Personal, Photography

WPPI Road Trip–Chicago Baby!!!

September 16, 2010
The Hilton, Chicago(ish). lol

Man, was that a great day!! I am sooo grateful and thankful, and happy and excited, and lucky to have gotten to attend the WPPI Road Trip Chicago last Thursday!! It was such an experience, a great one. And I had a blast, every minute. I learned a lot, filled half my notebook, fell in love with several different vendors, and people, and got to meet….ready for it??…Jasmine Star and JD!!!! Man, I never thought I’d be such a blubbering mess, but I was!! Blegh, it was soo embarassing, and that is a difficult feat for me!! Anyways, here’s a recap of what happened yesterday::

Salvatore Cincotta

This man, and his darling wife, have a new fan in me. I’d never heard of them before, but you could tell who he was, just by how he was dressed. Which, oddly enough, he brought up almost immdediately in his presentation. Great, great guy. Awesome photographer. Amazing salesmanship. It’s true. He knows how to captivate an audience. And man, can his wife Taylor rock some killer shoes!! ♥

His presentation consisted mostly of giving your business that boost that it probably needs. He went over quite a bit on how important pricing is, and how your appearance affects the type of clientelle you attract. “Superficial? Yea, so be superficial.” I had a great time, and Sal has found a new fanatic in myself. His photos were stupendous, I absolutely loved them. And of course, you know he’s successful at what he does. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be rocking it like he was!!

“We are not just photographers. We are visionaries, artists, entertainers…”- Sal Cincotta.

Bob & Dawn Davis

Bob and Dawn Davis are just so….cute!!! There is just no getting around how beyond cute they are. I loved loved loved their video to start with. And it’s great, ya know? The point was so that the client got to see who Bob and Dawn are as people; as more than just a wedding photography team. They are just so open. It was great to meet with them and talk to them. Turns out Dawn is a huuge fan of The Secret by Rhonda Byrne!! I knew I’d like her… =)

But anyways, their presentation was about uploading and post-processing; pretty much just the work flow. Never in my life have I met someone as organized as that woman!! She makes me feel ambitious, and want to color code all my sticky notes!! =)

They gave some pretty good advice, and I can’t wait to get my hands on some of those Lexar card readers!! (Those babies rock fast paced!!)

Mike Fulton and Cody Clinton

Mike and Cody are Texas fireballs. They are fast paced, and funny. And man, are they tech savvy!! Those boys definitely know their lights. I learned quite a bit in that little amount of time; but I also realized how in over my head I am if I think I know the first thing about off camera flashes and lighting!! I can’t wait to hit up one of their workshops. Mike, you promised a Chicago one next year!! =) It also made me realize just how important it is to be prepared for any kind of situation. It’s great to know these things, ya know. Justin Case.

aaannnnddd finallyyy (drumroll please)….

Jasmine Star

I swear, it was just like a scene in a movie.

Amidst the sea of photographers looking to leave the room for a final coffee break, I was a rock in the stream. They flowed around me as I inched my way closer to the stage. I knew she was there, I just had to get a glimpse!! If I got a glimpse, I’d know she was real, and I could go to my coffee break in peace. *Yea right!*

First, I looked onstage, and I saw JD. Man, my heart stopped cold, then sped up like crazy. Yes, I’ll admit, I felt like a woman going through menopause!! I never knew what it felt like to have hot flashes. It was weird. lol So, I knew, where there’s a JD, there’s a J*. I looked to the left, just off stage, and I could see her brown hair peaking out from behind a woman she was talking to. Just as the woman left, just as Jasmine was about to be visible, a whole crowd of people pushed past me, and I missed my chance to see her! Boo. So, of course, I kept looking around and pushing my way through people, but she was surrounded!! I swear, the woman didn’t get to sit down for probably hours!! But then, the crowd broke, and I saw her. Yup. She was right there. Twenty feet in front of me was the photographer who made me fall in love with weddings, the woman who made me realize that it’s good to be you. Just you.

And man, was I STAR STRUCK!! It was horrible. I ran out of the room. Hyperventilated a bit. Then I went back in. Ya know. To meet her and stuff. Of course, there was a line. And then reality struck:: I had no camera with me!!! Wilson had the iPhone, and I left my camera in the car!! But of course, a couple lovely girls behind me happened to have an iPhone. And were able to provide me with the picture below. I look like a raccoon, but they look great!! And I loved it!! I finally had my turn, and I almost cried!! Really, Brittani? C’mon now…She told me not to cry. That’s right. J* told me not to cry!! I loved her. I was speechless. It was crazy. And then? I sat down. And waited. For what I knew was coming. She gave a killer presentation.

Branding You.

She talked about how it’s great to be transparent. Get to know your client. Be their friend. Let them get to know you. Like, you. Not me, the photographer. Just me. It is imperative to the health and success of you and me as a photograher to be real. K.I.R. Keep it real.

lol and actually, there 4 parts to her talk. I liked that. Waayy easy to keep up. =)

Part 1.
Social Networking. The importance of blogging, and actually writing a story to go with the pictures you’re posting. Introduce your clients to the world. Give them an entrance. Be their friend. And slideshows!! (Apparently, those are real important.) I love me some slideshows. Differentiation. One of my favorite things she said all night:: “What will carve you of a sea of sameness?” Similarities. It’s good to relate to the people around you. To your clients and friends to be. Part 2. Community. Be INVOLVED!! With the photography community.  With charities, your local hospitals. Part 3. Image. O yes. Very important, that aspect. Do you really want to be the same as those photographers you admire? Do you want to blend in? Again, it comes back to sea of sameness syndrome. No thank you! and Finally, part 4. You. What makes you different? Why should a client hire you instead of him?

Overall, everyone did such a great job. They all had some very important things to say, and man did they say it!! I absolutely cannot WAIT for Vegas in February!! It is going to be 10 times more of an amazing experience!! I am ready to take on the photography world. =) Bring it.

And one more huuuggge thanks to all the speakers. They may not realize actually how much they help, but it is tremendous, their generosity. ♥


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