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PPA Today

By Rachel Noto

Though the early bird deadline for entries has passed, there's still time to enter your images in the International Photographic Competition (IPC)! 

If you've waited until now because you were intimidated by the idea of entering your images into a competition to be judged -- don't be! All IPC judges have earned Master of Photography degrees by submitting their work to competitions like this, so you can be sure that they have the experience to back up the feedback they give you.

You'll even have the option to have your images critiqued by an IPC judge so you can get professional feedback on what you've done well and what you can improve on. To get an idea of what your critique would be like, watch a review of one of last year's merited images, "Grandma Mary" by Pete Rezac, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, with critique by Larry Lourcey M.Photog.Cr., CPP.

Submitting your images comes with more perks than just receiving feedback, of course! All images that earn a seal of approval are awarded with a merit, and all merited images then have a chance to be featured in the prestigious loan collection. Merits on your images go toward your Master of Photography degree, which requires 13 exhibition credits. 

If you're still nervous or feel unprepared, watch this video of PPA Instructor Michael Timmons explaining the process by which IPC judges judge entries and gives tips on everything from image size specifications to where to set your easel compared to the judges' chairs! 
It's not too late! Click here to enter and Be More Confident in your work!

Rachel Noto is one of the summer interns wandering around the labyrinthine offices of PPA, enthusiastically taking pictures of her cat, and occasionally getting a little writing and design done. An Atlanta native, she's learned to embrace the feeling of getting lost every now and then, though she now spends most of the year in the gridded city of Savannah, Georgia, where she attends the Savannah College of Art and Design. She has a passion for food, cute animals, and communication in all of its forms.

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By Megan Mitchell
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Surprise! Our weekly roundup of our favorite blog posts is a day early! Sending best wishes for a happy and safe independence day weekend celebration!

TELL YOUR STORY: As a professional photographer trying to set yourself apart, you need to connect with your clients. That's why you need stories on your website and as a photographer, you have many places to add them - tell your story and tell the stories of the photographs you take. 

TOUCH UP: Wondering how you can enhance your firework images? Here's one way from the folks at Killer Lightroom Tips!

HONOR CODE: You want to be respectful when photographing the American flag in portraiture, so read up on the U.S. Flag Code - the LawTog makes it easy to understand!

STATE OF THE UNION: Have you heard? The White House has lifted its ban on photography during tours! National Geographic sent a team of photographers on one of the first photo-friendly tours. Check it out!

HEALTH: Here are some stretches you should do during your long editing sessions at the computer - your body is an important asset to your business, so take care of it!

By Lindsey Forson

Things continue to move forward on Capitol Hill and we'd like to share updates on three fronts: 

Capitol_Copyright_Blog.png1. Currently, the primary focus of PPA's advocacy efforts is responding to a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) recently released by the U.S. Copyright Office. This NOI requests written comments on how certain visual arts, including photographs, are monetized, enforced, and registered under the Copyright Act. The issues we will address in our response are the same issues we're advocating for everyday through our lobbying efforts. This NOI is just another avenue through which we are able to speak up for your interests! 

It's very promising to see the Copyright Office continue to express interest in the concerns of visual artists (through this NOI) and show initiative in improving the copyright process for small creators (through several legislative proposals). In our response, we will stress the need for a small claims process for copyright enforcement as a top priority and will discuss other important issues such as the modernization of the U.S. Copyright Office and difficulties for photographers pertaining to copyright registration. We are working in close communication with other visual arts associations and stakeholders in the preparation of our comments and as always welcome PPA members' input!

Call a Doctor Plus, the latest membership benefit from PPA, can save photographers both time and money when they're not feeling well or have health questions. For a modest monthly fee, PPA members can simply pick up the phone or log on to a website to get answers, assistance, and even prescriptions.

Call a Doctor Plus is a health and wellness telemedicine program that provides patients with effective, immediate access to medical goods and services. There are no copays, deductibles or per-call charges. Photographers who are members of PPA get service for an exclusive low monthly subscription.

Call a Doctor Plus provides 24/7 access to U.S. certified physicians who can diagnose and prescribe over the phone or through an online chat. Prescriptions are sent directly to the patient's local pharmacy, and records are sent to their primary physician. The benefit covers up to five dependents at no extra cost.

One member who's already used the service gives it a thumbs-up. "I requested a consultation online and was called by a doctor within 5-10 minutes," she said. "After providing a brief description of my symptoms, I was diagnosed with an acute upper respiratory infection. The doctor sent a prescription to my local pharmacy, and I had the medicine in hand less than an hour after I called."

Read more about the service at PPA.com/CADR+CADR_monthly_push_ppa_today_ad_650x160.jpg

 

By Sarah Ackerman 

Time is ticking down, but you still have a chance to enter the International Photographic Competition (IPC)! Although the early bird deadline has passed, you can submit your work until July 10. 

If you're still not quite sure what the judges are looking for, check out this review of "Grandma Mary" by Pete Rezac, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, with critique by Larry Lourcey M.Photog.Cr., CPP. Critiques are a great way to get even more out of your competition experience. It's a personal review of your work on what you did well and what areas need a little more attention. IPC jurors are accomplished photographers who have been in your shoes, they've competed for years and all have had successes and a few stumbles. 

Check out this great review of Pete's work that made it into the General Collection.

   

Still need more convincing? Well I quit. You obviously want to keep being terrible at photography. You can get inspired by what other photographers have gotten out of entering their images in IPC! Ready to compete in the IPC? Enter the IPC today and Be More Competitive!

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Sarah Ackerman is known around PPA as #Sarah in part because she handles all things social media and in order to differentiate herself from the other Sarahs in the office. Sarah loves improv comedy (think "Whose Line") and routinely performs around Atlanta. When she's not tweeting/facebooking/instagramming all of the action at PPA, she can be found gallivanting around the world or wandering around the woods with her pup, but more than likely she's on stage making people giggle.

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By Chris Homer

We hope you've been enjoying success throughout June. Check out these top conversations on theLoop and join in! You never know what you might learn, or who your advice can help!

Have you ever exhibited your work at a summer festival? If you have, share your advice in this thread. If you're thinking about selling your work at a festival, there's lots of good advice to consider as well!

One member brought an interesting problem to theLoop in June. A client asked him to sign a contract guaranteeing that images of her family would not appear on his website or social media. Would you sign this contract? See what other members have to say!

Do you need advice for adding accent light to the background of a portrait? This thread is for you! Read members' suggestions for lighting set-ups.

Most photographers carry multiple cameras while out on an assignment. In this thread, one member asks what's the best solution for carrying multiple cameras so you can easily switch between them. Members provide all sorts of great ideas, so if you've struggled with this, check it out!

Do you shoot jewelry commercial photography assignments? If you do, this thread provides some good tips for capturing all the details.

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!


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About 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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By John Owens


Greetings photography community! Hope you've all had a wonderful start to summer. To cap things off, here are our favorite 10 blog posts from the week. Dig in!


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1. Have or Want To Open Your Own Studio? Read This

STUDIO ADVICE: This post from Million Dollar Photographer shares common pitfalls that you'll want to avoid if you have or are considering opening your own studio. Author Bradford Rowley offers 9 things to keep out of your studio space. Take a look around and see if they apply to you!

2. Why Compete? Photographers Weigh In

BE MORE INVOLVED: First, some good news: The deadline for submissions to the International Photographic Competition (IPC) has been extended to July 10! Why should you enter? We asked photographers just that on theLoop. Check out their responses in this post. Hopefully they inspire you to compete too!

3. People Skills? Yeah, You Need Those Too

NEGLECTED NECESSITIES: Here's a trick of the trade that's not often talked about but generally assumed we all have: people skills. The word 'skill' is there for a reason--it's a talent! This post discusses their importance and asks three insightful questions for you to consider. Take a look!

4. Skin Retouching: What To Do (And What Not To Do)

POST-PRODUCTION: Here's a post from Lindsay Adler, all about skin retouching. (did you know she's speaking at Imaging USA in 2016?!). I this post, she discusses five things that ruin skin in your photos. Are you guilt of any of these photography sins? Lindsay tells you how to fix them.

By Megan Mitchell

Have you been on the fence about entering PPA's International Photographic Competition (IPC)? 

If you're simply not entering because you are afraid of not scoring well enough, you might be missing a huge learning opportunity! What did you learn the last time you took a risk and tried to step up your work? What else could you learn? If you want to become a better photographer, these are probably the real questions! 

Entering the IPC and choosing to have your image critiqued is a great way to improve your photography skills. IPC jurors are accomplished photographers who have entered their images into the IPC many times before. Their eyes are trained to see things in your photos you might miss.

Now's the time to decide! If you enter before midnight on June 25th, you'll avoid a late fee - but no worries if you need a little bit longer to put things together, as late entries close July 10th. 

Curious about what sort of things the judges will be looking for? Watch a critique video here! Andrew Jenkins M.Photog.Cr., CPP, critiques Michael Patch's merited image, "Woodland Faces." 


Need a little more help before you take the plunge? See what other photographers have gotten out of entering their images in IPC and what they learnt from their critiques here! Ready to compete in the IPC? Enter the IPC today and Be More Competitive!

Megan Mitchell is an intern at PPA. Though she attends college in New York, she is originally from Georgia - most everyone she meets up north is shocked and disappointed by her lack of a southern accent. She finds great joy and comfort in copy editing and reading. She loves nothing more than words, but her family and friends take a close second.

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PPA instructor and sales guru Jeff Dachowski, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, is dropping some free advice this Thursday, June 25, 2pm ET, and if you want to Be More Profitable, don't miss it! The webinar is all about Selling to Out-of-Town Clients.

Jeff will discuss all aspects of long-distance sales, from how to set the stage with the first phone call to the final delivery of portraits! You'll learn how to set and manage client expectations, maintain control of the session and use technology to your advantage.

Check out the full class description and Jeff's bio then register! It's FREE and open to both PPA photographers and nonmembers alike. If you're looking to become a master of the sale--this is the class for you!

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By Chris Homer

If you're thinking about entering the International Photographic Competition (IPC), make sure to get your images entered by Midnight ET, June 25! After that date, there's a $35 late entry surcharge! You'll still be able to enter until July 10, but why waste $35? 

If you've never entered the IPC before, don't fear having your images judged. The process can be intimidating, but entering the competition really is one of the best ways to improve your technique as a photographer. Read all about why PPA members enter the IPC and how it can help your career in this post. 

When you enter, you'll also have the option to request your images critiqued by an IPC judge. Go for it! The judges have entered the competition in the past and have achieved success, so they know exactly what to look for in an image. They'll point out ways to improve your photography that you may not have considered before. Check out a critique from last year's IPC. 

Are you ready to Be More Confident in your images? Remember to enter the IPC by June 25 and avoid the late fee! 

And remember - the IPC judging will take place August 3-6 at Gwinnett Technical College in Lawrenceville, GA. Judging is open to the public, so feel free to attend and watch the judging. If you can't make it to the IPC to see the judging live, it will also be streamed online! This year there will even be a live broadcast, twice a day, to answer judging questions and go over some of the image reviews and challenges that will be happening during judging.


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About 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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