Imaging USA 2016 was a resounding success all around and one of the most noteworthy takeaways was the keynote speech by Amy Purdy. Even those who were unfamiliar with Amy and her inspiring story found themselves blown away by her larger-than-life personality and charm. Now we want you to experience it too!
Paralympic medalist/motivational speaker/New York Times best-selling author/Adaptive Action Sports co-founder/Amazing Race and Dancing With The Stars runner-up Amy Purdy gave the inspirational keynote presentation to thousands of photographers on the first morning of Imaging USA 2016. A lot of photographers work alone and can be discouraged when trying to "make it". Amy offered a fresh perspective and showed everyone that it's all a matter of putting your heart and soul into something bigger than yourself. She shared her triumphant tale of overcoming the loss of her legs to go places she never thought she could. From nearly losing her life to being able to buy feet to match her favorite shoes, Amy's story is both thought-provoking and uplifting. Get some motivation and take your business to new heights by checking out the recording from her speech!
As we turn the corner on January and what was an amazing Imaging USA month here at PPA, let's take a look at some of the best blog posts from Jan. 25-29, 2016. From the secrets of creative people to Imaging USA highlights and wrap-ups, there's something for everyone!
1.Imaging USA 2016,Imaging USA 2016 Review, &Imaging USA Fresh Look IMAGING TOURS: Ann-Marie
Ford has a great set of pics from Imaging up on her AM blog. Brian
Striegler Photography recapped all three days of Imaging in great
detail. Judith Chauvette took tons of model shots from Imaging USA and
posted them to her Fresh Look blog. If you missed out this year, look
through these and be very jealous. Then, mark your calendar to join us
for Imaging USA 2017 in San Antonio, January 8-10!
3. Six Unusual Habits of Exceptionally Creative People CREATIVITY BOOST: Inc.com studies some of history's greatest creative minds and came up with this eye-opening list of daily habits they have in common. These six strategies have the power to change the way you think about creativity.
4.A Beginner's Guide to Working with Flash Off-Camera LIGHTING HOW-TO GUIDE: In this tutorial, Digital Photography School shows you the quick and easy steps to shooting portraits using off-camera speedlights. From gear and setting up to step-by-step lighting, this Beginner's Guide is a must-read if you're working with off-camera flash.
5.Eight Ways to Separate Yourself From the Competition BUSINESS HACKING: Rosh Sillars wants to help you get noticed and earn what you're worth. His eight steps aim to add value to what you do. Stepping outside of your bubble, engaging with worldwide cultures and trends and sending unique thank-you cards are just some of his tips for standing out from your competition.
6. Time Lapse Imaging USA Trade Show Opening TIME LAPSE TELLS A STORY: Check out this delightful footage from Successful-Photographer.com from the floor of the Georgia World Congress Center. See all the first-day madness from the bottom of the escalator when the Expo doors finally opened!
7. Adulting with Randy Van Duinen IMAGING RECAP: PhotoBomb guys Booray and Gary interview Randy Van Duinen for a three-part Imaging Recap podcast. Check out this second show, which is all about Randy's history and tips on how he makes a living with architectural photography.
8. Closing the Loop: Photographer Susan Michal LEAD & INSPIRE: Read or listen to the amazing life story of Susan Michal, M.Photog.Hon.M.Photog.Cr., CPP, ABI, courtesy of WJCT, Florida. Learn how her music background combined with her passion and talent for photography and led her all the way to the Chairmanship of PPA.
9. Capturing the Female Form with Master Photographer Sue Bryce IMAGING USA FAVORITE: RollingOut.com gives a play-by-play of one of the most popular classes at Imaging USA 2016: Sue Bryce. Find out why the packed audience was so excited to learn from one of the fashion world's greatest photographers.
10.Imaging USA 2016 Was Incredible! EXPO VIDEO: Broadcast Pro Photo takes you on their journey of what made Imaging USA so special. Check out their iMovie video tour of the Expo floor and feel like you're really there.
Hope you are as inspired and excited for 2016 post-Imaging USA as we are!
This is going to be a great year! And please let us know what photography blogs
or podcasts you follow! Post your favorite on theLoop or email us
links at OnlineContentCommitee@PPA.com
I'm trying to stay upbeat but heading home is a bittersweet feeling. Everyone on the floor of the GWCC and Expo today was excited, inspired, and ready to return home with a ton of new friends and weapons in their photography arsenal.
Let me share with you the story of April Ranew, a PPA member of just two years. Last year was her first Imaging USA and she left inspired and determined to make her business a success. In just a couple of months, she used her new knowledge to open her home studio and by the end of the year she had doubled her sales. Now, that's exciting enough but here's where the story gets even better: at this Imaging USA she happened to be in line at a nearby restaurant after the convention one evening. The party in front of her noticed she was alone and invited her to sit with them. It turned out to be several PPA Board Members who wound up sharing their stories and years of experience with her, a "newbie", and forming new friendships. She learned so much and now feels like she's "part of the PPA family". That's what I'm talking about when I say you never know what can and will happen at Imaging USA!
But back to this last, amazing day. The classes today were as fantastic as one would hope for on the last day. Peter Hurley is always a big favorite from attendees. Craig LaMere taught everyone how to have a "badass brand". Ashley Brooke used her social media savvy to inspire attendees to put the personality back in their business. And there were more than a few tears shed at the highly emotional session with Jerry Ghionis, M.Photog.Cr. His session was all about evoking emotion! You didn't expect him not to do that, did you?
The Expo floor was abuzz today as throngs of people bought last-minute tickets for the PPA Charities Dream Studio Giveaway, a complete makeover for one lucky winner, Greg Mooney of Marietta, Georgia, souped up and tricked out with all the latest and greatest products from the expo and valued at an estimated $50,000. Check back in the spring here at PPA Today to see video of Jamie Hayes, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, ABI, API and the PPA Charities Dream Team surprising Greg at his studio and beginning the process of giving it that amazing makeover.
Next up tonight was the Awards and Degree ceremony where PPA honored the professional photographers who set themselves apart in the industry by earning new PPA degrees and awards. There was even the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award given to Ken Whitmire, M.Photog.Cr.FASP. Ken is only the fourteenth recipient of that honor in PPA's nearly 150 year history!
And then...the Closing Party. Imaging USA goers schmoozed with fish, danced with penguins, and snapped pics of beluga whales at the Georgia Aquarium. You went, right? If for no other reason than to say "see you next year!" Please tag and share your pictures with #ImagingUSA with all the friends you've made and saw at Imaging USA.
That "last day of camp" feeling is electric in the air today. Let's all get rested and then work hard to implement everything we learned to help our business and art thrive!
If you missed out....DON'T LET IT HAPPEN NEXT YEAR! We're going to be Living La Vida Lone Star in San Antonio, Texas. Not a PPA member? Join now and get your first Imaging experience for FREE! PPA.com/Join
Check out the Recap Video for the final day of Imaging 2016
Wow, everyone. Sorry. I don't know what happened. I'm usually so calm and composed but my first couple of posts about Imaging USA have had the tone of a 12-year old girl's post to Justin Bieber's Facebook page. I'm fine now, though. I've adjusted to the constant flow of positive vibes and stream of new friends I'm making by the second. I'm now used to the passion, the parties, the pride I'm seeing photographers take in their work and their generosity with sharing their knowledge with anyone who needs it. I'm jaded now.
Just kidding! Of course I'm still walking around with my jaw on the floor! In fact, if you see me around at the Imaging Expo tomorrow, come pinch me and wake me up.
The day kicked off with morning classes and there were twice as many today as yesterday. The tradeshow doors opened at 11:30am and was just as full of happy and excited photographers the second time around. I was able to interview vendors today and their excitement over sharing new products and trends with their clients was contagious.
There was a LOT of chatter on the Expo floor after the 10am class with Sue Bryce. I heard the term "fangirl/boy" maybe ten times from as many different people. Other amazing speakers today included Lisa Evans, M.Photog.Cr., Chris Garner, CPP, Clyde Butcher, and Terri Eddington, M.Photog, CPP.
A video went up earlier today about last night's jam-packed Opening Party, sponsored by Canon. In one of our greatest opening party turnouts, guests were treated to more delicious food than they could handle and several models roaming the ballroom dressed in fun costumes including retro and superhero fashions. Watch the video and re-live a night you maybe can't remember or have major jealousy for missing out on completely. Don't have FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) tomorrow night! Be sure to attend the Closing Party at the Aquarium, featuring catering by Wolfgang Puck!
The day ended with one of the highlights of everyone's year, the Grand Imaging Awards. The best of the best in PPA's loan collection were honored. The winners in each category were:
Ted Linczak---Non-Event Album
Jerry Ghionis---Event Album
Paul Ernest---General Portrait
Abby Ziemer Malone---Animal Portrait
Dan McClanahan---High School Senior Portrait
Kimberly Smith---Fishin' Buddies
and the Grand Imaging Award for 2015 goes to...
Ted Linczak for his Non-Event Album, 1863.
Tomorrow's going to be full of excitement. From the Award and Degree ceremony to unbelievable prizes and surprises on the Expo floor. I'm signing off for the night. I can't believe tomorrow is the last day! If you've missed out this year, don't let it happen again. You have GOT to join PPA and see what all the fuss is about by being a member of the world's oldest and largest nonprofit association for photographers by photographers. Need an incentive? If you join, you get to go to next year's Imaging USA in San Antonio...for FREE. PPA.com/Join
Watch our daily Recap Video here for an up-close look at all that went down.
If you read my previous post, then you know how much the Pre-Convention days here at Imaging USA in Atlanta meant to me as a first-timer. To be able to speak to members, hear their stories, share in their excitement, and make new friends in the process seemed like PPA's coupe de grace.
And then the first official day happened today.
The entryway to the GWCC had a DJ...at 8:00am. I danced to Outkast with Imaging USA attendees at 8:45 this morning! Now THAT is ATL love! I knew there were lots of parties at Imaging but this is ridiculous!
Right off the jump, the 8:00am classes featured amazing speakers like Kristin and Paul Privette and Timothy Walden, M.Photog.Hon.M.Phtog.Cr., CPP, F-ASP, starting everyone's convention off with fun, informative (and full) classes that had me wishing I could stay for the whole thing each time I ducked in to sample them. The faces of the attendees, while they learned pro tips like how Kristin and Paul describe being "obsessed" with your products personally before showing them to your clients, were what you would call "transfixed".
This year, everyone's schedule was cleared so all attention would be paid to our Keynote Speaker, Amy Purdy. You could hear a pin drop as she told her life story and inspired everyone in attendance with her triumphant take on life's struggles. I've had the pleasure of writing up several blog posts about Amy over the past couple of months and I was more than a little "fanning out" over her being here. She did not disappoint, in both inspiration, and generosity of spirit.
We barely had time to think before the Board of Directors cut the ribbon to the Imaging Expo floor and, in an instant, PANDEMONIUM. It was like a Black Friday sale without the trampling and shoving (photographers are a classy and respectful bunch). Seriously, if you have never seen the Imaging Expo, it truly is like the Mall of America for photographers. Everything and anything you need for your business is there, from the latest trends to perennial favorites.
I interviewed tons of people on the Expo floor and around the conference today and found a special bond with other first-timers. Our eyes would meet in a look of "CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS?!".
The evening classes were awesome too and I was able to catch an entire class on the amazing Studio Makeovers. Here's the deal: two studio owners, both members of PPA, were chosen to partner up with five PPA mentors, the best in the business, to completely overhaul the finances of their business. The class was a group interview and presentation as we were walked through their process and how their year went. It was a real-life experiment in the question, "How does change feel?" Here's a hint: both studios became increasingly financially successful. I'll devote an entire blog post to just this class when my head stops spinning from everything else I saw today but seriously, with mentors as strong as Ashley Brooke, Gregory Daniel, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, F-ASP, Dave Doeppel, CPP, Mary Fisk-Taylor, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, ABI, API, and Kristin Privette, CPP (yes, her again!), you can imagine how insanely informative and packed with info the class was.
As Angela Kurkian, PPA's Director of Education, put it, "When you decide to create change, change occurs all around you."
I'm inspired, I'm moved, I'm exhausted, I'm ready for more. I have to finish writing this so I can hop over to the Opening Party where I hope to dance with a few superheroes and flappers until all the fun starts again tomorrow!
Imaging USA 2016 doesn't officially start until tomorrow but you sure wouldn't know it from the tons of people already enjoying Pre Convention classes!
I'm James Yates, PPA's Communications Specialist and one of the newbies on the PPA staff, having only started working with PPA two months ago. I had certainly heard the hype: "Imaging is the most fun you'll have all year!" "You won't believe how happy and friendly everyone is!" and "Get ready for the ride of your life." Aside from that nervous, "up the rollercoaster"-feeling in my stomach, I set out Thursday morning ready to receive whatever Imaging goodness came my way...
...and boy, did it! THIS IS AMAZING! Seriously, the convention and expo officially start tomorrow but it already feels like the greatest photography party on earth up in here! The Georgia World Congress Center has been painted red-and-white by PPA and I got to snap some pics and take in everything there is to do during the Pre Convention courses. Here's a Pro Tip for next time....GO TO PRE CONVENTION!
Because sometimes being an internationally recognized symbol for overcoming adversity just isn't enough and some of you wondered where the connection is, we have been spending the past several weeks helping you get to know Amy Purdy. You'll quickly understand why we're so excited to have her be part of Imaging USA 2016!
Imaging USA 2016 is HERE and Amy will be with us, Sunday, January 10 at 10am! You'll be with us, right? By now you really don't need any more info to know how amazing Amy is (HELLO! She's a Bronze Medal- winning Olympic athlete!), but we've saved some clips for you just to get you even more excited.
First up, in 2011, Amy gained international notoriety through her TED talk. This was long before she started working as a motivational speaker and was a huge success, being viewed worldwide nearly 1.2 million times. Consider this clip about drawing inspiration from life's obstacles a preview for what's to come on January 10th! (She'll be inaugurating a whole new presentation for us at Imaging USA!)
Did you know Amy was featured by ESPN as one of their Impact 25, a list of the greatest women athletes for 2015? Her interview is intimate and inspiring and you can read it here:
Of course, a year before her fame-making appearance on Dancing With the Stars, Amy first proved herself to be a superstar by winning the Bronze Medal at the 2014 Sochi Winter Paralympics. Host network NBC included Amy in this documentary profile, How to Raise an Olympian, sponsored by P&G.
Finally, if you haven't already, grab yourself a copy of Amy's memoir, On My Own Two Feet: From Losing My Legs to Learning the Dance of Life. Copies will be available before and after her talk because she's doing a book signing right after her keynote speech! We know you're as excited as we are now to meet and be inspired by Imaging USA's 2016 Keynote speaker, the amazing Amy Purdy.
See you there! If you, for some insane reason, haven't registered for Imaging USA 2016 yet, do so here. But hurry! It's THIS weekend!
2016's Imaging USA convention in Atlanta features several celebrations and programs brought to you by PPA Charities. A fully functioning philanthropic arm of Professional Photographers of America (PPA), PPA Charities' mission is to "allow PPA to become a force for positive change in our society and to make a difference in the lives of others." PPA Charities chooses partners in the philanthropic community to help reach their giving goals.
Imaging USA is always the kick-off to a great year of giving and this year's charity events are no exception. It all begins Saturday, Jan. 9 at 8pm with the Cooking it Up with PPA Charities party at the Georgia World Congress Center. It's a great place to meet and mingle with other philanthropic photographers. Yearly donations are presented to Operation Smile and Dando Amor, the newest recipient of the prestigious Legacy Award will be announced and the whole party is sponsored by White House Custom Color.
Don't party too hard because the next morning, Sunday, Jan. 10 at 7am is the Super Hero for Smiles 5k Fun Run around downtown Atlanta! It's a fundraiser for Operation Smile, an international medical charity that has provided more than 220,000 free surgical procedures to children and young adults from over 60 countries born with cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities.
After the run, kick off those shoes and donate them and other gently used shoes to Dando Amor's "Shoes for Love" shoe drive! Dando Amor helps orphans in South America and Africa escape poverty through education and self-sufficiency training. They collect gently used shoes of all kinds to give to the shoeless and also help teach the unemployed how to run a small business selling repurposed shoes.
Stop by the PPA Charities booth #1551 to see the Dream Studio and buy raffle tickets for Tuesday, Jan. 12th's Dream Studio Giveaway, where one lucky winner's photography studio is overhauled with $20,000 worth of photographic equipment, products, software, lab credits and more.
Be sure to allow plenty of time in your Imaging USA 2016 schedule to party with your philanthropic peers and help artists give back to the community with PPA Charities!
PPA's theLoop online community has been on a roll lately, hosting Imaging USA 2016 speakers for Ask Me Anything sessions. This week, we were privileged to have Terri Eddington, M.Photog., CPP, sit and answer your questions for our final AMA before Imaging USA 2016!
Terri is a 3-time recipient of the International Photographer of the Year Award as well as PPA's highest honor of Diamond photographer; her elegant style and talent in wedding and boudoir photography has truly set her apart in the industry. Terri also devotes her time and energy to furthering her industry as the rising President of PPA Louisiana.
At Imaging USA 2016 in Atlanta, Terri will be teaching the class "High Impact Lighting Made 'Easy'", January 11, 5:00 PM - 6:15 PM. In this amazing workshop, Terri demystifies everything that is difficult, complicated and cumbersome about lighting. Using her unique gift of simplifying this all-important concept, she'll show you fun and easy-to-understand setups that will deliver stunning images for your clients!
Terri's easy-going approach and sparkly personality are infectious. Right at the start of our AMA session, she told the audience, "Go ahead ask me anything...I will answer with a 'TNT' response! Does that mean 'Powerful'? From me, no! 'TNT' means 'Terri Not Technical' LOL! If you like an easy approach and simple explanation...then I'm you girl!"
Thanks, Terri! We know there are both new and evolving photographers who appreciate "easy" and "simple"! Here are some highlights from her AMA:
What's Your Inspiration and Your Favorite Personal Photo?
My inspiration? "People". I love to photograph people. Any kind, any style and even anywhere! Years ago in painting or art class when I could choose to draw or paint anything, I would choose people! I was told that was the hardest - but not to me. It was my passion. I did not know that many years later I would be photographing people but I never get tired of it. It is always exciting to see the many faces and personalities before me. And I have the privilege to capture them all!
What is my favorite photography ever? Really? I mean, really? That is impossible to say! But I can say, when I capture the soul of a person, there is nothing like it. When their inner beauty shines through their eyes we are no longer just photographers but artists!
Is your creativity for an image fully realized before the capture or in post-production?
There are so many ways to approach photography to where there is not a true right or wrong. I can just say from my personal experience I have done a little of both. I do try to have a "game plan" when I shoot. I like to know location, time of day (if outside), the personality or taste of the client to know what to work towards during a shoot. If shooting in the studio I try to have the type of props and style of lighting ready that will work for the client. These are things I do for my everyday clients. A lot of times these clients have a need for normal/regular shots. What I do try to do is at the end of the shoot I like to be creative and do a little something different. We just have fun! A lot of times it will be their favorite but it was nothing they originally asked for. This allows me to stay creative and also gives them something that maybe no one else has.
Now, on a stylized shoot I do plan more ahead of time. I try to have a theme, look and style ready. But again during the shoot something might hit me and I go for it. It's either the look someone has or their personality that comes thru and may lead me in a different direction. No matter how tired I am at the beginning of a shoot, once we get started I am "in the zone". I don't get in a hurry when I shoot. I love to create so I make sure I schedule in the time.
That being said I would say that I don't fully realize everything I am going to do before a shoot but it does help to plan a little.
How do you approach High Key Lighting?
I really don't shoot a traditional high key. As far as a high key look on the subject themselves, I shoot normal lighting ratios and then lighten in Photoshop. This allows me to be in control of how much I want to lighten the subject and also to keep good detail and depth in the eyes, etc. I do sometimes shoot to have the background a white high key look by putting a one-to-two stop higher light on the background than the subject as long as the light on the back of the subject (reflecting from the background) is not brighter than the main light.
We hope you found Terri's advice helpful! And remember to catch her live at Imaging USA in Atlanta! Sign up today at ImagingUSA.org/Registration.
Can you believe Imaging USA 2016 is only 2.5 WEEKS away?! PPA Today is going to make sure you have all your i's dotted and t's crossed before your big trip and we figured now may be a good time to go over...transportation.
Imaging USA 2016 will be held at the Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC) in the heart of downtown Atlanta. PPA is super-excited that Imaging USA is in our hometown this year! If you've never been or it's been a while, downtown Atlanta got a face-lift. Right next to the GWCC you'll find Centennial Olympic Park and the CNN Center, the new SkyView Ferris Wheel, the World of Coca-Cola, the new College Football Hall of Fame, the new Civil Rights Museum, and of course, the amazing Georgia Aquarium...home of the 2016 Imaging USA closing party!
If you're flying to Atlanta...take MARTA (Metro Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) from Hartsfield-Jackson airport to the GWCC, Omni or Glenn Hotels. It's only $2.50 and a straight line there!
1. Enter MARTA Airport station adjacent to baggage claim.
2. Board northbound train (Red or Gold) toward Five Points Station.
3. Get off at Five Points and follow signage to westbound train platform.
4. Board westbound train (Green or Blue) travel one stop to Dome/GWCC/Philips Arena/CNN Center.
5. Follow signage to street level, walk one block northwest toward Georgia World Congress Center.
If you're heading to the Hyatt Regency, Sheraton Hotel or other downtown Atlanta properties, continue on the Red or Gold line past Five Points Station, and get off at Peachtree Center. From there you'll find signage directing you to your respective hotels.
If you're driving to Atlanta...save a lot of money and pre-purchase parking for Imaging USA. That's 50% off the regular convention parking price at $10 per day - no overnight parking permitted.
1. Just click on the GWCC Online Parking Permits button here to go to the main parking permits page. 2. From there you will click on the "Purchase Event Parking Permits" button. 3. On the Select Event page, click on Georgia World Congress Center. 4. Look for Imaging USA among the January events. 5. Continue to pre-purchase a parking permit for IUSA.
If you're also staying at a hotel downtown, you will have access to everything you need for the week with just a short walk. There are also several ways to get around if you want to spend some time exploring our beautiful city or if you're staying at a hotel a little farther away.
Atlanta also has Uber, Lyft and taxi services available.
Wanting to go check out more cool Atlanta spots like the Martin Luther King Center or the Sweet Auburn district? You might want to take a ride on Atlanta's new streetcar! The streetcar will take you all the way from Centennial Olympic Park to the King Historic District, 12 stops along the way, for only $1 a ride with the quick purchase of a free Breeze card (the same card you will use to ride Marta).
No matter how you want to get around, Atlanta is ready to wow you at Imaging USA 2016!