Photo Pro Expo 2013


First and foremost, my apologies for being such a silent blogger for so long.  I have taken on a few new responsibilities and also apparently channeled my inner “bear” and attempted hibernation mode for a while.  I am *fingers crossed* going to post at least once/week from here on out.  That’s the goal!

So, now to begin my blog backlog….

The second weekend of February was the annual PhotoPro Expo in Covington, KY.  This was my second year attending the 4-day event.  The speakers were awesome, the socializing was awesome, and the trade show was once again, awesome.

During the trade show, Westcott Lighting hosts (and lights) the Fantasy Model Shoot-Out.  This year there was one-less studio set-up and more people with camera in hand, so it was overwhelmingly crowded at times.  However, one of my favorite models returned this year, so I tolerated the crowd for a period of time.  Model Shoot-Out CrowdImage taken by Lisa Hezlep
Sometimes, it’s nice being short. 😉  Check out the images that I was able to grab of these pretty-costumed people:

Day 1 of the Westcott Fantasy Model Shoot-OutDay 1paparazzi shotDay 2 of the Westcott Fantasy Model Shoot-OutDay 2

I have yet to submit my images into the contest (and as I type, I realize that I probably missed the deadline,) but if you would like to see other photographers’ submissions, please follow this link to the Flickr page!

So, that’s what I’ve got for now.  I have some really fun posts coming up, including images from a project that I have been working on for 2 years.  Please stay tuned!

My final Ode to the Expo

So, for every person that is interested in photography, either behind the scenes or just to look at some pretty AWESOME images, this blog’s for you!

After spending 4 days at the PhotoPro Expo, I learned a lot, I wrote a lot, I oooh’d and aahh’d a lot, I networked a lot, and I met a lot of spectacular artists!  The point to this post is simply to introduce you to some amazing people and some crazy-awesome “I need these” products.

Let’s start with some people:

Vincent Laforet  First, and foremost, he made me respect the Tilt Shift.  He was a photographer for the New York Times and many of his images made some very memorable covers.  He did a lot of aerial photography (he can have that, I enjoy being close to the ground.)  He is now diving headfirst into directing and videos.  Crazy-amazing!  Yeah, I bought his book 🙂

Kirk Voclain  Besides being an amazing Senior (as in High School) photographer, he is one hell of a stand up comedian.  I almost missed his seminar because it ran until 11pm on a day that started at 7am.  Thankfully, my fellow Cincy Smugger, Marion was there to suffer the fatigue with me (and I had some tiny wings, courtesy of Red Bull.)  I never imagined laughing so much in a how-to-succeed-in-business-while-shooting-as-many-seniors-as-possible seminar; especially after 15 hours of note taking and intense listening.  Anyway, check out his work!

Lindsay Adler  Ahhhh, to be a fashion photographer.  I am a huge fan of the Out of the Box shoots.  I do very well with themes.  So here you have a very talented photographer that shoots outside of the box, likes her shoots to carry a theme, AND she shares a name (ignore the “a.”)  What more do I need to say, LOVE her work! If she had a coffee table book, I would own it.

Scott Kelby  First, I didn’t think it was possible for a human to store as much knowledge in their brain as this man must have in his.  He spent 3 hours on stage, demonstrating (start to finish) a studio photo shoot WITH post-edits.  He successfully re-introduced me to every single studio lesson that I’d ever learned from my college courses 10+ years ago.  He hosts a jam-packed educational blog, several workshops and multiple webinars, and is also an amazing photographer to boot!

Jerry Ghionis  Let me start with his Australian accent… No, just kidding.  But seriously, he’s from Australia and travels the world, teaching and shooting weddings.  AMAZING weddings!  In the 3 hours that he spoke on stage, I gained a new love for weddings.  I love weddings, don’t get me wrong, but they are STRESSFUL. He has a more relaxed approach and it works. You say, “yes, it’s easy for him to tell you how it’s done, but does it really work? And how can I pull that off?”  Well, after telling us, he showed us. I kid you not, in a 5 minute period, he seduced the entire audience and then made all the ladies (and some men) cry.  I was sobbing by the end of his lecture.  After his seminar ended I, along several other colleagues went straight to the registration booth and signed up for the all-day Jerry Ghionis lecture add-on for the following Monday.  That Monday I spent another 9 hours listening to him teach a room of about 150 people, and it was totally worth it.  So to any readers out there that are in full wedding-planning mode… 😉 Oh, and his coffee table book is on order.

There were several other speakers that were all well worth listening to and equally just as amazing.  The above mentioned were definitely my top 5!

Now, for photographers that are wanting to add to their grocery lists:

But, wait! There’s more. Too much more. An overwhelming amount more.

This is a very small portion of my want list, but again if anyone is feeling generous. 😉  Notice my new interest in lighting? Studio? ….someday.

Model Shoot-Out: Part 2

I mentioned 4 models were present for the Westcott Model Shoot-Out at the PhotoPro Expo last weekend.  So of course I have to share the love and post some of the others too!

Starting with Dawn:

She was the “glamorous” model during the shoot-out on Sunday.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take her picture on Saturday when she was a “laundry” girl.  Her Saturday set featured a clothes line with pinned clothing.  Too cute!

Next, we have Anthony.  He was dressed as a character from ‘Assassins Creed,’ whatever that is (I’m an NES, ‘Kirby,’ Mario Bros’ person.)  At one point he had a little boy sitting on his lap, sucking on a lollipop.  Very cute, but since I don’t know the little boy’s parents, I’m not gonna post the pic.  Anthony was dressed in a suit, tie, and fedora the day before.  Again, bummed that I missed him. And finally, Natalie.  A woman after my own heart.  I was able to grab one image of her on Saturday.  She totally rocked the Steampunk! If you aren’t familiar with Steampunk, think Victorian era mixed with Sci-fi. ‘Moulin Rouge’ and The Smashing Pumpkins’ video ‘Tonight, Tonight’ demonstrate the style perfectly (IMO.)  If that still doesn’t help, please check out Natalie’s photograph below: On Sunday, she went totally Pin-Up!  Love the Pin-Ups!!!  As a side note, if anyone wants to do a Pin-Up session, please give me a call! So those are my model images.  If you would like to check them out in their entirety, I have them posted to my flickr account and also to my Facebook page.  Really hoping to win the shoot-out contest.  We shall see!

And by the way, Dawn has a Facebook page!

Lighting & set-up provided by Westcott ( co-creators of the Icelight (on my want/need list, if anyone is feeling generous.)

Model Shoot-Out: Part 1

So this is Laurel.  She made many photographer friends this past weekend at the PhotoPro Expo.

After spending 44+ hours with so many photo-friendly colleagues, mentors, teachers, and professionals, I have plenty of goodies to talk about.  Trust me, there will be several future posts resulting from my time spent (time very well spent) at this huge gathering over Super Bowl weekend.

The Expo started Thursday, February 2nd and ran thru Monday, February 6th.  It was held at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center, in Covington, KY.  Side note… I spent many days driving to and from Covington, KY and I still have yet to master the art of not getting lost on the way out of Covington.  For me, it’s kinda like a mini-Bermuda Triangle.  So anyway, on Saturday and Sunday they not only held seminars, but also hosted a rather large trade show (if you are into photography, gear and props, do NOT go in there with an empty credit card, unless you want a new monthly bill.)  Not only do they sell everything on my “want” lists, but they also hold a model shoot-out.

At the Westcott Model Shoot-Out, we are given the opportunity to hone our photography skills, using Westcott studio lights, backdrops, and models.  Which brings me back to Laurel.  She would be the model, that on Day 2 of the shoot-out, wore some crazy patent-leather/vinyl, platform boots to go along with her Harlequin checkered Jester costume.  The three remaining models will be posted in a future post, but I opted for Laurel first, as I am a sucker for clowns, jesters and anything with a Harlequin, diamond pattern on it.

The way that the shoot-out worked was very simple, and very chaotic.  Anyone with their camera could come up to any model at anytime, pose them and shoot them.  I kinda felt like the paparazzi a few times.  The sets were prearranged in four separate booths with backdrops, lighting and some props.  It was my job, as the photographer to settle the technical aspects of the manual settings withing my camera and make sure to capture the models in creative and interesting ways. Hmmm… reminds me of what I do on a pretty regular basis.  Can I say it?  I LOVE my job!

To the models that stood, posed, sat, and posed some more while being photographed for 4+ hours, I say “Thank You!”

As I’d mentioned before, I will be posting more from the PhotoPro Expo in the very near future.  It was an amazing experience and well worth the time spent.  I saw some A-M-A-Z-I-N-G photography, and I would just be a greedy person if I kept it all to myself.

Please stay tuned!

By the way, Laurel has a Facebook page!

Lighting and sets provided by Westcott