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PPA Today

by Mayo Lawal

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It's finally weekend and you deserve some "you time". So, take a break from all that hard work and check out our ten favorite blogs from around the web this week!

FREELANCE LAW:  In May 2017, the city of New York passed the Freelance Isn't Free Act. The Law Tog has this article on how the Act may immensely affect freelance photography in New York and why you should care.  

DRONES PHOTOGRAPHY: Do you know about the Drone Certification program recently launched by PPA? The author of this article outlines the benefits of this unique program, designed to ensure that you are not only legal to fly drones, but also well prepared to take the best pictures.

COPYRIGHT: Photographer Annette Navarro is suing Procter & Gamble, whom she accused of using her photos for several years without paying her. The author of this article tells the story about the lawsuit concerning images that were on Olay packaging all over the world.  

PRICING TECHNIQUE: Figuring out what to charge a client after a shoot can be difficult if you don't have a good pricing system in place. Find out what Wedding Photographer Susan Stripling did to ensure the most cost-effective pricing for her photography sessions. 

LAWSUIT: The battle that began when VHT filed a copyright infringement suit against Zillow Group in 2015 continues. Check out the updates on Digital Photography Review.

TIPS: Drones are becoming more popular, and many photographers are learning to do amazing things with them. The author of this article has some really good tips on how to take breathtaking photos using drones.  

BUSINESS CHALLENGE: The Business Challenge is a fun, interactive program designed to help PPA members reach their business goals and become more profitable. Also, it's FREE! Learn more about the program and how you can easily sign up today.  

TEST: How good are you at spotting fake photos? Find out with this challenging game and a good reality check on Peta Pixel!  

CONFIDENCE: It could take years and years of good work for some photographers to gain confidence in their abilities. Levi Keplar of Fstoppers explains how lack of confidence could hinder success.

There you have 'em, our weekly blog post roundup! What photography blogs or podcasts do YOU follow? Post your favorites on theLoop or email them to us at

Imaging USA 2018 will be here before you know it...three-to-six days of the best in photography learning, networking and partying! It's all going down in the Music City, Nashville, TN, January 14-16, 2018 (Pre-Con classes January 11-13). 

Imaging USA is known far-and-wide as THE place to see some of the best speakers in the photography industry, as they take you on deep-dives into every topic you could want to learn more about. In order to get you even more excited (if that's possible!), PPA is going to spend the next several months highlighting our 2018 Imaging USA speakers.

Let's Meet...

Keith Dixon
Facebook: keith.b.dixon
Twitter: keithbdixon
Instagram: keithbdixon

Keith B. Dixon is a freelance commercial photographer, specializing in corporate event photography, corporate executive and on-location, group portraits. Throughout his career, he has photographed high profile clients including the U.S. Chief Judges of the U.S. Appellate Courts, several Bay Area Executives and many celebrities from around the world. Keith has also worked with corporate clients across the United States and abroad. He is an Official Ambassador for Dye  Sub Printer Maker DNP Imaging of America, NETGEAR (the number one producer of Networking and Cloud Based Storage), and affiliations to Spider Holster, Think Tank, and Arkon Mounts. He is a legend on social media, known for creating The Keith B. Dixon Zone on Periscope and Facebook Live and is the founding member of the popular BombSquad Photography Community.

In 2015, Keith was ranked #3 in the world as a Cloud-Based Influencer by Onalytica. He also created a series of free workshop for beginning photographers, the Keith B. Dixon Meetups, and somewhere in the midst of all this, still finds time to serve as the PPA Diversity Co-Chairperson within his industry. More than just a photographer or a social media guru, Keith is a true trailblazer, paving the way and educating those coming behind him.   

Speaker Sessions:
Mon, January 15
11:30 am Business

What is your life motto? Go hard or not at all
What do you value most in your friends? Loyalty
If you could have dinner with any historical figure, who would it be and why? Marcus Garvey and I named my youngest son after him.
What did you want to be as a kid when you grew up? A Business Man
What was your first concert? Chaka Kahn
Coke or Pepsi? Coke all day!

Keith Dixon is just one of the many amazing speakers you'll get to meet and learn from at Imaging USA 2018! Registration is open now so take advantage of the Early Bird rates for passes and your hotel!

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It's been a year since the introduction of the Section 107 drone regulations and many photographers are still extremely excited as more and more of them look to incorporate drones into their businesses. 

Over the past couple of months, PPA has featured break-downs of these Section 107 exemption waivers, providing you with examples as to when you can apply for them and what sort of information to provide to ensure your wavier is processed as quickly and smoothly as possible.

Here is a summary of the waiver-types and how to apply for them!

You can count on PPA to deliver you all the latest news, helpful tips and even certification for Drone Photography at!


by James Yates


PPA members have a way to stand out from the crowd built right in to their membership. The CPP (Certified Professional Photographer) designation is the official credential for photographers that want to set themselves apart within the photography industry.

The Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) program from PPA assures potential clients of a photographer's knowledge, experience and continuance to develop new skills and techniques. It is a declaration of professional competence and ability.

Photographers who earn their CPP credential do so for three primary reasons:

  • It gives them an edge in advertising their services, as certification promotes trust in the minds of clients and consumers.
  • It is a way to justify the price of services offered by the world's top photographers.
  • The peer validation step that is required to earn the certification signals to the photography world that you truly care about your craft.

The path to certification is a simple, 3-step process.

  • Declare your candidacy to PPA.
  • Study for and pass the CPP exam.
  • Submit a set of images for official review.

Once said images are approved, the photographer will have earned their CPP designation. For more information or to get started on your path to photography certification, head to

by Mayo Lawal

IPC judging begins July 30! As you get ready to stream the competition's judging, you can start to think of ways to step up your game for next year's competition. 

The PPA annual competition is a great way not only to test, but also enhance your photography skills. This educational opportunity gets even better if you choose to have your images critiqued by one of PPA's jurors. The judges will explain how each of your images, specifically, stacks up against the 12 elements of a winning photograph, and any possible ways you can improve to obtain a higher score.

Check out this critique from last year to get a feel of what to expect. This is Colleen Udell's "Gift Wrapped" being critiqued by IPC Judge Gregory Daniel M.Photog.Cr., F-ASP.  

Even if you've never entered the IPC before, we hope seeing a critique has encouraged you to enter the IPC next year! 

And remember, you can stream the IPC judging July 30 - August 2 on and the IPC Live broadcast July 31 - August 2 on You can also attend the judging in person FOR FREE at Gwinnett Technical College, Building 100, 5150 Sugarloaf Pkwy, Lawrenceville, GA 30043. There will be signs directing you to the IPC. 

Save the dates and be sure that whether you watch online or come pay us a visit, you're guaranteed to learn a lot from this experience.

by Sidra Safri


PPA's first two meetings today have us off to a great start! 

We started the morning with Representative Doug Collins (R-GA). We were happy to hear that they are hoping for introduction of a small-claims bill very soon and they have been keeping in close touch with key players.

Representative Collins went on say that even though there is so much going on right now, he is devoted to moving small claims forward and ensuring small creators are protected. He also acknowledged that small claims and copyright modernization go hand-in-hand and we must continue to push both. We ended the meeting taking the opportunity to thank his office for everything he has done.

After Rep. Collins we went to meet with representative Hakeem Jefferies' office (D-NY). Jefferies' office has been in close contact with various members of the visual-arts community and is making sure the small-claims bill is what creators want. Once they are able to introduce a bill, Jefferies and Rep. Marino want to work closely with Joe Keeley (House Judiciary Committee's chief counsel of the Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property) and make sure small claims continues to be something both parties can agree upon. 

Another key aspect discussed in this meeting was making sure that however the small-claims process goes forward, in no way should it become cumbersome to the people it's meant to help. We ended this meeting thank Jefferies' office for bringing small claims to the forefront and helping making sure creators' rights are on everyone's minds. 

Right now we are heading to lunch and will take the opportunity it to regroup for our next meetings. After lunch we will be meeting with Joe Keeley from Chairman Goodlatte's office and representative Jim Jordan. 


PPA is back in D.C. for day two of our trip, meeting with representatives to advocate for copyright modernization and small-claims protection for photographers. Yesterday ended with our meeting with Representative Lieu (D-CA). We visited Representative Lieu's office earlier this year and he showed great interest in small claims since many of his constituents are affected by copyright Infringement. We wanted to follow up with him and thank him for his support and push for small claims. Since Representative Lieu works closely with Representative Chu's office, he fully understands why it's important for small claims and modernization to go hand in hand. This meeting was a great way to end the day, especially since we know we have such fantastic support! 

Today we are changing things up and are going to be joined by other visual-artists organizations that are also pushing for small claims! These organizations include GAG, ASMP, APA, NANPA, and NPPA. With our partner organizations we will be meeting with Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), Representative Doug Collins (R-GA), Representative Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), and Representative Bill Johnson (R-OH). All four offices have heavily engaged in work on small claims and we wanted to take the time to propose additional provisions and see what we can do to make a small-claims bill as successful as possible while protecting creative artists. 

Stay tuned for more updates!

by Sidra Safri

We started the morning by meeting with the office of Representative Labrador (R-ID) and it was a great way to get started! We were happy to hear this his office has been following the news on small claims and really thinks it will be a great step for small business and individual property rights. During this time, we also took the opportunity to explain why small claims and copyright modernization have to happen together and how interdependent they are. Rep. Labrador recognizes this importance and hopes we can continue to push the two issues together.

After meeting with Representative Labrador we went to see Representative Marino's office (R-PA). As a reminder, Representative Marino co-sponsored the other small-claims bill last year. We wanted to meet with his office to take the opportunity to thank him for how often he has worked with Representative Chu, encouraging bi-partisan support. We again took this opportunity to explain why small claims and copyright modernization need to happen together and Rep. Marino's office fully supported this. Representative Marino's office agreed that small-claims protection is important to ensuring that America continues to be the leader for creative artists for decades to come.

Our first two meetings went really well. We are heading to Representative Lieu's office (D-CA). Stay tuned for more updates to come!



PPA is back in D.C once again and we have three exciting meetings planned for today! 

We'll start the day off visiting the office of Representative Raul Labrador (R-ID). This is will be our second time meeting with Rep. Labrador this year. We thought it was important to visit his office again since he has a strong interest in copyright and small business... the ultimate combination! We will take this time to update his office on where small claims stands, and continue to talk to him about how important small claims is.

After meeting with Representative Labrador we are heading to Representative Tom Marino's office (R-PA). Representative Marino has an extensive history with copyright and IP issues, and has done a fantastic job in the past of working with members of both parties. PPA knows he has an interest in small claims, since Representative Marino co-sponsored the other small claims bill. Having everyone on the same page will help ensure the success of small claims.

Our last meeting for the day is with Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA). Representative Lieu has a strong interest in copyright issues and is well versed in the area since his constituents are constantly affected by copyright infringement in California. This is the second time we will be meeting with Representative Lieu's office. We believe it's important to keep him updated on small claims, and wanted to take the time to thank him for his support. 

We have some great meetings lined up today, and are excited to be advocating for your (copy)rights!!

Stay tuned for more throughout the day.


by Trent Schick

Every year, Imaging USA puts on an amazing show and is an event that is anticipated by thousands of photographers. There's so much that goes into making Imaging USA incredible that we could write a whole book on it, but this year you are going to want to especially look out for the opening keynote speaker.

Kicking Imaging USA off with a bang will be the exceptional Ryan Estis, who has skyrocketed to prominence as a public speaker, leading his captive audiences toward achieving breakthrough performances in their careers and personal lives. According to his bio, Ryan "blends original research with compelling stories that move participants to take action."

An ad-agency executive for 15 years, Ryan broke away to become a motivator and consultant. Named one of the "Best Keynote Speakers Ever Heard" by Meetings and Conventions magazine, Ryan is bringing his unique research and insight to Imaging USA 2018 in Nashville.

You will be able to see Ryan Estis' opening session Adapt & Thrive on January 14th from 10am-11am. You're not going to want to miss this one. He's tailoring his message specifically for the professional photographers and small business owners in attendance at Imaging USA!

Ryan Estis is just one of the many amazing speakers you'll get to meet and learn from at Imaging USA 2018! Registration is open now so take advantage of the Early Bird rates for passes and your hotel! 


by Mayo Lawal

Great photography includes the ability to express one's passion through images that tell a story.

Portrait photographer David Peters, M.Photog.Cr. F-ASP, tells his stories through Passion Voice, a faith-based nonprofit he founded to help victims of human trafficking. 

"This whole project was born from a desire to contribute, to do something valuable," says David. "I wanted to tell the transformational stories of people who changed their path, and use those stories to inspire others." 

Read David's inspiring story in Photographer's Personal Project Leads to Nonprofit Launch on 


By Chris Homer

Do you feel like your photography business isn't as profitable as it could be? If you're looking
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 for business advice, PPA's Business Challenge may be just the solution you need! 

The Business Challenge helps members reach their business goals and overall become more profitable. It's a free, year-long program that is supported by mentors who are here to guide you, step-by-step, on how to take your business to the next level.

The Business Challenge is a fun, interactive way for PPA members to integrate as much business acumen as they can in one year's time. There is work involved, as this "challenge" is meant for photographers who are serious about taking their business to the next level. Participants will have tasks to complete and the opportunity to be active members of accountability groups and peer-to-peer mentoring.

Many photographers are self-made, so they never had the chance to get proper training and education on the business side of how to be a successful and profitable photographer. PPA has filled in that knowledge gap with the Business Challenge.

One of the participants, Alison Satterfield, had this to say about the program: "This challenge is so awesome! I'm so happy that there is actual math that can put a real-life value on a hard-to-measure workload! I can now make sense of my numbers and it's useful and fun!" 

Want to join PPA's Business Challenge? Sign up today at to enroll in the next group, which begins August 1st, and spend the next 12 months working on your personalized success path. It's FREE! Sign up today! This is the help you needed to Be More Business Savvy!

ch_headshot_100x100.jpgAbout the author:
Chris Homer is PPA's SEO & Web Specialist, which basically makes Google Analytics his best friend. A graduate of the University of Georgia, Chris cheers passionately (and obnoxiously) for the Bulldogs in all things from football to checkers. When he's not hard at work on PPA's websites, you'll find Chris at auto racing events around the southeast, where he's known as a master architect of tent villages.


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