On Twitter, on Facebook and even on LinkedIn, I have been asked the same question: “Are you going to be at WPPI?”
The short answer is: no. The somewhat longish answer is: no, not this year, but hopefully the next.
It got me thinking, however, about my friends who have been to every single WPPI convention in Las Vegas for the last 20+ years. That’s commitment. That’s loyalty. That’s staying power. That’s knowledge. Those photographers are obviously much more advanced than I could be; knowing their craft, the business and the industry we are all members in.
Can you imagine going to every single WPPI convention? Are you that committed to your business or to the industry?
Is WPPI the must-go event of the year for wedding and portrait photographers? If you are going, what do you get out of conventions like WPPI? How do you pay for the entire experience? Do you set aside a special budget for it? If you are not going, why not?
Are there other conventions you attend on a regular basis? For me MysticSeminars and Inspire Photo Seminars provide great value. Why? Because I live in Connecticut and while MysticSeminars is in my back yard, I think of Inspire Photo Seminars as being in my front yard, in Massachusetts. The smaller, more intimate, nature of these events are also a bit factor in my decision to commit to them every year. I guess, then, it comes down to one’s personality and goals.
So tell us a little bit about you and your goals. Would a big (and I do mean BIG convention like WPPI) be your cup of tea or would you prefer smaller, more regional gathering of wedding and portrait photographers.
Please comment below!
Carolyn Ann Ryan says
Interesting question. I only decided two weeks ago to return to WPPI this year for my 2nd trip. Last year was my first. It was an awesome educational experience, and introduced me to a group of photographers from all over the country that have become my closest colleagues and friends. And it’s great that we are all over the country, because we can share advice on how to handle situations without worrying about competition.
But WPPI is about so much more for me – it’s about education, networking, and meeting vendors and seeing new products. I have a packed schedule set.
Budget – won my registration, used airline miles to pay for the the hotel, and so I’m working to keep costs to a minimum, and I will only buy things at the tradeshow that I really need – or already use and can pre-purchase for a significant discount (saving me money later). And there is always the hope of winning cool prizes.
The most exciting part for me today as I get ready – is knowing that all those friends that I made last year are going back too! We are all getting together for the evening events and some other meet-ups, and I get to see my friends. It’s education and fun all together!
I’ll let you know how it really went when I return, but for now, I’m psyched to be able to go back.
Anne R. says
I think every other year is a good balance. I like going every year just as a family reunion to catch up with all of my photo industry friends that live all over the world- but I’m really just going for them and seeing new things in the tradeshow is just a bonus. I don’t attend platforms or shoot outs anymore unless I’m teaching them.