What Motivated Photographers to Get Their CPP?

"It can sometimes be difficult for a consumer to know which photographer to choose from among the masses and being CPPs is something that sets us apart from the hundreds of other 'photographers' in our area. The way that I personally look at it is if I were going to get my hair cut. If I'm looking for some random hairdresser to cut my hair for the first time, I am going to look for someone who has been to beauty school and who has the license to prove it, not just some random person who says, 'oh I've been cutting hair for years. Who needs a beautician license.' Combined, my partner and I have been full time professional photographers for going on 30 years AND we have a studio that sets us far apart from most of our competition, however, we still felt that becoming CPPs was the way to go to differentiate ourselves even more." – Tracy McGee, CPP

"I chose CPP to fine tune my 'self-taught/Internet learning' into stronger fundamentals and better understanding. I also wanted a way to set myself apart from every Joe and a camera. The more I dove into the process the more I realized that although I had talent — I was very weak in other areas. Talent without education is talent not tapped." – Bree Barber Adams, CPP

"I chose to earn the CPP title as a way to set myself apart from others, to grow, challenge myself, and fill in the gaps where I lacked knowledge (and there were a LOT of gaps!). There is no way I would be the photographer I am today without the CPP process. Although I earned my CPP designation a few years ago, I still have a long way to go and lots to learn. It's the learning process that is so valuable and exciting to me - back then and still today." – Laurie Warta, CPP

"Just wanted to say I implemented something I learned during this process yesterday in a commercial session. I was put in a bind with time of day and location and my CPP studies saved the day. I had to overpower the sun with my off camera flash. Seems simple to many of you I am sure, but I never had understood how to have someone in major sunlight, but it behind them, over power it with flash and come up with an amazing image (oh...and use a reflector as fill). I needed the sky to be perfect and not overblown. AWESOME! I think what was so freeing about it to me was that I did not know the situation when I got there. The client changed it at the last minute. So...I had no time to go 'look up' how to do it. However, I didn't need to because I just knew it from my CPP studies. It is very empowering to have a major issue come up and I had the knowledge to solve it on the spot." -Aimee Stephens Woolverton, CPP

"Certification counts in ways you never thought! Two years ago I was in a nasty auto accident and couldn't shoot for three months — it's in litigation — my lawyer just called and wanted to know 'are you a certified professional photographer?' I kid you not! Because they have to prove I'm not just a MWAC—belonging to PPA and being certified is critical in proving my professional status! Who knew?" -Francie Balthazar Stonestreet, CPP

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Personally, I chose to go the CPP path because I never had any formal photography training. I can tell you that I have seen a great deal of changes in my work. People outside of this circle are wondering what in the world happened and how did I improve so fast and I simply say it's because of CPP

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