Whether you are brand new to photography or an established professional who wants to learn what’s next for photography, one of these five conferences can help you gain the knowledge and connections you seek.
At each of these events you can see demonstrations of the latest photography equipment, pick vendors’ brains, expand your technical skills, learn more about the business of photography, and network with experts and peers. Here’s a quick rundown of the major events scheduled for the first half of 2013.
Las Vegas, Nevada
January 6-7: DIMA, PSPA, and SPAA Conferences at Bally’s
January 6-7: AIE Future Imaging Summit at Bally’s
January 8-11: PMA Conferences and Exhibits at LVH (formerly Las Vegas Hilton)
If you like seeing how photography fits into the larger universe of consumer electronics, this event is for you. Held in conjunction with the International CES (Consumer Electronics Show), the PMA-hosted events can benefit anyone involved in marketing photography products or services, including photo-imaging retailers, chain stores, photo labs, and professional photographers.
At the DIMA conference, digital-imaging professionals will share business-growth ideas such as retail strategies, social media marketing, and photo publishing. Also discussed with be technologies such as hybrid imaging and consumer-generated augmented reality.
The PSPA/SPAA conference helps school, sports, and event photographers discover new ways to grow their business. Sessions will cover microbudget filmmaking, 21st Century lighting techniques, photo-merchandising trends, and social-media marketing.
For the Future Imaging Summit, The Association of Imaging Executives (AIE) is bringing together top imaging executives for four in-depth panel discussions to forecast the future of photography. The four areas to be discussed include: capture technology; online and smartphone image sharing; desktop and mobile apps and software for editing images; and output (the latest tools, tools, techniques, and materials for physical photo display).
The PMA@CES Conference sessions on January 8-10 will discuss the top imaging and technology trends to watch in 2013, new opportunities in creative photo products and personalized photo gifts, and best practices a challenges for storing photographs “in the cloud.”
Georgia World Congress Center
January 20-22, 2013
Hosted by the non-profit Professional Photographers of America (PPA), Imaging USA is the largest annual convention and expo organized by professional photographers for professional photographers. Expert instructors will show you how to make more money with photography and balance that business your family life.
In one session, Will Crockett will discuss how to become comfortable, efficient, and profitable creating hybrid “eProducts” that customers can view in their iPhones, iPads, Facebook pages, and any screen you can think of. Hybrid imaging is the skillful blending of photos, videos, and audio (and anything else you can fit into an electronic image file).
Three days of more in-depth education are offered January 17, 18, and 19, covering topics such as business basics for portrait photographers, business basics for wedding photographers, portrait retouching, composite imaging, and how to turn your passion for photography into a viable business.
WPPI Wedding & Portrait Photography Conference & Expo
Las Vegas, Nevada
MGM Grand Hotel
Conference: March 7-14, 2013
Expo: March 11-13, 2013
This event is organized by the Wedding & Portrait Photographers International division of Nielsen Photo Group, the same company that publishes Rangefinder and PDN magazines and hosts PhotoPlusExpo in New York. The WPPI conference is the biggest event in the world for wedding and portrait photographers.
Sessions are geared toward teaching up-and-coming photographers how to strengthen their shooting skills, market their photography services, and run a profitable business.
Specific topics to be covered include: how to make the most of out of Pinterest; how to get amazing portraits in venues that are less-than-appealing; business law for 21st century photographers; and easy HDSLR filmmaking techniques for still photographers.
Orange County Convention Center
April 17-19, 2013
Organized by the National Association of Photoshop Professionals, this design and photography event offers three days of training from experts in Photoshop, photography, and lighting. The program includes more than 100 classes on photography, multimedia, printing/prepress, retouching, lighting, composition, and Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop, and Creative Suite. Specific sessions explain how to: sell your work online, create custom photo books, manage paperwork such as contracts and licenses, and get great prints from just about any printer.
The Big Photo Show
Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles Convention Center
May 4-5, 2013
In September, PMA (the Photo Marketing Association) introduced The Big Photo Show website as an online community where photo enthusiasts, professional photographers, photo retailers, imaging labs, and manufacturers can meet, learn and grow together.
Now, PMA has announced the dates and location for The Big Photo Show, an event where photo enthusiasts can come to: see, touch, and try the latest in photography gear; meet representatives from the top equipment manufacturers, retailers, and labs; interact with other photographers; and hone their skills.
“The website offers photo contests with great prizes, tips and tricks from expert photographers, and a calendar of events, where photo enthusiasts can find out what’s happening in the world of photography, right where they live and work,” said Jim Esp, Executive Director of PMA. “Retailers, labs, framers, photographers and other imaging industry members can share their news and invite photo enthusiasts in their local markets to take part in whatever they’re doing.”
Allen Showalter, PMA President, added, “The Big Photo Show and the new, corresponding online community will bring consumers who love photography together with the people who have made it their life’s work to serve them. What a remarkable opportunity for imaging businesses to develop relationships with photo enthusiasts, and for those avid photographers to discover all the wonderful tools and services this industry has to offer, to help them grow in both passion and ability as photographers.”