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PPA Today: PPA Membership Archives

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by James Yates

Being the oldest and largest nonprofit photography association comes with responsibility. Our mission is to not only provide photographers with the education, resources and industry standards of excellence to help them be successful, but to also help consumers see the difference when evaluating photographers. That's why PPA launched an online, print and social media consumer awareness campaign called See The Difference®. 

For the Jan/Feb 2016 issue of Bridal Guide, PPA was called upon to offer the top three wedding photo trends for 2016. You can find us on the bottom right corner of page 5. If you're snowed in and can't make the newsstand, here's some of what we revealed:


  • Photographers are needed for more than just the "big day". They're being asked to be around the whole week!


  • Photo editors are in-demand now for onsite instant retouching and social sharing! 


  • Forget the old superstition about not seeing the bride before the wedding! "Many brides and grooms not only want to see each other before the wedding, they also want to capture those private, connected moments in their photos." 


The 2016 Hottest Wedding Trends issue of Bridal Guide is on sale now! 

See The Difference is a marketing toolset developed for professional photographers, by professional photographers. If you want it, or for more information on how YOU can put See The Difference® marketing resources to work for your business, visit PPA.com/SalesTools

by James Yates
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Your client's four-legged best friend has a personality and style of their own. They know it by heart, but can they articulate it to others ... say, you, the photographer who will be shooting lasting pictures of their pet? PPA's See The Difference® resources include a fun, shareable quiz, "How is Your Pet's Personality Captured in Photos?" that can help steer them in that direction!

See The Difference is an online, print and social media consumer awareness campaign that aims to help consumers see the difference when evaluating photographers. It was developed for professional photographers by professional photographers and those who are PPA members get access to these FREE marketing tools including shareable videos, customizable brochures, logos, side-by-side comparisons, dedicated landing pages and consumer tips/FAQs.
 
With the Pet Quiz, your clients can find out, for instance, if their dog is a "Diva" or "Down-to-Earth" and just looks that way. But "pet personality" isn't the only See The Difference® quiz for consumers to try out! You can share quizzes based on Family ("What's Your Family's Style?"), Wedding ("What's Your Bridal Style?"), and High School Seniors ("Will Your Senior Photo Capture the Real You?"). They're all designed to help promote PPA members' value as a professional and better serve their clients.
 
Go ahead and use these tools or share these quizzes because it is only by exposing consumers to professional grade work that they will learn to see the difference and value professional photography. For more information on how YOU can link to the See The Difference® quizzes from your website, visit PPA.com/SalesTools.





Here is a consumer video for senior yearbook photographers to upload to their website or play on a monitor in their waiting room. This video was created to help seniors and their parents see the value in hiring a PPA senior yearbook photographer.  In this video, PPA senior yearbook photographers descend upon a high school senior class at the start of their final year. High school seniors are shown sharing their stories and talking about why it's so important to hire a pro. PPA photographers talk about the importance of being prepared and on task so they can spend time helping seniors and their parents feel comfortable in front of the camera. 

See The Difference is an online, print and social media consumer awareness campaign that aims to help consumers see the difference when evaluating photographers. PPA photographers get access to a FREE marketing toolkit that includes shareable videos, customizable brochures, logos, side-by-side comparisons, dedicated landing pages and consumer tips/FAQs. 

Watch and share this video with your clients to help them See The Difference when choosing a senior photographer! For more information on See The Difference marketing resources, visit PPA.com/SalesTools.



By John Owens

DTrust.pngPPA's CEO David Trust was a guest on The PhotoTellers podcast with host Bill Ramsey to discuss The State of Professional Photography in America.

Before you get all doom and gloom, give it a listen! Bill and David discuss where things are now as well as what photographers can expect from the recent movement toward new copyright law in Congress. They also dive deep into the business of photography and how PPA helps the industry. 

Take a look at some of the topics covered below:

  • What is the future of professional photography in America? Are things as bad as people are saying?
  • Is copyright really in jeopardy? What's going on in Congress & the possibility of changing copyright law?
  • What are the biggest issues facing professional photographers?
  • What is the biggest business mistake photographers make?
  • The availability of "malpractice" insurance for a photographer.
  • The lifespan of a low-priced photographer entering the market today.
  • How to speak to potential clients so that they'll be willing to share some of their "pot of money" with you.
  • How to move from a "photographer hired to do a job" to "MY family photographer!"

It's a discussion that serves the interest of any photographer. It's perfect for background noise while you're in the throes of editing! Or set aside a half hour and give it your full attention.

You can listen to the podcast here, and if you have some extra time, there's another one with PPA president Michael Timmons linked on the page!

John_3197_1.JPGJohn Owens is PPA's resident wordsmith. Know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words? That's where he comes in. The Connecticut transplant and (still) avid Hartford Whalers fan is an aspiring adventurist/novelist/racer on a lifelong quest to find the best trails, brews and burger.


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By John Owens

What if I told you that you could completely immerse yourself in surround via a photograph. A complete 360 degree panorama experience created by a single digital image. You wouldn't believe it, would you?

Well this PPA and Atlanta-based photographer, Fabio Musio, came up with a way to do just that and he is now one of the very few who know how to make it happen. Hopefully his story will inspire you to try something new!

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Fabio, a former engineer and self-proclaimed salesman, janitor and CEO, creates virtual tours through his imagery. The tours could be of a building, a concert venue, a park, a car dealership... even space! His photography hasn't taken him out of the atmosphere yet, but (beyond) the sky is the limit.

Originally from Torino, Italy, Fabio moved to the U.S. in 2007 and worked as an avionics system designer. For a few years, he worked 6-7 days a week and was doing nothing with his downtime, so he decided he needed a hobby--an expensive one so he would be forced to do it. Guess what he chose?

He left his job and created his company in January 2012, 100-DC immersive marketing agency, and now has national clients like Google, Red Bull and Expedia or local ones like Atlanta's Fox Theatre or Stone Mountain Park.

He was looking for something on the cutting edge of photography, not wanting to stick to traditional boundaries of the media. He discovered 360 degree digital tours and found his calling. The process involved taking hundreds to thousands of images per scene, then carefully stitching them together to create a single, panoramic high-res image. It takes time, patience and a steady hand. He claims his image of downtown Atlanta taken from a helipad is the largest of the city in existence. He plans to return to the same location to try to enter in the top 10 largest images in the world. 

He first started out as a hobbyist, not seeing it as a future career opportunity. "It's taken a lot of time to transition to a full-time business" he said. "I didn't realize how tough it is to be a professional photographer and I think a lot of people underestimate their skills and offer their photography for next to nothing. But I decided early on that I wasn't going to do that."

That's right! PPA has elections and you get to vote! Starting today, April 15, PPA Council nominations will be accepted online at PPA.com/CouncilElections.

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But first...

What's PPA Council, you ask?

It's a delegate body that oversees PPA's bylaws. Volunteer PPA members are elected to represent their states for a 3-year period.

What does PPA Council do for YOU?

  • Assists PPA members and fellow photographers. As a group, they make decisions that guide the association.
  • Elects members to serve on the Nominating Committee and PPA's Board of Directors.
  • Approves PPA degree recipients and maintains PPA's merit system.

PPA Council Nominations will be held for each state. Who do you want to represent you? Give it some thought, and submit your nominee(s). But please, run it by them first...

You've got two weeks to submit your elected nominee(s). All nominations must be submitted by May 1, 11:59pm EST. Take advantage of this chance to give input on your state's PPA representative(s) and help shape your photographic association.

If you're not sure who a good candidate in your area would be, chat about it on theLoop and share what traits/skills you'd like your PPA representative to own.

For more information on the 2015 elections and instructions on how to nominate, please visit PPA.com/CouncilElections.

Don't forget - voting opens May 15!

By Chris Homer

This new video is part of a series that shows off beautiful/talented/awesome PPA members. PPA photographers like you are speaking out more and more about their way of coping with the changes in the industry, what they are doing about it and how they are using PPA along the way. The Faces of PPA series is there to market and show you off (take advantage of it!). This new Behind the Camera series is PPA showing YOU off... but this time, with video! 

Our first episode featured PPA member, portrait photographer, Jessica Williams. If you missed it, take a look to see how mentoring helped her take her business to the next level, feeds her passion for photography, and how she's using PPA to be more.

PPA is a nonprofit that's here to help its photographers/members be more. In the video below, PPA member and senior portrait photographer Sharma Ferrugia talks about her beginnings in photography, why she loves making a difference with high school seniors and how Imaging USA has opened her horizons! As a photographer, what are YOU doing to be more?





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. 


Behind the Camera with PPA Photographers is new a video series to show off our beautiful/talented/awesome members. PPA photographers like you are speaking out more and more about their way of coping with the changes in the industry (and how PPA is helping along the way). It's much like Faces of PPA, but this time, with video! 

Never before have we seen people joining the photography profession so rapidly. While this represents a challenge at first, this is also showing the strength of our industry. Photography isn't going extinct! And in response to the growth, photographers are coming up with ingenious ways to be more.

The first subject in the series is Atlanta-based portrait photographer Jessica Williams. She talks about how mentoring has helped her take her business to the next level. Take a few minutes to see Jessica's passion for photography, why she joined PPA and how it's helped her be more.




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John Owens is PPA's resident wordsmith. Know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words? That's where he comes in. The Connecticut transplant and (still) avid Hartford Whalers fan is an aspiring adventurist/novelist/racer on a lifelong quest to find the best trails, brews and burgers and wishes Taylor Swift would just stop.

By Penn Hansa, PPA Intern

Jonathan Givens, CPP, isn't just a photographer.

For starters, he was a master carpenter for the Oprah Winfrey show who had never considered picking up a camera until Oprah herself suggested he take pictures of the sets he built for the show. Fast forward 11 years, and Givens is now a Certified Professional Photographer who has made a business out of taking pictures of the thing he loves - entertainment.

Givens grew up as an actor, dancer and singer. He first performed when he was five years old, and was 12 when he had his first paid gig. Theater life was consuming, but Givens didn't want it any other way. "I didn't go to my high school graduation because I was in technical rehearsals for a show," he said. "Theater was always there for me. It was the place where I got to be silly and jump around, and do all the crazy things I wanted to do."

He was doing what he loved - until injuries set him back. He shattered an ankle during a show, and then his voice was "destroyed" by the steroids that were prescribed to help his vocal cords. But Givens couldn't stay away from the stage, and instead, moved his talents behind the scenes to work as a technician in 2001. Taking jobs here and there, he eventually worked as a technical director at a youth theater in Phoenix, where he taught a child actor named Emma Stone how to build scenery.

He made the move to the Oprah Winfrey Show in 2003, and as the carpenter who built the set, was part of the team who won an Emmy the following year for Best Set Design on Oprah's Pop Star Challenge. the host's own version of American Idol. When he built a set for Destiny's Child's appearance on the show, complete with smoke rolling over a moving sidewalk for the singers to walk in time to the beat of "Lose My Breath," he knew he should take pictures of his work. "It was hours of preparation and $80,000 worth of work and materials for only 10 seconds of airtime," Givens said. "I needed some way to document what I was doing, so I wasn't just throwing the set away."

Other highlights of his career include working with Cirque du Soleil in 2006 as head carpenter of the

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 show Alegria on their European tour. He also did rigging on major motion pictures like Iron Man 3 and Rock of Ages and at Univision Studios. In photographing the sets he was building, he began taking pictures of the entertainers he was working with and found that people were much more fun to take pictures of than set pieces. He started his own studio in Miami, Entertainment Photography Specialists, and joined PPA in 2012.

"I didn't want to be just another guy with a camera, which is why I joined and got certified. There are a thousand photographers out there, and tons of people who try to do the work that I do. PPA membership sets me apart from the rest," he said.

He attributes his success as an entertainment photographer to his background as an entertainer and technician, and notes that it's allowed him to capture some unique pictures. As a certified rigger, he was able to set an aerial dancer under a bridge in Portugal, with the 5:30 a.m. sunrise and a lighthouse in the background. "It's definitely different from being just a portrait photographer because I have to set up all the rigging," he said. "It's a logical challenge setting up the images."

What also helps are the emotions he recognizes in the performers, passions that he can empathize with having once had them himself. "I don't get my subjects posing - they are doing what they enjoy, and I take pictures of that. I can see the passion behind what the performer does, from the performer's point of view. When the dancer loses herself in the dance, I click the shutter.

"I photograph what I know - entertainment. I'm not only thinking about the lighting, the composition or all the other technical aspects of photography, but I'm also considering how the image will promote the subject's career, or gain attention for the production," he said. "And that's what's made all the difference."

 

 

As a PPA member, you're using some of the benefits the membership brings you and could probably leverage it a lot more. You know the value of belonging to this photography association. In fact, you probably have some photographer friends who don't belong to PPA and could use a little help with their business. 

Why are you a PPA member? People have very different reasons to join and belong to this group, but who better than existing members to get the word out? That's why PPA has developed a reward program, called the Member-2-Member Campaign, to compensate PPA members that refer fellow photographers to PPA. 

Whether the photographers in your network are new to the industry or veteran pros, we hope you will encourage them to belong to PPA! Here's how the program works: for each photographer you refer to PPA, you'll earn a $25 Visa Gift Card! The photographer you refer will also get a free all-access pass to Imaging USA 2015. Pretty good, right? Well, it gets even better:  

After 3 photographers you've referred join PPA, you'll get a $75 Visa Gift Card ($25x3) AND an all-access pass to Imaging USA 2015 (that's a $179 value!). That means that you get $75 in cash and save $179. Additionally, the friends you referred all get a free all-access Imaging USA 2015 pass. It's a win-win!

If 6 or more photographers you refer join PPA, you'll get a $150 Visa Gift Card ($25x6), plus an all-access pass to Imaging USA ($179 value), and a FREE year of PPA membership ($323 value!). Each friend still gets their all-access Imaging USA 2015 pass. You cash in $150 and save $502! Plain simple!

There's only one rule to earn the rewards: the photographers you refer must not have been a PPA member within the past year. That's it! 

Ready to start getting your photography friends to belong to PPA with you? Simply share with your friends how PPA has helped you (think PhotoCare Equipment insurance, PPAedu videos, networking opportunities, copyright guidance, inspiration, etc.). We've even put together recruitment materials to make it easier for you to discuss PPA with your friends. Heck, the free Imaging USA pass may be motivation enough! That's a $179 savings alone!

The campaign will run through December 31, 2014. Just be sure that your friends add your name as "Referring Member" on the top of the application form so you'll get credit for bringing them in. 

Find the recruitment materials and referral application on the Member-2-Member Campaign page. Get out there and invite your fellow photographers to Be More by joining PPA! 
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About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries in the PPA Membership category.

PPA Member Brag Book is the previous category.

PPA Merits and Degrees is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

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