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PPA Today: December 2010 Archives

December 2010 Archives

Dear PPA member,

Pop quiz: What did you do the second week of February this year?

Are you having trouble remembering? Don't worry...I had the same problem, too. With our lives as busy as they are, it's no wonder we forget things. Trying to remember work appointments, the grocery list and your neighbor's birthday can wreak havoc on your memory.

To help ease the burden, we decided to do a recap of all the new benefits that PPA has added over the past year. We're constantly trying to add value to your membership (and help you stay at the top of your game), and in 2010 we added everything from new business discounts to expanded educational resources. If you've used some of these new benefits, great! If not, take a moment to look them over. It's never too late to start using a benefit.

Happy New Year!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

Join us at the FREE PPA Charities Celebration event at Imaging USA on January 15, 2011, in San Antonio! Along with celebrating and enjoying the camaraderie, there will be great items to buy at live and silent auctions. Here's the most recent list of items to be auctioned:

  • LIVE AUCTION: Richard Sturdevant's "The Deadman's Hand" 30x40 Framed Canvas
  • LIVE AUCTION: Spend a Week at Deep Creek Lake! - The high bidder will win a week's stay at Jim and Ann Monteith's lake house at Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. Offered on May 7-13, 2011, the lake-side home has 5 bedrooms and 5 baths, sleeps 12, and would be perfect for a family vacation, business meeting or for hosting your own workshop.
  • LIVE AUCTION: Package of all Doug Gordon Products - $1700
  • RAFFLE: Texas School "Bonanza Basket" - Worth over $6,000, this item contains educational products donated by some of the 2011 Texas School instructors.
  • SILENT AUCTION: Bid on Workshops, Equipment, Software, Mentoring and More!

The list of auction items is growing daily, so check back to see what's been added to the list, from a $250 gift certificate from AsukaBook to the Full Creative Pak from Kobota Image Tools ($899). Learn more here.

Photographers stay informed and connected to local, state and regional organizations with newsletters, magazines or websites. But these publications don't produce themselves! All PPA Affiliate editors and webmasters are invited to participate in the 2011 Affiliate Communications Competition, which encourages excellence in affiliate publications and recognizes the individuals who spend their time and energy editing, designing and maintaining them. Entrants earn an achievement merit if their entry is accepted into the competition and an additional merit if they win.

Pass this news on, so the affiliate members who work hard to keep you informed get the recognition they deserve!

Entry forms and rules are available at the Competitions page on ppa.com, and it is free to enter. Entries must be received at PPA no later than Friday, February 25, 2011. If you have additional questions, please contact PPA at (800) 339-5451, ext. 226, or e-mail awijesinghe@ppa.com.

Have you purchased new equipment in 2010? If so, don't forget to take advantage of IRS Section 179!

What exactly is IRS Section 179? It's a deduction that allows you to expense almost any type of new equipment (including software) that you use in your business, as long as it is placed in service by December 31, 2010. This means that the entire cost of the qualifying equipment will be deducted from your current 2010 taxable income.

There's still a little time for you to buy new equipment and put it in use to qualify for the Section 179 deduction, too! If you're a PPA member and you do need new equipment, PPA Affinity Partner United Funding can help you get it with very little out-of-pocket cash. (And since United Funding doesn't report to the credit bureaus, your credit scores or ratios will not be adversely affected.)

Here is an example of the money that you can save by taking advantage of Section 179. Keep in mind that this example is only intended to explain the tax benefits under this provision. It is advised to consult with your tax professional to determine the accuracy of the calculations and the best structure for you.

 

Without Using Section 179

Example 1

Example 2

Original Taxable Income

$80,000

$80,000

$80,000

Equipment Cost

 

$15,000

$30,000

New Taxable Income

$80,000

$65,000

$50,000

Marginal Tax (Assumed)

25%

25%

25%

Out of Pocket Payments for 2010 (12/1/2010 install)

 

$725.10

$1,424.40

Tax Savings

$0

$3,750

$7,500

And don't forget that PPA members get a 2% rebate of the cost of equipment with United Funding! Learn more about this member benefit--getting started is as easy as completing the online credit application.

Photographers better plan ahead, for Photo Pie has announced that it will exhibit at Imaging EXPO, the Imaging USA trade show, in San Antonio, Texas, January 16-18, 2011.

Photo Pie will be featuring new, unique styles in backgrounds and wardrobe pieces, demonstrating how photographers can bring these ingredients together for a new, innovative look that will set them apart from their peers and bring new life to their businesses.

Specializing in backgrounds, wardrobe pieces and educational material to help complete a fresh style in photography, Photo Pie sees the Imaging EXPO as an excellent opportunity to make face-to-face contact with customers and show how they can bring new life to a photographer's business.

"Photographers, wardrobe stylists and imaging professionals are the very core of our business," says Jeremy Smith, owner of Photo Pie. "And Imaging USA is the premier place to meet and engage them."

If professional photographers want first crack at some great show specials and the chance to ask Photo Pie specialists their questions, join them at the upcoming Imaging USA in January.

www.photopie.com

freeman_headshot.jpgLou Freeman has been working as a photographer for over 29 years. Creative from an early age, her first photos were published at the age of 13. Since then, she has worked as a fashion and advertising photographer for many publications and brands, including Playboy, Italian Harpers Bazaar, Sara Lee/Hanes Brand and many others.

"The magic formed for me as a photographer when I realized I could join the technical side of photography to art and fashion," adds Freeman. That combination made her fall head over heels for photography.

After a 12-year career at Playboy and several years working for Italian Harpers Bazaar, it is easy to see why many people consider Freeman a fashion and advertising photographer. However, Freeman prefers to call herself an "image facilitator."

"I design images that bring on a brand for my clients to promote themselves with or for afreeman1.jpeg product they want to sell," she explains.

Freeman was one of the first female photographers at Playboy and sees her time there as significant because of the lighting techniques she developed. "The lighting I created with the magazine shaped my lighting for my life as a photographer," she says. She's even writing a book about her experiences at the magazine.

However, what she sees as one of her greatest accomplishments is the work she did in Europe for Italian Harpers Bazaar. "The experience was a validation for me," notes Freeman. "I felt that, for the first time, my vision was able to stand alone and compete in the industry. This opened the door for the hundreds of shoots I have accomplished at magazines, department stores, clothing campaigns and advertising campaigns."

If you want to learn how to apply Freeman's high-fashion photography techniques to your portraiture, be sure to attend her "From Fashion to Portraiture: Interacting with the Model" Imaging USA class on January 18.


freeman2.jpegFreeman says that her class will teach you to step up your creativity and make "killer photographic statements" of your own. "The world is changing and everyone is looking for the 'wow' factor in the photographers they hire," she adds. "You must deliver the best creative efforts you are capable of in every shoot you create."

If you're ready to make your portrait clients look like fashion models, Freeman's class is one you won't want to miss!

Read more about Lou Freeman here.

Read more about Imaging USA here.

ALL IMAGES © LOU FREEMAN
Aurora Lite Bank, a major player in the development and manufacturing of studio flash and LED lighting products and accessories, announces the appointment of Pakor, Inc. as their exclusive distributor for the Aurora brand in the U.S. photo and broadcasting channel. Pakor has been a distributor of photographic equipment and supplies for nearly 100 years.

"I am very happy that we could appoint Pakor, Inc. as our U.S. distributor of the Aurora Lite Bank brand of studio flash, softbox and LED lighting products and accessories." said Kevin Ko, Aurora Lite Bank President. "This new distribution channel offers us the opportunity to promote and offer our Aurora brand of products nationwide in the U.S. through a well established U.S. distributor."

Jeff Nylund, Pakor Vice President, Sales & Marketing said, "We are pleased to work with Aurora and promote their quality brand in the U.S.  Aurora's technology driven products further enhance Pakor's strategy of bringing new technology to the market."

"We will shortly be introducing some new Aurora products that will be leading edge technology", added Bob Leidlein, Pakor Director of Business Development. "We will feature the new Orion studio flash kits at Imaging USA, booth no. 745 in January, 2011. We will also showcase the new Aurora line of LED constant lights that substantially reduce energy costs while providing soft, focused light with consistent color temperature. These lights are lightweight and portable. To compliment this portability feature, Aurora will introduce a new battery pack that will have a battery life up to two hours."
Dear PPA Member,

Please be on the lookout for my December. It's missing, and I have no idea where it went. If you're anything like us here at PPA, you know what I'm saying! It feels like we were just in Nashville for Imaging USA 2010...but in a few short weeks, we will be in San Antonio for Imaging USA 2011.

Even though we at PPA associate this time of year with Imaging USA preparation, we like to remember that it is also the holiday season. It's a time for friends and families to gather together. To continue that holiday spirit, we have gathered together a list of Vital Signs articles that we feel represents the best of the year. Take a look at the topics and see what articles spark your interest. It never hurts to refresh business advice and ideas, and they can be a great read on your trip to San Antonio!

Happy Holidays!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

You worked hard to help save smiles for children around the world via PPA Charities and Operation Smile. And now there's another reason to smile with the PPA Charities Celebration: enjoying fun, food and dancing! So join your fellow photographers to enjoy the camaraderie only PPA and PPA Charities can offer:

PPA Charities Celebration
Co-hosted by Texas Professional Photographers Association
Sponsored by SuccessWare & White House Custom Colour
Grand Hyatt Hotel, Lone Star Ballroom A/B, Level 2
Saturday, January 15, 8:00pm - 11:00pm

During the month of December, your $240 donation--the cost of one life-changing surgery from Operation Smile--will save TWO smiles instead of one! A small group of PPA Charities' friends has issued a challenge to PPA members to raise $25,000 by the end of 2010. This "PPA Charities Leadership Circle" has pledged to match, dollar for dollar, all PPA-member contributions up to a total of $25,000. Donations must be made before Christmas Day, December 25.

How many smiles can you save? Click here to learn more about this challenge.

forester_headshot.jpg"I was always creative, and it just took me a while to find something that I could really become passionate about," remembers Beth Forester, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, of Beth Forester Photography in Madison, W.V. That something was (obviously) photography, and she feels lucky that it found her.

Owner of a portrait studio for about 15 years, she believes that her photography makes her a type of historian. "If you think about it, I capture the history in people's lives each and every day," explains Forester, who was a history major in college. "I am lucky to have a profession that is so meaningful and rewarding."

In fact, Forester specializes in "capturing the history" in teen's lives--she's a senior portrait photographer. She loves immortalizing those special moments for her seniors, and senior portraits form the perfect product line in her economically depressed town. It's a win-win!

"I found that people in my area would spend more on portraits when they knew it was aforester1.jpg 'one-time' thing," adds Forester. "Kids only graduate from high school once. Plus, parents always want to get their children the things that weren't available to them when they were children. So I found that most people would spend over their budget to make their teens happy."

Even after discovering the perfect product line for her area and spending years in the business, Forester says that you should approach every day as a challenge (as she does). It could be a challenge to do better work, a challenge to reach out to your next potential client, a challenge to increase your average sale, or a challenge to be more creative.

"I've seen so many photographers become complacent in their business. Then, a few years down the road, they lose a lot of their client base and have trouble getting new people in the door," Forester says. "My philosophy is 'if you're not moving forward, you're getting left behind.'  So every day I challenge myself to keep moving forward, to be a better photographer and to be a better businessperson."

forester2.jpgWant to learn how Forester has found success in the senior market year after year? Attend her "Seniors My Way!" Imaging USA pre-convention class on January 14 (for an additional $129 fee). She'll be teaching the course with fellow senior photographer Jim Lersch, M.Photog.Cr., API, F-PPO.

Forester says she'll share the "nitty-gritty details" on how to make money in the senior market. "I'll share everything I know about trying to get a higher average sale and marketing to next year's crop of senior clients."

After all, if you're ready to keep moving forward in your photography business, why not learn from someone who is doing just that?

Beth Forester has earned 13 Loan Collection images, 10 Kodak Gallery Awards as well as the prestigious PPA AN-NE Award for her marketing. She has been featured in various magazines, such as Rangefinder, Professional Photographer and WV Executive.



Read more about Beth here.

Read more about Imaging USA here.
forester3.jpg 













ALL IMAGES © BETH FORESTER
Want to attend the Imaging EXPO at Imaging USA in San Antonio but can't make it to the conference itself? Have we got the deal for you: Register for a FREE Imaging EXPO pass!

The Imaging EXPO trade show is worth the Texas trip itself (and if you live in the area, even better!). This is one of the first major industry events of the year, and companies will be showing all their new products. Featuring some 600 booths, the Imaging EXPO is your chance to get great deals on the hottest products and services you need...and gather up ideas that will ignite your creative fire.

Go to www.imagingusa.org/free-imaging-expo-pass/ to register for your FREE pass to the Imaging EXPO. While passes will be for sale on-site in San Antonio, why not register online now and get that free pass? Besides saving money, you'll greatly cut down on your wait time at the Imaging USA registration area, meaning that you can start browsing the trade show and its great deals faster!

Speaking of those great deals, don't forget that many of the vendors at the Imaging EXPO are offering show-special discounts and offers. Listed below are just a few of the companies offering specials at the trade show:

Albums Unlimited
Arlington Camera
Armadillo Photo Supply
Cash Flow Solutions
ClearBags
Colorado Timberline
CPQ Professional Imaging
Exclusive Albums
Hill & Usher Insurance
Hollywood Fotofix
ImageQuix
Image Wizards/ AluminArte
Imaging Spectrum
Inspirational Cutouts
Jill-e Designs
KEH.com
Kimbra Studios
Kotori (Photo Jewelry)
Larson Enterprises
Lenzart Professional Lab
The Levin Company
LumaPix
Lustre Color
Neil Enterprises
Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep
NRD, LLC
Photobacks
Photo Floors
Radio Popper
Richmond Professional Lab
Rotec Photo Cutters
Simply Canvas
Send Out Cards
Snaptotes
Tyndell Photographic

For a complete list of exhibiting companies and the show-special offers, click here.

Read more about Imaging USA here.

(And of course, if you want to absorb the great education available at Imaging USA itself--but are short on time--you can always register for a single day.)
Neil Enterprises, Inc. has introduced a new plaque for sports photographers on a budget. The Pro-Plaques are individually boxed and lightweight for economical shipping. The dark walnut surface is chip-proof and there are doors in the back for easy, slip-in assembly.

The Pro-Plaques are available in two sizes, the 392W Pro-Plaque holds one 5" x 7" photo and the 396W Pro-Plaque holds one 5" x 7" and one 3-1/2" x 5" photo.  There is space on both plaques to affix a medallion or an engraved brass plate, which are both sold separately. Customize these plaques not just for sports, but for a wide array of achievements.

Since 1961 Neil Enterprises has been an outstanding provider of unique and innovative photo and personalization products. Neil Enterprises, Inc. offers photographers, labs, dealers, and retailers the largest line of photo novelties available in the United States.

The entire photo line can be seen at www.neilenterprises.com

Dear PPA member,

I love my family. My very large family. Growing up, summers included the annual reunion with over 120 aunts, uncles, first and second cousins at my Aunt Rene and Uncle Cleo's. Birthdays were celebrated, stories were swapped, and cannonballs into the pool were perfected. Even though we're now scattered over the world, any one of them could call me and it would be as if the years have melted away. After all, they're family!

I'm not sure how I would feel, however, if all 120 of them wanted a discount or "freebies" if I was a photographer. How would you handle it? How do you define "friendship" or a "family relationship"? These questions were posed to a few PPA members and their insights are shared in this week's Vital Signs.

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. To celebrate the release of Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, onOne Software is offering PPA members an Extreme Deal on the product from now until December 31, 2010! Find out more about this limited-time deal here.

Epson America, Inc. has announced three new canvas products that will be added to its Signature Worthy® collection of media. Engineered for the most discerning professional photographers, artists, fine art reproduction houses, and print-for-pay businesses, Epson's Exhibition Canvas Gloss, Exhibition Canvas Satin and Exhibition Canvas Matte enable users to achieve industry-leading DMax and color gamut for prints that require stunning, museum-grade image quality and durability.
 
"Epson is very excited about expanding its Signature Worthy Collection of media again for the world's top photographers and artists," said Jeff Smith, product manager, Epson America, Inc. "These canvas products were developed through the collaboration of our engineers and industry-leading experts who understand the advantages and complexities of working with canvas. The end result is a selection of new canvases that will enable artists to produce some of the finest works on canvas the industry has seen to date."
 
Exhibition Canvas Gloss, Satin and Matte products are built on a polyester and cotton blend that is specially coated to produce vibrant colors as well as rich, deep blacks and tonal gradations that distinguish them from competitive products. These heavy 21 millimeter poly-cotton canvases can also be easily stretched and coated to help achieve the best combination of image quality and archival display life.
 
All three Exhibition Canvas products are available in roll widths of 13, 17, 24, 44 and 60-inches, and 17" x 22" cut sheets will be available in early 2011. The new roll-based products are now available through Epson Authorized Resellers. Pricing information (MSRP) is available in the following table. For more information about the Signature Worthy Collection, visit www.proimaging.epson.com
onOne_gif.bmponOne Software makes award-winning plug-ins for Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom and Apple Aperture...and these plug-ins make digital photography easier, faster, better. To coincide with the release of their Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, onOne Software is offering PPA members a limited-time discount from now until December 31, 2010!

Members, learn more about this Extreme Deal here.
groupphead.jpgJason Groupp has been involved with photography since he was 15 years old. In fact, he started working for a wedding photographer when he was still in high school. Now in the business for 23 years, Groupp has become known for his unique wedding images, as well as his commercial and editorial work for clients like J. Crew, Conair/Cuisineart and Men's Health.

Despite having done work in the advertising and editorial sector, Groupp says that he still loves shooting weddings. "Wedding photography found me at a young age, not the other way around!"

Before any of this happened, though, Groupp says he always felt destined for a career in some form of creative art. His mother is a fashion designer, and his father was a sound engineer who specialized in creating gadgets for rock stars in the '70s.On top of that, his brother is a painter!

"I grew up around creative people my whole life, so in a sense, with the way I was raised, itgroupp1.jpg would have been weird for me not to find a creative outlet," adds Groupp about his childhood. And he knew photography was the career for him from the first time he saw the latent image come up on his first pinhole camera shot in a darkroom.

Now, Groupp says that his longevity in the industry is the accomplishment he's most proud of: "Staying relevant in this business as a professional, no matter what field of expertise you're in, is hard work!"

Groupp's great images are one reason he's stayed relevant so long. If you want to learn how he gets his off-camera lighting just right--without complex, expensive set-ups--be sure to attend his "Shoestring TTL: Lighting That Won't Break Your Budget" Imaging USA class on January 17.

groupp2.jpg"Off-camera lighting is hard, but it doesn't have to be," Groupp explains. "I find all too often that many photographers get frustrated with using lighting, so they just stop doing it. Part of it is the gear, and part of it is the user.  I also find that once we learn how to 'use' the gear, many photographers simply don't know where to 'stick' the lights.  I'm going to show you where to 'stick' it so you don't forget it."

Groupp adds that his class is unique because he doesn't believe that anyone has ever broken down specific lighting set-ups and diagrammed them in a way that is easy to remember and take home. "To prove it, I'm going to do it live right in front of everyone," he says.

You won't want to miss it!

Read more about Jason Groupp here.

Read more about Imaging USA here

ALL IMAGES © JASON GROUPP

Tamron Co., Ltd., a leading manufacturer of optical equipment, announced the release of yet another groundbreaking lens: the world's most compact, lightweight lens with a 15x zoom ratio, featuring a 62mm filter diameter, VC (Vibration Compensation) image stabilization and Tamron's first standing wave ultrasonic motor system for SLR lenses, PZD (Piezo Drive). The 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD (Model B008) DSLR ultra-high-power zoom lens for Canon and Nikon mounts will be released December 20, 2010, with the development of a Sony compatible mount at a later date. This is the second lens released to commemorate Tamron Co., Ltd.'s 60th anniversary. The SP AF70-300mm Di VC USD best-in-class telephoto zoom was released this summer.

The 18-270mm Di II VC PZD is an astonishingly light, compact ultra-high-power zoom lens with a filter diameter of Ø62mm. Weighing in at 15.9oz., this new all-in-one zoom lens is equipped with an AF unit driven by Tamron's new PZD (Piezo Drive), an ultrasonic motor that delivers faster and quieter focusing when the autofocus is engaged.

The 18-270mm Di II VC PZD is easy to use and highly portable - a high-power zoom that will offer the user the versatility to shoot in a variety of situations. Its wide zoom range of 18-270mm positions the lens as an all-purpose workhorse for any photographic situation.

Product Features

Compact and Easy to Carry 15X All-in-One Zoom with Outstanding Feature Set
The 18-270mm Di II VC PZD boasts the world's highest zoom range at 15x magnification for a lens with its compact size and light weight, with the added value of Tamron's proprietary VC (Vibration Compensation) image stabilization. At 15.9 ounces, measuring 3.8 inches in length (from mount face to the tip of the lens), and 2.9 inches in diameter with a filter diameter of Ø62mm, it's a compact and easy-to-carry lens. A minimum focusing distance of 19.3 inches throughout the zoom range and a maximum magnification ratio of 1:3.8.

Tamron's new PZD (Piezo Drive) autofocus technology delivers silent, high-speed autofocus in a compact lens
Ultrasonic motors are divided into two categories depending on the principle that generates the energy to move the drive: traveling wave motors and standing wave motors. Traveling wave motors include the ring-type ultrasonic motor used in the recently launched SP 70-300mm VC USD as well as other lenses, but this lens employs a newer technology, the PZD (Piezo Drive), which functions on the standing wave principle.

A standing wave ultrasonic motor utilizes high-frequency voltage to extend and turn the Piezoelectric (Piezoceramic) element, thus moving the entire element in a standing wave movement. The metal tip is the contact point of the element to the rotor, and moves in an elliptic motion from the swiveling motion of the moving element, and the friction from this motion turns the rotor. Standing wave ultrasonic motors have the distinct advantage of being smaller than their traveling wave counterparts, and therefore allow a more compact SLR lens size.

VC (Vibration Compensation)
Tamron's VC mechanism employs a three-coil system, whereby three driving coils activate the shake-compensating VC lens group electromagnetically via three steel balls. The VC lens elements are held in place only by contact with the steel balls, achieving smooth movement with little friction. This provides a stable viewfinder image with excellent tracking performance that eliminates the blur from handheld shots for cleaner, crisper shots.
 
New VC Mechanism (Moving Coil Method)

Tamron's original VC image stabilization mechanism utilized a moving magnet system whereby a heavy magnet was positioned near the moving VC lens element. In the new VC unit, the positions of the magnet and the coil are reversed, and because of this, the VC optical lens element is attached to the coil. The new VC mechanism employs a moving coil mechanism with a lightweight coil, and the lighter coil reduces the load on the drive system. Thus, the lighter, more compact new VC unit contributes to the lens's overall light weight and compact size.
onOne Software, Inc., a leading developer of innovative, timesaving solutions for professional and advanced amateur photographers, has announced the immediate availability of Perfect Resize, one component of the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 for Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom® and Apple Aperture. The next generation of Genuine Fractals technology, Perfect Resize adds new features for achieving sharp detail when enlarging images, new gallery wrap and tiling options, and interface enhancements for photographers who want to make the highest quality prints. Perfect Resize supports Photoshop CS5, CS4 and CS3 and can now be used directly from within Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Apple Aperture without the need for a separate host application.

New Features in Perfect Resize, the next generation of Genuine Fractals:

NEW Smoothness Control: Designed for the demanding photographer, the new Smoothness control allows users to adjust the smoothness of curved edges to minimize artifacts. This new feature is very useful when resizing images and is especially valuable when working with lower resolution source files or when an extreme crop is required from a higher resolution source file.

NEW Loupe Tool: With the new Loupe feature, photographers can get an instant 1:1 or 100% magnified preview of enlargement quality while still seeing the entire image with the Loupe function of the Navigator.  

NEW Presets: Photographers can now achieve consistent results in less time by saving commonly used settings with the new Presets feature. Photographers who routinely send images to labs will benefit by creating a preset that allows them to resize the image, apply a specific sharpening amount and apply a gallery wrap all in one step. Stock photographers who need to resize batches of images before submitting them will also benefit from this new feature.

NEW Sharpening Methods:
Two new sharpening methods allow photographers to sharpen small details without causing halos on larger, distinct edges. The first sharpening method targets out-of-focus images and the second method adapts the sharpening amount automatically to the size of image details.

Work Directly with Lightroom and Aperture: Perfect Resize now integrates directly with Photoshop Lightroom and Apple Aperture and no longer requires a host application to get amazing results when enlarging an image. Of course, it still works within Adobe Photoshop as well.

Improved Gallery Wrap: Photographers can now preview the Perfect Resize gallery wrap results in real time, allowing them to quickly fine tune their settings for the perfect gallery wrap. Additionally, gallery wrap corners are automatically filled in with matching image detail from the surrounding area. While it may not sound like much, the improvements to this feature alone will save photographers hours of time when assembling their gallery wraps.

Improved Tiling: The Tiling feature now automatically saves each tile as new file. This makes it much easier to save and print individual tiles especially when sending these tiles out to a print service provider. Additionally, because each tile is its own file, it is now easy to create canvas diptychs, triptychs or mosaics with the improved gallery wrap feature.

Batch Processing Enhancements: Easily work with images of mixed size, type and orientation with more batch-processing engine options. Save time by batch processing images from the Export dialog inside of Lightroom.

Misc Improvements: Additional enhancements include presets for common printer resolutions, improved progress indicators, improved film grain simulation, and the additional document size presets for panoramic and no-crop sizes.

Availability

Perfect Resize is available immediately as a standalone product and as a part of the new Perfect Photo Suite 5.5. Owners of Genuine Fractals 6 or earlier can upgrade to Perfect Resize for $99.95 or to the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 for $349.95. Owners of Plug-In Suite 5 are eligible for a free upgrade to Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, which includes Perfect Resize 7, and can find the update at: http://www.ononesoftware.com/suite5update/.

Users who purchased Genuine Fractals 6 on or after September 27, 2010 will receive a free upgrade to Perfect Resize 7 and will receive an email from onOne Software with instructions for redeeming their free upgrade.

Owners of Plug-In Suite 1, 2, 3 or 4 can upgrade to the Perfect Photo Suite for $199.95. Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 is available to new customers for $499.95; purchased separately the 7 products would normally cost $1460.  For more information on upgrade options visit http://www.ononesoftware.com/upgrade/. For more information on the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, visit http://www.ononesoftware.com/.

cincottahead.jpgSalvatore Cincotta, of Salvatore Cincotta Photography in O'Fallon, Ill., says that he had the photography bug in him from an early age.

He was first exposed to photography when he was 16 by an aunt who had a darkroom in her basement and was a serious hobbyist. Despite his love for photography, Cincotta admits that he originally shied away from it because he was afraid he couldn't make a living as an artist. It wasn't until after attending business school and working in corporate America for a number of years that he decided to pursue photography as a career.

"I realized my love and passion for photography was something I needed to pursue," Cincotta says simply.

Cincotta and his wife, Taylor, opened Salvatore Cincotta Photography four years ago,cincotta1.jpg specializing in wedding and senior photography in the Chicago, St. Louis and New York areas. "We just love the energy and excitement of working with our couples," explains Cincotta, talking about his wedding focus. "It's an exciting time in their lives, and we feel so fortunate to be part of it! It's a big responsibility, and we love it."

Of course, Cincotta loves photographing seniors just as much, and he works with about 120 a year. "It's pretty much their 'coming out party,' and our job is to showcase their transition into young adulthood," he adds.

Like many photographers, Cincotta's biggest challenge is to stay ahead of those who think they are professional photographers, those who have saturated the market. How does his studio work to overcome this challenge? Superior products and services that help them stand out.

"A simple example of this is our ability to turn wedding images around in two weeks," says Cincotta. "There is a huge difference between handing over a DVD of images and showing the client their images fully edited with a slew of high-quality product options. It's the difference between being viewed as 'just' a photographer or as an artist."

Since opening their business, the Cincottas have seen growth every year. In fact, they recently opened up a second studio, Studio C, which focuses on baby and children's photography. Cincotta says that being able to open up this second brand (behind Salvatore Cincotta Photography) is one of his biggest accomplishments. "Studio C is targeting a whole new demographic," he says. "It's an exciting time for us, and we are pumped about the possibilities this new brand offers our studio and our clients."

cincotta2.jpgAll of this happened in a relatively short period of time, and Cincotta believes that membership in PPA has helped his business achieve success so quickly. For example, he recalls a conversation he had with an attorney through PPA when he was first starting his business: "It was a very simplistic set of questions, but I had no idea who to ask or how it could affect my business. However, not getting the right answers could have really impacted the overall direction of our business, not to mention the potential legal issues that could have arisen if handled incorrectly."

That one conversation helped Cincotta greatly, and he urges other photographers not to overlook such benefits that are available to them.

"PPA offers a great framework of services that can help your business get up and running quickly," he explains. "Little things like contracts, release forms and some of the group benefits are all valuable resources. Don't underestimate their value! They more than offset the cost of membership. It's a no-brainer."

Dear PPA Member

There's a countdown clock on a website that thrills me. Today, it says 37 days to go...until Imaging USA. Soon, about 10,000 photographers, PPA staff and fearless volunteers will descend on San Antonio, Texas. They say that everything is bigger in Texas, so I'm looking forward to being taller. (What? No? Awww...)

This also means that I have 37 days left until I get to see some of my favorite people--PPA members--and meet some new members of our family. Just 37 days until I can see the latest cool stuff at the Imaging EXPO and celebrate talented and dedicated photographers at the Grand Imaging Awards and the PPA Award & Degree Ceremony. And by the time Tuesday night rolls around and the dance floor at the closing party gets packed, we will have already begun planning for Imaging USA 2012 in the Big Easy (actually, we are already planning it!).

As an attendee, you've probably already got a plan to get the most out of Imaging USA 2011, right? If not, this Vital Signs has some tips and suggestions, including what to bring. Read on and get prepared because we're bringing the heat.

Cheers!
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. Whether you already incorporate music into your workflow or you are looking to, don't forget about PPA's newest Affinity Partner: Triple Scoop Music. Not only to they have over 7,000 songs to choose from, but PPA members get a discount on any Triple Scoop Music song purchase. Learn more about the new benefit here.

Photodex has announced ProShow Web, its all-new service for creating instant video slideshows online. The service works by intelligently mixing photos, videos and music together into a unique video slideshow. Users can create free, 15-photo slideshows or opt for a Plus or Premium account which offer expanded features and up to 12 minutes of full length video. Once created, shows can be customized with over 600 built-in, drag and drop effects and easily shared online or downloaded to a computer.

"ProShow has been a revolutionary product that we wanted to make available to our users in every venue possible", said Paul Schmidt, President and Founder of Photodex. "Being able to access content anywhere, edit shows and create HD videos on-the-fly is what this service is all about."

ProShow Web expands Photodex's award-winning ProShow product line to the web, providing a new platform for slideshow creation. It's a quick and elegant way to show off images and videos, and it works virtually anywhere, whether on a Mac or PC. Users simply pick a theme, upload their content, choose a song from the royalty-free music library and ProShow Web instantly creates a polished video slideshow, ready to share or fine-tune further.

ProShow Web provides a robust collection of themes for slideshows including choices perfect for a birthday, wedding, family reunion or just showing off vacation photos. Shows can be customized with over 600 drag and drop effects that can be mixed and matched to create a unique video. Users can add even more effects through StylePacks and Transitions Packs, bringing the number of available effects up to over 1000.

Finished shows stream as high-quality Flash video directly from ProShow Web and can be shared in a number of formats. Built-in social networking tools post videos to Facebook and upload directly to Youtube. Videos can be embedded or linked to directly from ProShowWeb.com and played back on the latest smart phones and devices as HTML5 video. Downloads let users save videos to their computer as an HD video file (up to 1080p for Premium accounts) or grab ready-to-burn disc images for DVD and Blu-ray.

A unique element exclusive to ProShow Web is the ability to download and edit any video created online into Photodex's professional desktop slideshow software, ProShow Producer. The software offers complete control over any aspect of a user's slideshow, an unparalleled range of creative options and virtually unlimited output options. In Producer, users can trim video clips, crop and retouch photos, trim and fade audio tracks, set text formatting and fonts, create their own custom effects, layouts and much more.

Pricing and Availability
ProShow Web is available now in Free, Plus and Premium accounts. Free accounts allow for slideshows to be created and shared online (free accounts limited to 15 photos or videos). Plus accounts offer unlimited, full-length videos (up to 12 minutes), built-in online sharing and free DVD quality downloads for $30/ year. Premium accounts are unbranded and licensed for commercial use. Premium accounts include full-length videos, free 1080p HD video downloads and more for $25/ month or $150/ year. 
Kurkian_Scott.jpgDid you know that your business entity type can affect the amount of taxes you pay? Do you know the income tax strategies that can lower your 2010 AND 2011 taxes? Scott Kurkian, PPA's chief financial officer and one of the founders of PPA's Studio Management Services, has updated his Income Tax Strategies webinar to answer these questions and more (Thursday, Dec. 16, 2:00pm ET).

"This year, we saw several tax law changes that impact small businesses," says Kurkian, as he explains why he is presenting the upcoming webinar. "It is imperative for small-business owners to make sure their tax preparers are up on the latest tax laws--those laws could significantly impact their tax liability!"

Consider the upcoming webinar your personal guide to these tax laws. Kurkian will help you understand how the tax decisions you make affect the amount you'll pay the government. You'll also learn more about retirement, home office deductions and other crucial information for your business. Most importantly, you'll discover whether or not your accountant is doing what he/she should be doing for you--and know what to ask them to do.

Remember, as Kurkian says, it is not enough just to have your taxes prepared by a professional. "Business owners need to know the questions to ask to make sure their tax preparers are taking advantages of the laws that are designed to benefit small businesses."
Gordon_Doug.gifDoug Gordon, Cr.Photog, F-SWPP, founder of Patken Photographer, is recognized as one of the top wedding photographers in the country. He is also a recognized expert in the industry and a sought-after speaker, even hosting his own seminars through Doug Gordon Workshops. However, Gordon originally set out on a very different path.


Calling himself a "failed baseball player," Gordon was scouted as a pitcher by MLB teams asgordon1.jpg a sophomore in high school. He loved the game of baseball, and thought he was set to go pro. "That being said, I wasn't a great student. I didn't think I needed to be," remembers Gordon. "I graduated high school with a GPA of 74 and scored 880 on the SAT, of which 800 points were for signing my name."

He was first introduced to wedding photography by his father, who, in addition to working two jobs, was a wedding photographer on the weekends. As a child, Gordon would assist his father at wedding shoots. "I just loved being with my dad," he says. "Little did I know how much I was learning about photography and, more importantly, life."

gordon2.jpgWhen he was 16, Gordon's parents opened up a storefront studio. It was here that Gordon had his first experience photographing a wedding by himself. A panicked bride and groom had come into the studio after their wedding photographer walked out on them, and Gordon's father told them his son could handle it.

"I loved it. It was like being on stage. I was loud and in control," Gordon recalls. "Although I still didn't see myself being a wedding photographer, I now had something besides baseball that I loved."

Eighteen months later, Gordon ripped the rotator cuff in his throwing shoulder, ending his baseball career. Luckily, he had photography to turn to: "I had that fallback thing I never knew I was prepared for!"

Gordon has now been a wedding photographer for the last 21 years. But even after those 21 years, he says that wedding photography is as exciting and entertaining for him as it was at the beginning.

"I am a crazy romantic," he explains. "I love being involved. I am a sap, and I cry more oftengordon3.jpg then I would like to admit at weddings. The connections, the love, the dream...I honestly just love feeling romance, and what better place to do it than a wedding?"

Since his company, Patken Photographer, now shoots over 1,000 weddings a year, Gordon has plenty of opportunity to feed his romantic soul. How has he grown so successful? He believes that a large part of the credit goes to the consistency of his wedding images.

"I live by systems and being able to get the job done under any situation," says Gordon. "I always have a plan and know what I need to accomplish. Too many photographers wait for the moment to happen. I make the moment. I believe that it's what happens in the pose that makes it natural. I believe in feeling the moment and seeing more."

If you want to learn the posing techniques that Gordon uses to capture unique yet natural-looking wedding photos, don't miss his "Got Flow? Posing is Back" Imaging USA class on January 17. Gordon will share over 200 poses with you in the class!

gordon4.jpg"There are a lot of things in life that will catch your eye, but very few that capture your heart," adds Gordon. "Those are the things I will teach photographers to capture in this class."

Read more about Doug Gordon and Patken Photographer here.

Read more about Imaging USA here.

ALL IMAGES © DOUG GORDON
Unified Color Technologies, the experts in high dynamic range imaging (HDR), have announced the immediate availability of HDR Express which is specifically designed to meet the requirements of professional photographers and photo enthusiasts who are new to HDR software and looking to create stunning images quickly. With HDR Express, Unified Color has automated some of the most complex aspects of HDR photography and replaced the traditional HDR workflow with a lightning-fast alternative for creating the most realistic HDR renderings possible making this once-complicated process accessible to even the most novice user. The software is available for purchase through Unified Color's website at www.unifiedcolor.com/hdr-express.

HDR Express automates key aspects of the HDR production process, such as tone mapping and halo elimination, offering a streamlined and very easy-to-follow workflow. After merging the multiple exposures required for the HDR process into a 32-bit image, the simplified user interface presents an animated exposure range preview of the HDR image along with five tone mapping preset options. For the fastest results, users can then choose from a series of color and style presets or create their own presets using the program's adjustment sliders which manipulate brightness, highlight and shadow recovery, black point, contrast, saturation and white balance. In addition to workflow enhancements, the newly developed processing algorithms in HDR Express enable users to view edits in real-time.

"We have developed an entirely new workflow that makes HDR Express a real game changer" said Alfred Zee, CEO of Unified Color Technologies "With HDR Express we've dramatically reduced the steep learning curve for HDR photography software, while significantly improving performance and image quality. HDR Express makes true color HDR accessible to photographers at any skill level."

Like all Unified Color products, HDR Express leverages the company's patented 32-bit Beyond RGBâ„¢ color technology, resulting in the most true-to-life HDR images possible. Beyond RGB separates brightness from color information and performs all editing operations on the full 32-bit color data, thus eliminating the color shifts and halo artifacts often associated with the "HDR look." As a result, HDR Express produces a more accurate representation of the colors and tonal range of the original scene that the photographer saw in the viewfinder.

Whether using HDR Express to apply HDR effects to a single image or merging multiple exposure brackets to maximize the dynamic range, the software accepts popular JPEG and TIFF files as well as many of the major manufacturers' RAW formats. The included plug-ins for Adobe Photoshop® Lightroom TM and Apple's® ApertureTM also allow users to seamlessly "round trip" images from their libraries. Once the work has been finalized, users can save the results as a JPEG, 8-bit or 16-bit TIFF, or preserve the full dynamic range of the HDR image by exporting in Unified Color's native 32-bit BEF file.

HDR Express is available for $99 at www.unifiedcolor.com/hdr-express as an electronic download. Throughout December, Unified Color is also offering a special holiday promotion, during which the software is available for just $85. Current Unified Color customers looking to take advantage of HDR Express' streamlined workflow can purchase the software for $50. A free, fully functional 30-day trial version is also available allowing anyone to take HDR Express for a risk-free test drive on their own computer with their own images.
TSMlogo_standard.pngAre you looking to incorporate music into your marketing or client products? As PPA's newest Affinity Partner, Triple Scoop Music can help you do just that--and at a PPA member discount!

Triple Scoop Music is the leading music licensing service for professional photographers around the globe. In fact, their website features more than 7,000 songs by talented composers and award-winning artists, including Grammy and Emmy winners. Every song has been hand-picked by their in-house music experts to add emotion and depth to websites, slideshows and videos. New music is added to their database every month to provide you with fresh choices and a diverse selection.

"Simply put, adding great (and legal) music to your presentations is the single most powerful way to inspire new clients and energize your marketing," says Roy Ashen, Triple Scoop Music CEO and co-founder. "At Triple Scoop Music, we are dedicated to helping photographers grow their businesses!"

Not sure what type of music you're looking for? That is not a problem with Triple Scoop Music's easy-to-use online database. This straightforward process gives you the opportunity to browse through the available music based on theme or style. They even have a search engine that allows you to search through song titles and lyrics.

Now, as a PPA member, you can take advantage of what Triple Scoop Music has to offer at a discount! "We have been a part of the PPA community since we started Triple Scoop Music, and we love showing our support for this amazing community," says Ashen. "We believe great images deserve great soundtracks, so creating a PPA member discount is an exciting way for us to help our friends."

PPA members can learn more about the new Triple Scoop Music discount here.

Safari_Sweepstakes.pngNik Software, Artsy Couture, Blurb®, Datacolor, Eyes on Africa, Graphic Authority, Lowepro, and Professional Photographers of America (PPA) announce the continuation of a special sweepstakes promotion that began at the recent Photo Plus Expo in New York City and ends February 1, 2011, with a Grand Prize drawing. Contestants can enter the sweepstakes either online at www.safarisweepstakes.com or at the upcoming Imaging USA show in San Antonio, January 16-18, 2011. The Grand Prize package, which will be awarded to one lucky winner, is valued at approximately $12,000. Intermediate prize packages, drawn monthly, are valued at approximately $3,000.

The Grand Prize package includes a 10-day South Africa Photo Safari with famed professional photographer John Paul Caponigro and a collection of top-of-the-line photo products and services. Organized by renowned tour operator Eyes on Africa, the Photo Safari will begin in September 2011 and features photo opportunities in the world-famous Sabi Sand Game Reserve and the many landscapes of the Cape Town region.

"Africa's beauty is intoxicating. The people, the animals, and the land are enchanting. One lifetime just isn't enough to see all of Africa, but no lifetime should pass without seeing a part of Africa at least once," said John Paul Caponigro. "I can think of no better way to truly see Africa than on a photo safari organized by Eyes on Africa."

Dear PPA member,

I'm petite. Really petite. Officially, I'm 4 feet 11 3/8 inches tall, but I give myself 5/8 of an inch for good behavior and tell anyone who asks that I'm five feet. Being petite certainly doesn't mean that I don't pack a wallop or get the job done. (Yes, I still need to ask people to get things off the top shelf at the grocery store, but I think of it as an opportunity to meet a new friend!)

The same can be said for mini sessions. These may not be for every photographer (it would be just a little awkward for wedding photographers, I must admit), but mini sessions are wonderful opportunities to develop new client relationships, foster community relationships through a "social event," and frankly, earn some extra income.

This week's Vital Signs urges you to think big by thinking small. It's amazing what can grow from small things!

Cheers,
Christel Aprigliano
Director of Member Value & Experience

P.S. Lions and tigers and famed photographer John Paul Caponigro, oh my! Win an opportunity to go on an African safari (and other cool prizes) through the Safari Sweepstakes at www.safarisweepstakes.com.

onOne Software, Inc., a leading developer of innovative, timesaving solutions for professional and advanced amateur photographers, has announced availability of Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 for Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom® and Apple Aperture.  Tackling specific problems within a photographer's preferred workflow, the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 offers simple yet powerful solutions for color correction, image resizing, masking and professional photographic effects in one affordable package. With support for Photoshop CS5, CS4 and CS3, the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 includes FocalPoint 2, PhotoTune 3, PhotoFrame 4.6, PhotoTools 2.6, MaskPro 4.1 and Perfect Resize 7 (the next generation of Genuine Fractals). The Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 will also include the recently announced Perfect Layers, which will be available in early 2011.  

With this new version of the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, photographers now have more options for where they use many of the onOne products. For the first time, photographers will be able to use FocalPoint 2, PhotoTune 3, PhotoFrame 4.6 and Perfect Resize 7 directly within Lightroom and Aperture without the need for a separate host application. In addition, owners of the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 will receive Perfect Layers when it becomes available next year. This completely new product provides photographers with the ability to create layered files directly from within Lightroom and Aperture that are fully compatible with Photoshop for later editing.  

Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 continues to include full support for Photoshop CS5, CS4 and CS3. Mask Pro 4.1 which allows photographers to replace backgrounds and make selections and PhotoTools 2.6, allowing photographers to leverage the power of Photoshop to enhance and stylize their images, continue to function directly within Photoshop and do not run as stand-alone applications.

Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 includes full versions of the following onOne Software products:

Perfect Resize 7 - The next generation of Genuine Fractals - Based on the same proven and patented algorithms as Genuine Fractals, the newest version of the industry standard for image resizing introduces new Smoothness and Sharpening controls to achieve the highest quality results when enlarging images. In addition, Perfect Resize adds features that make printing easier and faster including the new Loupe Tool for an instant 1:1 magnified preview. The upgrade also adds the ability to save custom Presets, a new Gallery Wrap preview with Auto Corner Fill, and Image Tiling improvements. Perfect Resize 7 now enables those who prefer a Lightroom or Aperture only workflow to resize a single or batch of images directly within those applications.

PhotoTools 2.6 - PhotoTools 2.6 adds a dozen new effects to the highly acclaimed Photoshop plug-in that allows photographers of all skill levels to maximize the full power of Photoshop with its ability to preview and combine Photoshop Actions in a single, intuitive interface. Designed by photographers for photographers, PhotoTools 2.6 includes the MaskingBug control, based on the FocusBug control from the award-winning FocalPoint plug-in, to selectively apply effects to images. PhotoTools 2.6 now has a total library of close to 300 effects that photographers can easily browse, preview and combine to create images that truly stand out.  

PhotoFrame 4.6 - With PhotoFrame 4.6, photographers can add the perfect finishing touch to images and layouts with new backgrounds, borders, layouts and adornments. With over 1,000 design elements such as film edges, borders, textures, backgrounds and adornments, PhotoFrame 4.6 even has complete layouts where users can simply drop an image in and they are done. It is the easiest and fastest way to add an authentic darkroom touch with a film edge or to create beautiful albums or scrapbook pages. Photographers can now use PhotoFrame 4.6 directly within Lightroom and Aperture.

FocalPoint 2 - Like bringing the camera lens inside Photoshop, FocalPoint 2 gives photographers the best way to add realistic depth of field and selective focus control to any image. Photographers now have an incredible amount of flexibility and control over the look of the blur with the new blur algorithm, FocusBrush, Lens Presets and multiple FocusBug features. Photographers can now use FocalPoint 2 directly within Lightroom and Aperture or on its own.

PhotoTune 3 - PhotoTune 3 uses patented technology to optimize the dynamic range, color and sharpness of images so that they look more true-to-life. The Wizard offers fast color and tone correction in as little as two steps while giving pro users direct access to advanced and innovative controls. SkinTune, which represents two years of research and analysis of thousands of skin tones, offers one-click color correction of portraits and the option to correct just the skin in an image. Photographers can now use PhotoTune 3 directly within Lightroom and Aperture or on its own.

MaskPro 4.1 - When a subject needs to be quickly extracted from a photo, Mask Pro 4 provides a color-based method that helps photographers easily remove unwanted backgrounds. Mask Pro's unique Color Decontamination technology allows users to get realistic results by maintaining transparency in hard to mask objects such as hair, smoke and glass in a fraction of the time using traditional tools.

Perfect Layers 1 (New!) - The newest product in the onOne Software line-up provides a fast and easy way to bring a layered workflow to Photoshop Lightroom and Apple Aperture. For those using a Lightroom or Aperture workflow, but not yet using Photoshop, Perfect Layers introduces the ability to create and edit multi-layered Photoshop files. With Perfect Layers, photographers can combine multiple images into a layered Photoshop compatible file; adjust layer size, position, blending mode and opacity; and use the built-in masking tools to blend multiple layers together. Perfect Layers will be made available at no cost to current owners of Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 as a free upgrade when it becomes available in 2011.

Availability
The new Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 is available immediately to owners of Plug-In Suite 5 as a free upgrade at http://www.ononesoftware.com/suite5update. New users may purchase Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 for $499.95. Purchased separately the products would normally cost $1,460. Existing owners of Plug-In Suite version 1, 2, 3 or 4 can upgrade to the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 for $199.95. Customers who own one or more of the products in Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 can now upgrade as well by visiting http://www.ononesoftware.com/upgrade/. For more information on the Perfect Photo Suite 5.5, please visit http://www.ononesoftware.com/.

SM_postcard.jpgOne of the great things in this industry--especially in PPA--is photographers' willingness to share ideas and advice. Have you found an especially effective technique? Know a great marketing or business strategy? Are you a whiz at photo manipulation? Want to share what you've learned? Be a Super Monday Instructor!

The next Super Monday event will be held on May 16, 2011. (December 6 is your deadline to volunteer!) Get ready to build networks and rack up speaking experience (and merits towards a PPA degree).

If you're Super Monday Speaker material, sign up now!

About Super Monday

Super Monday is PPA's unique, peer-to-peer educational initiative, and proceeds support PPA's non-profit educational programs. Since the 1993, thousands of photographers have gathered in studios around world to share their knowledge and experience.

Read our Super Monday instructor FAQs for more information.

PPA Charities has announced a new promotion for the month of December. A group within PPA Charities has challenged PPA members to raise $25,000 for Operation Smile by the end of 2010. This PPA Charities' "leadership circle" has pledged to match, dollar-for-dollar, all PPA member contributions up to the total of $25,000. Donations must be made before December 25, 2010.

In announcing this challenge, PPA Charities President Mary Fisk-Taylor said, "We are so grateful to these individuals for their leadership. If PPA members respond as we hope they will, we will be far more likely to meet our 2010 goal of raising $120,000 for Operation Smile. If we do, then PPA members can be extraordinarily proud that they have made it possible for 500 desperate children to receive the gift of surgery that will change their lives forever."

This means that a $240 donation, the cost of one surgery through Operation Smile, will now fund two surgeries.

Remember that if you contribute $240 or more, you will be listed on the PPACH consumer site www.saveasmile.org. As a 2011 PPA Charities Operation Smile Studio, you will have access to special promotional downloads and receive the monthly Keeping in Touch e-newsletter in which studios can share their year-round fund raising ideas.

Read more about Operation Smile and PPA Charities here.


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