Sarah Ackerman is known around PPA as #Sarah in part because she handles all things social media and in order to differentiate herself from the other Sarah's in the office. Sarah loves improv comedy (think "Whose Line") and routinely performs with Witless Protection around the Atlanta area and at Dad's Garage Theatre Company. When she's not tweeting/instagramming/facebooking all of the action at PPA, she can be found gallivanting around the world or wandering around the woods with her pup, but more than likely she's on stage making people giggle.
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Bring Your Party Shoes--PPA Charities Celebration
(Sat. 1/31, 8 - 10pm)
The festivities start the night before Imaging USA opens with the PPA Charities Celebration. Kick off your week in good spirits and come enjoy the fun and browse the PPA Charities auctions. This is open to any Imaging USA attendee.
Bring Your Running Shoes--PPA Charities 5K Fun Run
(Sun. 2/1, registration 6:30am, race begins 7am)
It's healthy to give back! The race begins and ends (it's a loop) at the Convention Center's entrance near the Presidential Portico--don't be late!
Bring Your Old Shoes--PPA Charities Shoe Drive for Dando Amor
Your old shoes can be upcycled to help those that have none! Bring an old pair or two to Imaging USA and they'll be re-purposed for orphanages in South America and Africa. Handy drop-off bins will be located by the Expo entrance and by the registration kiosks.
Image ©Dan Phillips Photography, Cedar Falls, Iowa
Imaging USA 2015 is only 75 days away! With that in mind, I'd like to encourage you to download today (it's free!) so you can be more prepared for all the good stuff coming your way in Nashville. It's the best way to be connected with all the latest news and updates while you're there!
With the mobile app, you'll be able to:
- View and favorite all the details on classes, sessions, speakers, special events and even the exhibitors at the Imaging Expo.
- Build your own schedule by simply adding the sessions or events you want to your agenda.
- Message and arrange private meetings with other attendees (even if you have all their contact info: the app will connect you!)
- Earn points and take your chance at daily prizes by playing with the in-app game.
- See what other attendees are saying on Twitter and Facebook (and add to the conversation!)
- Give feedback and help make this a better conference by taking the in-app session surveys after each class.
- Use the maps to find your way around the convention center and throughout the Imaging Expo.
- And more!
If you're attending Imaging USA, this app will be your best friend during the convention. It's available now for iPhone and iPad, Android devices and there's also a web version for those of you that don't own an Apple or Android phone or tablet.
Find all the information on how to download for your device here. Stay-tuned to PPA's blog and ImagingUSA.org for videos demonstrating how to use the different features of the app.
Of course, if you haven't registered for Imaging USA yet, do it today! Find all the different options on the registration page.
See you in Nashville!
It's time to get to know another Imaging USA instructor taking the stage at Nashville in 2015. In this interview, Steve Kozak, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, talks about why you should sign up for his "The Secrets to Success When Turning Pro" pre-convention class (which he'll be co-hosting with Britney Fullgraf). He also shares why he become a photographer, what he believes his style is, why he enjoys serving on PPA's Board of Directors... and why he prefers Johnny Cash to Elvis.
When did you know you wanted to be a photographer?
I was a professional musician in a band when I got my first camera. I loved music, but there are demands that go with being in a band that make things hard to keep up with that lifestyle. The more I learned about photography, the more I realized the similarities between taking photos and making music. When I figured out I could use my camera to tell stories, make people feel and use it as an outlet for my creativity, I left the band, sold my guitar and bought my first 2.8 lens. There was no looking back!
What are the top 5 things people will learn from your class?
The first thing we discover is that quality photography begins with the fundamentals--the techniques all photographers should know. Participants will learn how to elevate the quality of their images to a professional level through proper exposure, lighting and posing.
Next, we'll look at gaining control over the portable flash by using it in manual mode and the value of using supplemental lighting with off-camera flash. This is a huge game-changer for photographers trying to improve the quality of their images!
Then, we examine the value that studio lighting brings to the financial success of photographers--and I'll show you how you can use this type of lighting even if you don't have a studio space. I plan to really demystify studio lighting and make it an approachable technique for photographers.
We then look at how to market professional photography and the importance of the message that you place in front of the target market.
Finally, we examine sales strategies and techniques to maximize the sale without feeling like you are pushing too hard. After all, the easier sales become for you, the more money you'll make and the more time you can actually spend behind the camera!
Who should take your class?
All photographers who are considering stepping out into professional photography as their full time job, as much as those who "leapt before they looked". It's not too late to learn how to run a photography business properly! It's never too late! I've built this class to answer so many of the questions photographers starting in the business have, and I truly believe it can help you be successful.
Which do you enjoy more: teaching or photographing?
OK, this question is not fair! It's sort of like choosing your favorite child or your favorite Beatles song. The truth is, I love teaching to those who will dare to take information and run with it. Helping others grow and seeing them succeed brings me greater pleasure than just about anything I do.
What makes you and your co-speaker Britney Fullgraf such a great team?
Britney is simply brilliant. She has a sharp mind for business and knows how to make money. We really take two different approaches to what we do, but when it comes to teaching photographers how to find success, our styles complement each other so well that students can take the best of what each of us has to offer.
Describe your photographic style.
I think of my work as "crafted". I do not leave the details of my work to chance and I am very selective about my lighting, posing and technique. I almost always go into a session knowing what I seek to create for the client. I strive to create images that are unique for every client.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Life. Music. The heart of the person in front of my camera. Landscapes. Fashion. Movies. Art. The human emotion. The mountains. The beach. Contrasts. The dark side. Beauty. Love. Lost love. Hope. Just to name a few!
Why was it important for you to serve on PPA's Board of Directors?
It is important that all of us answer the call to serve whenever or wherever we are called. Serving on the PPA Board of Directors means that I really am serving the 27,000+ photographers of this association who have dreams, passions, struggles, needs, successes and desires. By giving my time and service to this group, I become a small yet active part of a larger community that provides photographers a light along a path that helps them be more and get where they want to go. The tools and the opportunities that PPA provides for photographers are limited only by the willingness of each photographer to reach out and take hold of them. Who wouldn't want to be a part of something as special as that?
Elvis, Johnny Cash, or Jack White?
What about the Beatles?! OK, focus...Jack has had a hand in the success of a number of projects, but is not as recognized as Elvis or Johnny Cash. Johnny was, and still is, "The Man in Black". How cool is that? But Elvis... he is so cool he only needs one name.
This question has me "all shook up", so I think I will "walk the line". I think Elvis had so many people he had to please and so many people trying to own him, so I chose Johnny Cash because I think he did what he wanted to do the way he wanted to do it. Sounds like a true artist to me!
Come learn from Steve live at Imaging USA 2015. His "The Secrets To Success When Turning Pro" pre-convention class will run January 29 - 30 for an additional $199 fee to your registration. Get all the details on Imaging USA and register here!
Have any tips for newbies? Head over to the Imaging USA community on theLoop to share! It's also a great place to find a roommate or a study buddy!
Attention all Imaging USA attendees: In the spirit of the holidays, PPA Charities will support the Dando
Amor Charity and hold a shoe drive at Imaging USA this February in Nashville! There's no better cure for those inevitable post-holiday blues than doing something to give back to communities around the world.Some of the logistics: Drop off bins will be located by the convention floor and at registration. Shoes will be collected at Imaging USA, and re-purposed for orphanages in South America and Africa.
Are you looking for ways to be more charitable? This is an opportunity to truly make a difference in people's lives. It seems small in scope from where we sit--in front of computer monitors, on a staircase changing a flash, in a car wading through rush hour traffic, but Dando Amor has a global reach and will have a positive effect on communities around the world. All it takes is five minutes and a little bit of kindness to rummage through your closet and find old shoes that you'll never use again.
Think of it this way: If everyone brought one pair of shoes, we would have 10,000 pairs of shoes to donate. That's an inspiring number and one that is totally attainable with your help.