Benefits / Resources / Articles
June 05, 2018

Learn the Secrets of Senior Photography Lighting from the Pros at Imaging USA 2019!

Imaging USA 2019 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 hometown of PPA: Atlanta, Georgia, January 20-22, 2019 (Pre-Con classes January 17-19).

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.

Let’s take a closer look at the class, “Light It UP! Amplify the Impact of Your Senior Photography” with Dan and Alex McClanahan.  

Dan and Alex McClanahan have discovered that mastery of lighting has been the biggest differentiator and job securer in their business. Being able to show a client the back of your camera and drop their jaw with un-retouched beauty gives the power of self-confidence and buffers your sale. At Imaging USA, Dan and Alex will share how they execute their most successful lighting designs, with a primary focus on flash photography. They’ll teach you how to effectively problem solve unideal situations like shade-less mid-day photos and dreary overcast days, using light as a tool to exceed client expectations on each and every session. They’ll share the modern lighting styles that their clients love and get you pumped up to push yourself in 2019!

Who are the McClanahans?
Dan and Alex McClanahan became photographers in 2009 with the goal of creating a fresh alternative to traditional photography in their market. Their work quickly made waves in the photo industry, earning them multiple Grand Imaging Awards, WPPI 1st place awards, and magazine features. In 2017, Dan became one of the youngest photographers on record to receive all three photography degrees bestowed by PPA. In 2018, Dan received a bronze medal for Team USA at the World Photographic Cup and his senior photography landed him the highest award, Icon Status, in the Senior Style Guide Hot 100 competition.

The couple splits their time between high school senior photography and advertising photography. Outside of work, Dan and Alex love Jesus, snowboarding, live music, and cherishing their daughter!
Facebook: McClanahan Studio
Twitter: McClanahan Studio
Instagram: danmcclan

Q&A with Dan McClanahan:

Why do you love photography? It allows me to satisfy my urge to create and to serve others through validation and memory all in one fell swoop.

If you could have any superpower, what would you choose? I think I would choose the ability to freeze time so I could be more efficient at work and responsibilities, freeing up time to do more important things without altering my life and skills as drastically as some other powers would. That or the ability to shoot spaghetti out of my fingers; even though it wouldn't really give me an advantage over regular humans (keep those expectations low), it would allow me to never go hungry, and to scare off robbers via confused discomfort.

What did you want to be as a kid? NBA baller, then video game tester, then fireworks designer. Dang unattainable dreams!

Who has been one of the biggest influences on your work? Dave Hill. Seeing his photos of bands in music magazines made me want to be a photographer.

What was your experience like with your very first client and what did you learn from it? My first ever client was my college neighbor and I photographed her son's senior photos for $100, which seemed like a good deal as a broke college student. But the experience taught me that, 1) I really needed to up my game and gain confidence in portraiture because I was pretty terrible, and 2) I needed to figure how to price myself ASAPif I wanted to get into this because a lot more goes into a session than I thought!

Dan and Alex are just two of the many amazing speakers you'll get to meet and learn from at Imaging USA 2019! Registration is open now at, so take advantage of the Early Bird rates for passes and your hotel!