PPA Today: Search Results

Results tagged “photographers association” from PPA Today

September was a busy month on theLoop! Check out some of our favorite discussions below:

When you finish a photo shoot, how do you know which photos to keep, and which ones to delete? Members share various tactics they use to tackle this tricky situation. 

If you're thinking of offering metal prints to your clients, be sure to check out this thread first! Members share their favorite companies for metal print production. 

Being out on a photo shoot can take a toll on your body! Check out these tips on keeping healthy and injury-free while you're on the job. 

If you're looking for a good print lab, or thinking of switching to a new one, you'll find lots of useful advice and points you should consider when choosing a print lab in this discussion!

Do you define your photography by a certain style? Members share their thoughts on developing style and what they think their own personal style is. Don't miss this interesting thread! 

If you photograph handicapped children, or have been offered this type of work, you'll find some fantastic advice for how to handle posing. You'll get lots of great ideas and advice in this post. 

This discussion deals with a common problem photographers face: getting prints back from the lab that look dramatically different than they did on your computer screen. Your monitor calibration could be the problem. If you have this problem, take a look. Your fellow photographers have great tips for calibrating different monitors, and if you can't find yours being discussed, there's a good chance you can post the make and model and find an answer! 

If you've ever dealt with someone wanting rights to an image that wasn't initially included in your agreement with them, this is the discussion for you! Find out how to draft an agreement that meets both of your needs through this post, and don't forget that you always have access to PPA's Copyright Resources for more advice. 

If you shoot on location, you know that transporting your gear can be a pain. Learn different methods that have worked for other PPA members in this discussion. 

Don't forget, theLoop is PPA's safe and secure online community where members can discuss various photography topics! Not a PPA member? It's easy: join today!

A New Era for Credit Card Processing Rates and a Reality for PPA Photographers

BOA-email graphic_v2.jpgBuckle up for some big news everyone: PPA has joined forces with Bank of America to offer what is potentially your most money-saving benefit yet. Get ready to be even more profitable!

This new benefit means massively discounted rates on credit card processing for all PPA photographers. If you sell prints online, accept credit card payments at your studio or process mobile transactions, this could mean huge, tangible, cost-of-doing-business savings.

Now, you're probably thinking, Sounds good, but how does it save me money?

Here's the breakdown:  PPA is able to offer these deeply discounted rates because we use Bank of America (BOA) Merchant Services too! Like, a lot (several thousand transactions each month). Since there are 27,000+ PPA photographers and most of you renew each year, Bank of America agreed to extend our volume discount to all of you.

That's right, this means that PPA photographers will be able to get the same low credit card transaction processing rate that's normally reserved to very-large size businesses! That's the benefit you reap from belonging to the world's largest photography nonprofit!

That incredibly low rate should help you save a good bit by reducing the so-called interchange fees you end up paying anytime you use a credit card processing service. These are the pesky fees you pay to a bank when you accept a credit card payment.

Bank of America's reduced pricing for PPA photographers puts your interchange rate (if you make the switch ;-) at a crazy low 0.07 percent with a flat hard-to-beat $0.07 per transaction fee. It's easy to do the math and figure out you've got big savings headed your way.

At the end of the day, photographers always end up eating the cost of these pesky fees. With that in mind, and to give you an example of just how much cash savings this can represent, we asked two PPA photographers to send us a month's credit card processing statement with their current service provider. Kelly Sullivan, the point of contact for all PPA-related business at Bank of America, then plugged the numbers in and the comparative results blew us away.

The first photographer's previous merchant charged a converted interchange rate of 0.73%. With the new PPA discounted rate of 0.07% (see the difference?), that studio shaves off about $2,500 per year in credit card processing fees. That alone would pay for your PPA membership for the next 7 consecutive years! (or some new gear, I know, I know...)

"This first studio is on tiered pricing for their credit card transaction fees and their pricing structure is interchange plus, so the savings is going to be approximate and not exact. With that said, our [BOA] pricing model is showing that if this studio was on the new PPA program, they would save $2,500 per year (based on their current credit card transaction volume). For this PPA member, that amount represents 3 months of free credit card processing services!"

The second PPA photographer would save even more: $3,000!

"This Square* user would save about $3,000 per year with the new PPA discount. Since Square charges 2.75% for all card types, no matter what interchange level they fall to, BOA's discount will represent significant savings to any photography studio that uses Square. To give you an idea, the wholesale cost of a regulated debit card is 0.05% and $0.22 per transaction. Since PPA's preferred pricing is interchange plus 0.07% and $0.07, we would charge 0.12% and $0.29 on this same transaction. Take, for example, an average sale of $500. With Square, that would cost $13.75 (or 2.75%). With the BOA PPA discount, the photographer would only play $0.89 on that same transaction. That's a difference of $12.86 on this one example alone!"

[* - For those unfamiliar, Square is a popular, easy-to-use credit card processor, but they charge a very high 2.75% processing rate.]

These aren't shrug-your-shoulder savings, this is big time. We hope you'll consider learning more about the program and checking out how much money you could save. Kelly Sullivan at Bank of America is offering free statement comparisons. That 0.07 rate plus $0.07 per transaction is so hard to beat; they will most likely save you a large about of cash each month.

Connect with Kelly at BOA at (678) 540-7558 or kelly.sullivan@bankofamericamerchant.com
Be more business savvy!

For even more reasons to get in on this new service, head to PPA.com/BAMS, or jump on in and make the switch now!

And if all that sounds too good to be true, ask your credit card company to match that rate and see what they say. Trust us, it's not. It's your newest PPA member benefit. We've told you before and we won't stop: PPA has your back.

Another Friday, another roundup! We're back with our weekly collection of our favorite
top10blogroundup.jpg
photography blog posts around the web. Here's the top 10:

SAFE & LEGAL: We've said it before, and we'll say it again, please don't hold photo shoots on train tracks! This article from MetroNews Canada details the close call one photographer and a newlywed couple had while shooting on train tracks. If you think it's not dangerous or that nothing will happen to you, take a look at this post. It'll make you think again! And if that's not enough, just know that every 3 hours, a person or a vehicle is actually hit by a train! For more information, check out OLI.org

GEAR: Phase One has released a new version of their popular Capture One Pro software. If you use this software, you'll want to check-out this post on PetaPixel, where the new features are detailed. 

BUSINESS: Many photographers feel anxiety when it comes to making changes to our business. This article on Fstoppers does a great job of discussing the cause of these fears, and how you can overcome them! 

FUN: Photo Throwdown is a brand new photography reality show where two photographers are pitted against each other in a series of challenges. The first episode takes place in New York City, and features PPA photographer and PPAedu instructor Jennifer Rozenbaum taking on Chris Fain. It's a fun show that we think all photographers can enjoy - you can watch the first episode online now... we're ready for the next one already!

NEWS: Many of you are probably familiar with the work of amazing landscape photographer Peter Lik. He had a show on the Weather Channel and once sold a photograph for a million bucks! And yes, he's also a PPA M.Photog. photographer! You'll get a chance to know him better at Imaging USA 2015 in Nashville, where he'll be hosting a keynote program. In the meantime, check out the news of his latest gallery opening in San Diego. 

PRO TIPS: PhotoFocus details four shots every photographer should be doing during a photo session for greater success with your clients, as well as for building your own portfolio. 

WORKFLOW: If you use Lightroom 5, are you familiar with the Smart Previews feature? If you answered 'no', you'll want to check out this tutorial from Photography Concentrate. The post details how you can use this feature to help with your workflow. 

BUSINESS: If you're thinking of getting into stock photography, this post on The Creative's Corner is for you. It provides some useful tips for getting started in this market.

LIGHTING: Are you confused about when to use flash to supplement ambient light? Well, here's a post to help you figure out when to use flash. Neil Van Niekerk provides some quick tips for when he uses flash to supplement ambient light. 

INSPIRATION: Is there anything cooler than space photography? We wrap up this week's roundup with a collection of images on InFocus from the European Space Agency's Rosetta satellite, which has been traveling through space for more than a decade. Enjoy! 

There it is! Your top 10 photography blog posts from around the web this week. What photography blogs have you been enjoying? Let us know on theLoop!
At PPA, we know that photographers are always looking for business guides to help them stay
benchmark_september_prize.jpg
profitable. One tool provided by PPA that we often hear is useful for members is the Benchmark Survey! We've previously heard from June's winner Heather Sams, CPP and July's winner A. Michael Fletcher about why they find PPA's business guide, the Benchmark Survey, to be so helpful. But don't take our word for it; instead, take a look at what David. H. Smith of Phoenix, AZ has to say about it (he's the August winner!).

David has nearly three decades of experience in photography. At his studio, he specializes in high school seniors, engaged couples, families and fashion models. While he prides himself on creating unique imagery and experiences for his clients, the Benchmark Survey has also been essential to his success. 

"Learning, participating and using the Benchmark Survey has been extremely valuable in making sure I am able to keep doing what I love to do. Comparing the performance of our studio to the recommendations from the Benchmark has helped us put certain goals in place. It has also helped us position our business, so that it is financially profitable and remains as such for years to come; it was like having my own photography business guide," David said of his experience.
 
PPA's Benchmark Survey is the industry's only complete financial overview depicting what profitable studios look like (unlike other industry averages). As such, it has been helping photography businesses form a better idea of where they stand and how they can improve their bottom line. Participating studio-owners get a free side-by-side comparison of the Benchmark to their own financial data. Not only is this an in-depth source of information to help them grow their business, it is a $750 value (or more!), as PPA develops a customized comparison that is the first step in determining what to change for greater success! As a bonus, participants are automatically entered each month in some giveaway drawings for great prizes. For submitting his information in August, David won a $500 B&H gift card!

Ready to better your business and get a chance at winning September's prizes? There is a $300 Tether Tools gift card and a Spyder Pro 4 to be won! Go to PPA.com/Benchmark to participate!
 
But wait, there's more: all participants are also entered into a drawing for an all-expense paid trip for two photographers to Imaging USA 2015 in Nashville. That includes airfare for two, hotel for 4 nights and two all-access pass Imaging USA registrations. Submit your info today! 
Have a gloriously productive Friday! Here are some interesting photography related articles
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 from the around the internet to help you make it to the weekend. 

Learn all about Instagram's revolutionary new app which allows you to take tracking shots and quick, time lapse videos that would make PT Anderson jealous.  

Listen as two photography masters harp on photography clichés and how they make even the most mundane shots unique in their own way.

Understand the difference between "pushy" marketing and marketing that can illuminate and help your customers in this post from Psychology for Photographers. Everyone hates getting spam emails or an annoying commercial jingle you can't get out of your head, but when done well your marketing can be your key to success.  

Use these tips to successfully build your portfolio through creative thinking and practical planning from The Law Tog. And check out some of their past works - it's an awesome resource for the legally minded photographer!

For your inspiration, here are some of Nat Geo's favorite photographs of the cosmos--from aerial thunderstorms to long-exposure images of stars in Greece. 

Yeah, that Socrates. Learn the Socratic Method for photography sales from Elizabeth Halford and find how it can lead to an increase in your bottom line.

What software should you be using for your photo editing needs? Jeff Guyer of DIY Photography covers the basics of both Photoshop and Lightroom and lets you know what you can do to maximize your workflow.  

Learn from Joe McNally how ambient, natural light should be the first element of photography you think about on location--and how it can drive the narrative of your pictures.

Chase Jarvis gives his personal recipe for cultivating creativity and how you can break out of even the worst creative ruts. Read this and see where it might take you on this holiday weekend!

Even the photography greats get nervous before shoots. Learn how National Geographic's Jim Richardson deals with his anxiety and captures some of the most beautiful environmental photographs around. 

And there you have it! The top posts from around the interwebs. What sorts of photography blogs trip your shutter? Let us know on theLoop!
Happy Friday! We're back with our favorite photography blog posts of the week. From
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 timelapse to lighting, you'll find a little bit of everything in this roundup. 

If you ever shoot on location and have to travel there by airplane, you know how challenging it can be to figure out what gear to bring, especially with airline luggage limits. If you're one of those photographers that want to error on the side of caution and bring as much gear as possible, check out this post on PetaPixel. Photographer Benjamin Von Wong (and past Imaging USA instructor) shares how you can take advantage of special luggage allowances for media professionals that will allow you to bring as much gear as you want. 

If you shoot timelapse videos, you know how annoying shaky footage can be. Well, Microsoft may have a solution to this problem! Check out this article from Cnet about Microsoft's work on the "hyper-lapse" tool, which has the goal of turning rough timelapse footage into smooth videos. 

One photographer on Fstoppers discusses how switching back to shooting on film as opposed to his DSLR has improved his creativity. There's a lot of interesting points raised in this post. See if you agree! 

Here's some unique photography for your inspiration. Photographer Thomas Leveritt used an Ultraviolet camera to show people what their skin looks like in only UV light. The project was created as a public service announcement on the importance of wearing sunscreen, and the photos are pretty surprising. Check it out on DIY Photography. 

It doesn't matter how long you've been in the photography business, occasionally you'll miss a shot because something is incorrect in your camera settings. Light Stalking provides 5 quick things to always check before you start shooting to make sure you get the photographs you want! These are useful reminders for all photographers.

This post is worth a look for those new to professional photography as well as those that are more experienced. Digital Photography School has collected 15 of the best cheat sheets and infographics that are full of great reminders for photographers. Print them out and keep them for your reference! 

In Focus has a great collection of images of last Sunday's "Supermoon", the largest full moon of the year. If you missed your chance to photograph it this year, get inspired for the next Supermoon with these photographs. And as always, feel free to share your images on our Facebook page: facebook.com/ourPPA 

If you struggle with lighting, or just need some new ideas, check out these lighting tips and ideas on Photography Talk. 

As a professional photographer, you want to keep your business profitable. In this post from the Creative Live Blog, PPA member Joel Grimes outlines 10 pitfalls to avoid that can mean disaster for your business. These things to be on the watch for all come from a class Joel taught, which was inspired by the idea of what advice Joel would give his two sons who recently entered the photography business. There's a ton of great tips here! 

In today's world of digital photography, all photographers are faced with the challenge of competition. Making yourself stand out is key. In this post from The Phoblographer, the impact great lighting can have on your business and your photography is discussed. 

There you have it! What are your favorite spots to get some photography knowledge and inspiration? Let us know on theLoop!
It's Friday, which means it's time to share 10 more of our favorite posts from around the web!
weeklyroundup.jpg
 From tutorials to laughs, you'll find it all here.
 
Here are some great tips from DIY Photography on how you can create multiple backgrounds using only a seamless white background. You might be surprised how versatile this one piece of (cheap) equipment can be!
 
Wow, this post made us nearly die of laughter. We all need a good laugh now and then, so check out what happened when this husband took his wife's place in maternity pictures. Hilarious stuff! 

If you photograph dance recitals, or want to get into this market, this post from Improve Photography provides some great, easy advice to keep in mind to get the best results possible. 

Here's a great post for those still learning how to light! The pop-up flash on your camera is great, but PetaPixel provides some simple alternative methods of lighting you'll want to try out. You never know what might make your images really stand out. 

If you've ever struggled with lighting a group shot outdoors in full sunlight, this tutorial from Strobist is right up your alley. The post walks you through the steps and equipment you can use to get awesome photographs next time you find yourself with this challenge. 

If you shoot any imagery that includes glass, you've probably run into the issue of reflections showing up in the photograph. This quick tutorial on PhotoFocus shows how you can get rid of these pesky reflections. 

If you're in need of some inspiration, this post from A Photo Editor is a great read. Read how photographer Stephen Mallon landed the job of photographing the salvage of Flight 1549 after the Hudson River incident in New York, and how this assignment lead to his transition to capturing video. 

Many photographers could use less stress when it comes to photo editing. After all, the less time you're spending on photo editing, the more time you can spend shooting. Digital Photography School provides 4 tips in this post that can make the photo editing process easier on you.
 
Do you want to create photography that looks like a still captured from a film? Check out this post from Fstoppers, where several photographers share how they create imagery like this. 

We wrap up with some beautiful, interesting imagery from photomicrographer (meaning he photographs very small things) Danny Sanchez. PetaPixel has a collection of his photographs of the inside of gemstones, as well as the steps Sanchez used to create these unique images.

There you have it! What are your favorite spots to get some photography knowledge and inspiration? Let us know on theLoop!

At PPA, we're constantly paying attention to the fears and concerns of photographers. One of the worries of professional photographers that we hear consistently is struggling to make those big sales. We hear you! Chances are you became a photographer because you love creating beautiful imagery, not because you wanted to be a salesperson. However, to have a successful business you need to be skilled at both!

Privette_Kristin_250.jpgSelling your photography doesn't have to be frightening. Many photographers hate the feeling of putting some sort of pressure on their clients to buy packages. That's why this four-part webinar series will help! "Soft Selling with Intense Results" will show you that the uncomfortable high-pressure strategy isn't necessary to make great sales. Soft sales methods focus on using casual, friendly messages to drive sales. Instructor Kristin Privette is very skilled at this and she will share different soft sales methods for photography that have helped her to quadruple (more, actually!) her income within the last five years. Take a look at what you'll learn in each part:

Soft Selling with Intense Results--Webinar Series

Part 1: Soft Sales System for Weddings (view recording)
In this first part, Kristin walks you through the 10-step process she uses to gain five-figure wedding sales. Hear the language they use, the specific steps they take their couples through, and selling techniques that anyone can learn and be comfortable using.

Part 2: 7 P's of Portrait Selling (view recording)
In part 2, Kristin's covers the '7 P's of Portrait Selling.' You'll learn how to start selling from the very first time you speak with a potential client in a way that excites them and prepares them for a big purchase. This simple process has proven to bring her average sales higher than where she started.

Part 3: Your Arsenal of Answers & Increases (view recording)
During Part 3, you'll get the specific phrases Kristin uses to encourage upgrades, wall collections, add-ons and big investments. You'll learn how to prepare your brides from the very beginning to upgrade after the wedding. Plus, you'll hear the language you can use to guide your portrait clients toward wall collections and future sessions. She'll also share how she handles the common objections that every photographer gets.

Part 4: Live ProSelect Demo
September 18, 2014 - 2 pm ET
In the final part of the series, you'll go through a live ProSelect demo, showing exactly how Kristin would present to a portrait client using this software. From the moment the client walks in the door to writing a four figure check, you'll hear Kristin guiding and exciting her client about wall collections and making a big investment.

If you need help with sales, you won't want to miss this series of webinars! As always, both PPA members and non-members can attend the live webinars for FREE. However, if you want to be able to replay the recordings on demand (along with another 250+ videos on different techniques for photographers and business practices), you'll need to be a PPA member (join right here!) or just subscribe to PPAedu. Sign up today and let PPA help you be more!

It's Friday, which means it's time for our favorite photography posts of the week! From advice
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 to inspiration, you'll find it all in this collection of posts. Enjoy!

Nobody likes it when it happens, but sooner or later you will have a conflict with one of your clients--be it a copyright violation or another type of contract dispute. This post from The Law Tog gives you 5 quick and easy things you can do to help avoid conflicts with your clients. 

At some point, all photographers are faced with major decisions in their business, like whether to invest in new equipment or tackle a new product line. It can be very stressful! That's why we like this post from Photography Concentrate. It points out that when researching a decision, it's what's right for you that matters, not what's right for everyone. It sounds simple, but check it out. This approach just may make your life easier. 

If you're thinking of revamping your website (if you haven't changed it much in 3+ years, it's time to freshen things up!), check out this guide from Tiffinbox first. It provides some great things to be aware of when hiring a company to build a website for you.

This week, Adobe announced updates to their Creative Cloud, which includes every photographer's friends: Lightroom and Photoshop! PetaPixel compiles the updates in this post and goes over the critical ones. If you use Creative Cloud, you'll want to read up! 

If you shoot infrared photography, check out this tutorial from PhotoFocus. You'll learn how to improve your workflow when processing these images using Lightroom and Photoshop. 

In this post for Fstoppers, Photographer John Schell points out how going outside some of the "standard" photography techniques can help improve your images. Take a read and let us know if you agree with him. 

If you're looking for some inspiration, check out these photos of the Great Wall of China from Trey Ratcliff's Stuck In Customs blog. Better yet, Trey explains how he captured each image! 

Looking for some composition tips to improve your photography? This post from Digital Photography School provides some great tips to think about when preparing to photograph anything! 

Do you add Metadata to your digital images? If you just said, 'Say what!?' you'll want to read up on why you really should and how to do it in this post from Photojojo. 

This post from Reviewed.com is just plain cool! Check out how 6 photographers broke the Guinness World Record for the largest photograph by using a camera obscura technique in an airplane hangar.  

Usually we give you ten posts, but this week we have a bonus for you! The winners of the iPhone Photography Awards have been announced and the images are quite remarkable. Given that they were all taken with iPhones, we could not pass up sharing these inspiring images. 

Boom! We did it again. Don't forget to share your own favorite posts over on theLoop. See you next Friday!
It's Friday the 13th! YIKES! Here are our 10 favorite photography blog posts from June 9-13. In
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 this week's round-up, you'll find some egregious errors to either laugh at or learn from (or both!), helpful tips and of course just some flat-out beautiful imagery. Enjoy!

You might have heard about a little soccer tournament starting this week? The World Cup debuted yesterday and Brazil is... ready? We'll see as the next couple weeks go on, but here are some images of the country in the days leading to the opening kickoff.

The hubble is back! We're suckers for basically anything space photography, but seriously just check out this time lapse. Too cool!

We certainly don't advocate for the use of flames with your wedding or portrait sessions (seriously, we really don't, just like we'd always advise people against any situation where you'd put yourself or your clients at risk!), but having said that, these images sure are pretty remarkable to look at! Check out this brave Oregon couple's wedding photos as wildfires raged on behind them.

In a project to celebrate National Geographic's 125th anniversary, the magazine put their photographers in front of the camera to talk about why they do what they do. The resulting video is a powerful piece on the passion that motivates these photographers. Perhaps you all can relate. P.S., we're not saying they got the idea from our Faces of PPA campaign, but hey, we're fans either way!

OK, seriously NatGeo?! THIS is totally the Faces of PPA campaign. We've started a movement! BRING BACK THE SELF PORTRAIT. Oh yeah, and check these out, they're pretty cool.

After a beach session, photographer Heather Swanner spotted a proposal down the shore and snapped a couple photos. After she got home, she regretted not getting the couple's contact information so she took to Facebook to try and get in touch, and the power of social media brought them their photos. Take a look! 

We're talking super old, like 1995 old. The first DSLR's! Boy have we ever come a long way.

Hey, the help you'll get from the Student Photographic Society is plenty but these are good equipment and business tips too. Take a look!

Up and at em! If we have any early birds out there, you'll appreciate this collection of photographers catching the worm. Maybe it will inspire you snooze button pounders to get up and get out there!

Greek photographer Vassilis Tangoulis created this series of breathtaking landscapes using lengthy exposures. Pretty remarkable stuff!

And that's that! We did it again. Don't forget to share your own favorite posts over on theLoop. See you next Friday!
Here are our 10 favorite photography blog posts from the first week of June. In this week's
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 round-up, you'll find some egregious errors to either laugh at or learn from (or both!), helpful tips and of course just some flat-out beautiful imagery. Enjoy!

Ellen Seidler of Vox Indie penned a blog for the Copyright Alliance this week on her opinion on Google's response time for DMCA notices on its Blogger-hosted sites. Google thinks it's been doing a great job of streamlining its responses, but according to Seidler, it isn't. Have a read in case you ever come across your content illegally posted to someone else's blog! It's a little long, but very informative!

One day, bridal parties will figure out that docks aren't meant to hold 20 people at a time. Lucky for us, today isn't that day! Watch this group take the plunge. A couple crafty bridesmaids actually manage to escape!

You've got rules and contracts and stuff, but how do you get your clients to actually abide by them? Psychology for Photographers tackles how to lay down the law. It might come down to presentation (and properly setting up expectations)!

Photographer Steve McCurry posted to his blog a collection of harrowing images from a visit to Afghanistan. The images show pain and suffering but also beauty and hope. Take a break from your daily routine and take a look.

The cool thing about exhibits predicting the future of the world is that eventually, you get to look back on them and see how they did! This collection of photographs from the World's Fair, hosted in New York City in 1964, shows just that, particularly those from the Futurama exhibit. Think they nailed it?

That's unconfirmed, of course, but we're going to give Lee Thompson credit for it anyway, and definitely credit for being one gnarly dude. The photographer, and co-founder of The Flash Pack, was in Brazil shooting preparations for this month's World Cup, and somehow found himself with permission to not only photograph, but climb to the top of Christ the Redeemer. Read about his experience and see the results!

25 years ago this Wednesday, the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) violently cleared Beijing's Tiananmen Square of protesters, ending a six-week demonstration that had called for democracy and widespread political reform. While Chinese censors have blocked Internet access to terms like "never forget" in an effort to silence talk of the anniversary, the photos remain. Take a look.

Have you seen these?! They look like GIFs, but they are actually portraits created by photographer Romain Laurent. And not created through an app! Photojojo tracked him down and asked for his secrets. Check them out!

We had you at that headline, didn't we? National Geographic photographer Peter Essick traveled through the Ansel Adams Wilderness to capture images in Adams' style. See the beautiful results!

Don't you wish you had a lens like the Hubbel? I mean it'd be hard to carry around and all, but I bet you've never imagined creating a composite image of thousands of galaxies! Well NASA did just that, so be jealous. Take a look.

And that's that! We did it again. Don't forget to share your own favorite posts over on theLoop. See you next Friday!
As we move toward summer, here are the top discussions that took place on theLoop during the month of May. Take a look - you never know what might help you keep growing your business this summer! 

It's a piece of advice that photographers starting out often hear - take lots of photos and delete most of them. The thought is that deleting these photos helps you to spot errors and continually improve. Photographers debate the merit of the approach in this discussion. Join in!

Whether you include print prices for your photography on your website or not, you'll want to check this post out. PPA photographers share advantages and disadvantages of putting your prices online. If you're thinking of doing it, read this post first!

Do you pay for advertising on Google and/or Bing? Read this post before you spend (or keep spending) your dollars! PPA photographers share Search Engine Optimization tactics that can have great results, and cost you nothing. If you are doing paid advertising, members that also do it share some things you'll want to be aware of. 

If you've ever wanted to learn how to light using hot shoe flashes off camera, this is the discussion for you! PPA photographers share different techniques they've used successfully to light using this method. Check out this discussion to participate or learn something.

Did you know that there's probably a local PPA affiliate organization in your state? If you didn't, check out this thread to see what you might be missing out on by not being part of your local chapter! 

Don't forget, theLoop is YOUR safe and secure online community where PPA members can discuss various photography topics! You don't belong to PPA? Don't be left out! It's so easy to join, do it today!

ppalogo.PNG
On Monday, May 26, entries will open for the 2014 International Photographic Competition
ipc_blog.jpg
 (IPC). PPA members that have entered the competition before know that not only can IPC help you earn merits toward your PPA degree; it can also help improve your photography business! 

While having your work judged can be intimidating, especially if it's your first time entering, we get tons of positive feedback on how entering IPC has made entrants better photographers. From keeping you inspired by seeing other IPC entries to being able to charge higher prices if you earn an award, there are many great reasons to enter IPC. Check out 10 of the ways competition can help your business here. 

As you're preparing your images for entry (digital or physical prints), it's important to keep in mind the 12 Elements of a Merit Image. These are the standards by which all photographs in the IPC are judged. By adhering to these standards, you are more likely to earn a high score so you can get those merits towards your degree. Practicing these elements will also help keep your photography at its best! 
 
If you're new to the IPC, or just need a refresher on the 12 Elements, check out our PPAedu video series on the topic with IPC judge Michael Timmons. In part one, Michael covers the elements Impact, Creativity, Style and Composition.  Part two covers Print Presentation, Center Of Interest, Lighting and Subject Matter and part three focuses on  the last 4 elements; Color Balance, Technical Excellence, Technique and Storytelling. You've got to be a PPA member to watch these videos, so join today! 

Once you've reviewed the 12 Elements and are ready to enter, you can read the rules and register for the competition at PPA.com/IPC. Here, you'll also find video tutorials covering topics like choosing the correct category for your images, setting profiles and calibration, entering albums and more. Make sure to review these videos before you enter your images to ensure that you are doing everything correctly! Oh, and if you're planning on mailing in physical prints, you can find a list of approved print cases for shipping to the competition. 

Be sure to enter by June 26 to avoid late fees! Entries will be accepted until July 10, but after June 26, an additional fee is required. 

Once you enter, watch the judging live in-person or streaming online
As we mentioned earlier, entering the IPC is a great way to improve your images and your business as a whole. However, the score you receive won't include all those great judges' comments about your work. You might be surprised by some of the things the judges pick up on!

So, to get the most out of IPC, you'll want to be present while your image is being judged so that you can absorb all of the judges' comments and ideas, and use these to continue to improve your photography. You'll also learn some great lessons while watching others' work being judged, and you may be inspired as well!

Judging will take place August 3 - 7 at Gwinnett Technical College in Lawrenceville, GA. Judging is open to the public, so we encourage you to attend and watch  the judging live. Can't make it to Georgia for the judging? No worries, we've got you covered there too! For the first time ever, all of the judging will be streamed live on PPA.com, so you can still watch from the comfort of your couch. Remember, watching the judging is the best way to learn at IPC, so we hope to see you there, in person or virtually. Stay tuned for more details about the streaming as we get closer to the judging. 

In the meantime, start getting those images ready and enter the IPC beginning May 26! 
In today's photography world, it seems like everyone knows a "photographer". But, much like owning a knife doesn't make you a chef, owning a DSLR doesn't make you a professional photographer. So, how do you explain to potential clients the difference between your work and that of Uncle Phil's down the street? One easy way you can set yourself apart from the competition is by becoming a Certified Professional Photographer (CPP). 

PPA started the CPP program to assure consumers that a certified photographer is an experienced professional with the knowledge to create, consistently, the best images possible. Becoming a CPP takes several steps on a photographer's part. First, you must take (and pass!) a written exam that covers the photography techniques used by pros. Finally, you must submit a portfolio of your images to a panel of judges, showing that you can indeed apply all of the techniques covered by the exam. Once you've passed both steps, you'll earn your CPP designation! You'll need to re-certify every 3 years, a process that is by design meant to ensure that CPP holders are always at the top of their craft. Learn more about the steps to becoming a CPP here.

Once you've earned your certification, it's time to start marketing it to possible customers! Keep in mind these 3 points when marketing your CPP designation:

1. Image & Advertising Edge

The fact that you are a CPP is an immediate huge trust indicator for clients and potential clients alike. By showing that you are certified on all of your advertising, you are telling them that they can rely on you to consistently produce high-quality images. 

As Gregg Martin, CPP, says, "Photographers are coming out of the woodwork in every town in America, and being a CPP places you in a much different category than the average photographer. Being a CPP has opened doors to numerous corporate jobs, magazine work, sports contracts and several other opportunities in my career. It makes that instant difference between a hobbyist (even good ones) and a pro. And in a split second only."

2. Pricing Justification

As you know, the digital era has made it easier for inexperienced and fly-by-night photographers to enter the industry. Often, they undercut the profession by charging extremely low rates. Your CPP designation helps clients justify your higher asking prices. After all, don't they want the best photos possible for once-in-a-lifetime events like weddings and graduations? The inexperienced guy may be cheaper, but they'll get what they pay for when it comes to quality of images!

3. Peer Validation

Make sure your clients know that your certification is granted to you by Professional Photographers of America. It is the world's largest non-profit association for professional photographers and that alone is added credibility for your work. Before you can get certified, or even renew your certification, other photographers who have also earned the designation review your skills via the exam and the image submission. That process shows that you are knowledgeable and dedicated to your craft. And the fact that you must re-certify every 3 years shows that you are keeping up with the latest skills and techniques in photography. That should help put clients' minds at ease when hiring you. 

4. Boost Your Confidence

Once you've earned your certification, you should be proud of what you've accomplished! After all, you are now one of the few Certified Professional Photographers, meaning that you can be confident that your work is top-notch. This confidence will come through when you are speaking with clients and help put them at ease with hiring you. 

There you have it! We hope that the edge you can gain over the competition has inspired you to become a CPP. Just remember, you've got to be a PPA member to earn your certification. Join today! 

Watch this video for more on the CPP program, and you can read all about it at ppa.com/cpp.

Here are the 10 photography blogs from April 20 - 25, 2014, that we hope will inspire you and
blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
 professional photographers around the internet to be more!

Nobody likes hearing about a photo copyright violation, but it's important to be aware of all the same! After photographing the band Red Jumpsuit Apparatus at a live show for a publication, photographer Rohan Anderson was surprised to find the band using one of his images on Facebook without his permission. Even more surprising, the band started bullying him online when he requested that the photo be removed! Check out Rohan's blog to read the full nightmarish saga, how he resolved the violation and how the photography community helped him through the process.

The Phoblographer heard about the Red Jumpsuit Apparatus copyright ruckus as well this week, and that inspired them to interview Rolling Stone photographer Nicole Fara Silver about how to deal with bands using your images without permission. If you do this type of photography, you'll want to check her advice out!

This video of a photography workshop from 1961 on Fstoppers made us laugh, and it's a great look at some photography history. Any long-time PPA members out there remember taking a workshop like this one? 

April 22 was Earth Day and in honor of the event The Big Picture put together a series of photos from Earth Day events around the world, as well as photos of distressed environments. There's definitely some powerful photography in this series! 

In Focus gives us another impactful photo series this week. Check out these amazing images of squatters living in an unfinished high-rise building in Venezuela. It's yet another example of how photography can makes us see the world in a new way. 

As a photographer, you probably have taken hundreds of photos that didn't make the cut in the final product you delivered to your client. Digital Photography School points out why you shouldn't just get rid of these images, and why it's worth to go through them every now and then. There are more opportunities with these images than you thought! 

Do you use lens filters in your photography? If you do, Photography Life points out some issues to be aware of when choosing filters in this post. 

All wedding photographers would probably like to speed up their post-production time and deliver images to their clients faster. Virtual Photography Studio points out 3 simple things you can keep in mind while shooting a wedding that can help speed the process up. 

In golf, the 'Yips' are an apparent loss of fine motor skills without explanation, making the game impossible to play. Believe it or not, this same phenomenon can happen to photographers as well and affect the quality of your photos. One photographer explains how he noticed the problem, and overcame it, in this post for The Online Photographer. 

SmugMugFilms interviewed acclaimed commercial advertising photographer (and Imaging USA speaker/PPAedu instructor) Joel Grimes about his creative process. If you're in need of inspiration, this short video is sure to stir up some ideas.

There you have it, the favorite blog posts of the week from your PPA team! Don't forget that you can share your own posts, or other stories you have enjoyed, on theLoop.
Here are the 10 photography blogs from April 13 - 18, 2014, that we hope will inspire you and
blog_roundup_graphic.jpg
professional photographers around the internet to be more! 

Did you see the cover of Sports Illustrated this month? It's a giant Boston Strong group shot (3,000 people!) to commemorate a year since the marathon bombing. And guess who was behind the camera?! Imaging USA speaker Gregory Heisler! If you thought wrangling a family of five was tough, you need to see this behind-the-scenes video.

Getting an image or project to go viral can be a real boon to your business. It can also get you... nothing. California photographer, Mike Kelley, unfortunately knows a thing or two about that. Read his cautionary tale on posting your images to social without any form of protection.

Have you posted one of those silly Buzzfeed lists to your social media pages with an "OMG this is SO true!" Admit it, you have. Well, if you're a wedding photographer, we've got one here for you. Check this one out on the many emotions of wedding photography.
 
Approximately one out of six people in the world live on a dollar a day. Photographer Renée C. Byer traveled through four continents capturing what life is like under extreme poverty. The stunning images are a heartfelt reality check for most of us living in "first world" countries. 

We're suckers for a good time lapse. And we can say for certain we haven''t seen one quite like this! Get your smiles ready and be prepared for a good heart-string tug. Kids... they grow up so darn fast! (Especially in fast forward.)

Good luck finding this one on Amazon Prime. This week, one lucky husband and wife team drove a pretty special package across the country--a friggin T. Rex! National Geographic takes us along as "The Nation's T. Rex" is transported from Montana to the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. It's as simple as wrapping it and putting it in a box, really... but it's a 38-foot, 66-million-year-old fossil. You won't see the full dinosaur on display until 2019 so check this video out while you can!

Did you see the lunar eclipse this week? It was all over social media! If you didn't, these photographers did. Discovery News compiled some of the best photos from the rare event. Check 'em out!

This one touches on a real hot-button issue. You'll be hard-pressed to find more passionate and protective animal lovers than pit bull owners. One photographer decided to put their passion on display and bring them together to raise awareness with his Not a Bully portrait campaign. Read on to learn the story and view some of the portraits!

Ever encounter questions about why you can't photograph for free? Photography Talks came up with a pretty cool list of reasons. Take a look and see if you agree!

Slate delivers this collection of group portraits from photographer Neal Slavin, who's been doing this for, well, a while. There's some really beautiful, really funny, and really weird pictures posted in there. Take a look!

There you have it, the favorite blog posts of the week from your PPA team! Don't forget that you can share your own posts, or other stories you have enjoyed, on theLoop.
Here are the 10 photography blogs from April 6 - 11, 2014, that we hope will inspire you and professional photographers around the internet to be more!

Do you use your DSLR's preset shooting modes? You'll want to read this post. Photography Talk examines DSLR preset shooting modes and the danger of relying on them too heavily.

You've probably heard about it this week: the Heartbleed bug is an error in internet security that was recently discovered. The bad news? Hackers could exploit this flaw to gain access to your personal information through many websites you may use daily. The good news? Mashable has developed a guide that will show you how to protect yourself from this abuse. (Oh, and don't worry about your PPA.com account being hacked, our security is up to date, so your data on theLoop, My PPA and your PPA profile is all safe and sound!)

Have you been wanting to get into the pet photography market? This podcast from Improve Photography can be a great starting point for you as you enter the market. It provides not only technical tips, but some business tips as well!

This is a great post for those of you in need of inspiration. The Phoblographer goes behind-the-scenes of Australian photographer Alexia Sinclair's "A Frozen Tale" photo shoot that took place in an old European castle. There are a lot of cool ideas here, including a shooting diagram! 

Is there anything more annoying than capturing a blurry image when you've got everything else right? This post from Digital Photography School will show you how to choose the correct Autofocus mode and help you avoid this problem. 

Occasionally, you'll get a bride and groom that just don't want to follow your instructions. They just don't get that you've done this before and that there's a process for a reason. This short post from Virtual Photography Studio provides a great tip for how to overcome this challenge. 

Did you know that Lightroom launched their mobile version of the software for tablets and other mobile devices? If you're curious about what Lightroom Mobile is capable of, be sure to check out this post from Lightroom Killer Tips. You might be surprised how much of your workflow can be taken care of from an iPad!

Shoot video and trying to capture movement? These videos on PhotoFocus will show how to do just that. Learn how to use a camera slider to capture fluid movement and create some really interesting shots! 

Do you struggle with color management, or maybe just need a refresher? Check out this step-by-step color management tutorial (complete with examples) from FStoppers. These techniques can help add impact to your photography. 

There's a lunar eclipse coming up on April 14/15 (date might vary depending on where you live) that nature photographers out there will love to photograph. The PhotoNaturalist provides some tips for photographing the eclipse so you can get the best photographs possible. 

There you have it, the favorite blog posts of the week from your PPA team! Don't forget that you can share your own posts, or other stories you have enjoyed, on theLoop.
ppalogo.PNG
Here are the 10 photography blogs from March 16 - 21, 2014, that we hope will inspire our photography friends to be more!

Many wedding photographers are forced to photograph around friends and family with camera phones (or worse, tablets?!), often getting in the way of the images for which they were commissioned. Photographer Corey Ann shares with the Huffington Post why she requests that her clients ask friends and family to not take photos during the big event. If you've ever faced this problem, this is a great post to share with potential clients to back-up your request for no camera phones at a wedding.

Here at PPA, we know that photographers are always looking for ways to improve their photography technique. That's why we were excited by this PetaPixel news that Nikon has launched a 15 part instructional video series on topics ranging from lighting to family portraiture. One of the photographers in the series in PPA's own Tamara Lackey, who will discuss family and portrait photography. There's something for every photographer in this series! 

If you're interested in getting involved in commercial photography, or are already in the industry and want some advice from a seasoned pro, don't miss this opportunity from FStoppers! Experienced commercial photographer Douglas Sonders has been answering questions from photographers all week that are worth a read. If you've got a question of your own, don't be shy. Sonders says he'll try to answer all questions submitted by Midnight on March 24. 

Looking to speed up your workflow in Lightroom? This list of keyboard shortcuts from Photofocus may be a great help! To the point, this blog is sure to be bookmarked by many!

Looking for a little inspiration? This post from DIY Photography has some amazing photos! Check out the photos of the world's largest beehive in Nepal being harvested for honey from travel photographer Andrew Newey. That's a lot of bees!

Do you shoot RAW? If you don't know what that is and how it can impact your workflow, you'll want to check out this instructional video from Photography Concentrate. 

If you're still new to the photography industry (or just want to avoid some duh-moments!), check out this post from Digital Photography School. They cover 10 simple things you can quickly do to help improve your output. 

Here's a unique technique for photographers that you may not have considered before! Canon Blogger shows you how you can create a black background using flash, and why you'd want to. It may sound counter-intuitive, but check it out... it really works! 

Have you tried out timelapse photography yet? If you've ever been curious how to do it, this tutorial on Planet 5d will get you started. Photographer Dustin Farrell gives you a behind the scenes look of how he creates night sky timelapses. 

Last but not least, we end the roundup with some inspiration and beautiful landscape imagery. The Photo Argus has collected an awesome array of city skyline photos sure to get your creativity going. Enjoy!

There you have it, our favorite blog posts of the week! Don't forget that you can share your own posts, or others that you have enjoyed, on theLoop
ppalogo.PNG
As a PPA member, you're using some of the benefits the membership brings you and could probably leverage it a lot more. You know the value of belonging to this photography association. In fact, you probably have some photographer friends who don't belong to PPA and could use a little help with their business. 

Why are you a PPA member? People have very different reasons to join and belong to this group, but who better than existing members to get the word out? That's why PPA has developed a reward program, called the Member-2-Member Campaign, to compensate PPA members that refer fellow photographers to PPA. 

Whether the photographers in your network are new to the industry or veteran pros, we hope you will encourage them to belong to PPA! Here's how the program works: for each photographer you refer to PPA, you'll earn a $25 Visa Gift Card! The photographer you refer will also get a free all-access pass to Imaging USA 2015. Pretty good, right? Well, it gets even better:  

After 3 photographers you've referred join PPA, you'll get a $75 Visa Gift Card ($25x3) AND an all-access pass to Imaging USA 2015 (that's a $179 value!). That means that you get $75 in cash and save $179. Additionally, the friends you referred all get a free all-access Imaging USA 2015 pass. It's a win-win!

If 6 or more photographers you refer join PPA, you'll get a $150 Visa Gift Card ($25x6), plus an all-access pass to Imaging USA ($179 value), and a FREE year of PPA membership ($323 value!). Each friend still gets their all-access Imaging USA 2015 pass. You cash in $150 and save $502! Plain simple!

There's only one rule to earn the rewards: the photographers you refer must not have been a PPA member within the past year. That's it! 

Ready to start getting your photography friends to belong to PPA with you? Simply share with your friends how PPA has helped you (think PhotoCare Equipment insurance, PPAedu videos, networking opportunities, copyright guidance, inspiration, etc.). We've even put together recruitment materials to make it easier for you to discuss PPA with your friends. Heck, the free Imaging USA pass may be motivation enough! That's a $179 savings alone!

The campaign will run through December 31, 2014. Just be sure that your friends add your name as "Referring Member" on the top of the application form so you'll get credit for bringing them in. 

Find the recruitment materials and referral application on the Member-2-Member Campaign page. Get out there and invite your fellow photographers to Be More by joining PPA! 
ppalogo.PNG
At PPA, we're always striving to help you be more as a professional photographer. There's many ways we do this, but just one of those ways is offering PPA members deals and discounts on products you use in your photography business! 

PPA members already get unbelievable discounts on products and services that they use on a daily basis, but occasionally PPA negotiates something extra special with top photo companies. We call these Extreme Deals. Extreme Deals are short-term discounts and offers, only for PPA members. This March, we've got an extreme deal for PPA members on Accucolor albums. 

Here's the offer: Get one 10x10, 15 side/30 page album and two 8x8, 15 side/30 page albums with the "Elite Collection" or "Leatherette" cover material for only $300! Plus save 50% off any album upgrade options. 

Sounds pretty good, right? Just be sure to log-in to the member only Extreme Deal page by March 31 to get all the information on how to take advantage of this deal. 

Of course, being a PPA member gets you access to more than just the Extreme Deals and other discounts. You'll also get full access to PPAedu, our collection of live workshops and webinars and on-demand videos on various techniques for photographers and business practices. You can even take the PPAedu Assessment to get recommendations for the courses you should attend or watch to help you be more as a photographer!  

Along with PPAedu, members can also access theLoop, our online community just for PPA members! Here, you can discuss various topics that impact the photography business, all without fear of having potential customers see what you've been posting. 

These are just a few of the benefits of PPA membership. Browse the benefits section to see even more perks of joining our photography association. And remember, to access the Extreme Deal, PPAedu or theLoop you've got to be a PPA member, so join today!
ppalogo.PNG


Tags

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

Categories