Learning never ends. For me when it comes to staying inspired, being on top of the best technology, knowing what products to offer my clients and fine tuning my shooting skill set I look to conferences and workshops. I prefer a smaller more intimate setting and in the past couple of years I have searched for those that offer a fresh approach to the standard hotel ballroom base camp. When I found Field Trip I knew this was just the place for me! Of course I was a bit nervous about having to apply to go to this intimate adventure in learning … would they even accept me to attend?!? How elite is this group?!? What am I getting into?!?! But all those nerves faded away and I was quickly registered and bunking with my pal Meg Simone. (phew!)

I left cold and snow covered New England for Santa Barbara and the El Capitan Campground. Now, this is not a New England style campground. In fact, I have a hard time even calling it a campground! (the Real Housewives stayed here!!) Adorable yurts, platform tents and cabins dotted the hills near the California coast at this “campground”. I had hopes of sunshine on my face as I sat in a field learning. But, it rained. Hard. Really hard. Except for the last night and the morning we left, I ran from tent to cabin to cabin to yurt in my L.L. Bean boots! But looking past all the rain this trip and conference was pure magic. I learned a lot. I opened my eyes to new ideas. And I met some really talented, smart and fun people. A worthwhile trip in my book, rain or no rain.

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On Saturday, February 8th, we will be hosting our popular Camera 101 workshop at our studio in York, Maine! This is perfect for those of you who got that new camera under the Christmas tree this year or made a new year’s resolution to take better pictures of your family and friends. We will go over all those fancy buttons on your camera that look so scary and give you all the tools you need to take great pictures! You don’t have to be a professional photographer to take our workshop so bring your camera and questions and join us on February 8th. Seating is limited, so contact us soon to sign up.

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In our previous blog post I talked about our recent trip to Arizona for a couple of amazing workshops. Today, Heidi shares with us her thoughts on attending her first big photographers conference and what Fearless Photographers is all about.

It seems so long ago, especially with this past week’s cold spell that I was basking in the warm Arizona sun at the Foundation Conference. My memories of the event are keeping me warm and inspired so I thought I would share a little bit about my experience.

As a photographer I’m constantly looking for ways to continue developing my skills and reinvent them. One way to do this is to attend workshops. There are a lot of really great photography workshops out there to choose from and I was lucky to find out about the Foundation Conference through Brea. She was going to attend the Posh Retreat and the Foundation Conference happened to be taking place at the same time and same hotel, the fabulous Hotel Valley Ho in Scottsdale, Arizona. With the Posh Retreat and the Foundation Conference taking place at the same time, the hotel was full of creative energy and enthusiastic people. I found it really influential to mingle between the two conferences and connect with some remarkable individuals.

The Foundation Conference is a gathering of photographers from all over the world for a three day event of motivational and educational seminars. It is put on by the Fearless Photographers, an organization of wedding photographers who truly value photography and the art of capturing the moments.

There were so many great speakers at the FC2012 and it kicked off with Tyler Wirken. He delivered an incredible presentation, reminding us why we love capturing that decisive moment. This set the tone for the rest of the conference and showed us that as photographers we are shooting for future generations to see who we were and see our stories. I also loved listening to Anna Kuperberg and Jacklyn Greenberg, two very impassioned individuals, who shared with us their love for photography and how to incorporate your free spirit and fun attitude into your images. Some of the other speakers included Olivia Vale and Dave Getzschman who’s messages evoked in me the desire to cultivate empathy and challenge my visual personality.

Attending the Foundation Conference was a fabulous opportunity and I am very grateful to have attended it. Looking back, I think the most important thing for me, is to continue to develop my ability to understand and share the feelings of others through my photos. I look forward to the upcoming 2013 season and to challenging myself even more to truly tell the stories of our couples.

– Heidi

 

Scottsdale, Arizona, Hotel Valley Ho

 

Above: Always fun to Instagram when traveling!

Below The Foundation Conference attendees.

Hotel Valley HO, Scottsdale, Arizona

 

 

It’s always been important to me to never stop learning. It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut or routine in my creative world or lose track of the business side of my work. Attending workshops has been one way to keep on top of my game. Sometimes it’s a local photographers gathering and sometimes it takes me across the country to meet up with people from all over the world! This fall both Heidi and I travelled to Scottsdale, Arizona to attend two different workshops taking place at the same hotel! What are the odds?! (I think it was meant to be!)

I headed out to Arizona a couple of days ahead of Heidi as POSH started  before the two day Foundation Conference. Jen and Reagan, the creators of POSH, had asked me to document some of the retreats events for their website and blog so I was excited to get my bearings upon arrival. The POSH Retreat is an event for women filmmakers and photographers. I was lucky enough to attend and present a workshop at the very first POSH event two years ago so I was super excited to reconnect with familiar faces at this years retreat! I love how Jen and Reagan have created a retreat with a wonderful balance of education and reflection. I don’t know about you but I have a hard time sitting in a seat for hours and hours a day!

Every morning at POSH we were treated to a yoga class from the talented Heather Robertson at Centre Line. She got the group both physically and mentally warmed up for the morning workshops. With sessions like “Unleash the Power of You” and “Harness Your Strengths in Art and Business” we all needed to be on our game! I loved how all the session topics were both focused on us as creative individuals and how to harness it to be better at what we do both creatively and in business.

I loved listening to the StillMotion gals talk so deeply about story telling and how we tell a story with our gear choices, our site preparation and our contact with our clients. They really talked details and it was great to break it down to the nitty gritty!

Day one also included New England native and wonderful friend Meg Simone. She brought to life the possibility of living a backlog free business! She shared her work-flow and tips on how to remain focused while not burning out. Imagine that! Something that everyone in the room could learn from.

Day Two of the workshop brought us the adorable Heidi Bartlett of idieh design. She laid down the branding goodness that she does so very well, teaching us all the importance of our companies look and how that speaks to prospective clients and others in the wedding world. All things we need to brush up on! Following up Heidi’s presentation was the Outstanding Occasions duo of Heather and Jennifer. They have streamlined everything in their event company and shared with us tips on how to tighten up our own business processes to create a leaner, meaner, more effective business. They are also super techie so I loved hearing about all the amazing online options that we can take advantage of!

We got a dose of “The Commercial World” from Christina at Society Hill Films. Tho not the area I work in it’s always wonderful to hear about other areas of the film/photography world. Their work was amazing to watch and visually inspiring.

Both days at POSH wrapped up with mega hands on workshops. Learning your technical approach in both film and photography is so very important.  I loved the story telling hands on training with StillMotion. They talked a ton about where to find the shot, how to predict it, what lens to use to better tell the story and being able to work together as a team on the day of the wedding. Priceless information and great fun to act out! We were super lucky to have smarty pants Meg from Lens Pro to Go in the house all three days with suitcases FILLED with gear to play with. What photo geek doesn’t love ooohing and ahhhhing over all the latest camera bodies, lenses and toys?!?! Yes, we all left with a wish list of new gear to buy but the great part is we can rent it right from them!

Our final day of POSH focused on wellness. Yoga, Belly dancing, a healthy breakfast and a round table discussion brought us all together to wrap up final thoughts. With an intimate group of women it’s amazing to see how we all felt so open and connected by the end of the three days. Sharing our work and life experiences on a female to female level brought up hard questions and silly ones too! There is just something to be said about girl time.

I left Arizona feeling refreshed, connected to my business, with amazing new friends and ready to make a few exciting new changes for 2013!

 

women photographers and filmmakers, Meg Simone

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women photographers and filmmakers

I mentioned at the start of the blog post that the Foundation Conference was happening at the same place and same time…. so in good fun we joined forces for a spirited party on the last night. Stay tuned as Heidi will be blogging about her experience attending her first Foundation Conference later this week.

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Are you looking for a perfect gift for that photo enthusiast? Or are you looking to improve your photography skills? Come join us Saturday, January 19th for a Camera 101 Workshop at our studio in York, Maine from 9am until noon. We will teach you how to use all those fancy buttons on your camera and how to take better photos of your family and friends. Seating is limited, so contact us soon to sign up.

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