This post brought to you by PPA – Professional Photographers of America. All opinions are 100% mine.
I remember my very first big-girl camera. I had been playing around with the idea of getting into photography (just as a mom taking pictures of my own kids at that point!) and my husband surprised me with my first SLR (in the days before digital photography!). I was more excited than a child on Christmas morning when I opened up that shiny new SLR, and for the next several months I learned all I could about taking good pictures.
It was several years (and many hours of practice and studying) later that I finally started to gain confidence in my abilities as a photographer.
Since that first SLR, I've learned about dark room developing….and then I moved into digital photography and editing on the computer. Photography is an art – an art form I still have so much to learn about! – but it is also an amazing avenue for starting and building your own business. Since those beginning days, I've photographed engagements, weddings, pregnancies, new babies, families, high school grads and every other life stage or special event you can think of. I have met and learned from other photographers who are SO much more talented than I am (I've convinced myself that it's ok if I'm not the best as long as I enjoy doing it).
At this stage in my life, I've settled in to a comfortable spot. Being a photographer fits my life as a blogger very well, and I know that many of my fellow bloggers also dapple in photography. Those of you who do enjoy taking pictures for other people – or hope to someday – you should consider joining PPA today!
What is the PPA?
Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is the largest international non-profit association created by professional photographers, for professional photographers. The PPA has roots dating back to 1869 (they definitely weren't using digital back then!) with close to 27,000 members who have taken advantage of the PPA's protection, education, and resources.
Almost as long-lived as photography itself, PPA has roots that date back to 1869. It assists close to 27,000 members through protection, education and resources for their continued success.
Check out the Summer Photolosophy Schedule
PPA has recently announced the ‘Summer Photolosophy’ events, which will give photographers across the country the chance to showcase their work, learn more about the photography business, and grow as photographers.
PPA is not in the business of making money off photographers, it is in the business of helping them as a non-profit built for professional photographers and run by professional photographers.
Events include workshops, master classes, business courses and exhibits hosted by some of the industry’s top photographers. I'm most intrigued by the PPA’s International Photographic Competition (IPC), which runs from August 3-7. How fun would that be to enter OR just peruse the entries for inspiration?
Other events include:
- iClick Expo (Des Moines, IA)
- Projection Sales in Your Pajamas (Atlanta, GA)
- Texas Summer Roundup (Kerrville, TX)
- Photopalooza (Fairview Heights, IL)
- Photo Safari (North Andover, MA)
- CAPTURE 2014 (Little Rock, AR)
- Storytelling Photography (Dallas, TX)
- Little Red Schoolhouse: Great Gatsby Style (Galveston, TX)
- The annual International Photographic Competition (Atlanta, GA).
The PPA is helping photographers “Be More” – PPA members are raising the bar in the photography business, inspiring other photographers to become more creative, profitable, protected, in-demand, and business savvy.
What does a PPA membership do for photographers? PPA members have access to dozens of members-only benefits, including insurance and business tools.
Not only can photographers easily protect their images with PPA’s Copyright Resource Center, but together with resource from the PPA, we can all educate clients and potential clients to “See the Difference” it makes and recognize the value in hiring a PPA photographer.
The Photocare program covers $15,000 in equipment replacement for your cameras, lenses, and other photography equipment including computer hardware. I know as a photographer with thousands of dollars of equipment, that's a huge benefit!
PPAedu offers you a 24/7 personalized online classroom with courses in business and photography technique, as well as degree and certification programs.
Are you a photographer or do you know a photographer that would benefit from membership in the Professional Photographers of America? Spread the word about the PPA!
Note: above image of photographers in beach is courtesy of Vasilena Balabanova of Jupiter, Florida. The first photo is of me at Great Falls just outside of DC!
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