Thursday, January 27, 2011

San Antonio... PPA Imaging USA recap and more!

Wow, I can't believe January is almost over already! I have a feeling this year is going to go by way too fast...
I was in San Antonio last week to attend the Professional Photographers of America's annual convention, Imaging USA. It was awesome for two reasons: (1) IUSA was an incredibly amazing experience, and I learned a lot from the speakers and other attendees, and (2) I got to spend a week with my family, which was kicked off with my dad's 60th birthday party! Here's a recount of my trip, with some (unrelated) photos I took while in San Antonio.
My older sister had flown into San Antonio on Friday, then my little sister and I flew in at 2:15 on Saturday. He knew I was coming in to go to IUSA, but he had no idea Kay and Caroline were coming in! As soon as Caroline and I landed, we headed over to Perico's, where about 40 of our family and friends had gathered to celebrate his 60th! It was so fun!
Then on Sunday, I started off bright and early with Scott Robert Lim's "Portable Fashion Lighting Made Easy" and saw Hanson Fong's presentation on posing. In the afternoon, my dad joined me at the convention (he always has said I got my photographer genes from him) so we spent a few minutes at the Nikon booth at the expo before listening to Jennifer Hudson tell her story through her art (amazing!). I ran off to hear Yervant's take on the future of wedding photography while Dad saw Harry Benson recount his 60 years as a photojournalist.
On Monday, I was inspired by Doug Gordon's flow posing technique and heard Jamie & Todd Reichman speak on running a sustainable business (it was eye-opening!). My mom, brother, and little sister came down and we enjoyed lunch at La Gloria. I hadn't been over to the Pearl Brewery since it was renovated, so it was fun to see all the changes! Then we snuck in a little shopping before dropping Caroline off at the airport and I scurried back to see Jeff & Allison Rodgers' explanation of balancing business and life! That evening, Mom, Dad, and I went to a cooking class at their church. It was fun to be using the same bathroom that I had used exactly two years earlier to get dressed for my wedding! That's right--it was my husband and my anniversary! Hubby was busy with work all last week, so we didn't get to spend it together, which seems to be a tradition now! (If the same thing happens twice, that makes it a tradition, right?! ;)
The convention wrapped up on Tuesday. Storey Wilkins inspired me to showcase the moments at a wedding, and Clay Blackmore covered how to photograph everyone. I was "captured by the light" thanks to David Ziser, and Bob Davis showed us his wedding reception lighting techniques. By the end of the day, I was exhausted but so excited about what I learned that I spent a few minutes outside the convention center taking a few shots of the area. Then Dad and I stopped at Bill Miller's on the way home--perfect!
I had a few days to see family and friends before heading back to California. It was awesome to be able to spend so much time in San Antonio, yet I still felt like I had so many others I wanted to visit before jumping on the plane. Unfortunately, Friday came too quickly and I was back in San Diego before I knew it.
This week it's been back to work, and I've spent time prepping for the San Diego Shooting Group's meetup next week! Stay tuned, my friends! :)


Monday, January 10, 2011

San Diego Shooting Group

Hey Friends!

I wanted to write a quick post to let you know about a new opportunity I'm taking on this year.

Last month, Stephen Knuth approached me to take over the reigns as organizer for the San Diego Shooting Group, since he's moving to beautiful, sunny Florida to be with his new bride! :) He started this group last year as a way for photographers to get together to shoot, learn from each other, and build community. What's the best part of this group, you ask? Well, shoots are kept small so that they can be offered FREE for participating photographers! It's a great way for us to connect, practice, and learn! Typically, we'll meet up for a shoot in the afternoon, shoot for a couple hours, then we sit down and chat over dinner at a nearby restaurant.

We have one shoot lined up right now, and my intentions are to hold shoots every other month. The upcoming shoot is happening on Friday, February 4. It will be an engagement-style session in La Jolla. If you are interested in participating, tickets will be released this Thursday, January 13 at 7:00 pm (Pacific time). As I mentioned earlier, this shoot is FREE but the tickets are a way for us to control the number of people that will show up. Click here to register.

Sound good? Join us on Facebook to get advance notice of upcoming events, and don't forget to register for our next shoot!

See you soon!


Saturday, January 8, 2011

A New Year for this Photographer

Wow. That's really all I have to say right now. In case you didn't notice, it's 2011 already! And we're already more than a week into it! Remember my New Year's post from last year? I have the same exact sentiments about 2010 as I did about 2009 a year ago.

I once read that, as we get older, the years seem to go by quicker because each year takes up an increasingly smaller percentage of our total lifetime. I have no idea if that's true or not, but I do know that 2009 whizzed by before I knew it, and now 2010 seems to have been even shorter. Like, crazy shorter.

But it was a really good year! I know most photographers do their year-in-review in photo form, but I'm going with what I did last year and I'm going to sum up 2010 in words instead. (I like being different, ok?) Here's how I saw 2010:

I was away from my hubby on our anniversary, so I spent it watching a Chargers game at a friend's house instead. :)
We enjoyed the top layer of our wedding cake on our 13-month anniversary, and it was WAY more delicious than I ever imagined it would be! Seriously, couples, don't fear the year-old cake! :)
I met up with some awesome photographers and formally shot my first wedding!
I booked my first wedding!
I got personal and successfully blogged every day for a week as part of Diabetes Blog Week.
I took a trip to Miami Beach to attend the AIA convention, then hubby and I escaped for a road trip up to San Francisco (with stops on the way up and back). Both were awesome!!
I assisted two award-winning photographers at a wedding that was featured on TLC!
My family came out to visit us here in California--so fun!
I was booked solid for a month shooting weddings here in SoCal!
I put a collection of images up at the ZTA Gallery; opening night was amazing!
I met up with my family in Durango, CO to celebrate the holidays.

I have LOTS in store for 2011! Check back soon for more updates, including my new role as organizer of the San Diego Shooting Group! Also, I'm in the process of re-doing my website and blog, so that will be coming up in the next few months.

I already know that 2011 is going to present one of the most challenging experiences I'll ever have to go through. I'm not looking forward to it, but I know that I can and will handle it--especially with all my friends by my side. And, before you ask.... No, I'm NOT talking about a mini-me! :-P

So, how about some images, huh? :) Here are some shots from my recent holiday trip to Durango, CO. My hubby, my in-laws, and I drove there and met up with my immediate family as well as my aunt, uncle, and cousins. We did this trip for Christmas in 2007, and we had all been itching to go back!

One morning, hubby and I rented snowshoes and took a trek up the mountain near where we stayed. I had never snowshoe'd before, and we had a blast!

One day, my parents, hubby, and I went on a sleigh ride around Haviland Lake. Here we are before we took off. (My photographer dad took the picture of us.)
Here's the stable at Rapp Corral.
The next day, we took a trip on the Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. During the winter months, the train doesn't go all the way to Silverton, but the trip was awesome and we had some incredible views of the mountains and the Animas River below. Gorgeous! This first set of two images was taken using the Diana lens I got for Christmas! It was my first time to use it, and I definitely need to play with it more. :)
A big snowstorm hit the night before we left! Here are a few views from my parents' room the morning we headed out.
Back home, I snapped a few images of our decorations before we took them down for the year. First, the holiday cards we got!
And here's a small image of one of my favorite Christmas ornaments and the gingerbread tree we made this year. The ornament is one we picked up when we were in Hawaii on our honeymoon. :)
Here's to 2011!