tapp

    What? Best in Process from your CR2 Capture
    When? February 23, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? CR2 Raw workflow, tips and techniques for: processing, enhancements, printing, exporting to Adobe Photoshop CS, printing export module

    Lori Nordstrom

    What? The Profitable Portrait Studio
    When? February 23, 2:30-4:30 pm
    Why? Portrait studio, business, profitability


    Jerry Deck & Sondra Ayers

    What? Turn Your Ideas into Success—15 Ways To Make More Money In The 60 Days Following WPPI!
    When? February 24, 1:00-4:00 pm
    Why? Change, business, getting started, achieving success

    Don't forget, these classes are included with your WPPI registration, and you can secure a seat for up to five classes in advance with Preboard to avoid long lines and waiting. Today is the last day to Pre-board, so if you haven’t yet – get to it!

    WPPI Platform Picks: Lighting & Posing

    16 Feb

    Light, weather, location, environment, gear, f-Stop, aperture, motion, emotion, gesture, a connection, a spark; there’s an infinite number of variables that go into not just making a great photo, but truly capturing a moment. It’s a delicate balance – and such a rewarding feeling when the stars align.

    The thing is, rainstorms, crowds of people, challenging spaces, stress and more, can create extremely challenging circumstances, but that doesn’t mean you can throw in the towel. Some of these things you learn to work with – but there are others – like lighting and posing – where we as photographers do have some control. This post is dedicated to, both literally and figuratively, seeing the light, as well as commanding, creating, capturing and captivating with it!

    The speakers in our Lighting and Posing Platform Picks are experienced, visionary photographers who take charge and create amazing work, and will educate and inspire you to be prepared as well!


    Clay Blackmore

    What? Creating the Portrait
    When? February 21, 3:00-5:00 pm
    Why? Portraits, posing, lighting and refining, techniques, live demo, create images from the heart, marketing, sales

    Michael Grecco

    What? Lighting and the Dramatic Portrait
    When? February 21, 6:30-8:30 pm
    Why? Portraits, techniques for creating light and shadow, stylistic and dramatic images, specialty lighting, live demo, Q&A

    Michael Grecco | http://michaelgrecco.com


    Louis Pang

    What? Guerilla Lighting: Fast and Furious
    When? February 22, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Managing light, achieving great results regardless of adverse lighting conditions, TTL speedlights, modifiers and color gels

    Nancy Emmerich & Rose Coleman

    What? Bringing Sexy Back to the Studio
    When? February 22, 11:00 am -1:00 pm
    Why? Portraits, high school seniors, workflow, pricing, creativity

    Nancy Emmerich | http://studioartblog.com

    Roberto Valenzuela

    What? Break It Down!
    When? February 22, 3:00-5:00 pm
    Why? Finding opportunity in challenging situations, creative ideas for posing and locations based on colors, geometric shapes, balance, angles, symmetry and more

    Roberto Valenzuela | hwww.robertovalenzuelaphotography.com

    Bambi Cantrell

    What? Focus on Fabulous—Weddings
    When? February 22, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? Lighting, posing, fashion, drama, creating captivating images quickly

    Mike Fulton & Cody Clinton

    What? Wireless Flash Tips and Tricks
    When? February 22, 6:30-8:30 pm
    Why? Wireless flash and video lighting techniques, studio lighting anywhere anytime, simple techniques

    Mike Fulton & Cody Clinton | http://www.tricoastphoto.com


    David & Quin Cheung

    What? Guerrilla Lighting for the Real World
    When? February 24, 9:00-11:00 am
    Why? Off-camera and dramatic lighting, minimal gear, working with success with tight timelines and stress

    David & Quin Cheung | http://www.dqstudios.com

    Don’t forget, these classes are included with your WPPI registration, and you can secure a seat for up to five classes in advance with Preboard to avoid long lines and waiting.

    Inspiring Women: Deanne Fitzmaurice

    14 Feb

    With so many platform speakers and so many intriguing topics, it wasn’t easy to pick my top 5 for preboard. But the one class that I didn’t hesitate upon selecting was Deanne Fitzmaurice’s Storytelling: Pictures and Motion. Fitzmaurice is a Pulitzer prize and an award-winning photojournalist. Ah, photojournalism – the genre of photography that originally lured me into the medium. Sold at “hello.”

    But, wait – that’s not it! Though my business focus is wedding and portraits, there is no disputing that there is an infinitely important component of storytelling in what we do – and if there isn’t, we aren’t doing our jobs the way we are supposed to. And beyond that, we now have so much more capability within our DSLRs and the realm of multimedia. Is it possible that in opening our minds to a new way of visually communicating we can catapult our body of still imagery into a new echelon of photography? Well, I’m hoping Fitzmaurice has the answer.

    Deanne Fitzmaurice

    What? Storytelling: Pictures and Motion
    When? February 21, 6:00-8:00pm
    Why? Storytelling, Multimedia, New age of DSLR’s

    Pulitzer Prize Winning Image "Saleh" http://www.deannefitzmaurice.com

    Not free for Fitzmaurice’s platform time slot? Here are a few more great speakers that are tackling the subject of DSLR and motion:

    Ken Sklute

    What? Seeing into the Future
    When? February 21, 8:00-10:00 am

    David McLain

    What? Merging Video and Still Production
    When? February 21, 3:00-5:00 pm

    Sue Bryce

    What? Moving Portrait
    When? February 21, 6:00-8:00 am

    Jeffrey T. Medford & Ross Hockrow

    What? The Cinema Photographer
    When? February 23, 8:00-10:00 am

    Don’t forget, these classes are included with your WPPI registration, and you can secure a seat for up to five classes in advance with Preboard to avoid long lines and waiting.

    Las Vegas Snappy Hour!

    13 Feb

    It’s Vegas, baby, VEGAS! So let’s put on a little “Rouge” and get our happy hour on!!

    Join us for a Betties Snappy Hour “Vegas Style” on Sunday the 20th from 6-7 pm at the fabulous Rouge, downstairs at the MGM Grand. Grab a drink before the opening reception with your favorite photog gal-pals!

    Please note: You must be 21 to attend, and this event is B(uy)YOB ;)

    Secret of my success: WPPI Survival Tips

    12 Feb

    The most-anticipated event of the year is almost here – and it’s a big investment of time and money to attend. There’s a few simple things you can do to take full advantage – and still maintain your sanity! Here’s come sound advice, fun stories and helpful tips from other photographers who have attended in recent years:


    + If you haven’t already registered, get on it!

    + Look online for the tons of contests giving away free registrations. Search on twitter under #WPPI and check all of your favorite vendors’ Facebook pages. I won a free registration from Leather Craftsmen in 2010!Linda Morrow

    Do your homework

    + Read up on classes, events and workshops

    + Prioritize your favorites and make a calendar of the ones you want to attend so you don’t miss out

    + Trust that for the most part, WPPI has chosen a variety of great speakers, and there isn’t one right or wrong answer for whose class you should attend. Choose the class that suits what you are looking to strengthen in your business – have issues with off-camera lighting? Go for a class that focuses on new lighting concepts. Feeling a little behind-the-curve with marketing? Choose a speaker that can give new tips and tricks to push you in a new direction. Go with your gut – these classes are 2 hours long, so find ones that suit you and will be worth your time.Christina Masters

    + Preboard and reserve your seats at up to 5 Platform classes so you don’t have to wait in line

    + If you’re attending with friends – divide and conquer. Learn and share ideas over lunch or drinks later in the day!

    + There’s so much to be gained! Inspiration! Networking! Fun!! Everyone knows that it can be a sensory overload, so my best advice is to approach the conference with an open mind, and have your goals on paper before you arrive. What are your must-see platform speakers? What vendors do you want to visit at the trade show? What photographer do you want to have a conversation with?Emilie Sommer

    Plan ahead

    + Pack lots of light layers so you don’t overheat from running around, or get too chilly at from the A/C; a cute scarf, cardigan and/or light jacket as back-up is key

    + Add in extra time to grab your morning coffee, take lunch or grab something “quick” because lines will be long

    + Comfy shoes, a charger for your cell phone (so that you can plug it in while you’re attending workshops) and a BIG purse (for all the “stuff” you’ll be lugging around).Isabel March

    + Keep it basic: A small notebook and pen, point-and-shoot (or better yet, just use your smartphone’s camera) and business cards. You’ll amass a lot over each day, and walk a lot, so be kind to your back and shoulders!

    + SNACKS! Sometimes it is not always easy to grab food and you want to keep going – I was so grateful to have yogurt, granola bars and water with me! You can get food in Las Vegas at a grocery store. We took a $10 cab and stocked up.Susannah Gill

    + Be sure to check out the print competition – not only to see the winners – but sit in on a few judging sessions. You can pick up a lot of good tips and advice on lighting, posing, gesture and more!

    Trade show tips

    + Make a list of things you want/need/are interested in; be sure to include products and services

    + Comparison shop beforehand to see what prices are competitive on items like lenses, lighting, bodies, etc that many companies sell

    + If you’re planning to price check on your smart phone, don’t count on it; dead zones abound in Vegas, and did last year for many on the tradeshow floor!)

    + Most vendors offer their best discounts on Monday, the first day of the trade show. When I walked into the trade show last year, it was so crowded that I decided to come back the next day. I learned that I should have stayed because I lost out on some major discounts! Some of the show specials offered are really significant. Try to research the deals in advance via facebook and the vendors’ websites.Linda Morrow

    + Take note of trade show locations and hours

    + With two locations, hundreds of booths and tens of thousands of people, the trade show floor can be overwhelming, so plan plenty of time to explore

    + Make sure you’ve carved enough time out of your schedule for the trade show. It really is worth it, especially if you are in the market for a new lab or album company – all the products and price lists are right in front of you, and you can ask questions and ‘feel out’ the companies to see if they are a good fit for you. Remember, customer service at these places is CRUCIAL – you will be making calls to correct print orders, to reorder albums, etc, so make sure the reps for the company are the kind of people you want at the other end of the phone line.Christina Masters

    + Find out what photographers and artists are speaking at booths and plan them into your day

    + Check back for Photo Bettie’s post on booths to check out next week!

    Be friendly

    + Say hello, chat photographers and vendor reps up!

    + Invite some new people out for drinks or lunch

    + Give/get business cards and write a specific detail afterwards on the back to help you differentiate people once you go home and look through that stack of cards

    + Take a ton of business cards. Even in this technologically-centered world, exchanging business cards last year was the biggest way for me to make connections with others. Trade cards, check out the website/blog later, and if this person intrigues you, keep up with them after the convention! It’s so nice to have a network of peers and people who can continue to inspire each other long after WPPI has ended.Christina Masters

    + Don’t be shy. You’re surrounded by thousands of other people who share the same love and passion for photography!

    Treat yourself

    + Make sure to plan time to relax!

    + Book a massage

    + Be sure to check out the spas while you are there – especially the one at Ceasar’s. It’s amazing!Jennifer Domenick

    + Take a break from WPPI; Las Vegas has tons of amazing things to experience

    + Get out of the building at least once! Book a show, ride a roller coaster, treat yourself to a delicious dinner, rent a car and explore Red Rocks…

    Share the love

    + Tweet about what inspires you! You’ll be passing it on to those who couldn’t attend the session – and maybe make a few new connections too!

    + Blog about WPPI, take photos. Tell your clients via social media what you are doing to further your photography education and to keep up with the latest technologies.Linda Morrow

    + Share photos and thoughts online as well through your blog, facebook, tumblr – your favorite way to connect. Make sure to ask if it’s OK to photograph people or products that you intend to share or publish online ;)

    + WPPI is a great experience… If you leave with a few valuable connections, and a few bits of useful advice to apply to your business, you have made it a successful trip. Keep your expectations reasonable, stay confident in yourself, drink lots of water and bring on the sequins! Have an amazing time!Christina Masters

    T.A.G! You’re It!

    11 Feb

    Who doesn’t love a good scavenger hunt? Especially when it means you could win nearly $12,000 in photog prizes. Asuka Book is hosting their scavenger hunt contest at WPPI this year – and those who aren’t attending can still participate by mobile tweet and twitter!


    If you’re heading to Vegas, start by finding the scavenger hunt card in your welcome bag – then follow along to win up to $11,950 in prizes!

    Staying home this year? Just login to your twitter account and make sure you follow AsukaBook and set your account to mobile alerts to stay on top of the game.

    The prizes are worth a little play-along so get in on the action starting next week!



    WPPI: Women in Contemporary Photography

    9 Feb

    WPPI holds many big events each year, from educational and business-focused functions, golf outings, opening ceremonies, featured photographers and after-hours parties. With so many women entering the business of wedding and portrait photography – our most anticipated the 1st Annual Women in Contemporary Photography event!

    Where? MGM Grand Garden Arena
    When? Tuesday, February 22, 7:00-9:00 pm

    This panel discussion will be featuring well-known photographers – including Lindsay Adler, Jules Bianchi, Joy Bianchi Brown, Jessica Claire, Kay Eskridge, Catherine Hall, Sarah Petty, Dawn Shields and Jasmine Star – who will share success in the competitive market of wedding and portraits photography. It will be an exciting opportunity to hear their insights, individual perspectives and personal stories – and learn how they balance work and life.

    The panel discussion is sponsorship by Kodak, Canon, Black River Imaging, Sigma, Simply Canvas, Triple Scoop Music and Adorama. If you stop by their booths, make sure to thank them for their generosity and vision in making this event possible!

    WPPI Platform Picks: Inspiration

    7 Feb

    Here’s a list of our favorite WPPI Platform Classes that are sure to get you inspired, give you a jolt of motivation, and maybe even send you on the path to better work/life balance! These classes are included with your WPPI registration, and you can secure a seat for up to five classes in advance with Preboard to avoid long lines and waiting.


    Elizabeth Messina

    What? The Heart and Soul of Photography
    When? Monday, February 21, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? Natural light, film, artistry, finding your vision, balancing work and life, telling a story

    Elizabeth Messina | http://www.kissthegroom.com

    Jesh de Rox

    What? Beloved: The Revolution
    When? Monday, February 21, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? Experiential photography, connecting, love, exploration, something unexpected and new

    Jasmine Star

    What? Untold Stories
    When? Monday, February 21, 4:00-6:00 pm
    Why? Creating change, finding your passion, restructuring life and business

    Deanne Fitzmaurice

    What? Storytelling: Pictures and Motion
    When? Monday, February 21, 6:00-8:00 pm
    Why? dSLR video, multimedia, storytelling, making a connection

    Joe Buissink

    What? Do You Know Who “You” Are?
    When? Monday, February 21, 6:30-8:30 pm
    Why? Reinvigorating your business, change, passion


    Tamara Lackey

    What? The Fusion of Work and Life: Structure a More Efficient Business. Work Less. Live More.
    When? Tuesday, February 22, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Work/life balance, building long-term client relationships, passion, managing creative burnout

    Jamie Schultz

    What? It’s Beyond Me
    When? Tuesday, February 22, 3:00-5:00 pm
    Why? Transformation, business, understanding client expectations, studio photography

    Anthony Vazquez

    What? Get Creative – Five Techniques to Keep You Inspired
    When? Tuesday, February 22, 3:30-5:30 pm
    Why? Taking your business to the next level, staying inspired and fresh, marketing, sales

    Patrick & Amina Moreau

    What? Creating Relevant, Meaningful Imagery
    When? Tuesday, February 22, 6:30-8:30 pm
    Why? Unique storytelling, dSLR video, connecting, self-fulfillment


    Jose Villa

    What? Fine Art Wedding Photography
    When? Wednesday, February 23, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Unique, film, saving money while gaining exposure, getting published, setting yourself apart

    Me Ra Koh

    What? Creating Confidence – How to Succeed by Shooting from Your Authentic Heart
    When? Wednesday, February 23, 8:00-10:00 am
    Why? Connecting, art, business, family, empowering women

    Susan Stripling

    What? Then and Now: Taking Your Work to the Next Level
    When? Wednesday, February 23, 2:30-4:30 pm
    Why? Improvement, lighting, composition, equipment, client interaction


    Justin & Mary Marantz

    What? How To Be a Rainmaker: Ten Tips to Turn the Tides
    When? Thursday, February 24, 9:00-11:00 am
    Why? Thriving in challenging economy, business, “Loyalty Beyond Reason”

    Justin & Mary Marantz | http://www.justinmarantz.com


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