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Tampa Recap

Last time I wrote, I was sitting in Vancouver waiting to catch my plane to Tampa, where I attended my third DWF Wedding Photography Convention. A whole lot has happened in the past week!

I left YVR and flew to Vegas. Half way through the flight the lights in the cabin started flickering. The plane would go completely dark and then all the lights would come on, then flick on and off. All the call buttons were dinging, so there was constant sound, and every time the flight attendants came on the PA, the lights would flicker more. No one had a clue what was going on, the flight attendants were running up and down the aisle and we were all SCARED! This was all going on, unknown to the captain, and eventually, after half an hour, he came on the PA and said that everything was fine for him up front and that we were on our descent into Vegas. We landed safe and sound, but I was not wanting to get back on a different plane to head to Tampa.

3 am on the way to Tampa and all the lights come on in the airplane again, this time because someone had a cat (yes, the kind that meow) that got loose and was running around the plane.

The plane touched down in Tampa Thursday morning and I was greeted by a chilly 28oF. About the same temperature I had left behind in Williams Lake, but this was Florida. I thought it would be beach weather, not cold out! Record lows for this time of year!! Eventually, things did warm up and the rest of the week was quite pleasant weather wise and did not ever get too hot!

Thursday, I spent the day getting ready for the convention, in preparation for opening the doors on Friday at noon to more than six hundred wedding photographers at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay hotel.

On Friday, I had the wonderful opportunity of being mentored by Jesh de Rox and Tony Hewitt. Both totally different, but both totally inspiring. Jesh has changed the way that I think about life. I’m determined to be an opener and not a closer. Forever. And Saturday morning, I spent an hour with Mitche Graf discussing pricing and marketing strategies.

Friday afternoon my winning streak began, when I answered a question in Laura Novak’s seminar and won a DVD on marketing. Saturday, the winners of the DWF Finao Photo Contest of the Year were announced, and much to my surprise I won the Couples Category. $500 Cash and a new lens – SWEEEEEET!!!! Sunday evening at our Convention Party at the Tampa Aquarium, I won a Boda Bag playing Deal or No Deal.. NICE!!!!!

I participated in an hour of Trash the Dress shooting and our two model brides played in a fountain and I know that I have at least one amazing image that I will post later today of this session. I also took some palm tree pictures – because, well, we don’t have palm trees here, and they were exciting for me to see! I had to bring back a little bit of Tampa, you know? 🙂

The seminars were super informative and inspiring and I took away something different from each of them. Things to implement today to make my business better.

I met some incredible photographers in Florida, and learned just as much from discussing things with them over lunch as I did attending a 90 minute lecture. Special mentions go out to Andrea, Dean, Craig, Chris, Jon, Carey, and everyone else that I had heartfelt discussions with. Thank you.

I arrived back in Vancouver yesterday afternoon to discover that my luggage had been lost. It is still somewhere out there… I hope. Possibly Phoenix, possibly Puerto Vallarta, but hopefully on it’s way to me soon!

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