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PPA Today: August 2010 Archives

August 2010 Archives

Nik SoftwareWhere do you spend most of your time as a photographer? Are you capturing images for clients, or are you at a computer painstakingly editing those images? If you find yourself spending too much time post-processing, the award-winning Nik Software professional filters can help get you back behind the camera (and PPA members get a great discount).

Widely used by working pros around the world, Nik Software products solve many challenges faced by photographers every day and provide creative, practical and powerful workflow solutions that save time and money. Working tightly within tools you already use--Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom® and Apple® Aperture®--Nik's powerful, easy-to-use image enhancement tools help you quickly reduce noise, correct color and light, mimic traditional filters, retouch skin, convert color images to fine art black-and-white masterpieces, sharpen images and much more.

To learn more about how your peers are using Nik Software products, join PPA member Tony Corbell, Cr.Photog., API, for a special PPA workflow webinar. You can even download free trial versions to try on your own images!

Check out all of the software solutions available from Nik Software...and see how to take advantage of your special PPA member discount by visiting the Benefits section of PPA.com.

Business Tip from Imaging USA Instructor David Ziser, M.Photog.Cr.

ipad.jpgThree million Apple® iPads™ were sold in 80 days, with about one in five people wanting one. If you are a photographer and don't have an iPad yet, you are missing golden marketing opportunities.

For example, I use my iPad to show my portfolio and wedding album layouts to prospective clients when we meet...even during weddings. It's a great way to sizzle your prospect and turn him or her into a buying customer. But don't stop there.

Here are some more ideas photographers can use to make use of an iPad:

  • Load up your iPad with all your portfolios--wedding, family, children, senior, etc.
  • If your prospects see something they like, e-mail it to them right on the spot. (Now, you've captured their contact information, allowing you to follow up and not have to wait for them to call you.)
  • Add digital images of your favorite products to the iPad to preview for your current clients.
  • Upload your job proposals and price lists, making the iPad another easy and fast tool to help in booking the client.

The iPad is the single most important device to come along for photographers since the camera. It's a fast-paced world out there these days, and the new iPad gives you the marketing "rocket fuel" to keep pace.

(Learn more from David Ziser at his Imaging USA class: "Captured by the Light: Composing & Lighting for Dramatic Portraits.")

Adobe today announced the Lightroom 3.2 and Camera Raw 6.2 updates are available for immediate download on Adobe.com. The updates, originally posted as release candidates on Adobe Labs, extend raw file support to 16 new popular camera models including the Canon EOS 60D and Sony Alpha NEX-5, and improve on several of the lens correction profiles provided in the Lightroom 3.0 release. These latest updates also add over 120 new lens profiles to help photographers automatically correct for undesirable distortion and aberration effects. A full list of the newly added raw camera support and the new and improved lens profiles can be found on the Lightroom Journal: http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal.
Rick_Dawson_headshot.jpgIf you have 32 years of experience in something, you probably have a lot of time-tested techniques to share. That's the case with Certified Professional Photographer Rick Dawson of Virginia, who is sharing some of his techniques in an upcoming Super Monday class on October 25, 2010.

Dawson has been a professional photographer for over 32 years, starting back in college when he was earning his commercial art degree. As a student, he was required to take a beginner's black-and-white photography class that involved capturing images, learning to process the film,  and printing and mounting the photos. After college, Dawson became a press photographer for the Martinsville Bulletin, an experience that improved his confidence and taught him to compose images in ways that better tell the story.

Since starting his own photography business in 1978, Dawson's specialty has evolved to nature and environmental portraits. "Being out in the open air has allowed me to learn to control the sunlight with off-camera flashes and reflectors," he says about his photography's development. "Telling a story with less equipment just expands the artistic beauty I first experienced in my college photography classes."

PPA Charities CelebrationEducation isn't the only thing Imaging USA is known for. We're focused on photography and photographers, and that means a host of other events will be coming your way at Imaging USA. After all, Imaging USA is THE place to...

  • Get connected - Mix, mingle and network at the convention-wide parties.
  • Improve your photography - Sign up for free consultations with PPA Jurors/Mentors.
  • Get in touch with your charitable side - Party with the PPA Charities Celebration.
  • Be honored for photographic achievements - Celebrate at the Award & Degree Ceremony and the Grand Imaging Awards.
  • Get certified - Take your Certified Professional Photographer exam.
  • Meet up with your colleagues - Catch up with ASP events, the PPA District/Affiliate Print Chairs Meeting, PPA Judges Refresher Course, etc.
  • Get inspired - Soak up inspiration at the International Photographic Exhibit.

Now, we don't want to "sully" our reputation as the place for world-class business and artistic education, but we think it's only fair that you know there's some partying (and other events) going on. But really, these are all just different forms of inspiration. And inspiring YOU is what we're all about.

Party...we mean, plan...on!

Did you know that PPA is actively protecting your profits?

PPA's copyright & advocacy department is always available to help answer your questions if you believe your copyright has been infringed. In addition, PPA's RECON team is hard at work ensuring that retailers aren't illegally reproducing photographer's copyrighted works.

The Retail Compliance Network (RECON) is a group of photographer "investigators" who secret shop retailers (in store and online) to see if they are compliant with copyright law. PPA uses the results of these investigations to push the retailer toward greater copyright compliance.

Louisiana photographer and PPA member since 1998, Tim Schooler recently saw first-hand how PPA's RECON program works to ensure that retail stores are enforcing photographer's copyrights.

Schooler needed some last minute prints made from a photo session with his grandson for the child's first birthday party. He ordered the prints from his local Wal-Green's.

After picking the prints up, Schooler realized that he had not been asked for any identification or verification of a release form; necessary since they were copyright-protected studio portraits.

"I wouldn't need the release since I was the photographer, but what if this had been one of my clients?" Schooler said.

The next day, Schooler contacted the manager of the Wal-Green's to ask him what the store policy was for handling printing of studio portraits.

"When I explained to him what had happened he was quite upset and said the person who printed the images and sold them to me without a release could be fired." Schooler said. In this case, the clerk that assisted him knew he was the photographer because some of her friends had come to Schooler for Senior Portraits.

The manager went on to explain that someone from PPA's RECON frequently checks on the store.

"Recently, someone from PPA was in their store printing professional images to see what they would do. He said he knew infringement was subject to huge fines and took copyright violations very seriously." Schooler said of his conversation with the manager.

"I was so impressed that PPA does this. One more reason it is worth every penny to belong to PPA." Schooler said of RECON.

Read more about RECON here

Dear PPA Member,

I've had my fair share of hairstyles throughout the years. From varying shades of blonde (and a single weekend as a redhead), super short and spiky to long and curly, there wasn't a cut or color I was afraid to try. Once, I even bleached my hair "platinum" and cut it about a half-inch in length. That look wasn't an accident--it took planning with my hairstylist (and multiple confirmations that I did, in fact, want to cut off all my hair). I knew what I wanted and had to make sure that the person with the scissors and bottle of bleach understood me. We both wanted to walk away happy--me with my new look, and my hairstylist with a return client.

While your clients may not be coming to you for a new hairstyle, they are coming to you to capture a moment in time. And a client consultation allows both of you to understand what is expected and what can be provided. By knowing what your clients truly want, you are more likely to provide them with positive experiences and images that they'll treasure. That's the topic of this week's Vital Signs.

My current hairstylist has convinced me to grow my hair longer than a pixie cut, and the "Susan Powter look" has transformed into more natural shades. But you never know... there may be a client consultation in the future where I'll smile and say: "I'm channeling Susan again, so 'let's stop the insanity.'" And because he knows what I want, he'll know exactly what to do--and I'll know what to expect.

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. P.S. Want a great way to make yourself stand out during your client consultations? PPA's Merit & Degree Program recognizes you for your dedication and achievements--something both your and your clients can appreciate. Learn more by watching the webinar, 'Get Recognized: PPA's Merit & Degree Program'.

Kubota Image Tools, provider of photographer-empowering creative imaging tools, workflow-saving solutions and educational offerings for photographers of all levels, today announced details of the 20th iteration of its award-winning Digital Photography Bootcamp and launched an entirely new event to precede Bootcamp, called, SummitUp 2010. The two events will run consecutively starting on November 6 through November 13, 2010. Both are specifically designed to help photographers build the necessary skills to drive their business success while improving the technical and creative abilities that ultimately enable them to reach their artistic and professional goals. To meet the varying needs and educational preferences of photographers, the two events offer differing formats. The Bootcamp is an immersive week-long workshop program while SummitUp was designed as an intensive day and a half program featuring six focused sessions from leaders in the photography industry.

vintage_delish.jpgKubota Image Tools, provider of photographer-empowering creative imaging tools, workflow-saving solutions and educational offerings for photographers of all levels, today announced the immediate availability of its latest package of award-winning presets for Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom®. Fully compatible with the recently-released Lightroom 3, the Kubota Lightroom Presets - Vintage Delish offers photographers a multitude of pre-programmed short-cuts to create popular image effects. Using these new tools devised by photo industry veteran Kevin Kubota, professional photographers will save time in their existing work while those new to Lightroom will unlock the powerful image editing the software has to offer.

This latest edition of the Kubota Lightroom Presets includes 42 custom Develop Presets for Lightroom 3. Evoking nostalgia from decades spanning as far back as 100 years, these presets will transport images with fashionable, highly sought-after looks that consumer's desire. From handcrafted effects channeling the days of the Holga to iconic old film styles, every creative Develop Preset is fully compatible with Adobe® Lightroom 3 and will be the perfect complement those included in the previously released Kubota Lightroom Resets V3. Kubota Lightroom Presets - Vintage Delish includes easy image adjustments for:
Imaging USA is home to many photographic classes as well as the Imaging EXPO tradeshow, but there are also some great special events that will be happening at this year's convention.

Of course, we photographers like to party with the best of them! Get the party started with the "Heat Up The Night" festivity (Sunday, January 16). And don't miss the "Big. Bayou. Bash" on the last night of Imaging USA, for it will help prepare you for the 2012 convention in New Orleans. PPA Charities will also host a celebration the night before Imaging USA officially begins (Saturday, January 15), including the check presentation to Operation Smile.

Along with these great parties, Imaging USA will also host the brand-new Grand Imaging Awards and the PPA Awards & Degree Ceremony to celebrate photography and photographers themselves.

The International Photographic Exhibit is another Imaging USA highlight you don't want to miss. You'll see images from PPA's 2010 Loan and General collections culled from the International Photographic Competition.

Plus, attendees interested in becoming Certified Professional Photographers will also have an opportunity to register for and take the CPP Exam.

Read all about these events, plus many more, on the Event Highlights page.

HDR_Efex_Pro_Boxforweb.jpgNik Software (www.niksoftware.com) today announced HDR Efex Pro, a completely new HDR imaging toolkit designed to help photographers quickly and easily achieve the full spectrum of HDR enhancements from the realistic to artistic. 

High dynamic range photography is a process in which multiple exposures are captured, aligned and merged to generate a single image that enables a much wider range of colors, highlights, and shadows. HDR techniques are typically used to enhance landscape, architectural, nighttime, and artistic photography. New HDR Efex Pro overcomes limitations in other software tools with a revolutionary all-in-one approach that enables both realistic and artistic effects to be applied within a single tool.

"HDR is one area of innovation in the evolution of photography and an area that we have been dedicated to from a research perspective for quite some time." said Michael J. Slater, President and CEO of Nik Software. "Our focus with HDR Efex Pro has been to bring innovative and best-in-class technologies to HDR, including our unrivaled tone mapping, our proprietary U Point® technology and powerful ghost reduction, all of which have been developed specifically in response to our customers' requests."

Get Ready for Imaging USAWhether you're dipping your toe into Imaging USA for the very first time or you're jumping in full-force like you have for as long as you can remember, you're in for a rewarding experience in 2011. So how can you make it even better?

First-Timers
Wear comfy shoes and plan, plan, plan. Imaging USA can be overwhelming because there's so much to see and do! Make a plan so you don't miss out on classes and events that can be extremely helpful:

All-the-Timers
Carry on, my friends. You come back to Imaging USA for a cornucopia of reasons, and you know what works for you. But don't forget to test the waters in a new class, even if it doesn't seem like it's "what you do." You never know where you'll find the next great piece of advice to spice up your art or business.

Still, some of the best advice we can give for a rewarding Imaging USA experience is to ask each other! Ask your fellow photographers what they like best about Imaging USA, what they try to never miss, what they try to bring (and take away). Make new friends and talk to other Imaging USA attendees on the OurPPA forum, or on our Imaging USA Facebook page.

We'll see you soon...in the heart of Texas!

Gary Fong, Inc., developer and manufacturer of cutting-edge photography equipment designed to help photographers experience new levels of creativity, today introduced its new Tripod Adapter that enables iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS users to maximize their mobile device's photographic capabilities.  The new Gary Fong iPhone adapter affixes to most tripods as well as the popular Gary Fong Flip-Cage lineup of camera stands, enabling both casual and pro shooters to steady their iPhones and produce crisp images and video in a wide variety of lighting situations.

As the iPhone continues to earn praise for its ability to package impressive technology and an increasingly capable camera into one device, the new Tripod Adapter will make it easier for users to achieve professional quality results when using their mobile phone to capture pictures, video, or when streaming two-way video chat. The adapter features a 1/4-20 female tripod socket to affix to most popular tripod models, and is constructed of rugged industrial strength plastic to safely stow inside a backpack or pocket. Apple iPhone owners, who often use the FaceTime capability for streaming video chat, will find their chat partners especially thankful for less nausea-inducing screen shake.

"Photographers, professional or otherwise, continue to embrace their mobile devices as worthwhile companions to their familiar point-and-shoots or DSLRs, and we saw a need to help eliminate some of the challenges associated with using a device like the iPhone to take high-quality images and video," said Gary Fong, internationally renowned photographer and CEO of Gary Fong, Inc.  "By maximizing the iPhone's imaging capabilities, the new Tripod Adapter will open up new possibilities for users to capture print-quality stills, broadcast-ready video or merely stay connected to family and social networks."

The Tripod Adapter for the iPhone is available for $19.95 MAP.  For more information or to purchase the adapter, please visit http://www.garyfonginc.com.

PPA's Summer Shootout digital photo contest"You can't win if you don't play." There are dozens of quotes and song lyrics that give that message. It's a message to move past any lingering fear, shyness or apathy, and try something new...like PPA's Summer Shootout, an all-new, all-online photo contest.

There are cash prizes in all four categories...but you have to enter to win. There are critiques available...but you have to enter to get them. And there's only one more month to enter! (Entry deadline is September 30th.)

Pushing yourself further in art and business is a personal challenge, and so are contests like the Summer Shootout. Will you push yourself to try something new? Will you push yourself to accept this challenge? Are you up to it?

Come on...show us what you got!

Last week, we looked at two of the cardinal sins photographers often commit: ignoring their numbers--or, more aptly, running away from an encounter with their numbers--and failing to plan. This week, we continue the crusade to help you overcome the "7 Deadly Sins of Financial Management," starting with your state of mind.

#3:  Failing to Think Like What You Are--A Small Business
Salem, Ore., photographer and Studio Management Services (SMS) instructor Eric Anundi calls it the "artist mentality." He says that before he started using managerial financial concepts and planning in his business, he had the mindset of an artist, not a businessperson. 

"Now wait," you say. "What's wrong with thinking like an artist?" It's not that thinking like an artist is wrong; it's failing to realize that your art is a business. As we often say, if you can't make money, your images will look awesome...hanging in your basement.

"Oftentimes, our members don't make direct correlations between the money they're spending and how those expenditures affect the bottom line," says Scott Kurkian, PPA chief financial officer and founder of SMS, PPA's business and financial management practice for photographers. "We spend money on products and equipment because we believe they'll help us make better images--and maybe they will--but you have to plan for those expenditures and ensure that, while they're improving your art, they're not breaking the bank."

Common Sense Business Principles

Anundi says that it might seem obvious, but more often than not, "photographers don't place enough value on common sense business principles."

 
Walker_Karen_headshot.jpgKaren Walker of Portage, Mich., has been a professional photographer since 1992. Since then, she has had many chances to experience the importance of learning from other experienced photographers at events like Super Monday

"When I started my business 1992, I was familiar with the basics of running a business...but I had no idea how much I still needed to learn about photography," admits Walker. "If it wasn't for the opportunities to learn from other experienced photographers, I wouldn't be in business today."

In fact, Walker is getting ready to return the favor at this fall's Super Monday event. She'll share her expertise at photo restoration, an award-winning specialty of hers. Her electronic imaging print case of restorations even earned a Gold Photographer of the Year Award at this year's International Photographic Competition!

"I've always liked the idea that I'm helping people preserve their family history," Walker adds as she explains her various specialties. "Whether I'm photographing children, family gatherings or high school seniors, I know that I'm creating something that their children and grandchildren will have to help them know and remember their family members. Being able to restore and preserve a family's historical photos is no different. Photos of past generations help us know where we came from and give us a sense of who we are."

Join Walker at her Super Monday class, "Photo Restoration," October 24th in Portage, Mich., and learn her award-winning restoration techniques to repair old, faded or damaged images. This Adobe Certified Expert will also share her ideas on product design and marketing those restoration services. 
Mamiya, Phase One and Profoto today announced the Mamiya/Phase One V-Grip Air. This is the first product resulting from these companies' collaboration.

The Mamiya/Phase One V-Grip Air is not only the first vertical grip with a built-in wireless flash trigger; it is also the first and only wireless flash sync solution for a medium format camera system that is capable of delivering sync speeds as fast as 1/1600s.  The new V-Grip also offers owners of Phase One and Mamiya 645DF cameras more shooting styles, and delivers longer camera battery life through power integration and easy firmware upgrades.

"Profoto's innovative flash system technology is legendary in our time," said Henrik HÃ¥konsson, President and CEO, Phase One.  "Profoto's commitment to system diversity complements Phase One's open platform approach to ensure photographers have options to choose the best systems to support their unique requirements."

"Profoto is recognized globally as producing the most innovative flash equipment in the industry," says President of Mamiya Digital Imaging, Toshio Midorikawa. "By combining resources with Profoto, Mamiya and Team Phase One, we are able to offer photographers the most practical tools for their profession."

Built-in flash technology from Profoto lets photographers trigger a flash simply and wirelessly from the V-grip Air. The wireless flash triggering system is an out-of-the-box solution that works with all current and most modern Profoto flash systems. It is also possible to leverage the wireless flash triggering with other flash brands by using an optional receiver unit from Profoto.

"We share Phase One's and Mamiya's passion for pushing the limits for our customers," said Anders Hedebark, CEO, Profoto. "It is great to be working with companies that lead the medium format market in applied innovation for photographers. Our cooperation in designing the V-grip Air marks the beginning of new and better workflow tools we plan to be offering to professional photographers in the future."

The V-Grip Air unit features all the same camera controls and functionality as on the 645DF camera. An integrated L-bracket is available for portrait-mode mounting on a stand. The unit runs on the same type of battery used in Phase One and Leaf digital backs with a backup option to use standard AA type batteries.  

Pricing/Availability
The Mamiya One V-Grip Air for 645DF camera systems is priced at $1290. A L-bracket/handstrap standalone package is $299.  Both are scheduled to begin shipments in latter September.

The Profoto transceiver is $199 and is available from Profoto. More information is available at http://www.profoto-usa.com .

Dear PPA Member,

Legal, schmegal. Who needs the extra hassle of paperwork and signatures? You have clients and you know that they're going to pay you, right? They said they'd pay you, right? They told you the date and where you're supposed to be, right?

Wrong.

Contracts and releases and agreements exist for many reasons, but the main reason you need to have them in your business is to protect...you. I don't think you'd buy or sell a house without having something legally in writing. Buying a house is an investment. Buying your services as a professional photographer is an investment, too, so treat it as such!

This week's Vital Signs will show you what should be in your legal kit. You may not use everything in your kit, but it's worth putting one together...just in case. After all, they said they'd pay you, right?

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

red_velvet.jpgPPA member Debbie McFarland, CPP, of the Memory Cottage studio in Fayetteville, Georgia, recently launched a new division of her studio with the goal of improving women's self-esteem.

McFarland's new division, Red Velvet Epiphany, photographs women who feel vulnerable about their self-image to get rid of negative feelings about themselves and embrace the bodies they have.

"Our internal thoughts are our biggest obstacles," McFarland said. "I want to help ladies find their own kind of beautiful however they can feel beautiful."

She says that she was inspired to start Red Velvet Epiphany after living "40 years with no self-esteem" and hating everything about herself. One day, McFarland says that she underwent a transformation that made her realize she was perfect the way she was.

"It completely changed how I looked at myself and others and I really wanted other ladies to feel this epiphany as well." McFarland said.

McFarland has photographed women who are turning 50 and don't feel good about themselves, new moms and even chemotherapy patients.

"We have had such amazing feedback from ladies that say it has been life changing for them!" McFarland said.

Read more about Red Velvet Epiphany in this article from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Read more about Debbie McFarland here.

Have you been featured recently in your local news? Send your press to PPA's Online Content Editor, Chris Homer, at chomer@ppa.com.

Cathy Sachs, long time Executive Director of the American Society of Picture Professionals (ASPP), has told the National Board of her decision to retire at the end of this year. She has held this position for more than 15 years, having previously served on the National Board. During her tenure ASPP has become well respected in the industry as a knowledgeable intermediary for the different groups in the image business, and has been an important contributor to industry forums. The National Board has appointed Jain Lemos, who will assume the responsibility of the Executive Director position as of October 1, 2010, transitioning with Sachs through the end of the year.

Captured by the Light tour

Join internationally-renowned wedding photographer David Ziser for a full evening of high-energy education. Captured by the Light Tour 2010 (www.capturedbythelight2010.com) is filling ballrooms across the country and may be coming to city near you. Only $59 with promo code, when pre-registering. $79 at the door. (Click here to get your PPA promo code.)

You will learn...

  • 10 amazing new ways to use "exciting lighting" to create dramatic images!
  • 10 of the best lens choices and camera settings to produce strikingly beautiful results!
  • 10 fast and easy lighting secrets to make people look their absolute best!
  • 10 exciting ways to compose your image before firing the shutter... guaranteeing the perfect shot!
  • 10 fantastic tips to advance your digital designs to the next level!
  • 10 unique post-production software solutions to save you "tons" of time!
  • 10 awesome profit building marketing & sales techniques to add to your bottom line!

Registration begins at 5pm. The seminar will run from 6pm-10:30pm with a 30 minute break and mini-tradeshow.

iStock_000008590305XSmall_250.jpgOf course, Pope Gregory the Great wasn't thinking of running a successful photography business when he called out the worst of the worst in the seven deadly sins. Still, there are a few vices that can create holy havoc with your bottom line unless you're committed to changing your ways. Over the next few weeks, we'll break down the "Seven Deadly Sins of Financial Management," and give you some easy steps toward reclaiming the high ground of a pious passion for profitability.
 
#1: You can ignore it, but it won't go away.

Oh, we know you. You pursue your artistic goals with a vengeance, always looking to improve your skills and perfect your photography. But when it comes to facing the numbers, you'll find all kinds of reasons to put it off to another day. 
 
Come on now--it's time to man (or woman) up. Ignoring the math just because you're afraid you're not going to like what you see is not going to get you to business management heaven. "Just because you put off facing a problem doesn't mean it will go away, and those numbers are not going to get better on their own," says Scott Kurkian, PPA chief financial officer and founder of Studio Management Services (SMS), PPA's business and financial management practice for photographers. 
 
Kurkian also points out that you might even be in for a pleasant surprise. "Oftentimes, our members' finances just need a few tweaks and the application of some of the tried-and-true principles we use in SMS, like getting a grip on exactly what's coming in and what's going out." 
 
So what should you do? Pull that comforter away from your head and cozy up to your balance sheets. "It's always better to know what's wrong than to ignore reality," says Kurkian. Once you've faced your numerical nemeses, you can get started on taking control and making changes that improve your profitability.

© Victor Bruce, Imaging USA 2010Cooks know that preheating the oven is essential for getting the best results from baking. But did you know that the same goes for photography education?

Coming in early for Imaging USA's pre-convention classes is the perfect recipe for the best educational and networking results--it makes the entire experience more rewarding. You will have access to more instructors and more in-depth education, for many pre-convention classes last all day (or at least several hours). And that can also lead to tighter connections with your fellow pre-conventioneers.

"Preheat" your Imaging USA experience with the following early-bird specials:

  • Speed Shooting with the Pros classes - learn a multitude of tips from one hot photographer after another.
  • PPA's Studio Management Services (SMS) workshops - get your business on the path to success with these business, financial and marketing hotshots. (The Business of Wedding Photography, The Business of Portrait Photography & the 3-Day SMS Business Workshop)
  • Daylong classes on creating and refining your senior, boudoir or pet photography specialties.
  • Corel® Painterâ„¢ classes to help beginners and those more advanced take your art to new places.

And that's just a bite-sized sample of the opportunities available in these three extra days of education! Get your creative fire started--choose your pre-convention classes online now.

Your Imaging USA Team

P.S. Be sure to book your hotel room according to the times of your chosen pre-convention classes!

Business tip from Carol Andrews Jensen, M.Photog.Cr., ABI (Imaging USA 2011 Instructor)

Andrews_Carol.jpgWorking backwards to a goal? If you stop to think, you'll realize that it works! 

Goals are a huge part of reaching our vision and our dreams, and they are so important in creating business models (and life models) that are attainable and achievable. But as small business owners (and creatives), we have to get out of our set patterns to reinvent, refresh, restore and create. Backwards goal-setting is a tool to help us do that.

One of the questions I am asked frequently is how to create a business and marketing calendar. Surprise! Step one is to start at the end. (This "backward" planning method is often used in educational settings, as well as professional training techniques.)

Start at the End
Let's start with the ultimate end goal and think backwards. As always, write down your achievement/goal and your completion date. BE VERY SPECIFIC.

For example, I will have a Valentine's Day promotion, running February 10-14 and featuring mothers and daughters with fresh roses. My goal is 20 sessions at an average of $1,500.00, and the featured product will be a custom album with 10 retouched images.
Kubota Image Tools, provider of photographer-empowering creative imaging tools, workflow-saving solutions and educational offerings for photographers of all levels, has announced details of the 20th iteration of its award-winning Digital Photography Bootcamp and launched an entirely new event to precede Bootcamp, called, SummitUp 2010. The two events will run consecutively starting on November 6 through November 13, 2010. Both are specifically designed to help photographers build the necessary skills to drive their business success while improving the technical and creative abilities that ultimately enable them to reach their artistic and professional goals. To meet the varying needs and educational preferences of photographers, the two events offer differing formats. The Bootcamp is an immersive week-long workshop program while SummitUp was designed as an intensive day and a half program featuring six focused sessions from leaders in the photography industry.
Huegel_John_Headshot.jpgJohn Huegel of Erie, Pa., first began photographing as an amateur to get involved with his children's activities. Whether it was dance, band or sports, he made sure to photograph it. As a matter of fact, Huegel feels that photographing his daughters dancing led to him becoming a professional photographer.

"I chose dance photography to stay involved with my kids' interests--both of my daughters danced for 15 years--and it was very profitable!" Huegel recalls

Huegel was soon asked by the dance studio to be their photographer, pointing him towards his current career in photography. In addition, his work with dance studios opened up other photographic opportunities. As he says, "Dance studios are a great way to tap into the senior market, weddings and other events."

Photographing professionally for the last six years, Huegel has covered some weddings, but he focuses mainly on seniors and the dancers that started it all. "I really enjoy delivering images that exceed my clients' expectations," he comments. "My exacting work in creating collages, posters and individual prints for dancers and seniors makes me feel great."

If you're interested in learning how to photograph dancers--at a profit--you can't miss Huegel's Super Monday class "The Dance of Light: Business & Techniques of Dance Photography" (October 25th in Erie, Pa.).
PPA member Whitney Elizabeth recently traveled to Port Au Prince, Haiti to photograph the ongoing earthquake relief effort.

During her nine day trip in April, the Santa Barbara, CA based photographer documented the days of volunteer doctors and nurses from the organization New Reality International.

The group of doctors Elizabeth accompanied treated 2,000 patients in mobile clinics and preformed 43 surgeries.

Elizabeth was able to capture images of clinics, surgeries, tent cities and candid shots of the people of Haiti.

"It was the most incredible nine days of my life and I hope that my photographs will bring much needed attention to relief efforts for Haiti as the people are still struggling, especially with the rainy season upon them," Elizabeth said of the experience.

You can view Elizabeth's photos of Haiti on her blog, http://www.whitneyelizabethphoto.com/blog/haiti/.

Read more about Whitney Elizabeth here.

Have you been featured recently in your local news? Send your press to PPA's Online Content Editor, Chris Homer, at chomer@ppa.com

60 Second SurveyWould you mind answering a question? We'd like to know how you connect with us. Do you follow us on Facebook...read our blogs...subscribe to Professional Photographer? Please take a moment to click here and let us know.

Members, have you been featured in your local news? If so, PPA wants to know about it!

If you've recently been featured in a newspaper, magazine, on television or online, email your press to PPA's Online Content Editor, Chris Homer, at chomer@ppa.com

We will post your news spotlight on the PPA Today blog as part of our new "PPA Members in the News" blog feature. 

Dear PPA Member,

Unless you're Daddy Warbucks or Richie Rich, you probably don't have bags of money stacked to the ceiling that you can spend on advertising. So it probably goes without saying, but...don't blow it.

Word-of-mouth advertising is free, but it will only get you so far. Part of an effective business strategy is determining what paid advertising will be best for your studio. We're not talking about holding a "Mad Men" episode where account executives plan a multi-year international campaign or keeping Crispin Porter + Bogusky on speed dial; rather, take some time to think about what type of paid advertising may work for you.

If you are Daddy Warbucks or Richie Rich, give me a call. (I've always wanted to see those bags with the big dollar symbols.) Otherwise, this week's Vital Signs is a great way to help you spend your time--and your money--wisely.

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. Have questions about copyright? Look to PPA's 2010 Copyright Kit for answers! This exclusive PPA member benefit has recently been updated to reflect current copyright law, and it also offers advice on how to protect your copyrights.

onOne Software, Inc. has announced its upcoming schedule of free Pro Series Live Webinars. Acclaimed photographers and Photoshop Gurus will be hosting the live hour-long sessions, enabling participants to submit questions during the sessions. Topics will include lifestyle, landscape, portraiture, travel and HDR photography, with new sessions being added regularly.  Attendees who attend will not only be inspired by the amazing photography of the speakers but will also learn valuable tips and techniques on using onOne Software products.

"Our customers, and those evaluating our products, have told us they find our new webinar series incredibly valuable.  The webinars help customers quickly get up and running with our tools and they provide insight to those who are considering onOne Software Plug-Ins."  said Craig Keudell, president of onOne Software. "We have an exciting line up of speakers and we feel confident that photographers will find tremendous value in these free webinar sessions."

Webinar Registration
To register for the webinars visit: http://www.ononesoftware.com/webinars

Webinar Schedule


Creating Fine Art Children's Portraits with Kersti Malvre
August 11th at 1pm PDT and August 17th at 11am PDT
In this webinar, Kersti Malvre, Lifestyle Photographer, will be showing and enhancing images from a fun and lively photo shoot featuring a wonderful little girl. She will demonstrate from start to finish how she creates a beautiful Lifestyle book using onOne Software's PhotoTools, PhotoTune and PhotoFrame.

Creating Images with Impact by Scott Stulberg
August 25th at 11am PDT and September 8th at 11am PDT
Travel and stock photographer, educator and author, Scott Stulberg travels the world shooting stock photography that appears in many publications. In this webinar, Scott will show you how to make your images truly stand out using onOne's FocalPoint, PhotoTools and PhotoTune.

Live from Las Vegas with Vincent Versace at Photoshop World
September 2nd at 11am PDT
Join Vincent Versace, live from Photoshop World in Las Vegas as he demonstrates how he uses Plug-In Suite 5 to achieve an iconic look to his photos.

Enhancing Your Portraits, with Dave Cross

September 14th at 2pm PDT
Join NAPP instructor and professional photographer Dave Cross for this valuable webinar that's jam-packed with tips and tricks for getting the most out of your portrait images using PhotoFrame 4.5 Professional Edition.

midwesttransactiongroup.pngThese days, many clients prefer to pay for your services by credit card. Well, don't forget that PPA members have a great benefit--at a great rate--that will help you offer that option through Midwest Transaction Group (MTG)!

MTG is a national credit card processing company that caters to you as a photographer. Small merchants are usually subject to monthly minimums and higher rates because their transaction volumes are not as high as other businesses. Luckily, through PPA's partnership with MTG, you can sign up with no monthly minimums, no contractual period and no cancellation fees! But that's not all that MTG offers photographers. Take a look at some of the special benefits that come with MTG:

Discounts--Best of all? As a PPA member, qualified, swiped transactions cost only 1.55% + 20 cents/transaction, and you also get a discount on the terminal or internet gateway you need to process those transactions.

NEW Mobile Processing--
Looking to make the process even easier? Keep an eye out for MTG's new service (coming soon!) that will allow you to swipe a credit card using your iPhone™, BlackBerry® or DROID smart phone! This is perfect for the times you shoot on location or when you're simply outside of the studio and want to take an order.

PCI Compliance--MTG will help you become PCI compliant, which means that you comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards established by VISA®, MasterCard® and Discover®. Any business that accepts credit or debit cards needs to be PCI compliant, and this is one of the biggest hurdles in the industry. It requires a business to complete and file an annual assessment of their ability to safeguard card data. Most processors will send you to a third party in order to help you become PCI compliant, which entails an additional cost. However, MTG helps you become PCI compliant free of charge, thanks to their licensed PCI compliance technology that can help you complete the assessment and properly file the information.

Visit the Benefit area at PPA.com for more information about MTG and the services that they offer...and the special discounts that you get as a PPA member!
Florida has a great opportunity that local photographers should consider taking part in: a three-month Tax Amnesty program, signed into law by Governor Charlie Crist. It started July 1, 2010, and will end on September 30. With this amnesty program, Florida taxpayers that owe back taxes can settle their debts with the state at a reduced interest payment...and with no imposed penalties. By participating, delinquent taxpayers can avoid interest, penalties and criminal prosecution.

Why is this of interest to Florida photographers? Well, the government has been targeting photographers (and other business owners) who have not been keeping up to date with their sales and use taxes. So if you are behind, now's the perfect chance to get caught up!

To participate in the program, Florida photographers must do the following:
  • File all requisite paperwork, including returns and amended returns.
  • Pay the full amount of taxes due.
  • Pay the discounted interest rate due.
  • Pay the administrative processing fee

Two discounted rates are available for the amnesty program. If you have received a notice, bill or demand for payment, or are under audit or an administrative or judicial proceeding, then you can save 25 percent of the interest due. If you have never received communication from the government, you can save 50 percent, paying only half of applicable interest!

Florida photographers will also have the option of a seven-month payment structure, provided a minimum down payment of 12.5 percent is paid by the end of the amnesty period. Keep in mind, that should you miss a scheduled payment, you will owe all original taxes, interest and penalties.

Again, the Florida Tax Amnesty program ends September 30, 2010, and it applies to sales tax, corporate income tax, use tax and fuel tax, among other. If you have any questions about how the program may affect you or your business, please contact PPA's Studio Management Services (sms@ppa.com, 888.851.0405).

SM_postcard.jpgOn October 25, more than 95 of your colleagues across the country will open their studio doors to share their knowledge with you.

There'll be Super Monday classes dedicated to babies and seniors, posing and lighting, retouching and digital workflow, marketing and sales strategies. It's a chance you won't want to miss--a full day of instruction, inspiration and networking brought to you by fellow professional photographers.

The popular Super Monday bonus pack is back! View the sponsors and the goodies here.

Browse our online map to find a course near you, and register by October 11 for only $99.

Learn more about Super Monday here.

Tamron_SP_70-300_mm.jpgTamron announced another advance in the company's pursuit of high resolution images in the telephoto lens category with the release of its anniversary model SP 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens featuring VC (Vibration Compensation) image stabilization and an ultrasonic auto-focus drive -- USD (Ultrasonic Silent Drive). The SP 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di VC USD (Model A005) high-resolution DSLR telephoto zoom lens is available for the Nikon mount on August 26, 2010, with the launch of mounts for Canon and Sony to follow.

This new lens is designed for digital SLR cameras, and it can be used with both full-frame sensor and AF 35mm cameras with a zoom range of 70-300mm; or with APS-C sensor cameras where the angle of view will change the zoom range equal to 109-465mm.
Weekly-giveaway_180.pngWeek 1: Free Imaging USA Buddy Pass
Every week we'll be giving away special items that photographers like you might just find outstandingly handy. This week's hot deal: a FREE Imaging USA Buddy Pass  for San Antonio! Click here to enter and check back in every Imaging USA e-mail for new prizes and chances to win.

Henry B. Gonzalez Convention CenterCan you believe it? It's already August, and it's time to start making your plans for Imaging USA 2011 in San Antonio! We're so fired up about this year's photography convention and expo that we can hardly wait to start sharing the highlights with you...and now it's time:

  • Time to check out ImagingUSA.org to see all the classes and pre-convention choices
  • Time to make your hotel reservations (you'll want to be right next door to the convention center and in the thick of the action on the River Walk, which our reserved hotels offer)
  • Time to map out the sessions you want to attend
  • Time to plan your San Antonio sightseeing
  • Time to start making that wish list of equipment and products (the deals at the Imaging Expo will be smoking!)

Glen A. ClarkBay Photo Lab has chosen Glen A. Clark, Cr. Photog., F/S-PPC, photographer, consultant, presenter, and photography industry executive, to join the Santa Cruz-based company.

An accomplished photographic professional with more than 30 years of photo industry experience, Glen has served in a variety of roles throughout California and across the United States. He has received recognitions for his outstanding support of the industry during the past three decades, most recently honored (along with his wife Robin) by the Professional Photographers of California as their 'Corporate Vendor of the Year.'

"I am thrilled to be working with Bay Photo Lab as the company continues to flourish and grow in today's photography market," Clark says. "Bay Photo is a cutting-edge company and professional digital imaging lab that is a leader in the industry."

Smith_Kimberli_headshot.jpgKimberli Smith of Affinity Photography in Baytown, Texas, knows that a photography career needs personal connections to grow...from connections with your family to connections with your clients and community.

In fact, Smith can remember connections between herself, her family and photography as a young child.

"I remember my grandmother wanting to throw away pictures that were double-exposed, but I loved the effect that it made. I wanted to know how to make that happen, instead of how to prevent it!" Smith says of her early interest in photography.

Later in life, photographing her own children gave Smith the inspiration to open her own children photography business, which she did in 2007. "While others were documenting their children's lives with snapshots, I was taking it to the next level and critiquing my own work...waiting for the 'perfect moment' in the perfect setting," recalls Smith. "I knew [photographing children] was what I loved, and I could not see myself doing anything else. Every day is a new experience open for creativity and personal growth."
Jerry BorwickHas working weddings become more of a chore than a passion for you? Jerry Borwick knows the lure of wedding photography...and he knows the pitfalls. And if you, like Borwick, think that wedding photography may not be for you after all, come and listen to some firsthand advice in his webinar: "Say Goodbye to Weddings: Making a Successful Switch to Portraiture" (August 26, 2:00pm ET).

"Several years ago, I realized I would be happier shooting portraits instead of weddings because I could spend more time with my four boys on the weekends," recalls Borwick. "Another good reason is less work but more money. Plain and simple, I can photograph more portraits than I can weddings because there are only 52 weekends in a year, but there are 240 weekdays!"
PPACharities2010.jpgThis year, PPA Charities re-invented "Chicks Who Click," a conference focused on women in photography, turning it into a fundraising event of education, networking and fun. More than 150 registrants, along with vendors, speakers, volunteers and trustees, gathered at the Firesky Resort and Spa in Scottsdale, Ariz., in late June for this inaugural PPA Charities event. Attendees benefited from outstanding presentations on topics designed to increase their business success and, in the process, helped raise more than $30,000 for PPA Charities.
 
"Part of this success was our good fortune in having such an amazing group of presenters volunteer their services on behalf of PPA Charities," said PPA Charities President Mary Fisk-Taylor. "The Chicks Conference was a real team effort, with volunteers, trustees, speakers, vendors and attendees all helping to make it a huge success."

Learn more about the 2010 event here
.

About PPA Charities
PPA Charities is a charitable, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to reaching out and touching the lives of children and families in need. Established in 1997 as the philanthropic arm of Professional Photographers of America, PPA Charities allows imaging professionals to combine their individual efforts to make an impact. (www.ppacharities.com)
Datacolor® today announced a price reduction on select products from its Spyder line of calibration solutions. Effective immediately, Datacolor customers new and old can take advantage of lower costs on several of its most popular products, including the SpyderCube™, Spyder3Elite™, and Spyder3Studio SR™.

Dear (member),

I was an "upset client" recently. What was supposed to be an easy transaction turned into a six-week "I can't make this up it's so bad" fiasco and left me questioning the collective sanity of the store's customer service initiative. (Yes, they actually had one, but it wasn't working.) Several broken promises of call backs and updates, defective products, employees blaming other employees...and in the end? Well, I got what I wanted, but I will never purchase another item or service from that store again.

The bright spot? One manager who recognized that things were being handled so disastrously wrong became my champion for the store--because she saw it from my perspective and took the appropriate steps to make sure the situation was resolved. She followed through on every promise she made to me, offered me solutions, apologized and accepted responsibility for the repeated mistakes--even after I told her it wasn't her fault. She explained: "It's our store. I may not have caused it, but it's our mistake. I have the power to fix it."

For those upset clients you may occasionally encounter, we offer solutions and ideas in this week's Vital Signs. I wish the store's employees had a copy of this article, but they've lost this loyal customer. In this day and age, I've already found a new store that offers me better customer service--don't ever let your customers say the same thing about your services.

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. Before you jump into this month's newsletter, would you mind answering a question? We'd like to know how you connect with us. Do you follow us on facebook...read our blogs...subscribe to Professional Photographer? Please take a moment to click here and let us know.

Epson America, Inc. today introduced its new line of Artisan® all-in-ones - the Artisan 835 and Artisan 725.  With image quality preferred by consumers 3-to-1 over the competition and a host of unique features, the new Artisan all-in-ones are a perfect match for today's active, digital families that require one solution for various printing needs.

"These latest Artisan all-in-ones continue to redefine the standard for image quality, print speed and unique creative capabilities," said Julie Ernest, product manager, Consumer Ink Jet Printers, Epson America, Inc. "From family photos and creative projects to school work and household documents, these versatile all-in-ones deliver the quality, reliability and performance consumers have come to expect from the Artisan line."

The flagship Artisan 835 boasts a 7.8-inch smart touch panel, a 3.5-inch color LCD, built-in fax, and a 30-page Automatic Document Feeder to quickly copy and fax documents. The Artisan 725 features an enhanced touch panel for easier navigation. Both feature 2.5 times faster wireless connectivity with Wi-Fi, wireless printing from an Apple® iPhone and the world's fastest 4"x6" photo print speeds.  In addition, the Artisan 725 and Artisan 835 deliver vibrant colors and crisp, clear text with Epson's six-color Ultra Hi-Definition Claria® ink.

Additional Features of the Artisan Series:

  • Delivers fast ISO print speeds of 9.5 ISO ppm black and 9 ISO ppm color
  • Offers built-in wireless and Ethernet networking
  • Saves up to 50 percent of paper supply with automatic two-sided printing
  • Creates personalized greeting cards, coloring book pages, elegant stationery, and note paper
  • Creates professional-looking discs by printing images and text directly onto ink jet printable CDs/DVDs with easy-to-use Epson Print CD software
  • Features built-in Auto Photo Correction to automatically evaluate and correct images and red eye
  • Prints applications wirelessly from an iPhone, including PDF files, photos, photo calendars, business documents, and more, through applications available on the iTunes App Store
  • Prints images directly from digital cameras, mobile phones and USB Flash drives with PictBridge®
  • Accommodates various printing needs with individual ink cartridges at affordable prices (standard and high-capacity sizes)
  • Delivers vivid, true-to-life photos with Epson's exclusive MicroPiezo® print head with DX5â„¢ technology
  • Offers a range of eco features and environmental qualifications including, ENERGY STAR® and RoHS compliance, and is designed to be recycled

Pricing and Availability

The Artisan 725 ($199.99) and Artisan 835 ($299.99) will be available in mid-August through major computer, office and electronic superstores, a variety of retail stores nationwide and Epson's retail site, www.epsonstore.com. An all-white "Arctic Edition" Artisan 725 ($199.99) will also be available in mid-September exclusively through Best Buy to allow consumers more options to match the décor of their home and computer equipment. All models come with a one-year limited warranty and free lifetime phone support with quick and convenient product exchange. For more information, please see the Artisan 725, Artisan 835 and Artisan 725 Arctic Edition fact sheets
PhotoReflect has launched a new and improved shopping cart thereby enhancing the experience for the pro photographer's customer. Dubbed by the company as the 'Super Cart,' online photo customers can more efficiently review and edit their orders.

According to the company's vice president of sales, Charlie Meyer, this new level of interactivity achieves great results. "When an online customer is equipped to literally participate in their purchase, it does a number of things. For one, it creates a positive experience that the customer associates with the photographer who uses the Photoreflect e-commerce solution as their online storefront. Secondly, it reduces errors and returns because the customer can review and edit their order to get exactly what they want." He continues, "The simplicity of this experience causes customers to make a larger purchase more often which increases the photographer's revenue."

Photographers can evaluate the ever-improving Super Cart by signing up for a free 30-day trial and/or viewing a completely functional PhotoReflect site, of which more than 35,000 are live. Sample sites are also available for review and interaction at PhotoReflect.com. The best illustrations of the power of the Super Cart technology are when one selects to purchase a gallery canvas wrap, a print-package, and/or a digital package of more than one photo. Additional improvements and product uses of the Super Cart technology will be unveiled to PhotoReflect subscribers in coming months as part of the company's ongoing process to continually enhance PhotoReflect.

About PhotoReflect.
PhotoReflect has been providing websites and online photo selling services since 1999 and has since seen over one billion photos put online with their system. The company's mission is to make it easy for anyone to price and publish their photos online while at the same time designing website "storefronts" in a way that it makes it simple for a photographer's customers to buy the photos. To learn more about PhotoReflect and how it works, visit www.photoreflect.com.
2010 has been a phenomenal year for PhotoBiz.com and we are indebted to our wonderful customers. It is our desire that the new Photobizcommunity.com photography forum will benefit our customers and all photographers who may wish to join. This is our way to give back to the entire photography industry. Cutting edge social networking tools are integrated with each blog post and forum topic so that photographers can share particular information anywhere they would like.

The forum is moderated by photographers with amazing business, marketing and photographic expertise. We have great public speakers, social media gurus, seminar builders and business professionals with large and small studio experience. PhotoBiz.com has already had some of the industry's top professional wedding, family and event photographers contribute such as Brett Tyler, Michelle Moore, John Edgar, Hiram Trillo, Tessa Rice, Maïa Taïeb, Walter Van Dusen and Jen Shannon. With PhotoBiz.com members located around the world, there is the potential for a truly international flavor to the forums. In addition to the United States there are community members located in Canada, Mexico, The Caribbean Islands and Brazil we cover most of the Americas.

For Europe PhotoBiz.com members are from the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Italy, Greece, Switzerland, Germany, Poland, Sweden and Norway. We have a large contingent of customers in Australia with some in New Zealand, South Africa, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and a surprising number from Singapore. All of our customers will be notified when Photobizcommunity.com is launched and we believe that most will want to participate.

Photographers in Michigan should keep their eyes open for legislation and other legal changes that stem from a June 18, 2010, state Supreme Court ruling.

The Case
The legal question in Woodman vs. Kera, LLC, was whether a parent has the right to contractually waive liability for injury of their child before the injury occurs--and the court found that in Michigan, a parent's waiver is not enforceable.

The ruling handed down from Lansing included four different opinions from the court with the majority indicating that a waiver of liability signed by a parent is ineffective to waive the child's right sue for his or her injuries. The court's opinion seemingly goes even further, indicating that a parent does not have the ability to contract on behalf of a child or waive any legal claim the child may have unless the state legislature has passed a specific law allowing it.

What Does This Mean to You?
What the court has said means that any waiver of liability relating to injury incorporated into your portraiture agreement is not as binding as it was prior to this ruling. Additionally, even if your contract did not include such wording and was signed by a minor's parent, it has the potential to be voided if the child wishes to exercise his or her legal rights.

It is still unclear as to exactly how this would play out in the context of collecting model releases. However, upon initial review of the court opinion, it looks as though a standard model release signed by a parent is no longer binding in Michigan.

SMS_ATL_NOV.jpg

Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is no different than most organizations in having its own set of acronyms. It's the PEC who manages the IPC, and if you want to show the world what you know, you'll get your CPP, or maybe your MEI. See what we mean?

One of the acronyms you'll hear most often (and which may be confusing, especially to new members), is SMS. With the last SMS workshops of the year coming up, we wanted to break the information down so that everyone can understand this exclusive PPA program.

Comprehensive Business Education
Studio Management Services (SMS, as it's often referred to) is unique to PPA and offers members comprehensive business education via 2-day and 3-day workshops throughout the year. In addition to the workshops, SMS also offers one-on-one consultations to help photographers improve their sales, marketing and financial planning strategies to maximize their studios' profitability and improve productivity. (One-on-one sessions can be included in the 3-Day workshop format, but add-on sessions can be purchased as well.)

Castaneda_headshot.jpgChicago wedding photographer Christopher Castaneda says that he didn't choose to become a photographer--it was more a natural progression of his life. But that's not to say it didn't require constant hard work.

His father owned a pro lab for 20 years, and Castaneda feels like he grew up in the lab. In fact, he was developing prints in the darkroom as early as the age of 10. In 2007, Castaneda began photographing professionally, assisting well-established photographers. He then opened his own wedding photography business about two years later in 2009.

"I like weddings because of all the family and friendship connections," Castaneda says as he explains his favored form of photography. "Family is very important to me, so to be there when a new one starts is special. It also fits with my personality. I'm more of a directive photographer, and I try to be funny, entertaining and calming to brides and grooms. A lot of times, they are nervous or don't know what's going on. I try to be a 'bride whisperer' and steer them through the day stress free, making sure they have a ton of fun."

Out on his own now, Castaneda admits that the biggest challenge he faces is getting those wedding contracts, and he tries to overcome that by working hard every day.

"Sometimes I feel that a lot of speakers do a disservice to their students by making it seem like there's a magic bullet that will solve a problem," he says. "But one workshop or DVD or lighting modifier won't do it. It's only through hard work, consistent effort and patience that you can achieve something worthwhile. There is no fast track to anything."
Unified Color Technologies today announced the launch of 32 Float, the industry's first HDR-specific plug-in for Adobe® Photoshop® that brings 32-bit color controls and editing tools to Photoshop users. With 32 Float, photographers have complete control over images in the full 32-bit color gamut, regardless of the software used to create the resulting merged file.

For photographers looking to create the most true-to-life HDR images possible, the ability to manage the image at 32-bit depth color is imperative, and the ability to make these edits directly in Photoshop helps streamline the HDR workflow for users. Powered by Unified Color's patented Beyond RGBâ„¢ color space, 32 Float is able to separate color data from brightness information, to make brightness adjustments without introducing the color shift often seen using other HDR solutions.
Sigma_70200mm_low res-thumb-250x408-365.jpgSigma Corporation of America has announced that its new, optically stabilized APO 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM lens, which contains the company's new "F" Low Dispersion (FLD) lens glass, is now available in the United States for the MSRP of $2,470.

The APO 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM lens
was first announced at the PMA International Convention in February and is currently available in Canon mounts. It will soon be available for purchase in Nikon, Sigma, Sony and Pentax mounts. This second-generation lens is designed for use with full-frame, DSLR cameras and may also be used with smaller, APS-c size sensors with a corresponding effective increase in focal length of 100-300mm with most cameras.

This new addition to Sigma's lineup of more than 50 lenses covers a medium telephoto range of focal lengths from 70mm to 200mm with a large, maximum aperture of F2.8 throughout the entire zoom range. It's revered for its incorporation of Sigma's unique Optical Stabilization (OS) technology, which allows photographers to use shutter speeds approximately four stops slower than would otherwise be possible, while maintaining its predecessor's compact dimensions. Moreover, the lens offers two modes of optical stabilization: The first is for general photography and the second is specifically designed for panning with moving subjects. Sony and Pentax shooters who are accustomed to the anti-shake system in their cameras are able to choose between that internal function and the lens' OS capabilities.


Your Collages.net PPA member discount is growing! collages_new.png

Yes, Collages.net's most recent Extreme Deal has just become part of your regular PPA discount benefit. Here are just a few examples of the new benefits:

  • New to Collages.net? Get a complimentary Collages.net account and four free months of online posting (a $107 value!)
  • Already have a Collages.net subscription? Take advantage of the discounted annual fee and a product and print credit.
  • Take a look at all of the discounts that you have access to as a PPA member.

"This is a great opportunity for PPA members to take advantage of the best online posting, as well as the best prints, albums, books, cards and gallery wraps in the industry," says Kevin Casey, CEO of Collages.net. "Our products and solutions are delivering the best in class in every category while also saving studios time and money. Thousands of studios now enjoy our one-stop shop, and they use our customer service as an extension of their studio."

Collages.net has been providing professional photographers with complete online posting, print and product solutions since 1999. Today, Collages.net is partnered with over 10,000 professional photographers and is the premier online posting, printing and marketing service in the industry. To find out more about Collages.net's complete workflow solution, visit www.collages.net or call (877) 638-7468.



About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

July 2010 is the previous archive.

September 2010 is the next archive.

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