Well hellllloooooo strangers! When I went to put this up today, I hardly remembered how to log into my blog... it's been way too long! As I believe most of you know, the reason I've been MIA here is that I went to Las Vegas for the Wedding and Portrait Photographers International conference... and if you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you know that it was a huge success! Las Vegas WPPI 2012

The weird thing about my trip to Vegas is that I hardly took any pictures at all... I had my camera with me, of course, but to be honest, it spent most of the time in the hotel room. There was plenty to shoot, but my main goals in going were to a: learn a bunch of stuff, and b: meet a bunch of people. And I have to say, though I wish I had more pictures from the week, I met those two goals 110%, and not having many pictures to show for it is a small price to pay.

Like everyone else, I hate walking up to random people and trying to strike up a conversation, so my main strategy in meeting new people was to audition for a spot in Photo Ignite. "Ignite" is a style of presentation where participants are given five minutes to speak on a subject accompanied by 20 slides. Each slide is displayed for 15 seconds, and slides are automatically advanced. This year, Photo Ignite was held the opening night of the conference, and I auditioned and was chosen to present... to over 3000 people. Yikes! I'm pretty comfortable with public speaking, but this took it to a whole new level. The good news? My strategy totally worked! Not only was getting up there a total adrenaline rush, but it resulted in loads of "Hey, I saw you last night" type-conversations... and lots of new pals for me :D

Below, my iPhone pictures from the week: the view from my window, the view of the back of the crowd when I first walked into the ballroom for Photo Ignite, and two shots out the plane window (I'm a total sucker for plane window shots).

WPPI Las Vegas Photo Ignite

(And as soon as the official video of my presentation is made available online, I'll be sure to post the link... stay tuned!)

Really, the only official shooting I did all week was the morning I left. My awesome roommate Victoria (see her lovely work here) had hatched a brilliant plan to hire a couple of models and go out and do a shoot on the strip. We were hoping to do a night shoot, but the models were all so busy with the official WPPI work that the evening didn't work out. The lovely and purely coincidental thing about the models we ultimately got to work with is that they were actually married to each other, and had never had wedding pictures made... a total win-win in a town that's almost never win-win! Las Vegas WPPI Model ShootLas Vegas Bride & GroomLas Vegas WPPI Model Shoot

The only down side to my trip (if you can call it that) is that my to-do list is now 20x longer than it was before (and thus the lack of blog love)... thank goodness the calendar threw me an extra day this year! I've got some really exciting things on the burner, though, and will be sharing them with you in the next few weeks. I hope you're all doing well... happy Leap Day!

Las Vegas WPPI Conference