I get so excited when I talk about Relevant Workshop! I just never know where to begin! My co-captain in planning this event, Meg Simone and I just wrapped up year two of Relevant Workshop a few weeks ago and I have been trying to wrap my head around a blog post since that day. We created this workshop as a way to bring wedding businesses from our Maine and New Hampshire communities together for a day filled with learning, inspiration and engagement, and to be totally honest, had no clue if it was going to fly. You know that feeling you get when you put your creation out there? When you whole heartedly share that you think something is fantastic and important? And you hold your breath for just a second because you hope so deeply that everyone else thinks the same thing?!?! Well, that happened again this year and after holding my breath for just a second we saw the most fantastic group of speakers, sponsors and attendees make year two of Relevant Workshop even better than we could have imagined! I love this event, not just because Meg and I pour our energy into it in such a personal way, but because our community needs this. We all crave connecting in a more personal way. Sharing our ideas, our love for what we do and the struggles we ALL have in running our small businesses. Year two of Relevant Workshop filled me right up with all kinds of excitement for what lies ahead, not just for my own business but for this entire community! Can’t wait for next year! 🙂

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Relevant Workshop 2016

You know when you get an idea stuck in your head and you think it is a good one but you have that pause… that moment of wonder… will anyone else think this is as cool as I do?!?! Ya so, Relevant Workshop was that idea for us and it was an idea that totally came to life this past April. Meg Simone of Meg Simone Wedding Films and I have been talking about putting together an educational experience for our community of wedding professionals for a couple of years. We would talk about it, put it on the back burner, then revisit and so on. Until this year. Sometimes you just have to jump in and go for it… especially when it feels right!

We are both so lucky to have a strong network of colleagues and workshop opportunities and have heard time and time again that other wedding professionals wished they had the same thing for their crafts. So why not build that for our community? Why not create our own community for all wedding professionals?!!

So we created the Relevant Workshop. A place for wedding community members to come together for a day of inspiration, education, and engagement which would elevate our wedding industry and strive to keep us relevant in our craft.

We started to gather a dream team of speakers to cover content that would go back to the core of what Relevant Workshop is all about: staying relevant in our crafts, building our community and getting inspired. We found the perfect location at the Barn at Flanagan Farm where it would feel cozy, inviting and have space for people to feel at home. Meagan Gilpatrick and her team at Maine Seasons Events were there to cross the t’s and dot the i’s making the space everything we had hoped it would be for all who attended; who knew she’d create such an amazing back drop and sign?! She’s got some serious skills! The website was launched, registrations came in and then it happened. We sold out! To say we were blown away is a major understatement. In the end we registered about 70 people for the workshop! Had 10 awesome presenters, 4 hours of networking and 8 hours of relevant education!

You guys. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. For having faith in what Meg and I created, in the education that our speakers offered up and for jumping in with both feet to build your businesses, your community and have a bit of fun doing it! The energy you all brought to the barn was something I had never experienced before.

We are both still digesting all that has happened with this idea that we brought to life and hope to have more Relevant Workshop events in the future (yes this is a plug so go sign up here to get e-mails about future happenings). Thank you to our amazing team of presenters, panel members, helpers and sponsors for making this day what it was, it wouldn’t have been this awesome without all of your efforts! Cheers to saying Relevant!

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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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We get asked all the time from our family, friends and clients about what camera to buy and how to take better photos. The holidays are always a popular time to purchase a new camera or gift to that special someone. Keeping that in mind we will be offering our first camera workshop! Come join us for an introduction on how to take better photos. We will break down what all those buttons actually do, how to set up your new camera and go over all your questions. The workshop also makes a great gift for anyone you know who might be getting a new camera or needs a little brush up on their current skills. Space is limited so e-mail or call us with any questions or to sign up!