We almost don’t know where to start with telling about our experiences from WPPI Las Vegas. Wppi, worlds largest wedding and portrait photographer convention, was on our “to experience list” for quite some years now. Last year we missed it by three weeks during our trip around the world stop in Vegas. But we blocked the dates out for 2012 very early last year. Every single wedding photographer, who’s work we admire, has something to do with this event and visited it at least once. So we gotta see this too.
Sitting here in India makes it actually very hard to think about Las Vegas and all the “glamour” and tons of useless things you got to see. So leaving feelings and stories about this extreme contrasts behind and we instead focus on the business part.
Besides the workshops we booked (outside of WPPI) there are over 90 platform classes within 4 days. Sometimes it’s a shame that very good speakers are parallel and you have to decide which class to see.
So whom did we got to see?
Zach and Jody Gray
A fantastic and very inspiring husband and wife photographer team. They had the first class on WPPI12 and the house was packed with approximately 1000 people!! Yep, and they really rocked it. Got a lot of stuff out of that class and somethings we will for sure apply for our business as well. Not just only because their business approach (couple) is same as ours.
Catherine is a gorgeous wedding photographer and a great social media marketer. Her social media class clarified a lot of things in terms of the entire social media platform jungle.
It’s was his 16th WPPI and the 10th as a speaker. We have been following Chris for a very long time, might actually be one of the first US photogs in the wedding biz we were checking out regularly. He spoke about the 6 step B.E.C.K.E.R System how to be or become a successful photographer in the wedding industry. LOVED it!
Lawrence Chung (tofurious)
Lawrence is such a sympetic guy. He recently published a book called social media marketing for smart photographers. Well, nicely done right? Who does not want to be a smart photog? Haha, however he is very smart and his talk was brilliant!
Next to the MGM conference center, where the WPPI was happening, there was another “convention” scheduled for three days. The Showit gang around David Jay was holding the first Showit United in the Rooms off “The Signature”.
A free conference and get together with all the Showiteers around the globe. And sure they had all top speakers there as well for presentations.
Our friends Mike and Rachel Larson were in Vegas too and besides listening to Mike talk about his 10 mistakes in business and how he solved them, we also gathered for dinner and breakfast with them. We don’t really know how Mike does it, but whenever we hear him talk, we take out so much inspiration and, believe it or not, new things have not heard him say before!
So, who else was on the list?
We are not really groupies of Jasmine Star, but listening to her during the presentation was a freakin amazing experience. Wow! Pure energy and inspiration for packed two hours. And we think she did not even breath once :-)
Godfather of the wedding photography industry – Jose Villa!
Yes, himself! His class was the first to be sold out for pre boarding. The room was already full and the waiting line was another 200-300 people.
Even though only about 20 hands rose after the question “who shots film?” what he had to say is also true for every wedding photo business. We admirer is work and we sure admire him as a person. Not is he only very professional but also a super nice guy. We got to talk to him at the expo floor for a couple of minutes. He even said that he wants to shot our wedding! HAHA! And yes, if we become millionaires we will hire him :-)
Jared Platt – Lightroom Workflow Class
We though, that our post processing workflow is not really slow, but sure you always learn new things, right? Jared (and) his team shoots about 5000 pictures per average wedding. He selects it down to 500 (delivery quantity) and edits them, and that process takes him, wait for it, wait for it…. 2,5 hours maximum!!!
Yes, absolutely right, this we really wanted to know how he does that. He is not only a great photographer but also a super funny teacher. Both of us took a lot out of this class and we cannot wait to see whether this tips will double our speed up. We will let you know :-)
Other high lights of conversations and happenings:
Our dear friend, Vineet Modi from India. We will be staying with him during the last week of our Indian trip. It was just a lucky thing we gotta meet in Vegas, it was scheduled to miss each other by a day ;-)
It was just a fabulous time and we are planing to go again 2013!
We had some time before the buzz started so we rent a car and went to the desert for a self portrait session. Here is to wish you all a happy and nice weekend. We might have a Indian wedding to blog next week ;-)
Carmen and Ingo