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PPA Today: November 2017 Archives

November 2017 Archives

When you put your blood, sweat and tears into creating a masterpiece that showcases your uniqueness, the last thing you want is your work being improperly used or even stolen, especially if your art is your means of livelihood.  Unfortunately, many professional photographers of all backgrounds and fields deal with copyright infringement every day.

Granted, those who have high enough incomes predominantly benefit from today's current laws, but the same can't be said for the average professional; like Rob. Check out Rob's story on his battle for the rights to his own image:

Rob is a freelance professional photographer in San Francisco who was hired by an online

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 visitors' magazine to shoot a still life to illustrate an article on local bars and pubs. A competing website lifted Rob's photograph to promote their magazine without permission or compensation. Rob's client was upset that the image they had commissioned was used by their competitor and accused Rob of selling his image to the competition without authorization. Though Rob tried to explain that the image was stolen, his client, nevertheless, stopped working with Rob out of concern that he was untrustworthy.

Rob attempted numerous times to contact the infringing party by phone in order to be paid for the unauthorized usage and to demand that the infringing company remove the image from their website. He eventually sent the infringing company an invoice for the usage along with a demand letter telling the company to take the image down.

After several months, Rob was successful in reaching someone from the infringing company by phone, who subsequently refused to acknowledge their infringement-insisting that they hadn't infringed because they had simply lifted the image from Google Images. The infringing company refused to pay for the unauthorized usage and did not return Rob's subsequent calls. They did eventually remove the image from their website, however, due to this infringement; Rob was never hired by his client again.

Rob considered suing the infringer in Federal Court (his only recourse) but concluded it was too expensive to do so. He feels that if there was a Small Claims option available, he would have been able to not only enforce his copyright, but it would have also been useful in retaining his long-standing client.

This story and many others are the reason that a Small Claims process can be a game-changer for photographers and creative artists. It will help them enforce their copyright in cost-effective and efficient ways. We need everyone to support Small Claims at PPA.com/SmallClaims! Stay up-to-date on copyright and the fight for artists' rights at PPA.com/Copyright.


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By Bethany Clark

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This usually goes without saying, but we're going to say it: when it comes to drones, not following the rules can have consequences.

According to the Associated Press, a Northern California man accused of flying a drone over two NFL games last weekend and dropping political leaflets has been arrested. Police cited Tracy Michael Mapes, 55, with misdemeanor charges and released him after a drone was spotted over Levi's Stadium as the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks played.


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

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

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

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

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

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Photography is best enjoyed in Print. You know that, but do your clients? Are you struggling with exactly how to explain the process of print photography to clients? Here are a few ways you can show them why the efforts and services of this art form can't be matched.

  1. Thumbnail image for book 1080x1080.jpgChoose the Right Printing Material and Product Treatment
    Determining the type of printing material, as well as the kind of product treatment needed for a client's image, is crucial to the quality of the final product.  The quality of the material used will determine the image's lifespan. It's up to you as a professional to encourage them to use a paper that will last a lifetime.
  2. Frame Their Photograph so it Enhances Their Image
    Any professional photographer knows framing does not fall under "a walk in the park." Remind clients that you're trained to do this. And remember: You're offering them quality service that they can only experience when they hire an expert like you. The rich conversations between you and your client will help you produce every fine detail they hope for, the perfect encasing for their image, the best frame to fit with their home décor. You have the knowledge to guide your client through the purchasing decision, and you can help give them a great experience by prepping and showcasing the best frames for their image.
  3. Package and Deliver with Care
    Taking the time out of your day to package your client's photograph is a small gesture that will go a long way. They know you care about the image, but you personally packaging their photograph and delivering it to them yourself will signify, "Wow, they care about me." Speaking of which, whenever you have the choice and resources for shipping versus personal delivery, always go with the latter because quality customer service only enriches the entire customer experience. Going the extra mile acts as the icing on the cake. It further solidifies your relationship, and that mutual feeling of gratitude will last long after the project is complete. Clients will never have this kind of experience - namely a considerate, human touch to their customer service - if they simply stick with digital. Show them why they'll want to partner with you a second, third, twentieth time.
  4. Hang It Up Professionally, and Play Up "The Reveal"
    People are always eager for the reveal, and you can make it a very special occasion by hand-placing the image for your clients. Because mounting and hanging for visual impact is second nature to you, they can relax while you place the piece in an agreed-upon space. After you secure the image with utmost precision, everyone's favorite moment finally arrives: the long-awaited reveal! Ask your clients to close their eyes. As you guide them into the room, you let them take a breath, and once you finally give the "okay," that first heartwarming gasp happens. When it does, the realization hits them: "This was so worth it." They know one of their most cherished moments has become immortalized for generations to enjoy every single day.  

That's what you strive for, and that's what sticks in your client's mind. No matter how you chose to take your clients through the reveal, take advantage of this highly-touching moment to make it even more special, and tie it to your brand and your service.

In the end, it's always the client's experience that will set you apart as a professional print photographer. See the bliss that falls on your clients' faces when they are able to see their story come to life. They will feel the caring and consideration because you took their priceless moment as seriously as they did. Each and every meticulous step of creating beautiful print photography can't help but proclaim a valuable truth: There is no substitute for excellent, customized service from a pro. People don't become repeat clients simply because of the products... they come back because of the experience!

When it comes to professionally printing photography, people tend to focus on the end result and rarely the process. But if you can show them you hold their satisfaction as the highest priority, they will not only cherish your art in a timeless format but will also cherish your efforts, too. To learn more about print photography and to find resources that can help you market and sell your prints, visit Printmovement.org.


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by Mayo Lawal

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Travel photographer David Lazar has spent the past 14 years capturing the beauty of cultural diversity, and he's loving every bit of it. His journey began with a desire to explore the lifestyles of people around the globe.  

"I felt a real connection to cultural portrait photos with people in them people in other cultures and countries that had interesting clothes and a different way of life," he said.

 Read about David Lazar's amazing journey on Professional Photographer Magazine at ppmag.com.


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By Mayo Lawal

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You've got impeccable photography skills and you work hard, so you aren't really sure why your business isn't as profitable as you would like it to be. Have you considered joining PPA's Business Challenge?

The Business Challenge is free to PPA members and provides photographers with the information and tools they need to develop the foundation for a more profitable business over the course of one year. Not only do they receive the tools required to make changes to their business, but also step-by-step instruction and support from PPA mentors as they implement these changes. 

"PPA's business advice is based on years of experience and successful business mentoring," said Angela Kurkian, M.Photog.Cr., CPP and Director of Education at PPA. "The Business Challenge helps our members be more business-confident. It helps them think and strategize as a savvy business person."  

We know that the definition of success differs from person to person. This is why the Business Challenge is designed to help you work on your personalized success path. 

"PPA's Business Challenge has already helped me increase our sales averages a little, which is encouraging," said Wes Roberts, one of the participants. "It's helping me see the direction to get to my goals, which is awesome!" 

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

New Business Challenge groups begin every quarter. Sign up today at PPA.com/Challenge to enroll in the next Challenge Group, which begins on February 1st, 2018. Remember, the Business Challenge is free to PPA members. Not a member? Join PPA today!

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Have you visited theLoop recently? As an exclusive, PPA member-only forum, theLoop is a great place for members to connect with each other, share information/advice, get image feedback, and overall - a place to go if you need help. Become a member so you can "stay in the loop," and if you already are, then head over to theLoop to see what everyone's buzzing about. 

Lots of great discussions have been happening, so here are a few of the top posts from the back-half of November. Check them out, provide some feedback, and perhaps even learn something new!

Is it better to underexpose or overexpose for development in RAW? One Looper asks and it kicks off a great thread with lots of interesting advice. 

Plenty of chiming in here on a specific style of photo-book one photographer needs for a client. Check out your peers' recommendations and be sure to join the Print Movement today for even more pro-tips on printing for success.

It's Christmas time and "Santa-pic" season! This Looper is getting ready for her first Santa photo shoot and has lots of questions. Good thing there are plenty of helpful answers to be found on theLoop.  

One member is planning a group TFP shoot at Nashville after the day's conference is done. With downtown Nashville in the background, this request has proven to be popular and a nice group is forming. Don't be left out! Sign up today for Imaging USA 2018 and you can still receive the early-bird discount!

And there you have 'em, the top posts from theLoop! Remember to check out theLoop frequently as new discussions are posted daily. It's a great way to catch up with fellow PPA members! Not a PPA member? Join today!


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

Imaging USA is known far-and-wide as THE place to see some of the best speakers in the photography industry, as they take you on deep-dives into every topic you could want to learn more about. In order to get you even more excited (if that's possible!), Learn more here about the people you'll be learning more from in January!

Let's meet...

Ryan Armbrust
Boudoir Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky
Twitter: boudoirlou
Instagram: ryanarmbrust

For the past 8 years, Ryan Armbrust has owned and operated a retro pinup and boudoir studio with amazing results and success. Based in Louisville, Kentucky, his studio has photographed thousands of clients of all shapes, sizes and ages, delivering an exemplary product and experience. For Ryan, his success is in producing an extremely repeatable product for his clients while maintaining creativity, complete with Ryan's own retro touch. However, Ryan doesn't stop there. He has built a combined social media following of over 250,000 followers, and in 2012 Ryan's first published book, Shoot Sexy - Pinup Photography in the Digital Age, was released worldwide in 4 languages.

In addition to Boudoir Louisville, Ryan owns and operates a commercial photography brand, Sniper Photo. Specializing in corporate advertising, commercial photography, and environmental portraiture, Ryan has helped many businesses thrive through creative photography. An exquisite artist and exceptional businessman, Ryan is coming will share his expertise and experience with others at Imaging USA.

Speaker Sessions

Sat. 1/13
11:00 am Hands On, Technique
1:00 pm Boudoir! Shoot Like A Capitalist, Not Just An Artist. 
3:00 pm Hands On, Technique
4:00 pm Boudoir! Shoot Like A Capitalist, Not Just An Artist.
6:00 pm Hands On, Technique

Q&A with Ryan Armbrust

What is your life motto?: 'Cause I get the job done. I work. I work. I work. I work. I work...baby!'--Big Daddy Kane
What do you value most in your friends? A quirky sense of humor is what I value most. I like to be entertained.
What did you want to be as a kid when you grew up? An Architect! Like Art Vandelay...
What is your most treasured possession? As far as material items go, my collection of Mid Century Modern furniture and kitschy stuff!
What was your first concert? Bon Jovi and Cinderella! Woot Woot!
Coke or Pepsi? Oh, I get angry when I'm traveling to a region that has Pepsi. A N G R Y !
Which words of phrases do you most overuse? "Sooooooooo" and "I'm gonna have you..."! I find myself saying those constantly during shoots.

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









By Sidra Safri

Many of you remember PPA talking about the Drone Pilot Integration Program a few weeks ago. Upon its introduction, there has been a large influx of interest, and the FAA wants to ensure that the correction information is shared. 

The FAA will be hosting a webinar on  November 27th at 12:00 pm to discuss the program details in depth. For more information about the webinar, please see the FAA announcement below:

The new Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration Pilot Program fosters innovation and advances the integration of UAS into our nation's airspace to ensure U.S. global leadership in the emerging UAS industry. It's taking collaboration to a new level!  

There's already been tremendous interest in the Program and more than 4300 people registered to attend our online webinars to learn how they can participate. It's facilitating partnerships between state, local, and tribal government entities and private industry to gather operational and other data from advanced operational concepts, such as flights over people and package delivery. 

Based on demand, we've added more webinars, which provide you with an overview of the Program, application process, and the specific criteria and deadlines that you will be required to meet. Registration is required: 


The results from the Program will help to inform the development of future enabling regulations that will expand safe UAS operations and help to transition many of the new and novel operational concepts that we manage today by exception into routine, commonplace aspects of our everyday lives. 

Details about applying, timelines, and requirements are at FAA.gov/Go/DronePilot. 

Stay up-to-date about all things drones at PPA.com/Drones.

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By David Eun

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Arguably a creative mind's biggest headache - copyright infringement - affects professional photographers of all backgrounds and fields. From the head of a prominent studio to the small-business owner around the corner, having your work stolen or improperly used constantly remains a thought in the back of their minds.

Those fortunate enough to have high incomes predominantly benefit from today's current laws, but the same can't be said for the average professional. Check out Angela's story on her struggle to protect the rights to her watercolor illustrations:

Angela is an illustrator based in Atlanta, Georgia. She works in watercolor, ink and colored pencil. She published her illustrations and paintings in an instructional book, "Angelic Visions" [North Light Books, © 2011], available on Amazon.com and in bookstores.

Her registered illustrations in Angelic Visions were recreated and reproduced as prints and other decorative pieces without permission by another artist. The reproductions have been sold on the infringer's website and direct sales to the public as a vendor (authorized by event management and paid for a vendor's booth) at Renaissance Fairs throughout Texas. This infringer has also copied other artists' works and sold unauthorized reproductions.

Angela contacted the infringer directly and told her to stop selling her copyrighted work. The infringer agreed and removed the work from her website, but covertly continued to sell the unauthorized work in person at the fairs. The artist contacted her publisher, who told Angela they would send a cease & desist notice to the infringer but they would not be able to help with any further litigation, which Angela wanted to pursue. The publisher told Angela they would not sue the infringer, nor would they participate in her legal action if she filed suit, as this was beyond their capabilities.

If Angela would have been able to seek legal recourse against the infringer, she would have demanded take-down of the unauthorized images from the infringer's website, as well as an order to cease selling unauthorized prints of her work and to destroy all unauthorized prints the infringer currently has on hand. Angela would have asked for actual damages including a licensing fee for items already sold and profits from sales made, totaling $30,000 or more.

"I paid to copyright my work, and it feels pointless," Angela said. "I don't want to pay into our copyright system if it won't protect me. What's the point?"

This story and many other are the reason that a Small Claims process can be a game-changer for photographers and creative artists. It will help them enforce their copyright in cost-effective and efficient ways. We need everyone to support Small Claims at PPA.com/SmallClaims! Stay up-to-date on copyright and the fight for artists' rights at PPA.com/Copyright.

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PPAedu gives you 24/7 access to over 350 HD tutorial videos designed to educate you on all things photography and business. With new videos added every month, you are sure to find a video that fits you. It's FREE as one of the many great resources that come with being a member of PPA. 

This month's NEW PPAedu video is "Equipment Essentials: What Wedding Photographers Need" by Bry Cox, M.Photog.Cr., CPP. In this class, PPA wedding expert Bry Cox walks you step-by-step through everything you need, down to the tips of your shoes -and what shoes they should be! With Bry, you'll learn important tricks of the trade like...

  • What to wear - If you're thinking about your neon high-tops or your shimmery vest, think again. Bry shows you the wardrobe that works best.
  • What to bring - No one comes empty-handed to a wedding, especially the photographer. Aside from your camera, what do you bring? Do you have a checklist? Do you need a backup camera? What about lenses, batteries or memory cards? Lighting equipment? Don't panic! Bry gets you organized!
  • Time management - The bride can be late, but not you! Learn appropriate time management to get the job done right.
  • Your backup plan - Should you back up your cards? If so, when and how? What if you're traveling? Bry tells you everything you need to know, whether you're shooting a wedding in town or Timbuktu.
Visit PPA.com/PPAedu to learn more and see how you can take your photography and business to the next level!

If photography is how you make a living, as a business owner you face a whole new set of challenges. How do you get your name and business information out there? What is the best way to approach marketing for your photography business? Where are the most effective places to advertise in order to create the buzz about your business? 

All of these questions can be tricky to answer and can be answered a number of ways. Here are some basic ways to boost the impact of your photography business, so you can get the most out of your marketing efforts. 
 
Alphabet Soup - SEO, CTA, and CTR's

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These days, one of the largest advertising tools is the internet. With websites, social media, online reviews and such, it is an avenue too large for any business owner not to take advantage of. The first step when it comes to marketing on the web is understanding the meaning behind the acronyms. There are plenty of blogs about how to effectively market online, and many of them use the same language, or in this case, letters.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of getting as much 'organic' (non-paid) traffic to your website. With the use of keywords, tags, metadata, and many other factors, you can generate traffic to your website for free, just from simple search engine searches. You can track what works and what doesn't, and tweak all the meaningful data required to put your site on the top of the search page.

Calls To Action (CTA) are those little buttons placed all through a blog, or website. They are on the top, in the middle, on the bottom, and sometimes they pop out at you, but all of them have one purpose... to call you to action! They are strategically placed clickable links to your website, asking customers to go to your page and check out your stuff. And if you have any control over the placement, there is some scientific research as to where is the best place to put them. Don't be shy about your Calls To Actions: Book Today / Request a Quote / Meet the Photographer / etc. Almost every page of your website should have a call to action!

Click Through Rate (CTR) is another group of letters you will see, and this is something that anyone who uses the internet to market and sell should be aware of. It is the rate at which your Calls To Actions and search engine searches generate clicks through to your website. Using SEO data points to increase your CTR is crucial, as once you know what sections of your website or what pieces of content generate more clicks, then you'll have the key to  generate more website traffic,  more qualified leads, and more business!

Know Your Demographic

Often times, people think that to catch a lot of fish, you need to cast a wide net. This is true, but it is also true that this approach does not always bring the best prospective clients. This is why there is something to be said about professional photographers fishing in very specific pools. For example, if your specialty is weddings, you're probably not going to generate a lot of business advertising on auto supply websites. Find out where your clients spend their time, what social media outlets they are most drawn to, what groups they belong to and trust,and focus on marketing on those sites. Target the right audience to get more meaningful and productive prospects.

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Become An Exhibitionist

No, we don't mean run around in public naked (!), although that will probably attract attention as well. We mean exhibit your art. Get the word out there by putting on a show in a small local gallery, cafés or even local restaurants and bars. Not only will it get your work out there for the public to see, and possibly generate some print sales, but it is a feather in the cap of any photographer to say that they had a showing or an exhibition. Additionally, clients always get pride in knowing that their photographer is getting well known. This gives them the prime insider's feeling and elevates your brand and value in their eye. So advertise about your showing, and invite friends and customers, as well as critics and reviewers.

The Magic of Social Media

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Thanks to sites like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter, getting your pictures out there to be seen, is as easy as clicking a share button. These avenues can't be ignored for photographers to market themselves. Create an artist page, put links to your website where your contact information is in your bio's and start sharing yourself. Connect with your followers on a personal level, by responding to questions or comments on your work. Create buzz by posting about showings and exhibitions, or contests you've won along with other accomplishments. Share, and share again. Also keep in mind that these sites have options for paid advertisements, which can be affordable even if you don't have a huge marketing budget.

Word of Mouth

This has been, and will always be an effective marketing tool. People tend to choose a business more often if someone they trust recommends it, or if there are a lot of people who have good things to say about you or your work. Allowing for reviews on your social media page is one way to create feedback. Also creating a testimonial page on your business website, and asking people to review their experience and your work is an excellent way to get your word of mouth machine running.

Create a Connection

When we say create a connection, we don't just mean choosing to showcase your most emotion-provoking work. We mean connect with your clients, and other photographers, on a personal level. Put a personal bio on your website and social media pages, respond to questions and comments personally and in a friendly manner. Using emotional trigger words can be an effective marketing tool, can help to create relationships with clients, and can also generate more positive word of mouth action. Networking with other professional photographers through PPA.com can also be invaluable. Getting advice, or referrals from other professionals is something that every business owner needs. Because in the end, people always do business with people they like. This is valid for clients to do repeat business with you, for them to refer you, or for other vendors to refer you. Connections will help your business soar on its own.

Ask For The Sale!

In the midst of all these marketing strategies, networking tips, and promotion tactics, one thing we can't forget is to ask for the sale! It can be one of the hardest things to do for salesmen. They can talk to people, create rapport, and build a solid relationship with their customers all day long, but when push comes to shove, they are unable to simply ask for the sale. Sometimes that can mean the difference between creating an income and watching customers walk away.

All in all, marketing for professional photographers is similar to marketing many other types of services. Just track the results of your efforts, and be willing to change and acclimate to do what brings in the amount of business you want to see for yourself.

For more information and help to take your photography business to the next level, check out PPA's See The Difference® campaign. Not currently a member of PPA? Then, use the nonprofit that helps photographers be more profitable with a vast array of benefits and join today!


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Senior-portrait photographer (and upcoming Imaging USA speaker!) Howie McCormick has become West Virginia's most sought-after high-school portrait artist, thanks to the risks he has taken and the creativity he infuses into his shoots. 

Howie believes you can be successful in this market, too, and he's compiled a list of 15 ways to stand apart from the crowd and corner the market in your area. Professional Photographer magazine's Jeff Kent reveals all these secrets in his piece on McCormick. 


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By David Eun
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If you're headed to Imaging USA this upcoming January, you've probably already thought about bringing some maps, writing down your schedule, and packing a notebook to take notes in. But what if you could do all these things, all in one place? With the Imaging USA App, you can!

The Imaging USA App is now available, for FREE, in the App Store and Google Play. This means you can have Imaging USA at your fingertips on your iPhone, Android phone, Apple Watch, or iPad. This app will help you make the most of your time at Imaging USA, keeping you up to date and connected to the action.

With this app you can:
• Create your own customized schedule of classes and events.
• View interactive maps with a navigation feature to help you find your way around the tradeshow floor.
• View the comprehensive list of speakers, exhibitors, and programs offered.
• Favorite and bookmark the speakers or vendors you don't want to miss.
• Connect with other attendees through the app's networking function.
• Take notes and keep them stored all in one place.
• Give feedback on the classes you attend.
• Receive expo-only offers and discounts while in Nashville.

In case you have trouble navigating through the app, check out these tutorial videos!

These are just some of the many features available when you use the app. Best of all, the app is free, no login is required, and most of the app's features can be accessed without an Internet connection.

However, be sure to download the NEW Imaging USA app for 2018. Previous-year versions of the app have expired!

So what are you waiting for? Download the Imaging USA app TODAY so you can be in the know before you go!

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Imaging USA 2018 will be here before you know it...three-to-six days of everything photography, including learning, networking, shopping, and partying! It's all going down in the Music City, Nashville, TN, January 14-16, 2018 (Pre-Con classes January 11-13).
Imaging USA is known far-and-wide as THE place to see some of the best speakers in the photography industry, as they take you on deep-dives into every photographic and business topic you could want to learn more about. In order to get you even more excited (if that's possible!), PPA is highlighting our 2018 Imaging USA speakers.

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Let's Meet...

Rose Coleman

Rose Coleman has been a professional photographer for 17 years. Growing up in the photography business with two parent legends, she began making prints in her mother's darkroom as a small child. She started with a film camera and now is a thriving photographer with a husband and three kids in Oklahoma City with no limits to what she shoots. She aims for beautiful joyful images and businesses that know how to make money. Come see why she has 3 separate photography companies!

Speaker Session:
Tuesday, January 16, 8am - 9:30am: The Business of Cheerleaders

Q&A:
If you could have a theme song, what would it be? I love to sing and play guitar so this is big for me!  CAN'T STOP THE FEELING!

What would be your advice for photographers who are just starting their career? Be aggressive and don't cut corners to lessen your work or education...educate yourself with the style of imagery you love and try to become the best at what you do. 

What was one of the defining moments in your career? My mother taught me if you want to be a good photographer, then learn to be good with people. That was hard for me because I was a terribly shy girl growing up with a lot of freckles and big red hair. I always got attention even if I didn't want it so I wasn't outgoing or very confident. You have to learn that if you want to be successful in this business because you are working with people. The best photographer can give the worst experience to a client and still create something beautiful but that client will remember how that person made them feel forever... This is a business of relationships. 

Each photographer has a specialty/genre/niche; how did you discover yours? I grew up as a second generation photographer in a portrait studio. There wasn't a thing we didn't photograph. So niches, to me, have really grown in the last 10 years and become a dominant part of some people's success, which I think is great, but hasn't always been mine. You should always shoot what brings you joy and what thrills you, and if you can make a living doing it, DO IT! Sports for me is something that really works for our home studio and family dynamic and that's the most important thing to me... making things work for my family and keeping a good balance with a high-profit percentage.

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

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By David Eun

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Imaging USA 2018 feels as if it lies just beyond arm's reach, and we hope you're excited because we certainly are! While pre-conference jitters steadily soar through the roof, we are happy to announce PPA's November Giveaway!

This month's theme? "Giving thanks" for friendship because friends are awesome!

This month's giveaway will reward multiple registered attendees who have purchased the Buddy Pass for January's Imaging USA conference. The two prizes you could win are either an Amazon or Starbucks Gift Card! So, be sure to follow Imaging USA's social media pages to find out if you're one of the lucky winners!

Buddy Passes are currently available at $319. Buddy Passes +1 are available at $439. So, if you and a friend are planning to attend IUSA2018 but haven't registered yet, consider purchasing a Buddy Pass to save those extra dollars!

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If you are a professional photographer looking to offer a portrait experience that will bring year-round cash flow, allow you to feel good about what you do, AND give your clients something to RAVE about . . . tomorrow's free webinar is for you. 

Kay Eskridge has hit the jackpot by offering photography options for tween-agers (9-12 years old). With social media changing the face of how young people deal with self-image, especially girls in their tweens and teens, body-positive messages are becoming more popular. Kay's goal is to become a part of this movement with her photography and the experience that comes with these programs. 

The portrait experiences she covers are:  
Model for a Day  
Primp & Pose Portrait Parties (4-part series that involves her parent)

This webinar also covers Partnership Marketing Campaigns, as they play a big role in all of the programs. Additionally, you'll learn how to set up marketing strategies, increase your sales in this very lucrative target market, and feel good about making a difference in a young person's life. Finally, Kay will discuss why it is so IMPORTANT to educate this generation on the value of printing photographs.

This webinar is FREE and open to all TOMORROW ONLY, so register now and tune in, November 21, 2017, at 2:00 pm ET.

Oh, and if you're a member of PPA, you'll be able to replay this and any PPA webinar at your leisure and as many times you wish (videos uploaded about two weeks after original webinar date)! Block your calendar and learn how to be a successful tween photographer!



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Photographers of all skill levels can benefit from PhotoVision's high-quality, rich-content videos! These videos show you the latest and most effective techniques that expert photographers currently use to make their work even better, and you can too! See for yourself by checking out the latest video, hosted by Parker Pfister!

In "Creating an Heirloom", Parker captures a beautiful portrait of a mother with her children, and discusses how to tastefully handle non-sensual nudity in photography in order to create symbolically nurturing and organic imagery. Parker demonstrates how to keep children engaged, even when dealing with vintage full-frame film cameras that require absolute stillness. Parker stresses the importance of capturing emotion in his images and how to pose in order to create a sense of connection.

PhotoVision is included with your PPA membership. That alone represents savings of $199/year! So, what are you waiting for? Head over to PhotoVisionVideo.com and begin streaming classes today... for FREE! If you're not a member of PPA, consider joining today!


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

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

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Let's Meet...

Al Audleman, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, API

Al Audleman is a commercial photographer operating out of St. Petersburg, Florida. A PPA Master Photographer and Photographic Craftsman, he was one of the first PPA-approved Photographic Instructors, PPA Certified for 29 years, and one of the first officially-recognized PPA Certification Instructors.

Professional recognition includes several PPA Loan Collection images, selection to the Kodak Epcot Center Exhibit, Kodak Gallery and Fuji Masterpiece Awards, Florida's "Becker Award for Creative Photography," and the coveted Florida People's Choice Award. Al has also earned the Georgia Fellowship Degree, the Florida Degree of Photographic Excellence, the Florida Degree of Artistic Excellence, the Florida Service Award, and the Florida Education Degree. He was named the Florida Photographer of the Year in 2001 and 2002.

His teaching credentials include CPP Exam Prep and Photoshop classes throughout the nation and internationally. He is known to conduct a fun class on a technical subject, plus he includes lots of stories on how the information applies to the real world. And he tells a lot of jokes! But he is serious because more than 90% of his students normally pass the exam the first time following the class.

Al also has produced a comprehensive Study Guide, "The Road to Certification for Professional Photography," that includes a lengthy glossary of technical terms and a 256-question practice exam.  This is included in your registration as a workbook fee and you will receive the download link to obtain the document as soon as you register for the class. So sign up NOW! Get a head start on the test.

 Speaker Sessions:

Thu, Jan. 11

9:00 am-5:00 pm - CPP Prep Class A

Fri, Jan. 12

9:00 am-5:00 pm - CPP Prep Class A

Sat, Jan. 13

9:00 am-5:00 pm - CPP Prep Class A

Q&A:

What is your life motto? Do it right the first time ... and if not, FIX it!

What was one of the defining moments in your career? When a local adjunct professor/ad agency owner told a student that there were no good commercial photographers in my town and they passed it along to me.

Each photographer has a specialty/genre/niche; how did you discover yours? There was a need in my community for good commercial photography and with my technical background and training in good photographic techniques in the Navy, I said, "Hey, I can do this!"

If you could have a theme song, what would it be? "I Can See Clearly Now," by Johnny Cash.

What would be your advice for photographers who are just starting their career? Pursue the CPP credential because it will give you a solid foundation on which to build the rest of your career - something you won't get any other way. Do this FIRST!

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

  

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Thanksgiving is next week and we've got a lot to be thankful for at PPA... about 30,000 reasons to be more exact. While you prepare for the holiday (and spending some time with your favorite family) check out our top blog posts on the web this week!

COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHY: PPA understands the importance of teaching photographers how to run a profitable business and now FStoppers tutorial videos are switching things up from concentrating on the artistic process over to the business side of photography. Watch the new video, "Making Real Money".

COPYRIGHT: PPA is back at it again...and YOUR small-claims copyright bill is on the line! Catch up on all the updates as we meet with more representatives from the U.S. House and spread the good word of H.R. 3945 to those who have the power to change things. 

RESPECT: What does it mean to be an "ethical landscape photographer"? Spencer Cox explains the idea on PetaPixel, revealing the respect for nature required during the shoot...and the post-production process too. 

CHARITY: PPA Charities is gearing up for its annual "Giving Tuesday" fundraiser. From 10am-11pm (EST) on Tuesday, November 29th, they will have 15-minute mini-programs from some of the biggest names in the industry, streaming on PPA Charities' Facebook page via Facebook Live. In return, they'll be providing a link for you to donate to PPA Charities to help support their charitable efforts. (Last year we raised over $11,000 in a single day!)

EVENT PHOTOGRAPHY:  "Getting great light in an event setting whether inside or outside is a tough shoot. You have to understand exposure, people are moving sometimes erratically, ambient light is moving over your subjects randomly, and you still have to create sellable imagery." Dallas photographer JT Blenker gives you the tips on how to overcome these obstacles. 

PORTFOLIO: Your online portfolio is an important way to advertise yourself to new clients and show them what you've got. Aside from PPA's See The Difference® materials, how else do you market yourself? This post from PetaPixel helps you figure out your online calling card with strategies for image optimization, resizing, compression and more. 

INDUSTRY: Kodak lost $46 million in Q3 of 2017 and is laying off hundreds of employees. DP Review has the story, which includes the company's optimistic outlook on their fourth quarter. Remember, we have the power to keep print alive! Join the Print Movement now! 

PROTECTION: The holiday-sales season is here and OpenForum has this article about how to protect your studio's bottom line by following their e-commerce fraud prevention tips. Stay safe with these methods of identity protection so you can have a peaceful (and profitable) season! 

SHOP: Remind your clients that Small-Business Saturday is around the corner! This post-Thanksgiving tradition, as many seek out local mom-and-pop businesses for a portion of their holiday-shopping spending. American Express has a bunch of downloadable content you can use to promote and display your studio's participation in this year's Small-Business Saturday! And this is a great opportunity to remind your clients that shopping locally (with you) makes a difference all-year round!

PRINT: If you're looking to create images that are worthy of printing and selling to your clients to cherish forever, PPA Today has some pointers to keep in mind. From planning to technique, if you're wondering how to sell prints to your clients, PPA has you covered. 

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


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By Chris Homer

Have you visited theLoop recently? As an exclusive, PPA member-only forum, theLoop is a
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 great place for members to connect with each other, share information/advice, get image feedback, and overall - a place to go if you need help. Become a member so you can "stay in the loop," and if you already are, then head over to theLoop to see what everyone's buzzing about. 

Lots of great discussions have been happening, so here are a few of the top posts from the first half of November. Check them out, provide some feedback, and perhaps even learn something new!

A member is looking for advice on preferred in-person sales programs, as well as advice for how to upsell products to clients that live out of town. Check it out and see if you can help!

In this discussion, a photographer asks for advice on how to price a digital file for a corporate client. If you've got any experience with this scenario, share it here! 

This Looper wonders if any photographers have experience teaching photography techniques to others, and what they charge for this type of consulting. If you're looking to become a photography educator, this is a good discussion for you!

This photographer is asking for advice on the best lens to use for photographing a gymnastics meet. Take a look if you're thinking about taking a job like this - there's plenty of good advice!

And there you have 'em, the top posts from theLoop! Remember to check out theLoop frequently as new discussions are posted daily. It's a great way to catch up with fellow PPA members! Not a PPA member? Join today!


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


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By Sidra Safri

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5:02 pm
Day 2 has resulted in some very insightful meetings! The Small Claims panel was a hit, and it did a great job of answering questions that many staffers had. It was also great to have someone from the Copyright Office not only sitting on the panel but also in attendance of the event. We hope this panel will encourage Representatives who are not a familiar with the Small Claims bill to do research and increase the amount of co-sponsors.

After the briefing, we headed over to the Copyright Alliance meeting in Downtown D.C. The Copyright Alliance is an association that consists of various stakeholders in the copyright world. Its members include CBS, NBA, Disney, and more. This meeting is a great opportunity to touch base with the copyright world and see where everyone stands. As always, the Small Claims bill was on the agenda and was discussed at length as to what can be done to ensure the bill passes. We were very happy to see that many facets of the copyright world are dedicated to making Copyright Small Claims a success.

We are heading back to PPA Headquarters in Atlanta, but don't forget to keep sending those letters and calling your representatives! The more often they hear from YOU, the more attention Copyright Small Claims will get! PPA.com/SmallClaims


12:32 pm
Day 2 in DC is off to a great start! We started our morning meeting with Representative Farenthold's office of Texas. This was one of our first meetings with this office and wanted to take the time to share an updated status of the bill. We had some great feedback and were happy to know that the staff consists of people who have worked with the Copyright office. The office was happy that we met with them and brought them up to speed. We are hoping as time goes on we will have this office sign on as a co-sponsor. 

After meeting with Representative Farenthold's office, we stayed in Texas and met with Representative Ratcliffe. Since the staff has recently been changed, we provided a general back ground in why small claims is so important. This office was very open to the struggle that many photographers face and has assured us that they will look into the small claims bill. We will stay in touch with this office to keep them up-to-date. 

After both of these meetings with Texas representatives, we were told that it is absolutely important to continue to send letters and make phone calls. The more contact that is made with the office, the more likely the Representative is to support small claims. 

We are now off to a briefing being held on Capitol Hill about H.R. 3945 and why this is so important. Our allies from the Copyright Alliance Keith Kupferschmid and  Tom Kennedy of ASMP are on the panel. This will be a great opportunity for many staffers to hear about small claims, and hopefully convince them to support this bill. 

We have two more meetings after the briefing. Stayed tuned and remember to send your letters and make your phone calls! PPA.com/SmallClaims.

By Sidra Safri

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4:00 pm 
We just finished up our first day of meetings and we're off to a great start! We started our day with Rep. Richmond of Louisiana. During this meeting, we took the time to update the office about small claims, and provide a summary of what the small-claims bill entails. They showed a great amount of interest and have asked for more information so that they can study the bill in more detail. They have also asked for an approximate number of photographers in Louisiana to fully understand the impact that the small-claims bill will have in their district. We will continue to work with Representative Richmond's office and hope that he will sign on as a co-sponsor soon. 

After meeting with Representative Richmond's office, we moved on to meet with Representative Lofgren's office of California.  We haven't met with this office in a long time and thought it would be a good time to touch base since we had the introduction of the bill. During this discussion, some great ideas and concerns came up, including the constitutionality of certain provisions. We were also happy to see that Representative Lofgren's office understands the need for a small-claims process and fully sees this as a possible remedy for photographers.  

After meeting with Lofgren's office, we went on to meet with Representative Bigg's office of Arizona. We met with this office after a long absence and wanted to take the opportunity to have them become more familiar with the small-claims bill. This was a great touch-point meeting, and we are planning on circling back to this office soon. 

We are done with our meetings for the day. We have plenty of great potential co-signers and hope that the interest in the small-claims bill continues to grow. In the meantime, do not forget to contact your representative and urge them to support small claims!


10:00 am: 
PPA is off to D.C once again to continue to fight for your copyrights! As many of you remember, we are in the middle of urging representatives to co-sponsor H.R. 3945 (CASE ACT).

We are going to start the day off meeting with Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California. This is one of the first times we will be meeting with her office in regards to the Small-Claims bill. We are aware that Rep. Lofgren has her hesitations about H.R. 3945 and we are hoping to meet with her and ease some of her concerns and answer many of her questions.

After meeting with Representative Lofgren we are heading to Rep. Richmond of Louisiana. We have met with Rep. Richmond before but had not had a chance to touch base with him since the introduction of H.R 3945. We hope to bring him up to speed on the status of the bill and answer any questions that he may have.

After meeting the Representative from Louisiana, we will go on to meet with Rep. Biggs of Arizona. We met with the Representative's office earlier this year and they ask that we keep them up to date on the Small-Claims bill. Since the bill was introduced last month we thought it would be a good time to swing by again to fill them in on Small Claims and urge them to sign on a co-sponsor. 

We have a flight to catch, but stay tuned for more updates! And, as always, don't forget to contact your representative at ppa.com/smallclaims. You can send as many letters or make as many calls as you want!

See Day 2 updates here.
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Imaging USA 2018 is almost here and PPA has so much planned for you, including a variety of classes covering as many topics as you can think of!

In order for you to get the most out of your experience in Nashville, we created tracks that you can easily follow if you have an area you specifically want to concentrate on. So, if you've got the "what" down but you're still trying to figure out the "how," or you're just looking for the best ways to go about your photography, check out the Technique track!

With this track, you will learn non-complicated but exceptional techniques that will save you time and still keep clients coming. It includes everything from exclusive photography, to mind-opening business tips and tricks, such that no matter your niche, there's a class for you! 

Some of the classes in this track include:

Session Time: January 14, 5:00 pm - 6:15 pm
Speaker: Michael Anthony
There is no question that weddings are challenging. However, with the right knowledge, they don't have to be. Like all photography, wedding photography is based on light, and with the right lighting techniques, you can capture beautiful images in any situation. The challenge with lighting in wedding photography is that you have to remain mobile while remaining within a small footprint. In this class, Michael Anthony will show you how to turn any location into a studio and create dynamic photos for all of your couples. You'll learn how to prepare for each wedding day and how to be ready for any scenario that may happen. After this class, you will understand how to create beautifully lit images with minimal equipment. Michael will even discuss with you some of the challenges and tricky lighting situations in which you are bound to find yourself - and how to overcome these! You'll walk away with solid lighting techniques and the confidence to capture amazing images each and every time!

Session Time: January 15, 8:00 am - 9:30 am
Speaker: Alli Peck
Maximize the tools of your trade as you learn to create outstanding images. Using live models, Instructor Alli Peck will demonstrate maternity posing at its finest. Learn the poses that showcase your clients' beauty, grace and poise in your maternity sessions. You will also delve into lighting techniques and learn to use both one light and strip lighting to achieve optimum effects. This workshop gives you the skills, but also the confidence, to conduct successful maternity shoots with stunning results!

Session Time: January 16, 8:00 am - 9:30 am
Speaker: Dixie Dixon
In this in-depth talk, Nikon Ambassador Dixie Dixon will share her favorite fashion-lighting techniques and secrets that make all subjects look their best! Dixie will cover lighting styles, types and modifiers that suit different face shapes and skin tones.  From on-the-go quick lighting setups to more in-depth detailed strobe setups, you'll discover how to use all types of light effectively to make every person you shoot look amazing and save a ton of time in post-production.  

Session Time: January 16, 3:30 pm - 4:45 pm
Speaker: Joe Switzer
All too often photographers turn down projects because they involve video production. What would happen, though, if you were suddenly able to say "yes" to those clients? After taking Joe Switzer's course, you will! This class is all about video production made simple for you. Isn't it time you stop turning down the business and learn how to produce videos that people want? Joe will teach you how to use your camera to capture video footage and how to edit it for professional results to both shoot and edit. You will also learn how to take the ordinary and make it extraordinary. If you've tried video before (and failed), this is your chance to finally succeed. With Joe in your corner, you will find out how to become a successful video producer, increase your sales, and finally say, "Yes, I can!"

... and more!

You can find the classes in the Technique track and other tracks in the Imaging USA schedule. Don't forget to register for Imaging USA 2018, January 11-16 in Nashville, TN. We hope to see you there!

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By Chris Brennaman

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It's not an understatement to say that digital photography has fundamentally changed our industry. Not only can we snap hundreds of images without ever having to stop to change a roll of film but we also have what seems like an infinite amount of storage.

But there's just one problem with that: instead of handing a client a physical framed print or a quality album, we hand over a CD or USB flash drive and call it a day.

The general public may not understand-and some photographers for that matter- but most successful and profitable professionals absolutely do! Rather than existing in some digital ether, print photographs give memories a sense of permanence. So if you're looking to create images that are worthy of printing and selling to your clients to cherish forever, then keep these things in mind!

Plan Your Image With the Finished Product In Mind
Once upon a time, it wasn't enough to just snap away and hope to find an image in the mix that was "good enough." Rather, a photographer had to plan his or her vision.

Think about where the photo will hang and what emotions you'll want it to trigger with your work. Think about how your subjects will be framed. Think about lighting and how it will contribute¬ to- or detract from¬- your image. Think about all the things that will work in tandem to make your image one worth printing and putting on display.

Then start creating with that finished product in mind!

DO Sweat the Technique
About craft, about use of equipment, about product choices, about finishing or presentation touches- sweat the technique about everything! It's easy to forget about the latter, but it makes the biggest difference. Know what distinguishes each product and how they contribute to making the experience of having hired you one that's worth their while and then some.

Technology changes, but best techniques never go out of style. 

Be Picky About Your Images as Much as About Your Brand
After you've finished capturing your image, it's time to choose the one that will have the honor of being printed. Only then pick the ones that you're sure you'll be happy your client might select and showcase in print! 

Why be so picky? Because the images you choose to show your client will be the ones that speak for you and your business. "Image is everything" isn't just a saying; it's a fact. Bottom line: never present images you do not want to reflect as your brand...because any visible image of yours will contribute to building your personal and business' image.

Appearance Drives Everything 
Your session is over. You and your client have picked the very best photos. Now it's time to produce the final product, right? Well, no, not yet. Now it's time to take into account how you want this image presented.

It's easy to neglect this part of the process, and too often photographers go for a one-size-fits-all approach to printing. But every image is different and needs to be printed as such. 

Remember how we said image is everything? Well, that isn't limited to just the print. It relates to the total experience you provide your clients, too. Every detail, from largest to smallest, will go towards meeting and exceeding expectations and creating an experience that justifies your prices. 

Here are some examples of things you might not always think about as areas of opportunity to enhance the experience you provide but that you might want to consider :
What size print would best suit the image?
What paper stock is most appropriate?
What frame will best accentuate the image?
How will the image be lit?
If shipped, how will your packaging contribute to a reveal that delights the client?
If hand-delivered, how will you deliver the product and how will the reveal take place to delight the client?

Show Your Clients That Prints Are Relevant
Technology has made a lot of consumers think that prints are a thing of the past. Sure, they share their photos to sites like Facebook and Instagram, but beyond that, photos are often forgotten. They're left to sit on hard drives and CDs tucked away in some drawer that's never opened.

And when that happens it's like losing the memory itself. Having a physical print creates a tangible connection to one special moment in time. How many of us have been overcome with waves of nostalgia from holding a print? How many of us have felt like we've been pulled back in time just by being able to physically interact with a print? We all have. 

Happiness, love, comfort, fellowship, even sadness- prints make us feel. Those feelings are contagious. Show prints and have existing clients talk about how important prints are to them. So much of what you do is about connecting with people and bringing them something special. Do it in PRINT.

As a professional photographer, you understand just how important prints are. It's time you make your clients understand it too. It's easier than you think. Join the PRINT movement and learn more about pricing, selling and the many other benefits of prints so you too can become a Print Artist.

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From the moment you first attract an ideal client all the way through to the sale and beyond, your brand must be unforgettable. Relationship-building is the number one priority in creating an unforgettable brand. It starts with the first contact and basically, never ends. 

There are five major points to master if you want to be a brand that's irresistible. Join Teri Fode as she shares how to get these five points right so that you're on your way to standing out in your marketplace, no matter how crowded it is!

This webinar is FREE and open to all TOMORROW ONLY, so register now and tune in, November 16, 2017, at 2:00 pm ET. 

Oh, and if you're a member of PPA you'll be able to replay this and any PPA webinar at your leisure and however many times you wish (videos uploaded about two weeks after original webinar date)! Block your calendar and learn how to be an unforgettable brand!

By Bethany Clark

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Do you have a goal to earn your CPP? Imaging USA is an excellent place to learn more about the program, its benefits, and dive deep into it! 

The Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) program assures others of a photographer's technical knowledge, experience, and continuance to develop new skills and techniques. It is a declaration of your professional competence. 

Being a CPP is like quality assurance because certification is a credential consumers and businesses understand. More importantly, it provides you with a tool for telling the world--and all those potential clients--why they should call you rather than a competitor down the street.

So if you plan to become a CPP, here are some options while you're at Imaging USA 2018:

Imaging USA offers a three-day intensive prep class during Pre-Con that covers all the technical topics on the exam. This class isn't for the faint of heart - it's an in-depth study of the technical side of photography, almost equivalent to a semester of college! You'll work hard and study hard, but you'll also walk away a more polished, knowledgeable, confident professional. And a prep class like this will give you a lot of confidence when it comes time to take the exam. 

Topics covered in the prep class include:

  • The Inverse Square Law, Filter Factors, Bellows Factor
  • Lenses and Filters
  • Color Theory and H&D Curves
  • Lighting Ratios, Corrective Lighting and Posing, Depth of Field, Angle of View
  • The Zone System (and how it helps you understand the digital histogram)
  • Difference between a Bit, a Byte and Bit Depth
  • And much more

After you've taken the prep class, you can choose to take the CPP exam at Imaging USA, too, while the information is fresh in your mind!

Nervous about the CPP Image Submission? Do you want to have more confidence and control of your images? Do you just want to understand light more? If you answered yes to any of those questions than this class is for you. This one-day pre-con class takes an in-depth look at the process of submitting your images for CPP, and provides you with techniques to create images that benefit your craft and your business.

The image submission prep class will:

  • Review the criteria and guidelines for submitting images
  • Provide tips on how to build your image submission portfolio
  • Explain how to analyze images and understand how they are created
  • Explore portrait lighting patterns and ratios (with live demonstrations!)
  • Provide useful insight on the judging process
  • Give you confident understanding of light
  • Demonstrate how posing, color, key, composition, and lighting all work together for successful images
  • And much more!

The CPP Exam:
When taking your CPP exam, you'll have the option to test in person or online. And you will have the opportunity to do so while at Imaging USA on Sun-Tues, January 14-16, 2018 from 1 pm - 3 pm! You must declare your candidacy in order to sit for the exam. And if you have already declared your candidacy, make sure to register for the exam by Monday, January 8, 2018.

If you're already a CPP:
All this talk about becoming a CPP; what if you already are one? Well, current CPPs are invited to refresh, relax, and recharge in the Certification lounge, exclusive for Certified Professional Photographers and Certified Drone Photographers! The Certification lounge will feature charging stations, light refreshments, and a place to chat with your fellow Certifieds. Stop by and relax awhile!

So now you know how to dive deep into the world of CPP at Imaging USA! Register for a pre-con prep class today, declare your candidacy, and take your exam, all while kicking your 2018 off with the energy, excitement, and information at Imaging USA

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By Bethany Clark

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Five years ago, Jeff Roffman held his first Santa Day at his Atlanta photography studio. It was a modest event with about 15 sessions. Almost every kid cried.

But unbeknownst to him, that event turned out to be a hit and created a ravenous client base for more photography sessions with Santa. After adding many more props, features, and even a cookie decorating station, this seasonal event brings the North Pole to the middle of Georgia - producing a big boost to Roffman's bottom line.

"We're not just selling the photography; we're selling the experience," says Roffman. "This is a judgment-free zone where kids can be kids. If a kid has a meltdown on Santa's lap, that's OK. The parents can all share a laugh and not be embarrassed. We are all parents here, and we're in this together."

Read more about this merry project at '"Disastrous" Santa Sessions A Hit With Clients' on PPmag.com. 

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

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

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Let's Meet...

Ross Benton, Cr.Photog.

Web: studiobenton.com

Ross' recipe for business is as unique as his photography. Known for his weddings, his market rapidly expanded into the family and senior markets. His studio has created wall portraits to fill homes since 2008.

Ross and his wife of ten years not only run the studio together, but spend time leading functions, events and studies at their church. When not at church, you will find the Benton family cooking, entertaining, and boating at the lake. It is this laid-back, approachable style that creates a relaxed environment for his clients, which you will also find flowing over into the classroom. Many students have said his programs are not only easy to follow, but also chock-full of time-saving, money-making tips.

Speaker Sessions:

Thu, Jan. 11

9:00am- 5:00pm- The Secrets to Success When Turning Pro 

Fri, Jan. 12

9:00am- 5:00pm- The Secrets to Success When Turning Pro 

 

Q&A:

What is your life motto? Give and Give in Abundance and God will provide!

Why do you love photography? As a photographer, we are able to capture the most important moments in our clients' lives.  We are invited to cherish, celebrate and capture life!

Each photographer has a specialty/genre/ niche; how did you discover yours?

Starting my career in college, I chased the professional-sports business and enjoyed having a good time learning photojournalism while traveling.  Luckily, I was still in college and figured out I need to educate myself in business and added a minor in marketing.  From there, I followed the business.  My niche now evolves with my market.  My studio has continued to evolve for the past ten years into what it is today.

What was one of the defining moments in your career? The moment in college when my Photography-101 professor approached me and said I should consider entering his degree program.

What would be your advice for photographers who are just starting their career?

Get a business degree and do continued education in your local area on marketing and sales.  Photography is an artistic craft created by you.  Learn and grow in your photography through your local, state and national PPA associations, but never stop learning marketing and sales.

If you could have a theme song, what would it be? I just want to dance with you - George Strait

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

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It's Copyright GO TIME! With HB 3945 currently being worked on in the U.S. House of Representatives, we're farther along than ever in our mission to (finally) bring small-claims copyright protection to photographers like you. In order to join this fight for artists' rights, you need to Be More Informed and PPA will help with that!

Not sure what copyright benefits come with your PPA membership? Not sure if you are doing everything you can to protect your images from infringement? And what is the deal with Copyright Small Claims? Great news! All these questions and plenty more will be answered during tomorrow's informational copyright webinar.

This webinar is FREE and open to all TOMORROW ONLY, so register now and tune in, November 14, 2017, at 3:00 pm ET. 

Oh, and if you're a member of PPA you'll be able to replay this and any PPA webinar at your leisure and however many times you wish (videos uploaded about two weeks after original webinar date)! Block your calendar and join the fight for artists' rights! 

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By Chris Homer

PPA's District Photographic Competitions will begin accepting entries this winter through early
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 spring, depending on your district. Go ahead and start getting your competition images ready!

Entering your local district competition is one of the best ways to push yourself to be more. You'll learn where you stand--how your photography matches up with your peers. You'll learn about the 12 elements of a merit image, and start incorporating them into your daily photography. You'll learn what it takes to create a merit image, and if you stick with it, work your way up to the Loan Collection.

If you're ready to enter and improve your skills, visit PPA.com/Districts to find out which competition you should enter. From there, you can find the entry deadlines, judging dates and rules for each District competition. Be sure to read the rules carefully! 

So find your district and start getting those images ready and take the plunge to improve as a photographer by entering your District Photographic Competition!


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


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By Mayo Lawal

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We have no idea what the weather is doing, but we do know that whether you are out on the porch or cuddled by the heater, you can relax and enjoy our top 10 blogs from around the web this week.

HOLIDAY: The holiday season is typically a busy time for photographers. So as you begin to equip yourself with candy, treats, and lots of patience, you may want to also check out these invaluable tips on how to go about family photo sessions.

COPYRIGHT: The copyright system in the United States may work well for many creators in the higher-income industries, but not so much for small-business creators. Andrew's story is a perfect illustration of the downside of the current system - a story you can probably relate to.

SOCIAL MEDIA: How much do you think people can tell about you just by looking at your Instagram photos? If your answer was "not much," you are about to be mind-blown by this article based on scientific and psychological analysis from Harvard psychologists.

BUSINESS: As artists, your work environment is typically causal and informal, but this doesn't mean that professionalism can go out the window. This article discusses the do's and don'ts in maintaining a friendly but professional relationship with your clients.

LOCATION: This is the tenth time you are receiving a request for a unique photo shoot in a particular location and you are starting to run out of ideas. The author of this article gives some advice on how to create exceptional experiences in the same location over and over.  

SENTIMENT: Wedding photography goes beyond calculated photo shoots to the ability to capture the perfect, precious moments. Get inspired with these award-winning wedding images that will make you smile.

PHOTO WALK: Photo walks can be very enjoyable and low pressure... just you with your camera capturing whatever appeals to you. Here are seven tips that can make your experience even better!

TECH: You spent several hours editing that photograph to perfection, only to discover when you view the image on a different device, that your monitor had been deceiving you the entire time. Color calibration is vital in photography. Find out how you can ensure color accuracy on monitor by reading this article on Photographylife.

LIGHTING: Most photographers, during outdoor sessions, target the "magic hours" just before or after the harsh sunlight makes it almost impossible to get the lighting right. The author of this article, however, reveals how you can achieve spectacular photos during the middle of the day.

HOLIDAY: For many toddlers, attempting to achieve a photograph of them happily sitting on Santa's laps is a herculean task. But who says you have to? Read the story of Photographer Jeff Roffman who has made an art of capturing the children's true feelings about Santa in Professional Photographer's Magazine.

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

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Imaging USA 2018 will be here before you know it...three-to-six days of the best in photography learning, networking and partying! It's all going down in the Music City, Nashville, TN, January 14-16, 2018 (Pre-Con classes January 11-13). 
 
Imaging USA is known far-and-wide as THE place to see some of the best speakers in the photography industry, as they take you on deep-dives into every topic you could want to learn more about. In order to get you even more excited (if that's possible!), PPA is going to spend the next several months highlighting our 2018 Imaging USA speakers.

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Let's Meet...
Hannah Marie 

As an artist, Hannah is motivated to make the world a brighter place, to share her craft with those who have something or someone to cherish. She is motivated by the knowledge that she can be a blessing to someone's day, week, or month - to capture a moment in their lives she knows they will hold dear, and by the calling to share the beauty witnessed in this world, every day. Most of all, Hannah is motivated by the passion felt when creating a beautiful image, and even more so when holding the finished work in her hands!

Speaker Sessions:
Tuesday January 16

If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be? When driving, I often imagine how much safer the roads would be if everyone drove with the attitude of "let's work together to ensure we all get home safely." We'd extend a little more grace to one another, acknowledging that we're all just people trying to get home to our loved ones! I believe we are who we are regardless of where we are. If we all worked together on the roads and experienced less "me first" mentality there, I expect that would translate to all areas of life.

Why do you love photography? Throughout my life, I've had different "theme prayers" for different seasons. In my youth, my consistent prayer was that God would help me to see others (and myself) the way He sees them; to see the world through His eyes, with His love and His compassion. I believe He's answered that longing (as much as any human can see through His eyes) and I love that I can turn around and show others the beauty and uniqueness God sees in them.

What would be your advice for photographers who are just starting their career? 1) Spend time studying different business structures to find one that you're excited about. 2) Have the courage to photograph what you love most. It will show in your work and you'll find success more quickly. In mentor sessions, I can often tell the photographer what they're most passionate about shooting because that work stands out against the rest they produce. 3) Enter print competitions or at the very least sit in on the judging. It is the fastest way to grow as an artist.

What are some unmarked items on your bucket list? Be hired to photograph the children of the British royal family.

How often do you yourself get in front of the camera? I like to be in front of the camera every year so I can remember what it feels like. Being on the other side of the equation reminds me of the importance of guiding my clients through every step. For example, I never do a styling consult with myself, so on the day of my shoot I'm ripping through my closet trying to sort out what to wear!

What was your experience like with your very *first* client AND what did you learn from it? My very first client was a "newborn" session at two months old because he had been born prematurely. At that time, I was shoot-and-burn but surprised my clients by allowing them to select their favorite image to be printed as an 8x10. When the mother told me which image they had selected, I was surprised - it didn't even make my top 10 and in fact, I'd almost not even included it! The lesson: clients have totally different criteria for what makes an image their favorite.

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

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By Sidra Safri

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It's Veteran's Day and you probably want to go out into the November sunshine and get some great shots of the celebrations taking place all across the nation. If you're in our nation's capitol however...stop right there. We've posted about this before, but it just keeps happening!... remember Washington D.C. is always a NO-DRONE ZONE. Meaning that, no matter what time of the year it is, you cannot fly a drone in the D.C. airspace. 

If an individual is caught flying a drone, not only will they have to deal with buying a new drone, but will also be subject to fines up to $1,500 and other criminal penalties. 

Bottom line: don't fly your drone anywhere near D.C!




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The copyright system in the United States, while not perfect, has worked well for many creators in the higher-income industries. The harsh reality is, however, that copyright in America does not work at all for small-business creators. The vast majority of creators have very little protection under the law because, without a massive income or corporate support, they have no real option for enforcement - and what good are rights when you can't actually enforce them?

Andrew is the perfect example of the small-business creator. He provides for his family by operating a small photography business through which he provides families in his community a product that will be cherished for generations to come. Andrew photographed an event for a local restaurateur and licensed images to the restaurant for specific marketing purposes. 

The restaurant's PR firm distributed one of Andrew's images to a culinary magazine. The magazine then used the photo as the cover image of a monthly issue without Andrew's permission and without mention of either Andrew or his client. Andrew contacted the publisher and sent an invoice for an appropriate licensing fee. He was ignored. Andrew then had a cease and desist letter sent to the publisher on his behalf from his photographic association. Still, he received no response. 

Andrew is now facing an impossible decision. He can hire an attorney and pursue this further, or choose to let it go altogether. Due to principle, Andrew does not want to let it go, but at this point, he's afraid he would actually have to sue the infringer to get any response or payment. Andrew estimates the value of this infringement at $2,500 which he feels is far too low to justify a lawsuit in federal court. 

"It's a shame they will probably just get away with this," Andrew said. "Not facing any consequences just reinforces the behavior." Andrew believes the lack of copyright enforcement options available to small creators like him is the reason businesses and publications choose to infringe rather than secure proper licensing. 

"Some sort of a small claims process is the only way creators like me will ever be able to get paid for infringing uses of their work," Andrew said.

That small-claims process is on its way! With the introduction of HR 3942, small-business creators have a chance to finally have their cases heard. Stay up-to-date on the fight for artists' rights at PPA.com/Copyright and JOIN THE FIGHT at PPA.com/SmallClaims!

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By James Yates
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Imaging USA in Nashville is right around the corner, January 14-16, 2018, but there are a few ways to save money if you get started NOW! These tips will ensure you show up in Tennessee with even more spending money...

1. REGISTER EARLY! Imaging USA is the show for real professional photographers, with hundreds of classes, tons of networking opportunities, a huge photo exhibit, and a giant expo floor. Over 10,000 photographers attend to learn from the industry's best. Aren't registered yet? Register by December 6, 2017 to save $50 with the Early Bird Rate

2. BOOK YOUR HOTEL EARLY! If you're not staying at the host hotels, chances are you'll have to spend some money on a taxi or parking to partake in some of the events. Why bother? Stay at the host hotels and be at the center of it all. They're filling up fast, though, (especially for Pre-Con) so BOOK NOW at our easy, one-stop-shop booking platform. Imaging USA Host Hotels: Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center (HEADQUARTERS HOTEL), Hampton Inns & Suites at Opryland, Hyatt Place Nashville Opryland

3. FIND A ROOMMATE! Get on theLoop, PPA's exclusive social network, to post about and find a roommate. Everything's cheaper when you split the cost. 

4. MAKE AN EXPO GAME PLAN! Create a shopping list of the things you need for your studio in 2018 and grab those items first. The trade show floor is the best place to find exclusive deals from vendors, so save your holiday cash for January 14-16. 

Get ready to enjoy an amazing trip to Music City and rest easy until then, knowing you're saving money!

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James Yates is an Atlanta-based writer/actor and the Communications Specialist at Professional Photographers of America (PPA). A graduate of Georgia State University, James has worked in the non-profit sector his whole life and is proud to be able to help artists achieve their goals. In his spare time he can be found walking his dogs on the Beltline or partaking in the nightly theater and comedy scene in the ATL.


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By David Eun
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We are just two months away from Imaging USA 2018! This amazing photography convention offers a wide array of classes covering all sorts of topics pertaining to photography!

In order for you to get the most out of your experience in Nashville, we created tracks that you can easily follow if you have an area you specifically want to concentrate on. So, if you are mainly interested in learning the necessary techniques and business strategies needed to be successful in event photography, then the School/Sport/Event track is for you!

Some of the classes available to you in this track include, but are not limited to, the following:

Session Time: January 14, 8-9:30am 

Bryan Blanken and Neal Freed will demonstrate how their business model is transforming school photography in their Washington, DC, market and how easy it is for you to apply it to yours. You will discover how to identify the schools that you want and attain these clients. Learn how to create school portraits that both students and parents will love - and purchase! 

Session Time: January 14, 5-6:15pm

Everyone knows the key clients in volume photography: sports, schools, and daycares. But what lies beyond the packages? Leslie Ann will teach you how she gains traditional volume clients and turns them into hybrid clients - those that photograph like volume and pay like private commissions. Learn how to handle volume with confidence and extreme streamlining, and where to market so that they lead to higher-end volume clients.

Session Time: January 15, 10-11:30am

During this class, Mark will give you a model to maximize your performance, create value, and also prepare your business for change. Mark will take you through your business strategy and how this, combined with shared values and your company's culture, can influence the results you're currently getting. You'll come away from this program understanding what you can do, as a business owner, to shape your staff's behavior and to support your company's goals.

You can find these classes in the School/ Sport/ Event track on the Imaging USA schedule under General Sessions. Don't forget to register for Imaging USA 2018, January 11-16 in Nashville, TN. We hope to see you there!

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By Bthany Clark

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PPAedu gives you 24/7 access to over 350 HD tutorial videos designed to educate you on all things photography and business. With new videos added every month, you are sure to find a video that fits you. It's comes FREE as one of the many great resources that come with being a member of PPA. 

This learning opportunity is too great to turn down, especially since the newest lineup of tutorials, sponsored by Profoto, features tips and coaching from none other than Tony Corbell, Cr. Photog., API! Check out the newest videos form this amazing lighting master. They are part of a series called TAKING CONTROL:

There will come a time when a photographer may not have access to a window light source during a shoot. Mimicking window light in the studio can result in a beautiful, large, and soft yet directional source. This tutorial will leave you feeling confident and ready for the challenge as Tony walks you through different placements of light-shaping tools, and how subtle shifts in light directions make all of the difference in portraiture.

And there are more videos from Tony Corbell in this 'Taking Control' series, so bookmark these, make time in your agenda to watch them, and learn lighting techniques from the oh-so-talented Tony Corbell:


About Tony Corbell:
Tony is a true living legend in his industry, for his photographic talent his commitment to training and education! His Basic Studio Lighting book has become the basis for numerous photographic college lighting courses and he has been a photographer, photographic educator, and an author his entire adult life, and he has written articles in nearly every major photographic magazine in the U.S., Japan, the U.K., and China. Tony has photographed three U.S. presidents, The Millennium Summit Meeting of World Leaders at the United Nations, countless sports celebrities, almost 800 brides and grooms, and a handful of NASA astronauts. He is currently featured on PPAedu, KelbyOne, Epson and Creativelive and his YouTube videos have surpassed one million views as he explains lighting techniques to photographers throughout the world. 

Visit PPA.com/PPAedu to learn more and see how you can start your to take your photography and business to the next level!


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By Lisa Sharer

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As a photographer, your main job is creating images that make your clients happy. However, if you don't have clients, how can you do your main job? Check out Marketing 101 for Photographers to learn some basics. But for an easy, go-to strategy, Facebook is where it's at. Here are 5 reasons why you should start advertising on Facebook right now!

1. It's Cheap and You Can Cap Your Spending
If you don't have a high budget or a next to nothing budget, Facebook allows for low-cost ad buys. You could spend as little as $1 a day, or go as high as you want. This is great for starting out your advertising, as you can test to see what works and for how much.

2. Reach an Audience Actively Looking for Photography
With Facebook, you can pick and choose the type of audience you want to reach. You can target local clients, set ads with keywords like "portrait photography" or "wedding photography," choose demographics, and so much more. The advertising is set up so that you can reach the perfect audience for your specialty.

3. You Can Customize Your Advertising Campaigns 
Facebook allows you to make your ad campaign do the most for you. You can change your campaign objective, as in are you looking for site traffic or engagement with your Facebook posts? You can change up the amount you want to bid on your advertising. So if you started cheap, you're feeling more confident, and now you want to add more, then you can just add more! And these ads can also be optimized so that they are more likely to be seen by your target audience.

4. The Tools to Set Up Ads Are Actually Easy to Use
If you've never created an advertisement in your life, Facebook has a very intuitive platform. (For a little more help you can always check their FAQs.) It's easy to navigate, and you can always change things should you decide that you chose the wrong target, campaign, or design.

5. You'll Get Quick results
Analytics come free with your advertisement. You can quickly see how many views, clicks, likes, etc. that your ad receives. And again, if you're not seeing the results you want, it's very easy to change up what you're doing and test a new strategy.

Traffic and engagement from your Facebook advertisements will help to make you Be More Visible- which, in the long run, will help you to Be More Profitable.  With all the reasons above, it's hard to figure out why you wouldn't use Facebook as part of your marketing strategy

If you are looking for more ways and resources to help with marketing and advertising for your photography business, check out PPA's See The Difference® campaign. If you're not yet a member of PPA, find out more about how you can take advantage of all of the member benefits and join PPA today!

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About the author:
Lisa Sharer is the Marketing Campaign Manager at Professional Photographers of America. As a Creative Writing graduate, she loves any chance at getting pen to paper. When she's not being creative in the workplace, she can be found skating with the Atlanta Rollergirls or volunteering with the Weloveatl Project. Or really - snuggling with the dogs.
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By Bethany Clark

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Professional Photographer magazine has a great giveaway prize this month: a Sigma lens valued at $899! 

This state-of-the-art Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art lens is designed for full-frame cameras, though it can also be used with APS-C sensors. It features a hypersonic motor and inner focusing system, and is available in Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sigma, and Sony A-Mount.

Enter to win at PPmag.com/Win by November 30th, 2017. And remember, there's a giveaway every month on Professional Photographer magazine's website, so be sure to bookmark it and enter each month!

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By Chris Homer

PPA's Certified Professional Photographer program (CPP) is one of the best ways to separate yourself from the competition and improve your skills as a photographer. If you doubt that's true or still think 'CPP isn't for me' - here's something to challenge your mind!

The video below shows 5 common myths about the CPP program and why every professional photographer should become a CPP. Take a look and learn why you need to consider participating!


Ready to get started on the path to become certified? Visit PPA.com/CPP for all the details on how to begin!


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


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Imaging USA 2018 is almost here and PPA has so much planned for you, including a variety of classes covering as many topics as you can think of!

In order for you to get the most out of your experience in Nashville, we created tracks that you can easily follow if you have an area you specifically want to concentrate on. So, if you are mainly interested in learning the necessary techniques and business strategies needed to be successful in wedding photography, the Wedding track is for you!

With these classes, you will learn how to creatively capture the essence of an individual and increase your sales while you're at it. You will get tips on adventure weddings, lighting and much more. 

The Wedding classes include:

Session Time: Sunday, Jan. 14, 8:00 am 

This class will rock your world! It's time to put on your seat belts and take a deep breath as you challenge yourself and your talent! Experience photography on a whole new level - one where your heartbeat goes up with excitement and your couples go home with epic stories and amazing photos to share. During this class, explore the high-adrenaline, fast-paced world of adventure wedding photography. You will discuss how to direct and pose your couples in any location. Discuss wilderness and safety do's and don'ts and learn how to pack your equipment for your on-the-go adventure. Instructor Charleton Churchill even teaches branding and marketing so you can promote this new genre of wedding photography. Whether you're on the highest mountain or in someone's backyard, this presentation is one you won't want to miss. Be inspired by the images, videos, and stories you'll hear and walk away ready to lead your couples on an experience they'll talk about for years to come.  This course is not for the faint of heart, so leave your inhibitions behind and come ready to soar!

Session Time: Sunday, Jan. 14, 5:00 pm  

There is no question that weddings are challenging. However, with the right knowledge, they don't have to be. Like all photography, wedding photography is based on light, and with the right lighting techniques, you can capture beautiful images in any situation. The challenge with lighting in wedding photography is that you have to remain mobile while remaining within a small footprint. In this class, Michael Anthony will show you how to turn any location into a studio and create dynamic photos for all of your couples. You'll learn how to prepare for each wedding day and how to be ready for any scenario that may happen. After this class, you will understand how to create beautifully-lit images with minimal equipment. Michael will even discuss some of the challenges and tricky lighting situations in which you are bound to find yourself - and how to overcome these! You'll walk away with solid lighting techniques and the confidence to capture amazing images each and every time!

Speaker: Jerry Ghionis
Session Time: Tuesday, Jan. 16, 8:00 am with 

More and more wedding photographers have stopped providing a physical product for their clients. In a world of jpegs and digital results, this course takes you back to the art of creating one-of-a-kind printed wedding albums that clients will treasure. Jerry Ghionis has a compelling way to show you the importance of education so that everyone - both you and your clients alike - can understand the legacy that a printed wedding album becomes. Take this class! It will help you see how to overcome sales objectives and persuade your clients to step away from just "getting the CD." Jerry Ghionis has won more wedding album awards than any other photographer, and he shares what inspires him and how he creates his masterpieces. Learn how to do it the way he does; learn how he turns his clients buying a printed wedding album into a no-brainer!

You can find these classes in the Wedding track on the Imaging USA schedule. Don't forget to register for Imaging USA 2018, January 11-16 in Nashville, TN. We hope to see you there!

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

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


Let's Meet...Josh Hudson


Josh is the son of 34-year, internationally-recognized master photographer, and educator Bruce Hudson.   Josh literally grew up around the photography business and entrepreneurship. He was born in 1982 just three months after his dad Bruce and his late mom Sue Hudson started Hudson's Photography in the Fairwood neighborhood of Renton, WA. Together the two of them created one of the most profitable photography businesses in the country focusing on high-end weddings, high-school seniors, and large, family-portrait wall-décor sales. Eventually, Josh would follow in his mom's footsteps and manage the business, although not willingly at first!

With a degree in Political Science from Washington State University, Josh's path was heading straight towards law school. During the interim from undergraduate school, Josh worked at the studio. This interim job quickly turned into a passion for the photography business and marketing... and has since never left!

Now, Josh manages the day-to-day operations and the marketing at his family's studio, Hudson's Portrait Design in Tukwila. He was also instrumental in creating new, highly effective niche brands for the business with high-school seniors, commercial photography and video, and Hudson's Photo Workshops photography classes, which have now brought over 4,000 students through their studio doors in just five years' time.

As a much sought-after speaker, Josh has spoken to professional photography and business groups in nearly all 50 states and Canada on behalf of industry leaders like H&H Color Lab, Marathon Press, Animoto, and many others. He was also a monthly columnist for shootsmarter.com, a frequent speaker for New York Times best-selling author Sarah Petty's small business marketing web summits, is a co-founder of this educational website mystudiomentor.com, and co-producer for the popular web series, Photo Entrepreneur TV.

Josh Hudson's session at Imaging USA is on Monday, January 15, 5 - 6:15 pm: Selling with Projection: Putting Your Kids through College with IN- PERSON SALES 

Q&A with Josh Hudson:
What is your life motto? True Success is Found Outside Your Comfort Zone - Sue Hudson (Mom)
Why do you love photography? I'm a business guy first. I love the margins that we have! But seriously, I love how fun the business is! People call you excited, it's not like you are a plumber or a used-car salesman--But also being able to create something that is seen as a work of art that will be enjoyed for generations to come.
If you could have a theme song, what would it be? 24K Magic by Bruno Mars
What would be your advice for photographers who are just starting? Don't give away digital files or spend a year doing free sessions to build your portfolio. And for god's sake, sell with IPS Projection!
What was one of the defining moments of your career? Being to work with my dad every day and carry on my mom's legacy
How often do you yourself get in front of the camera? Pretty often with teaching and speaking, but we also have a family portrait taken every year
How did you discover your niche? We have several; ours were created by following the money! Our more profitable one is our Hudson's Photo Workshops, we teach photo classes to consumers, it's been great for marketing and $$$.
What was your experience like with your very first client, and what did you learn from it? Bruce has been in business for 35 years; that was a LONG time ago! And I honestly can't remember the first client I interacted with. 

Josh Hudson is just one of the many amazing photographers you'll get to meet, hear, and learn from at this upcoming Imaging USA! Registration is open online now, so save some money and take advantage of the Early Bird discounts for your passes...and your hotel!


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By David Eun

Anyone who's been hired to be a wedding photographer knows it's one of the most stressful gigs, period. Well, Dunja Djudjic provides us a parody video making light of the issues wedding photographers face when guests become photographers, too.

We've all been there: You just took the best photo ever. But, you can't decide which Instagram filter to use, so you end up scrolling back and forth for 15 minutes. Check out this article by Stefan Pettersson to see how the biggest IG users pick their filters.

The title says it all: If you're new to the photography game and are looking for tools to help you develop your images, you should take a look at this free video from Photoshop Training Channel on Adobe's newest Lightroom CC app.

Even the most imaginative minds hit a creative slump. Sometimes, we believe the answer is to consider as many ideas as possible to reinvigorate ourselves. Alex Cooke discusses how the answer could actually lie in narrowing our ideas.

Simplicity can lead to some of the most wonderful images people have ever seen. However, whenever people want to keep things nice and simple, it's imperative to not make the images too simple. Tihomir Lazarov discusses more in detail.

Documentaries possess the power to not only convey rich information to the public but also move hearts to take action. So, if you're looking to enhance your documentary photography skills, take a look at this article by Scott Choucino.

Being a small business owner can be stressful. You have bills to pay, you have clients to make happy - The list goes on. Pat Kiernan at CNBC wants to help, so if you're part of a small business here are 5 blunders you should avoid at all costs.

The market is flooded with competition, and getting your name out to your audience is vital to ensuring you even survive. Jack Alexander delves into the importance of creative professionals having and maintaining a quality website.

People pursue photography for many reasons. But, what happens, when you forget why you became a photographer? Jeff Carpenter discusses his story of regaining his passion for photography and his advice for those going through similar struggles.

Photographers are masters of stills, and sometimes they believe that's all they need to know to be successful. COOPH argues otherwise. Will Nicholls discusses his top 8 reasons why photographers should add videography to their arsenal.

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

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By Mayo Lawal

With over 200 instructors teaching in almost every state, Super 1 Day this past October was a huge success; and YOU can help make the Spring 2018 session even better!  This program provides a unique opportunity for photographers to learn photography tips, tricks, techniques, and best practices from fellow professionals. More and more photographers take advantage of these peer-to-peer educational workshops hosted in dozens of studios across the country.

So, here's where you come in: PPA is looking for instructors who are willing to share their knowledge with other photographers for the May 7-21, 2018 session of Super 1 Day. There are many benefits to teaching a class (or two!), including digging deeper into your subject area, elevating the industry by improving our profession overall, and even earning two merits towards your PPA Photographic Degree!

Instructor applications close January 29, 2018, so be sure to you fill out yours completely by then. Also, you can invite your pro photographer friends to apply as well! 

Find out how you can apply to be a Super 1 Day Instructor today!

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By Chris Homer

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

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

Let's Meet...Jetawn Spivey

Jetawn Spivey began his photography career in 1989 with Don Painter Photography, an independent school portrait company in Dallas, Texas. Over the next 25 years, he honed his career in volume photography, working in all aspects of the school portraiture market. In 2001, he ventured into the digital age, blending his experience in high volume photography with emerging digital technologies. In 2002, he developed a background replacement workflow, allowing for the management of over 380,000 images per year that elevated Don Painter Photography to the boutique school portrait company in the area. It's no wonder he was recruited by the Lifetouch team in 2014 where he currently serves as a photography manager and team member helping to improve the methods in which Lifetouch provides quality portraiture to its customers. Outside of the office and the studio Jetawn is involved in Texas PPA and is an impressive and influential teacher and speaker.

Jetawn Spivey's session at Imaging USA is on Monday, January 15, 8am - 9:30am: Let The Why Drive The How In Volume Portraiture

Q&A with Jetawn Spivey:

What was your first concert? Van Halen

Coke or Pepsi? Ice-cold Coke!

Why do you love photography? That requires a "Big" answer. To keep it short, it brings joy to my life; it conveys emotion of all the lens witnesses with an infinite array of perspectives all driven by the one holding the camera. Photography sways the world. It makes one stop and reflects or changes the perspective in which one views oneself or the world around them. It brings joy to my life!

Jetawn Spivey is just one of the many amazing photographers you'll get to meet, hear, and learn from at this upcoming Imaging USA! Registration is open online now so save some money and take advantage of the Early Bird discounts for your passes...and your hotel!


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


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The Department of Transportation has taken its first steps this week to increase the government's involvement in the use of commercial drones. 

The program entitled "Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration Pilot Program" would allow various safety tests and improvements of advanced operations. This program would also work with state and local governments to provide regulation clarity and continue to develop regulations in a more efficient and practical manner. 

This initiative may possibly allow the opportunity to explore drone package delivery (think Amazon) and test security and data links to ensure proper communication between pilots, drones, and planes. The improved connection will help prevent drones from not only crashing into each other but also planes. For more information visit the Department of Transportation Website here. 


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By David Eun

Arguably a creative mind's biggest headache - copyright infringement - affects professional photographers of all backgrounds and fields. From the head of a prominent studio to the small-business owner around the corner, having your work stolen or improperly used constantly remains a thought in the back of their minds.

Those fortunate enough to have high incomes predominantly benefit from today's current laws, but the same can't be said for the average professional. Check out Kathy's story on her struggle to protect the rights to her iconic image:

Kathy is a senior writer with the University of California, Davis, Department of Entomology and Nematology. She captured a rare close-up photo of a honeybee sting which showed the bee's abdominal tissue unraveling as it flew away from its own stinger. The photo titled "The Sting" won international awards and was named one of Huffington Post's Most Amazing Photos of 2012. Kathy posted the image to her website and blog with copyright attribution, and from that moment, completely lost control of the image.

"The Sting" has been used for advertising on pest control websites. It has been used on porn sites to draw in traffic. It is being sold widely across the Internet as canvas prints, as posters, on coffee cups, on cell phone covers, and on mouse pads, among various other infringing uses. And these are only the online infringements that Kathy has been able to locate.

Of course, Kathy's copyright information has been removed, blacked out, or replaced with false attribution each time.

Kathy estimates that she has lost tens of thousands of dollars, if not more, on the infringements of this image alone, and several of her other photos have been infringed widely as well. Kathy has gone through the DMCA takedown process hundreds of times, sometimes with success and other times to have the image reappear days later. Quite frankly, she cannot even keep up.

"I could spend all day, every day, working on this one case of photo thievery," Kathy said.

Kathy simply wants people to stop stealing her images and especially to stop using her work to make money. She is outraged by the rampant stealing of intellectual property with no fear of punishment that exists throughout the world. She has even received threatening and abusive messages from infringers, when she has reported infringements, who think they are entitled to the photo since they "found it" online. Kathy believes that we must do something that will make it so more copyright infringers actually face consequences in order to diminish the culture of online piracy.

Stay up-to-date on copyright and the fight for artists' rights at PPA.com/Copyright and JOIN THE FIGHT at ppa.com/SmallClaims!

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By Chris Homer

theLoop Image.jpgHave you visited theLoop recently? As an exclusive, PPA member-only forum, theLoop is a great place for members to connect with each other, share information/advice, get image feedback, and overall - a place to go if you need help. Become a member so you can "stay in the loop," and if you already are, then head over to theLoop to see what everyone's buzzing about. 

Lots of great discussions have been happening, so here are a few of the top posts from the back half of October. Check them out, provide some feedback, and perhaps even learn something new!

This Looper is wondering whether you perform SEO (search engine optimization) on your website yourself, or if you use a vendor? If you do it yourself, how much time a week do you spend on it? Chime in with your thoughts!

In this thread, a photographer is looking for solutions for slow import speed when putting images into Lightroom Classic. See if you can help out!

PPA members discuss the recent purchase of Nik Collection software by DXO and what it could mean for the future of the product! If you use Nik Collection, be sure to take a look and see what might be coming your way. 

And there you have 'em, the top posts from theLoop! Remember to check out theLoop frequently as new discussions are posted daily. It's a great way to catch up with fellow PPA members! Not a PPA member? Join today!


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


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by Mayo Lawal

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Want to know how some photographers consistently improve their skills? Check out PPA's 500+ video tutorials database: PhotoVision. You can start with the Free Video of the Month, "On The Town."

In this video, Andy Marcus and his assistants photograph a wedding couple in a beautiful European-style memorial garden, and at the waterfront to capture their images against the Jersey skyline. Then, they demonstrate how to utilize silhouettes and leading lines to create stunning abstract images that retain selling power. Watch how they use blurred foreground to create frames within a frame that help give images an artistic flair!

PhotoVision is a ginormous photography-learning library that offers photographers education and solutions through cinematic HD videos from some of the biggest names in the industry. Because we want all photographers to Be More, PPA unlocks one PhotoVision video each month that can be viewed for free by anyone. If you are a member, you have full access to all PhotoVision videos. This is just one of many reasons to join PPA today!

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By Chris Homer

The application deadline for the Imaging USA Kickstart Scholarship program is approaching
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 at the end of the week. Be sure to get your application in by November 3!

Why should you apply? Well, four lucky PPA members will win the opportunity to get a FREE 3-day all-access pass to Imaging USA AND a Pre-Convention class of their choice -- completely on the house! That's right - if selected, you get both for FREE!

Interested? Simply complete the PPA Kickstart Scholarship application and you will enter yourself into the running for Imaging USA 2018 in Nashville!

Pre-Convention Class registration normally ranges from $129-$299 and includes everything from a full-day of hands-on education to a 2-day PPA Business Workshop. If you're one of the four happy recipients, you'll get to choose the class you want!

So go ahead, apply for the Kickstart Scholarship to take your photography business to the next level and save a big chunk of money at the same time! Applications must be submitted by November 3, 2017. The winners will be announced on November 24.


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


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by Mayo Lawal

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Imagine a 3-day, 600+ booth Expo floor - We're talking an 80,000 square foot trade show of the newest and hottest gear on the market.  If you register now for your Expo pass to attend Imaging USA 2018, you get FREE access to that AND so much more:

1. The PRINT for Success Theater at Imaging USA will have top photographers sharing really valuable sales advice in 19 short-format sales training sessions over the course of three days. If you're interested in encouraging your clients to purchase more printed works, this is for you. Stop by the PRINT Marketing Theater and join a comprehensive sales session, get information about how to price and market printed products to your clients, and learn how to demonstrate the value of printed photography. The sessions will be held in 30-minute intervals during Expo hours. The tips provided in these sessions are sure to get your clients excited about the print movement, and buying printed products in no time.

2. The Keynote Speech by Ryan Estis, one of the "Best Keynote Speakers Ever Heard" according to Meetings and Conventions magazine, will blow your mind and get you motivated at the same time.  Ryan was an ad-agency executive for 15 years before he broke away to become a motivator and consultant. Based on two years of research into "sales success in a 2020 world",  Ryan's keynote presentation will be interactive, multi-media and provide you with action items to take back to your business. Having worked with top companies and variety of clients, he will inspire you with deep insights and powerful stories that you don't want to miss!

3. The IPC Photo Exhibit features thousands of award-winning images from the 2017 PPA Loan and General Collections. The exhibit is located beside the Merit Café, where you can gain a first look at the new IPC rules that are in effect for the 2018 IPC competition, meet with an IPC juror one-on-one to discuss your images, and participate in a series of short seminars geared to getting you familiar with and better prepared for future photographic competitions! Plus, new this year, check out Team USA at our display of images from the World Photographic Cup!

4. The Imaging USA Expo is basically the "Mall of America" for photographers,  an all-you can-eat buffet of photography wonders... with everything from heavy equipment to small gadgets, printers, labs, service providers, and BIG name photographic companies like Canon USA, Miller's Professional Imaging, H&H Color Lab, Kodak Alaris, Marathon Press Inc., and ChromaLuxe, to name a few. There's even a Drone-Zone section, with vendors giving demonstrations and workshops on how to fly your drones safely and legally. Oh and all these vendors are there to move merchandise, so get ready for deals galore! The Expo Floor also has classes, product demos, giveaways, and much more!

Did we mention that the Expo Pass is free? Register at ImagingUSA.org/Free-Expo-Pass and enter promo code TSC2018 at checkout. See you in Nashville!



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As a photographer, you're probably familiar with Adobe's family of editing software, including Lightroom and Photoshop. But are you leveraging them for an efficient workflow? If you only use the same few functions, how about delving in to take your editing to the next level? At Imaging USA 2018, there are five Adobe-sponsored classes, designed for both beginners and masters.

In the Adobe-Photography classes, renowned photographers and Adobe experts will teach you tips that make retouching your photos fast and fun!  And best of all, these courses are included with your Imaging USA All-Access pass. So make sure you add some of the Adobe-track classes to your program at Imaging USA this January!

Monday, January 15

8-9:30 am
Location: Delta Ballroom C, Level 2

Often you'd be quite surprised what a magazine or editorial portrait looks like before editing. No, it's not about changing the skin or body-- it's about the tones and colors. In this session, portrait and fashion photographer Lindsay Adler will begin by creating some images during a live demonstration. Then, you'll watch as Lindsay utilizes color grading to create images with even more mood and impact. You'll learn several approaches and tools to create drastically different emotional responses to your portraits using selective color, split toning, and more in both Lightroom and Photoshop!

10:00-11:30 am
Location: Delta Ballroom C, Level 2

Photography has always been rooted in innovation and technology. With each new advancement, technical barriers are removed and a higher level of creativity unleashes. Join Adobe's Digital Imaging Evangelist Julieanne Kost as she demonstrates the latest transformations and enhancements to the Lightroom family of products on desktop, mobile, and web. Discover how to manage photographs across devices using the cloud, making it easy to create content anywhere and share it with the world. Don't miss this opportunity to see the most compelling and useful new Lightroom features, and how to make them work for you.
Topics to be covered include:
  • How desktop, mobile, and web integrate seamlessly with the cloud
  • Exciting new features for making eye-catching edits anytime, wherever you are
  • Capturing DNG (raw) files using  Lightroom on your mobile devices
  • How to quickly share images with clients and friends

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Did you know that PPA offers a personalized, online education platform? With PPAedu, you are able to create a program that best fits you and your business needs from an extensive library with hundreds of educational videos.

And it's free! That's right, as a PPA member, you can access these videos any time, any day! If you have photographer friends who aren't PPA members but would enjoy this video, you can share this one, because PPAedu unlocks one free video for everyone to view each month. But be sure to hurry and share because non-members will only be able to access this video during November!

If you are curious about what goes into flying a drone, this month's FREE video is for you! In "Flying Your Drone," Stacy Garlington will give you a basic overview on how to operate a drone from the pre-flight to take-off and landing. You will learn basic take-off and landing steps, pre-flight procedures, and basic drone flight terminology. So tune in this week and get a quick glance at what a drone can do!


Non-members will have access to this video the entire month of November, but can get FREE access to all the videos and much more by joining PPA today!


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This page is an archive of entries from November 2017 listed from newest to oldest.

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