Professional Development: The Merit & Degree Program and Certification

  • Instructors:
    Michael Timmons

    PPA Members:


    If you’ve struggled with questions on why you should participate in the merit and degree programs or the benefits of earning your CPP, then this is the perfect class for you! Experienced photographer and PPA nstructor Michael Timmons gives you every reason you need to take these steps in your career.

    You’ll discuss why continuing education is good for you and your clients. Learn the benefits that degrees and certification can have your reputation and your business. Discover ways that you can differentiate yourself from everyone else around you! Once you’re on board with the “why,” Michael discusses the “how.” For example, you will learn:

    • How many merits you can earn in each category of PPA International Photographic Competition (IPC).
    • How speaking, teaching or contributing at PPA events can lead to merits.
    • How volunteer time at PPA events is not only good for the soul but for merit accumulation.

    Then, dig into the details of PPA degrees, what they involve and how they help your career. Discuss everything from photographic craftsman to diamond photographer of the year and the opportunities in between. Michael also shares the ways in which merits can be applied towards degrees that we'll bet you never knew!

    Finally, Michael sheds some light on the famous (and formidable) CPP. Learn what this is, why it’s important and how it gives you credibility and credentials to make you a better photographer. This is an excellent breakdown of the career tracks and opportunities available to each and every photographer.

    We value your feedback and want to know how we can improve. Please share your thoughts about the class here.

  • Duration: 0:18:52 Expand video to full screen for best view.

      • Michael Timmons

        M.Photog.M.Artist.Cr., CPP, F-ASP

        Michael E. Timmons owns and operates Gallery 143 and the Portrait Gallery in Vassar, Michigan. The Gallery clients includes NASCAR Teams, Hendricks Motor Sports, Drury Inns, and McDonalds Restaurants, in addition to banks, hotels, businesses, doctors' offices, and private collectors. The Portrait Gallery is an all inclusive portrait studio photographing portraits, high school seniors, children, families, commercial and underclass.

        Michael Timmons is a published poet, writer, artist, and photographer. He has been involved in the arts for over 38 years. Michael has lectured around the world and at local, state and regional conventions. He has presented programs several times at the Professional Photographers of America International Convention.  Michael is also an approved PPA International Juror and a PPA Jury Chairman.

        Michael has received his Master of Photography, Master Artist and Photographic Craftsman degrees from Professional Photographers of America, in addition to receiving the Imaging Excellence award.  Michael also was awarded the Fellowship degree from the American Society of Photographers. He is also a Certified Professional Photographer. 

        Michael is a past president of the Arkansas Professional Photographers Association, has served on the Portrait Group for Professional Photographers of America, including Chairman of the committee, and has also served PPA as a member of the Photographic Exhibitions Committee, including Vice Chairman, and several years as a PPA councilor.  Michael is currently serving on the Professional Photographers of America Board of Directors as Vice President for 2014 - 2015. Michael has also served on the board of directors of the Professional Photographers of the Ozarks. Michael has received the Arkansas Distinguished Service Award, the Michigan Service Award, and the American Society of Photographers Service Award. Michael also received the coveted “National Award,” from the Professional Photographers of America.

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