PPA Today: Search Results

Results tagged “#IUSA14” from PPA Today

Check out some photos from #IUSA14 below, including the opening party, Imaging Expo trade show, classes, World Photographic Cup, the Kenny Rogers Q & A and more. We'll have many more photos to share, so be sure to check imagingusa.org for the 2014 photo gallery (coming soon) and our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for more photos! Thanks to Alex the Photo Guy for providing images. 

untitled-6154.jpg
untitled-6198.jpg
01-13-PPA-ImagingUSA-4922.jpg
01-13-PPA-ImagingUSA-5261.jpg


When you think of Kenny Rogers, chances are you think of his long and impressive career as
Kenny_Rogers_Portrait_Blog.jpg
a country musician. But did you know that Kenny is also an accomplished photographer? In fact, he'll be at Imaging USA in Phoenix this January to host a Q&A about his work as a photographer and to receive an Honorary Master of Photography degree!

On January 14, Kenny's "Places I've Been, Things I've Seen" Q&A will be held from 5 to 6 pm (you just need an expo pass, which you can get for free here, or your full conference badge). Kenny Rogers will share some of his favorite images as well as take your questions about his work during this exclusive session. If you want to read more about his photography, check out the "Kenny Rogers Storymaker: The Entertainer Earns Acclaim for his Images" feature story from the December 2013 issue of Professional Photographer magazine. 

Kenny brings a lot of passion for photography, so you won't want to miss his special guest presentation! Plus a lot of his work will be on display for our viewing pleasure.

Along with this memorable Q&A, there are other special events happening at Imaging USA you won't want to miss! After long days of learning and product browsing, the opening and closing parties are there for you to celebrate with your fellow photographers. You'll also have opportunities to receive critiques on your work and mentoring from successful pros with PPAedu Business Mentors and the Coach's Corner, AND you can view ALL the Loan Collection images from PPA's International Photographic Competition and the World Photographic Cup Images at the International Photographic Exhibit. 

Two more places you'll also want to be at: (1) the Grand Imaging Awards, where the top images from the International Photographic Competition will be announced, and (2) the Award & Degree Ceremony, where we'll honor professional photography and the individuals who set themselves apart in the industry by earning PPA degrees and awards. There are even special events just for Certified Professional Photographers and new PPA members! Find all the details for these events on the Imaging USA Event Highlights page. 

Of course, these special events at Imaging USA are just part of the overall conference. There's also the full line up of photography courses to help your business and your craft, and the Imaging Expo (that's the trade show), where you'll be able to check out, touch and demo all the latest photography products! 

It's all included with an Imaging USA full-access pass. So, register for Imaging USA now! If you register by December 31, you'll also be entered to win an all-expense paid trip to Imaging USA 2015 in Nashville, TN. See you in Phoenix! 

Read more about Imaging USA:


Image © Jay Fletcher

From the IUSA Mentor Booth to the Loan Collection: The Journey of an Image

By Christine Walsh-Newton, M.Photog.Cr., CPP

Last year was PPA member Christine Walsh-Newton's first trip to Imaging USA. While there, she not only picked up her master of photography degree, but also took full-advantage of the 15-minute mentoring sessions with an affiliated judge.

She learned more about her competition images--and even her overall shooting style--than she could have imagined. She flew home inspired to take her images to the next level.

Christine shared her story on her personal blog, read it and see the results!

And make sure you check out our blog from a couple weeks ago on mentoring opportunities at this year's Imaging USA in Phoenix!

From the IUSA Mentor Booth to the Loan Collection: The Journey of an Image

By Christine Walsh-Newton, M.Photog.Cr., CPP

Last year was PPA member Christine Walsh-Newton's first trip to Imaging USA. While there, she not only picked up her master of photography degree, but also took full-advantage of the 15-minute mentoring sessions with an affiliated judge.

She learned more about her competition images--and even her overall shooting style--than she could have imagined. She flew home inspired to take her images to the next level.

Christine shared her story on her personal blog, read it and see the results!

And make sure you check out our blog from a couple weeks ago on mentoring opportunities at this year's Imaging USA in Phoenix!

The 2014 edition of the Imaging USA app has hit the shelves of the app stores (quick, download it now--this overview will make a lot more sense!)

There are plenty of amazing features on this year's app--from planning your Imaging USA Expo strategy before the show to selecting your top classes day by day. There's even a feature to connect you with other fellow attendees before the show. It couldn't be easier to make new friends at Imaging USA!

Once you download the app, you'll see the main nine icons: 

Home screen.PNG
Exhibitors
This is where you'll find all of the vendors at the Imaging USA Expo in alphabetical order or by categories. Want to favorite an exhibitor? Open their listing and click the star at the bottom, or if you'd like to make a note on their listing, like what products to talk to them about, click the notes button in the middle. These notes will be saved in two places: on the Exhibitor Details page and in the "My Event" tab (we'll get to that). If you found something your friends might like, you can even tell them about the listing with the share button. 

Schedule 
Search classes by date and time or by class track! Create your personal schedule by clicking the star button for the classes you'd like to attend (located in the session details screen). You can also find speaker bios and social media information so you can connect with our speakers before (or after) they take the stage. To access your agenda, simply click the star button in the upper right corner of the schedule home screen. 

Speakers 
This is where you can search for your top speakers alphabetically. Check out their bios, connect with them on social media and see all of the wonderful sessions they are leading! This is also another way you can add classes to your personal schedule.

Mapping 
Get a bird's eye view of downtown Phoenix in this nifty tab. You'll also find basic convention center information and labeled Light Rail stops and parking decks. We'll soon be adding interactive maps of the convention center as well as the tradeshow floor. 

My Event 
This tab is all about you! It's your quick access to all of those favorites you saved before (like speakers, exhibitors, etc.), allows you quick access to your custom schedule and access to all of your notes. You can also select favorite places you want to visit and easily find your favorite contacts (you'll find those under the "Networking" tab in a moment). 
This is also where you sign in to the app! You'll receive your log in credentials by email once you've registered for Imaging USA. (Registered but haven't received them yet? Give our Member Care team a shout at 800-786-6277. They'll get you squared away.)

Info 
Need some general information about Imaging USA? This is the place to find it! Get show information, hours for the Expo, travel information and more. You can even register for the conference (but let's hope you've already done that!).

News & Social 
Want to stay up to date on all of the latest happenings at Imaging USA? Check here for all of the Twitter and Facebook updates your heart desires! Follow the official @ImagingUSA account for official show info or #IUSA14 for tweets from attendees, exhibitors and more. 

Local Guide
If you find yourself with a little down time around Phoenix, this local guide is a great one-stop-shop for your dining and entertainment needs. Check out area activities and attractions, Imaging USA hotel info and a quick guide to area restaurants. You can favorite any of these places and they'll be saved under your my Events section. 

Networking 
Here's one of the most advanced features of the app--you can now connect with your fellow attendees in one easy place. The first time you click on the networking tab, you'll have to enable networking features in your profile (you can also update your profile with a photo, dates you'll be in Phoenix, your studio/company name and a brief bio about you and your interests at Imaging USA). Back in the main networking tab, you can search by last names, company names or by keywords (or interests) to meet some new friends. Once you've found someone you'd like to connect with, you can send messages or arrange a meeting through the app. You can also make a note about the person (they won't be able to see it, but keep it clean) or add them to your My Events section as a favorite contact. 

With all the great features the app has, we know it's a lot to take in with just one blog post. We'll also have videos coming shortly to give you a more visual representation of what the inner workings of the app look like. 

In the meantime, follow @imagingusa on Facebook, on Twitter and Instagram for the most up to date event announcements, speaker features and great behind the scenes access! 

And to get some tips & tricks on making this your best Imaging USA yet, check out our two videos (by PPA staffers). You're guarenteed to have a chuckle and hopefully learn something new!






As we continue counting down the days to Imaging USA 2014, we wanted to share more of the great educational opportunities available to photographers at the convention. 

We've already talked about the Wedding and School, Sport and Event educational tracks, so be sure to go and check those out if this is your photographic specialty, or if you want to enter these markets! Also, the Imaging USA schedule page is sortable by track, so go there to find all the classes you want to attend. 

Now, the next types of IUSA classes we wanted to share are the #Hash It Out sessions. These
hashitoutblog.jpg
 sessions are different, in the sense that they are interactive and will need your active participation. 

These daily sessions are interactive smart talks that will explore new ideas, from pro photographer to pro photographer. It's a photography business Q & A with a group twist. Our moderators will propose discussion ideas that you'll talk over with a small group of photographers and then share with the session as a whole. 

The really cool part about the #Hash It Out sessions are that you'll be able to tweet or text questions and ideas to the moderators and your peers and get advice on the spot. 

#Hash It Out sessions will be held twice a day January 12-13 with an additional session on January 14. Check the schedule page for times, and be sure to bring your ideas and questions! 

So, now that we've talked about the #Hash It Out sessions, let's dive into another type of track you'll find at IUSA, the Adobe class track. 

Seeing is believing, especially when it comes to award-winning images. And at Imaging USA, there will be PLENTY!!!

 

That's because there will be exhibits all convention long--including the International Photographic Exhibit, the ASP new fellows exhibit and a special exhibit from honorary master of photography recipient, Kenny Rogers. Yes, that Kenny Rogers.

 

If you're interesting in entering photographic competition in the future, the International Photographic Exhibit is the perfect way to see winning images. Many of the image creators will be on-hand in Phoenix and will be more than happy to discuss their photos with you. The adjoining ASP new fellows exhibit will showcase work from master photographers newly inducted into the prestigious American Society of Photographers.

 

The best opportunity to learn what goes into a winning image is at the Grand Imaging Awards. These photographers and images are the best of the best! Don't miss this opportunity to chat with them and see their work--you'll gain insider access you won't find anywhere else, until you actually enter competition yourself!

 

The exhibition schedule is as follows:

 

INTERNATIONAL PHOTOGRAPHIC EXHIBIT

Inside the Imaging Expo

Sunday, Jan. 12......11:30am - 5pm

Monday, Jan. 13......11:30am - 5pm

Tuesday, Jan. 14......11:30am - 3:30pm

 

GRAND IMAGING AWARDS

Phoenix Convention Center, West Building, Room 301A, Third Floor  

Monday, Jan. 13, 6:30 - 7:30pm (doors open at 6:15pm)

 

Note: the Kenny Rogers and ASP new fellow exhibits will be on display all convention long.

 

See the full schedule, including speakers, over at imagingusa.org!

When we talk to photographers that have attended Imaging USA, one of the comments we often hear is how easy it is to network with instructors, vendors and fellow photographers. You all love to share and exchange, talk shop, share best practices, and explain the photography techniques that have worked well for you. 

To get you going and facilitate the networking, Imaging USA offers two mentoring opportunities during the convention. The Coach's Corner and the PPA Photographic Competition Mentoring Program are both designed to help you be a(n even) better-rounded professional. After all, who couldn't use a little advice from a seasoned (and successful, that's key) photographer who's been in your shoes? 

Photographic Competition Mentoring
If you've ever entered PPA's International Photographic Competition (IPC), you know that earning a merit or having an image chosen to be part of the Loan collection is a very big accomplishment! It takes practice and effort to get your images to meet the 12 elements of a merit image (that's the standard by which images are judged at IPC). The process of preparing your images and entering an image competition is one of the best ways to improve your own photography skills.

However, it can be frustrating if you've entered a professional photographic competition and haven't had an image merit or become part of the Loan collection. Plus, the process can be intimidating for a first-timer. But you've got to go at it! And if you're considering entering into an image competition or fear it might not be for you, please consider signing up for a mentor session on Photographic Competition at Imaging USA.

You'll get to meet with a PPA International Juror who has actually scored images according to the 12 elements of a merit image at IPC. It's your chance to sit down with someone who knows what it takes to create winning images and discuss what you should consider when thinking about entering into a photographic competition. PPA mentors will offer ideas to help you improve your images and help you earn merits (or even get your work into the Loan collection!). After you sign up, be sure to bring sample images to the mentoring session to discuss (paper or digital)! 

Every year, PPA strives to bring education on the latest photography and business techniques to Imaging USA. We believe that there's great education for any type of photographer at Imaging USA--from wedding to commercial photography, the class tracks cover it all!

 

If you've got a certain photographic specialty you know you want to learn more in, you can easily sort the Imaging USA schedule by class track to be sure not to miss anything during the convention. It's a great way to plan your education schedule for Imaging USA 2014 in Phoenix. 

 

One such track is the aforementioned Wedding track. True to its name, this track is built specially for wedding photographers and will continue to advance your knowledge in these areas. 

 

The first available wedding class is the pre-convention Business Basics Workshop for Wedding Photographers. In this intimate, two-day setting, you'll assess the competitive wedding landscape and acquire those necessary, but too often avoided, business skills. Instructors , CPP, and , CPA, will walk you through the financial, tax and legal requirements of running your business, so that you are confident and legally compliant. It's a great way to kick-start the convention as well as your business in 2014.

 

Then, once the convention officially starts on Sunday, you can start your day by learning the art of capturing a moment from acclaimed wedding photographer, Ross Oscar Knight. In Moments Not Poses, Ross will teach you the three key components to document candid moments.

 

The rest of Sunday is open for you to explore other areas or the EXPO floor, but three wedding classes are on tap for Monday. Start your morning with a live demo class with . In Helping Others See, you'll learn the tried and true techniques from one of the world's top wedding photographers.

 

Next, you can learn tactics to establish a consistent workflow in Discovering Your Personal Vision with . Then finish-off your day with award-winning wedding photographer Roberto Valenzuela's Expand Your Vision by Gaining Control of Any Situation or Challenge.

 

On Tuesday, you'll be faced with the difficult decision of starting your day between two 8 a.m. wedding sessions.  will teach you how to Transform Your Studio and Unleash Your Greatest Potential while Carrie Wildes, CPP, offers the wide-spanning Build Relationships, Book Weddings, Get Published. Cap everything off with Photo Video Fusion from Vanessa Joy and Rob Adams.

 

Remember, these are just a few of the great classes you'll find at Imaging USA--there are so many more if you want to broaden your scope! Be sure to check the entire Imaging USA schedule and download the mobile app to customize your schedule. If you haven't registered yet, view all the Imaging USA registration options and pick the one that's right for you.

 

Read more about Imaging USA:

 

IUSA14 Class Track: School, Sports & Events

Your Tracks to Success at Imaging USA

#IUSA14 - 10 Things To Do in Phoenix

Someone Said Attending Imaging USA Is A No Brainer... Why? - Here are Ten Reasons to Attend

#IUSA14 - Hotels, Travel and Registration

Looking Ahead and Becoming Full-on Pro with Steve Kozak at Imaging USA

Be More Educated with #IUSA14 Pre-Con Classes

Pro Tips for Imaging USA

#IUSA14 Phoenix Overview Video

 

engagements-0039.jpg
Written by guest blogger, Danielle Brooks of St. Augustine, Florida as posted on theLoop.

The moment I booked my hotel it all set in. I was going to Imaging USA in Phoenix, Arizona. What in the world was I thinking!? How am I supposed to navigate a city I've never been to? I'm going to a conference where I know no one, and I'm pretty certain I will be the most inexperienced person ever to attend Imaging USA. Ok, maybe the last part isn't true, but it is definitely an overwhelming feeling to know I'll be in the company of some of the most experienced professionals in the field. 

You know how there are 5 stages of grief? Well I have officially run the gamut of emotions to know there are 5 stages of attending the Imaging USA conference. Here is my list of stages and what I did to overcome/prepare for them. 

1. Enthusiastically Overjoyed- As I said before, it wasn't until I booked my hotel that it set in that I was really going to the Imaging USA conference. A huge dorky smile spread across my face and I started jumping up and down. AHHHHHH!!!! I'M REALLY GOING! This is just what I need. This is just what my business needs! I cannot believe I'm going to have the chance to learn from the biggest and best names in photography!

2. Self-doubt/Nausea- It has set in. I am going to Imaging USA. Am I really prepared for this? I have never been to a photography conference before. How will I know where to go? What to do? Who to meet? I'm not qualified to go to this big of a conference. I live in the small city of St. Augustine, Florida (and proud of it) what am I doing flying across the country for a conference? My business isn't big enough for something like this. What was I thinking? I can't do this. When I looked at all the speakers and their accomplishments I felt deflated. I've never won any awards for my work. No one knows my name outside of Florida. These thoughts become so oppressive I felt like a little kid being pulverized by bullies. I finally grew a pair and said, "No more." I will not be limited by my doubts and fears. It is scary as hell for a photographer to fly across the country and attend their first conference. Money and time is on the line. They are the most expensive thing you can gamble with. I will not waste this time. I started feeding myself positive thoughts. I can do this. I am just as worthy as any other photographer to attend this conference. And slowly I rose from the ash of self-doubt and the nausea subsided. 

3. Acceptance- This stage was the shortest and simplest for me. I'm really going. Now what?

4. Prepare/ Nesting- Nesting is usually a term applied to women getting ready to have a child. And I guess going to Imaging USA is like having a kid. You are spending all this time and money to go to a conference, you don't want to waste your time and money. For me this meant research. I quickly found the Imaging USA Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts and followed/liked all of them. Next I started googling for reviews of the conference. What was the best thing that happened last year? What cool off beat things were there to do? What kind of swag did they get? The best way to prepare is to learn from others who have gone before you and to glean their gems of wisdom. I learned I should bring my own water bottle, it saves a ton of money instead of buying your own. I read a great blog that called the reader to analyze what they wanted/needed for their business before they stepped foot in the expo center. The reason for this is that you are walking into the biggest toy box of your life and you need a game plan or else you'll spend way too much money. For me, my plan is to find a printing company and to start offering print packages to clients. I also learned to bring a notebook and write down what I liked/disliked about each company. I will get so many flyers and information that by the time I get to my hotel room I will have a hard time remembering the little details about a company. 

5. Anticipation- I am bouncing back and forth between this stage and Stage 4. I am so looking forward to the conference. I am nervous/excited/expectant/overwhelmed. I am most excited about the adventurous possibilities a new town/conference will bring me. I am also eager to learn more about photography and business and how to apply that to my situation. I am glad this is happening at the beginning of the year. That way I can set new goals for myself and my business and have a whole year to implement them. I am 100% sure this will revolutionize the way my business operates. Most of all I am certain it will give me the confidence I need to follow through on everything I learn. 

Hopefully if you are a first timer to the Imaging USA conference this blog will help you to know you are not alone. It's ok to be scared, but do not allow that fear to paralyze you. Also, I'm sure you, like me are looking for a buddy to hang out with. Feel free to comment or connect with me. I would love to meet new friends. If you have gone to Imaging USA or any other conference for that matter, don't be an elitist. Take us under your wing. Introduce us to your friends. Pass on your knowledge to the next generation. Encourage us newbies. You are who we are really hoping to connect with. We would love to get a drink with you and learn from your experience. After all you were in our shoes at some point.
Every year, PPA strives to bring education on the latest photography and business techniques to
iusa_crowd_blog.jpg
Imaging USA. We believe that there's great education for any type of photographer at Imaging USA--from wedding to commercial photography, the class tracks cover it all!

If you've got a certain photographic specialty you know you want to learn more in, you can easily sort the Imaging USA schedule by class track to be sure not to miss anything during the convention. It's a great way to plan your education schedule for Imaging USA 2014 in Phoenix. 

One such track is School, Sport & Events. True to its name, this track is built specially for photographers who work in the school, sport and event market and will continue to advance your knowledge in these areas. 

For instance, if you do youth sports photography you won't want to miss the "From the Ballfield to the Bank - Big Money in Youth Sports" session with John Pittman on Sunday. He'll share tips that can make this market very profitable. Plus, if you're thinking about entering the youth sports market, Pittman says that you'll walk away from the session with great ideas that can help you as you venture out into this market.

For those sports photographers looking to add a new product offering for their clients, Richard Sturdevant's "Take The Gloves Off! Delivering a Knock-Out Blow with Creativity is Sports Volume Photography" session will teach you how this Grand Imaging Award-winning photographer creates unique composite sports posters that his clients love!

If you specialize in school portraits, check out "The Artona Group Inc. - School Pictures and Seniors" session with Michael Rak. His presentation combines the collective knowledge of a family who has been shooting special moments for almost forty years! Sit back and soak it all in as Michael and company share their family history, as well as their transition from a mom-and-pop shop to a high-volume school picture, senior portrait, and wedding photography studio.

These are just a few of the great classes you'll find in Imaging USA's School, Sport & Event track. Be sure to check the Imaging USA schedule as we're still adding classes for all tracks! If you haven't registered yet, view all the Imaging USA registration options and pick the one that's right for you.

Read more about Imaging USA:


If you're heading to Phoenix for Imaging USA (and you better be!), consider stopping by the Grand Imaging Awards to find out who will be crowned the Photographer of the Year!

Created by a group of your peers and members of the Photographic Exhibitions Committee
 (PEC), the Grand Imaging Awards was designed to promote the best of the best from the International Photographic Competition (IPC). It's all about the images from the most prolific, quality photographers in the industry... and that's why YOU are invited to this fourth annual celebration just for our PPA Diamond Photographers of the Year, IPC Medalists and the soon-to-be-announced Grand Imaging Award winners!

Trophies and cash prizes will be presented to the first-, second- and third-place photographers in six categories: Portrait, Illustrative, Commercial, Electronic Imaging, Albums and Wedding. The six first-place winners will walk away with $500 each. On top of that, one of those winners will be selected for the biggest award of the night: The PPA International Photographic Competition Grand Imaging Award (which comes with a sweet trophy and an additional $500). The ceremony will be held Monday night from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in room 301A of the Phoenix Convention Center. 

Images from all of the distinguished winners will be displayed on large screens during the celebration. In addition, the top 10 images in each Grand Imaging Awards category will be prominently displayed when the respective top photographers are celebrated on stage. We want everyone at Imaging USA to come celebrate them and find the inspiration you need to enter competitions! 

If you're considering entering future competitions and chasing merits and degrees, this is a great opportunity to rub elbows with the best in the business. These are people who take images specifically with competitions in mind to better themselves as photographers. You can chat with the winners and learn more about the competition process from real people. You can even snap a photo with the winners, you know, if you're into that sort of thing.

It's a big deal! Better yourself and in doing so help better the photography industry.

You can view a gallery of last year's GIA winners here. Until then, see you in Phoenix!

barton_gia2013_blog.jpg
Even though Imaging USA is still a few months away, it's always nice to know you've got some quick tips in your pocket to be better prepared! It's one thing for us to tell you what we think you need to know, but it's much more credible to hear it from your fellow photographers! 

We asked the Imaging USA community on theLoop what their tips were for first-timers and here are the top responses! 

Networking
  • "Attend the "first timer" reception and meet others that are there for the first time as well. You just might meet some photographer friends for life." - Audrey Wancket, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
  • "Bring business cards. These will come in handy and don't be afraid to hand them out to people you meet. Networking with peers is SO important!" - Amber Rushing
  • "The PPA Charities Event is casual and there are lots of great items to bid on. This is an amazing event to have face-to-face meeting with people you may only know from theLoop, Facebook or Twitter, in a smaller setting. It's also the perfect time to turn a virtual contact into a real-life friend. (Some of my dearest friends in this industry are people I've met through PPA!)" - David Grupa, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
  • "Find a couple of people who have been [to Imaging USA] before and buddy up with them. You can swap notes if you have to attend conflicting classes and compare notes with the ones you shared. You can visit the tradeshow floor with each other. It's great to have another pair of eyes or two when shopping the floor." - Steve Folino, CPP
Classes
  • "Take a pre-convention class and book it now. You'll learn a lot more in a small class environment than in open access lectures." - Haroon Ahmad, CPP
  • "If you're not making enough for a living, sign up for the pre-convention programs.  It will open your eyes!  Also if you have time and have a few things you need help with, go to one of the hash it out sessions. It's a forum where you can ask questions and get solid answers." - Timothy Cameron, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
  • "Sign up for portfolio review with a judge. You will really learn, especially if you end up with a great reviewer." - Haroon Ahmad, CPP
Expo
  • "Schedule some time to walk the print exhibit and watch the digital exhibit as well for inspiration." - Audrey Wancket, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
  • "Make good use of about 2 hours each afternoon to spend at the tradeshow. You will learn a lot about who is who and about products that may enhance your studio's revenue. Some trade show vendors offer free 1 hour lectures at the booth, and some of them can be as good as taking a class. Check them out as soon as the schedule is posted." - Haroon Ahmad, CPP(Editor's note: Many of the vendor's do not announce their seminars prior to the Expo)
  • "Save. Save. Save. So many of the vendors offer incredible deals during the show so if you have your eye on a new camera, lens and studio lighting...then save your money and wait." - Amber Rushing
  • "Another great thing about the Trade Show is that I get the opportunity to walk the floor and see all the different products, and see them live. I really love having the opportunity to touch and feel the products I am considering, either to buy or add to my current product line." - Andrea Taylor, CPP
  • "Don't forget to go through all your stuff when you get home. There will be coupons and so much useful information that you will forget you even had. It's like a recap." - Amber Rushing
General Info
  • "Download the Imaging USA app as soon as it is available! It was a tremendous help last year. It is great for selecting and organizing the classes you want to attend, and sorting out the vendors you want to see. It's a great time saver" - Dennis Chamberlain, Cr.Photog., CPP (Editor's note: We'll keep you posted for when it is available!)
  • "It can be a little intimidating at first. If you need help, look for an orange shirt. Folks wearing these orange shirts are there to help us. And if you can't find one, ask anyone wearing PPA medallions. Really, we've all been there and we'll be happy to help!" - David Grupa, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
Clothing & Accessories
  • "Wear comfortable shoes! Even though the floor is padded usually, I find myself on my feet for HOURS on end because I'm enamored with the show, then standing listening to the extra seminars at the booths and just walking. I think good, supportive shoes are #1!" - Amber Rushing
  • "Pack lightly. My first year I carried a purse, camera bag with 2 bodies, coat, two notebooks, all the fixings and on top of all that, all the awesome free stuff you get at the show... that's A LOT!  They will have notebooks and pens for you. They will also give you bags to carry around all your free stuff." - Amber Rushing
Travel
  • "Take public transportation if possible!" - Amber Rushing (It is possible! Check out the LightRail options!)
  • "Last but not the least, stay an extra day or two and visit nearby surrounding attractions that you may want to photograph (Sedona, Red Rock, Grand Canyon...)" - Haroon Ahmad, CPP

If you're a seasoned vet--what other tips come to mind? What other questions do our rookies have for the vets? Head on over to the Imaging USA community on theLoop to ask and/or answer!

Read other #IUSA14 posts:


If you've had a chance to check out the Imaging USA 2014 class schedule (or attended Imaging USA in the past), you know that three days of intense education in ten different tracks are included with your registration fee. But you also probably noticed that classes have been scheduled before the conference kick starts, from January 9 - 11. So, what's the deal with these classes before the official dates of the conference? 

Up to three days of pre-convention classes are available for an additional fee for those who want to maximize the Imaging USA experience. Get to Phoenix a few days earlier and get hands-on and small group learning sessions. There's something to interest any type of photographer... and offsite / outdoors / on-location hands-on opportunities!

Workshops 

If you're a PPA member who's considering attending one of the Studio Management Services (SMS) workshops (Business Basics or Business Breakthroughs), both will be taking place during pre-convention in Phoenix. The Business Basics workshop has even been split into two separate focuses for wedding and portrait photographers. If you're just starting out in the photography business, this workshop will provide some vital information on setting up and managing your business so that you can stay profitable! 

Check back next month for information on scholarship options for the SMS Business Basics workshop.

For those of you further along in business, the Business Breakthroughs workshop provides a more in-depth look at business and financial management, the how-to's of effective branding and marketing for maximizing sales. Better yet, if you sign-up for the Business Breakthroughs workshop you'll get a full-access pass for Imaging USA... for free! Just call us at 888-851-0405 or send us an email, so that we can set you up.

There will be other workshops (other than SMS) geared toward photographers who have just recently turned pro. Including "The Secrets To Success When Turning Pro" with Steve Kozak, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, which you can read all about in this recent blog post

There are great opportunities for photographers that specialize in high school senior portraits as well, so be sure to check out the "Taking Your Senior Business to the Next Level" with Gary Box, Cr.Photog., and Pam Box, Cr.Photog., as well as the 'Building and Maintaining a Successful Senior Business" class with Larry Peters, M.Photog.MEI., CPP. 

Finally, if you've been thinking about earning your Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) designation, consider attending the Certification Preparation Class to prepare for the exam and image submission. After taking the workshop, there are three opportunities to take the exam during Imaging USA.  Read more about the Certification Preparation Class on PPA.com/cpp and read the thoughts of some past class attendees on the PPA Today blog

Single Day Pre-Convention Classes

All the workshops mentioned in the previous section of this post last for multiple days, but there are excellent one-day pre-convention classes as well! 

These programs are for photographers of various skill levels and cover many different specialties. For instance, if you're into landscape photography you can spend a day in the Arizona outdoors in an "Off to the Desert Photo Shoot" with Bob Coates, M.Photog.Cr., CPP. A real treat!

Other pre-con classes focus on topics such as school and senior photography, babies and children, Photoshop techniques and many others!

If you're having trouble picking just one pre-convention class, the "Hands On Photography" sessions may be a great option for you. You can choose to attend up to three sessions, and you can combine them to create your own unique plate of photographic education! And yes, as the name suggests you won't just be listening to a lecture, you'll actually get hands-on experience with live models, shooting with the techniques your instructors demonstrate. 

Focus on children's photography? Maybe you'll want to attend "The ABC's of Children's Photography" Hands On Photography class. You can follow that up by learning more about lighting in the "The Power Of Light" Hands On session with Tony Corbell, Cr.Photog.API, and conclude your day with Julia Kelleher, M.Photog.Cr, CPP, and the "Bijou Baby: The First Year Forever" session. 

There are many hands-on photography options, so you can create whatever combination will suit your fancy! But don't think too long: pre-con classes always sell out. Attendance is limited to ensure a higher learning experience. So don't delay, or simply sign up today!

You can view the up-to-date pre-convention (and regular convention) class schedule on imagingusa.org. (Classes are continually being added, so be sure to check back frequently!)

When you're registering for Imaging USA, you'll see the options to add pre-convention classes to your registration. Make sure to act soon as the class sizes are limited for pre-con. 

Want to read more about Imaging USA 2014? Check out these other #IUSA14 blog posts:

HS02.jpg
Imaging USA might be 24 weeks away (yes, we are counting down), but we already have a stellar line up of industry professionals ready, willing and able to help you elevate the level of your photography. Steve Kozak,  M.Photog.Cr., CPP, of Steve Kozak, Photographic Artist, in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area will be back as one of our pre-convention speakers. 

Steve's class, "The Secrets to Success When Turning Pro" focuses on the transition to becoming a full-fledged professional starting a photography business. 

"I expect [attendees] to walk away with a clear understanding of their role in the craft of photography.  They will learn the pursuit of excellence is not optional and that the work we do has value--professional photographers can make a great living," said Steve. 

Like many of you, Steve doesn't take the term "professional photographer" lightly. 

"Being a professional photographer carries with it a responsibility to always deliver at the highest level of quality and service, and to never stop learning something new.  The rewards are greater than most can ever imagine and the personal satisfaction is over the top! I never take it for granted."

Some of that personal satisfaction comes from hearing about other photographer's successes. At Imaging USA, Steve's favorite interactions come from talking to former class attendees.

"I love those moments where I run into a former student who shares their success story and how far they have come after attending one of my classes." 

kozak_22.jpg
Steve has plenty of opportunity to find those students; he has been a leader in the photographic industry for over a decade. 

"This will be my 11th year speaking at Imaging USA and it is one of my career highlights. I love watching photographers learn how to take their passion and turn it into a profession. It is very gratifying watching others succeed while following my path towards success. I have been inspired by so many others before me, it is quite an honor to follow in their footsteps and give back to others."

So what keeps him coming back alongside newcomers and experienced pros alike? It's because Imaging USA combines the education you need to get started and stay on top with the networking and collaboration that the industry thrives on. Some folks go because they are starting out and need all the help they can get. Others, already in business, need some strategic help and guidance. And most everyone thrives on a triple shot of inspiration, creativity and energy boost. There are nine tracks during the conference, and a wide variety of pre-convention courses. This is THE only convention for all photographers, regardless of your specialty, location, or size. 

Networking is a key at Imaging USA (or any conference!). This is where you connect with real people who will later be able to help you from afar. There are plenty of opportunities to spark these connections, even before the conference. Check out the Imaging USA Facebook or Twitter pages or head to the Imaging USA Community on theLoop and start hunting for a roommate or a dinner partner. 

With all of the wonderful memories from so many years of experience - one moment stands out for Steve. 

"I think [my most memorable moment] might be the first time I walked through the print exhibit and saw some of my prints hanging in the show.  I knew then that I had made it and that I belonged," Steve said. "Getting my Master's Degree was pretty cool, too!"


1. Dive deep & reinforce your photography specialty

You're good at what you do -- that's why you're a pro. But we all know the moment you stop challenging yourself is the moment business starts passing you by. Imaging USA offers tracks on everything from weddings and portraits to sports and software keep you on your game. Explore the latest posing and lighting techniques, update your post-processing routine, and save time and money. Your clients will love your evolving craft and keep coming back.

2. Challenge & expose yourself to something new

It's always good to break your routine. Attend a class or two (or more!) outside your specialtyiusatop10_blog.jpg area as a way to explore new horizons (and revenue sources), experiment with new products and check out some tools of the trade you might have never utilized before. Sitting in on sessions outside your comfort zone will force you to look at things differently and might create some unexpected a-ha moments. It's always a great way to expand your creativity and comfort your choices.

3. It's always easier with a little help (of your friends) -- network & enrich your connections

It's hard to make new friends when you're in your own studio all of the time! This is the perfect environment to meet lots of fellow photographers who care and are or have been on the same boat. Getting help from others is priceless and a natural way to get help with tough business decisions, challenge you creatively, or keep you focused on why you love doing what you do! Everyone has rough days in any profession, but it makes it a lot easier when you have other supportive photographers ready, willing and able to talk it out.

4. Try, compare & snatch photo gadgets & gizmos deals (while saving big bucks!)


The Imaging Expo is like the Mall of America for photography equipment. Lenses, props,iusatop10_blog1.jpg accessories, editing programs and more -- you'll find everything you wanted (and some stuff you didn't know you needed!) from hundreds of vendors. Try or test products in all the demo booths and ask the million and a half questions that you can't ask when shopping online. It's like your own testing grounds - everything is set up to help you explore all the options. If you need some instant gratification, in most cases, you can walk away with your purchases in hand. For the bigger orders, there are plenty of FedEx and UPS stops around the area to ship home your new found toys. AND last but not least: on Tuesday, the last day of the conference, there are always mind-boggling deals for those who stick around the tradeshow floor!  

5. Reconnect with your passion & get inspired

The exhibit for winning images of the International Photographic Competition (IPC) is held during Imaging USA. This competition is open to all professional photographers until July 12th (late fee required) and the top scoring images will be included in the PPA Loan collection. Interested in competing? Get all the details! You'll want to schedule a bit of time to view the images of those who have taken it to the next level and will have been awarded recognition for their entries. It's key to (re)connect with the Arts component of Photography. We all get pulled away running our business and not always finding time to create for ourselves, so in the middle of all the learning and shopping hustle and bustle, it's nice find a photographers' haven. That's why you have to take some time to experience what the best of the best are doing across the globe in photography. Who knows, you might even pick up some new inspiration along the way.

6. Boost your business & get ready for a mega jolt of ideas to kick off the year

Even in the long history if Imaging USA, it's safe to say that no one has left the conference less motivated than when they came. You'll leave energized, filled with great ideas and ready to utilize new skills and put those new thoughts into action! Your business will feel the boost in creative juices you've gained over the three days (or more if you register for pre-con classes)! There is no better way to start the year and put your business on a path to success. Continuing to connect with the instructors and connections you will have made will also keep you on cloud nine for the longest time. It's oh-so-worth it!

7. Earn your Merits

If you're pursuing a Master of Photography, Master of Artist or Photographic Craftsman degree, it's important to earn you Merits! There is no easier time than at Imaging USA! For attending the conference, any PPA member in good standing will earn one Service Merit. Interested in pre-con classes? A one-day session will earn you one additional Service Merit (for a total of two) or a multi-day session will earn you two Service Merits (for a total of three)! These Service Merits go towards the additional credits you need to earn any of your degrees - and earning three in one week is a sure fire way to keep on track!

8. 10,000 pros under one roof means someone's been there & done that. Don't be shy -- ask away!

With hands-on classes, live demos with small groups and instructors eager to share whatiusatop10_blog2.jpg they love, you'll have more resources than you'll know what to do with! If you need specific advice, there are portfolio reviews and the coach's corner to offer honest and transparent feedback. It's also easy to connect online - join the Imaging USA community on theLoop, Twitter or Facebook, and start the conversation with fellow attendees before your flight touches down in the desert!

9. No matter how successful or famous you are, we all need to fuel our passion & inspiration

There is an unmatched passion and intensity of everything-photo-related that goes on at Imaging USA. The amount of energy from attendees, speakers and vendors make it mind boggling place for inspiration, creativity and motivation. There are so many options with ten tracks, the IPC, Coach's Corner, hands-on sessions and Pre-Con classes (and more)! It's impossible to miss your quota of creative and business learning.  

10. Get a full dose of Vitamin D (sun!) & explore the new Phoenix

It's been five years since Imaging USA was held in Phoenix, and my oh my, has the city changed! There are dozens of new restaurants and attractions mixed in with your favorites of years' past. The new highlights include CityScape -- a mixed use development located only one block south of the Renaissance Hotel. CityScape offers a dozen restaurants, night life, live music, a bowling alley, comedy club and a CVS for sunscreen, ice cream and band aids! A few blocks from there, the Phoenix City Market has taken off, spurning a café and weekly food truck round-ups for your ever-changing tastes. Another project that was recently completed was the Phoenix Civic Space Park, including a modern art piece that lights up the night and moves with the breeze. Last but not least, it's now easier than ever (and super affordable) to get around town with the LightRail. At PPA, we're so excited to be going to Phoenix, we will be posting videos, photos and a bunch of tips to show how much the city has changed. Stay tuned!

There you have it! If you have more reasons why going to Imaging USA is the easiest decision of your year, please share these us! In the meantime, connect with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram (@ImagingUSA) to share your insight, ask questions, get great tips and tricks, or simply see behind the scenes action. 

For more information on the specifics of Imaging USA 2014 or to register, simply visit www.imagingUSA.org. PPA's here to help you be more in photography, so don't be shy and reach out. 

First things first! Register for Imaging USA 2014! Done? Okay, keep reading.

Gearing up for the desert heat yet? Well no need! We're going in January so it will be pleasantly in the low 70s--comfortable enough for you to explore Phoenix and the surrounding area. We recently sent a few staff out to Phoenix to sniff out some of the best local sights, sounds and snacks and will have a video coming soon with what they found.

But for now, here are a few options for your precious spare time at Imaging USA 2014. Keep reading to find some of the more fun and unique Phoenix-offerings.

1.) Be a Zookeeper for a Day

Zoos are pretty rad, but they're all pretty much the same, right? Well, the Phoenix Zoo is a pretty hip place. They host cool events like Rock 'n' Brew and even got their animals in on their version of the Harlem Shake. Plus, they're a non-profit just like PPA!

Also, we know you've walked around and seen someone feeding a baby penguin and thought, dang, what a cool job! Well apparently, at the Phoenix Zoo, you can do that (not the penguin part, but fingers crossed). No information is currently available on their website, but here's to hoping they bring it back!

2.)  Take a Hike!

Ditch the valley for a bit and climb around the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. The Phoenix Mountain's offer enjoyable day hikes without even having to leave the city limits.

First there's Papago Park. The park features the aforementioned zoo, the Desert Botanical Garden, giant saguaro cacti, ponds, and geological formations like the Hole in the Rock.

There's South Mountain Park, the largest city park in the U.S., which features Mount Suppoa and Dobbins Lookout and houses an impressive chuckwalla population.

If you're looking for more of a challenge, give Camelback Mountain a try. Two trails over a mile long ascend 1,280 feet to the peak of the mountain, the highest in the region. Give yourselves a good 2-3 hours for this one.

Lastly, there's Piestewa Peak, formerly known as Squaw Mountain. The second-highest mountain in the range takes its name from SPC Lori Piestewa, the first woman to be killed during the 2003 Invasion of Iraq and the first-ever Native American woman in history to die while serving in the U.S. military. Take in views of the Phoenix valley and the surrounding mountains from the peak.

3.)  Shoot From Above

As photographers, you've probably all had days where you struggle to find a higher vantage point to shoot from. And if you're trying to shoot something as expansive as the Sonoran Desert, you'll want to get nice and high. But don't try to climb a cactus, we're talking higher. Like hot air balloon high.

Get carried away with Hot Air Balloon Expeditions, America's best and largest hot air balloon tour operation. We recommend taking a sunrise or sunset ride. Make it as romantic as you like, but, you know, bring your camera.

4.)  Bring Out Your Inner Cowboy

Are you after a true Wild West experience? Look no further than Western Destinations, located north of Phoenix at Canyon Creek Ranch. You can go horseback riding, stroll an authentic old western town, try the tomahawk toss and even duel the Governor for his daughter. No, seriously.

Just read this excerpt from their website:

At Western Destinations we represent a time when people were free, self-reliant and connected to nature. A time when the brave and adventurous left the humdrum of life in settled society behind and set off for the unexplored western frontier. As our guest, you too can experience the thrill of nature and the rugged beauty of the Sonoran Southwest the same way the original cowboys did.


Yep, we're in!

5.)  Take a Desert Tour...Day or Night...in a Hummer


So maybe hiking or horseback riding isn't your thing. All good. You can still ride around the desert like a boss in a military vehicle at Desert Storm Hummer Tours.

Once voted one of the Top 100 Adventure Tours in America by National Georgraphic, DSHT have provided exciting off-road tours through the Sonoran Desert since 1995. There are several different options to explore the desert. Daytime tours can include shooting off some AK-47 rounds or even a stop at Four Peaks Brewery to wash down the dust. Actually, you can even ditch the hummers and go straight for the guns and beer!

But for the REALLY adventurous, there's the Night Storm Tour. That's right, ride out and experience the desert at twilight with night vision goggles. Don't forget, most of desert wildlife is nocturnal! Sorry, no assault rifles or beer after dark.

6.)  Relax in a Pool & Spa...in the Outfield

By the time January rolls around, the Arizona Diamondbacks season will be long over whether they make the playoffs or not. But you can still experience Chase Field in a way no other baseball park can offer--in the pool.

No, you won't get to catch a home run ball, but the pool is available for rent year-round, it's the perfect way to cool-off after a long day at Imaging.

7.) Attend a Phoenix Coyotes Game

Did you watch this year's playoffs?! They were insane! No sport can match the intensity of hockey, a game in which players willingly lay their body in front of 100 mph slap shots, break their leg, and FINISH THE PLAY, have names as cool as Cal Clutterbuck and oh yeah, occasionally drop the gloves and fight.

The Phoenix Coyotes (yes, there's hockey in the desert) narrowly missed the playoffs this year, but boast one of the NHL's most exciting young rosters, led by all-star defenseman Keith Yandle. The Coyotes play at Jobing.com arena in nearby Glendale. The 2013-14 NHL schedule hasn't been released yet, but if the Coyotes are in town during Imaging, try to head on over for a game.

8.)  Find a New Instrument or Two, or 15,000

Museums are cool to see and all, but Phoenix has the most extraordinary museum you'll ever hear™. The Musical Instrument Museum is a bright and open space and home to 15,000+ instruments from around the world. Since photographers and musicians go together like peas and carrots, it's the perfect place to find some added inspiration while on your Imaging journey.

Obviously, music isn't just a visual experience, so you can hear them all too! But before you get a headache thinking about that many instruments playing at once, luckily that's not the case. The museum will provide you with a wireless headset (or you can bring your own) to take in the sounds of the museum. As you approach an instrument, you will enter a wireless hotspot which plays a solo or ensemble loop of music from that instrument accompanied with video.

It creates a unique experience that's personal and shared at the same time. So learn the history of the instruments you already love, educate yourself in the musical culture of other countries and who knows, maybe even find a new instrument that moves you. And yes, you can bang the gong.

9.)  Downtown Starts Here


Shop, eat, laugh, drink, dance, heck even bowl your way through CityScape Phoenix--the central hub of downtown.

There's Copper Blues rock pub & kitchen, heave your best gutter ball at Lucky Strike, work on your abs at Stand Up Live and grab some sushi at Squid Ink. Plus there are about 20 shops and restaurants to pick your way through. Best of all? It's right down the road from the Convention Center! Just use your feet.

10.)  Wherever You Go, Take 007 With You

Listen, we're big fans of everything listed above, but there's always a way to make it a bit better. And what better way than to take 007 himself, James Bond, out on the town with you?

You might recognize Dennis Keogh, and that's because he holds a striking resemblance to actor, Sean Connery. So much so in fact, that Keogh has made a career of impersonating Connery in his most famous role, as James Bond. You can hire him to bring some class to your evening, maybe even play a round of celebrity jeopardy.  

Just make sure the martini is shaken and not stirred.

So there it is, our little preview of some of Phoenix's hidden and not-so-hidden gems. Make sure you make the best of your spare time, and whenever you can, use the Light Rail to get around. It's quick, easy, and cheap!

See you at Imaging USA 2014! 


Use the links below to read other #IUSA14 posts:

Thumbnail image for 01-13-ImagingUSA-Sun-2737-2333771685-O_Alex.jpg

Since you're making the trip to Imaging USA, why not take things a step further? Enhance your photography business and broaden your scope and take some classes outside of your focus to learn new techniques and be more. Each track comes complete with live hands-on and demo sessions to see the skills you'll be learning in action!

People often describe Imaging USA as the Mall of America for photographers. This great mix of attendees, exhibitors and connected (well-respected) speakers from around the country forms the backbone of an expanding and evolving photographic industry and we're proud to be a part of it with you!

Mixing and matching is a great way to find new approaches, uncover some easy solutions and get beyond inspired. Many people tend to stick to what's familiar when operating a business. The conference is your platform to safely learn and explore new opportunities, options, products and solutions to take your photography business (and your craft as a whole) to the next level.

Here are the nine distinct areas to explore while at Imaging USA:

Portrait: Tips to skillfully capture the essence of an individual, young and old, male or female. There are different strategies for everyone! Get tips on workflow, post production, editing, client management, posing, lighting and how small tweaks in your process can relate to a big bump in your bottom line.

Senior Portrait: Get the latest posing, marketing and sales techniques in this ever-changing specialty. Get creative tips on working with your clients (and their parents) to boost your buzz and increase sales.

Family/Children Portrait: If newborns, baby packages, children and family portraits are an area you'd like to discover, these courses are right up your alley! Finding quality maternity clients and working with them through the stages of newborns, baby packages, childhood milestones and then start the process all over again. You'll have clients for life!

Thumbnail image for 01-13-ImagingUSA-Mon-3308-2335150773-O_Alex.jpg

Wedding: What are the images, albums and products that today's brides are demanding? Learn how to make your brides feel beautiful, maximize your profits, streamline workflows and create the memories for a perfect day!

Business: Pricing, sales, brand and marketing are all essential to making your business soar. Engage with speakers to see how they took their studios to the next level and see how their successes (and failures) can help you up your studio.

Technique: Refresh your fundamentals and gain new skills that will take your images and business to the next level. Watch live shoots, get in depth knowledge about lighting and get the inside track on creating your most dynamic images yet.

Inspiration: Reinvigorate your passion for photography and find new direction for your art and business. It's always important to take time to fall (back) in love with your work--so take the opportunity to kick start your motivation, feed your creative soul and watch how the rest falls into place.

Schools, Sports & Events: See techniques for posing, lighting and workflow for teams and individuals, sports action, dances or events. These are all great opportunities to expand your business, create additional lines of revenue and make customers for life.

Sunday Imaging USA 2013 - (c) Alex The Photo Guy (203).jpg

Hash It Out: Share your questions, ideas and solutions during these daily, interactive smart talks via tweet, text or in person. Think of it as a group brainstorming where you can be a part of all of the solutions! Commiserate over problems all studios face, find creative solutions and make new friends in the process!

Become an expert in what you do best, but also treat yourself to the opportunity of exploring new terrains. This is the safest place to experiment; approach new techniques and test drive some new ideas! All of this (plus the networking, parties and awards) is only $129 for current PPA Members. Not a Member yet? You can "Join N' Go"- meaning you join PPA and get to attend Imaging USA your first year for free!

For more information on Imaging USA or to register, visit www.imagingusa.org! Early bird pricing is through December 4, 2013. 


Use the links below to read other #IUSA14 posts in this series:



Tags

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Categories