Lasting structures are built on great foundations.
PPA was created way back in the 1800's, and you, our members, have been pushing yourselves to be more ever since. One of the big ways to do so and to create an ever-lasting impact on your business is to pursue professional merits and degrees in photography!
Created in 1937, PPA's Merit & Degree program (this is PPA's longest-standing educational program) works hand-in-hand with other educational events and competitions, helping you earn a photographic degree that recognizes your achievements in the profession. It means you have met PPA's standards of excellence and service. More importantly, it provides you with another tool for telling the world--and all those potential clients--why they should call you, rather than the competitor down the street.
Chasing a photography degree is one of the best ways to boost your confidence (and your clients' too!) and rub elbows with the best in the business. If you're a PPA member, you're in the right place to seek these marks of competence and excellence. You can earn many credentials through PPA, including becoming a Photographic Craftsman and even a Master Photographer.
But how do you earn them? The International Photographic Competition (IPC) is a good start!
Entering photographic competitions like the IPC is one of the best ways to earn merits toward your degrees. I wrote in length about the experience itself from a spectator's perspective, but the growth potential for a photographer is huge. And on top of just the potential merits, we're talking skill AND dollars here. Have I already mentioned that the growth potential for a photographer is huge?
It's easy enough to enter; you just need to push yourself just that little bit more. You must want to achieve a certain standard of artistry that will set you apart from the rest. You'll grow your skillset, you'll meet fellow photographers and even mentors, and the best part? You and your clients will notice your work improve.
And odd as it may seem very few photographers currently hold degrees. By urging yourself to be more and entering those competitions, once you earn enough merits for a degree, you will simply and truly be joining the elite.
As I mentioned, this year's IPC just took place, but it is never too early to start preparing your images for next year! Be on the lookout for district competitions opening in the Spring! And come to Imaging USA in Phoenix this January to see for yourself all those images that merited and went Loan.
And if you need any more inspiration, make sure you read longtime member Dave Huntsman's essay on why he earned his degrees.
Be more accomplished! Go after a PPA degree.