Every year I make a trip to Las Vegas (not a place I would go otherwise) to the Wedding and Portrait Photography International (WPPI) convention. WPPI attracts about 20,000 of the world’s best wedding and portrait photographers. The convention offers large platform classes, small master’s classes and a sprawling tradeshow.
The first stop I made after arriving at the MGM Grand was to see Sal Cincotta. Sal is fantastic photographer with a TON of energy. Day two was a highlight of the trip including Roberto Vanelzuela’s talk on posing. Roberto began by describing the problem with posing we are too focused on what looks good, rather than what does this communicate. “Look at posing like a language” said Roberto. I couldn’t agree more and highly recommend his book Picture Perfect Posing!! That evening I had wine and chocolate with the people form Shoot Dot Edit at a patio suite with a view of the Las Vegas Strip.
Day three included an emotional presentation by Elizabeth Messina. Elizabeth is a gem in this industry. She is talented, humble, kind and genuine. Her new book The Silver Lining grew out of a personal project of photographing a friend of hers through her battle with breast cancer. Elizabeth’s advice to us in the audience included “learn who you are.” So many stories Elizabeth shared were worthy of a presentation of their own. That afternoon, I headed over to the Two Bright Lights booth for an appearance. I met many wonderful people, excited to see The New Art of Capturing Love.
Every year, I swing through Kevin Kubota’s Photographers Ignite for a quick dose of 5 min. presentations on various topics. The show never disappoints! My final day included another platform on posing by Lindsay Adler. Lindsay opened the presentation saying “The most important part [of a portrait] is expression.” And with that I was hooked on a presentation of techniques for enhancing clients physical strengths.
Reluctantly, I left before the convention ended. I got home at 2 am on Thursday morning, just 1 hour before my husband left for his winter convention trip. Luckily, my flight was not delayed, so my kids had a ride to school.
It was a whirlwind of a trip, from which I am still in many ways recovering and absorbing the information presented. I do enjoy this convention; every year I learn something new, and I’m already looking forward to next year’s!