Planning My Year
As I began planning my 2023 year, I knew I needed to attend a photography conference. Why? To continue learning my craft and connect with other like-minded individuals. This was my first time attending a photography conference. In the past, I’ve attended conferences for my administrative background but this was new and out of my comfort zone. I felt that attending this conference at the beginning of the year would also help me set the tone for my business. Push out of my comfort zone and take risks.
On My Way to Imaging USA
In November, I joined the Professional Photographers of America (“PPA”) for their educational content and support for photographers. The upside was the conference. As a new member, the registration fee was waived for my first conference. Bonus! Aside from all the other incredible resources, I thought this was the icing on the cake. So, I signed up, booked my flight and hotel, and started the countdown to the conference. And on January 21, I boarded a plane and headed for Nashville.
The theme for the conference was Connect. Learn. Thrive. In my opinion, it truly lived up to it! The venue was the Gaylord Opryland resort and it was huge. I spent that first night walking around trying to gain my bearings. Everyone I ran into was so helpful. Big shout out to the volunteers!! Everything went so smoothly from the attendee’s point of view.
Early on Sunday, January 22, I headed down to the registration area, printed my badge and my adventure truly began. The classes and presentations were amazing. The expo was huge with an incredible variety of vendors (gear, photo labs, etc.). The two keynote speakers made an impact. I met several new photographers and had great conversations. The conference wrapped up on the 24th and I left wanting more.
The Return Home
The last bit of time I had before my return flight to Portland was spent writing up my notes. There were a lot of nuggets of information that I was bringing home and writing it out helps me retain it. One of the best feelings I had while being at the conference was feeling that I fit in. Everyone who attended were at different stages in life and their photography journey and everyone was encouraging. Such a unique experience in a competitive world. I’m looking forward to seeing what the rest of 2023 has in store because January was freaking awesome!!
As always, if you have any photography needs, please reach out. I’m happy to chat to see if we are a good fit or refer you to a colleague.
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I'm a Vancouver, WA photographer focusing on portraits and have a love of travel!