Chairman of the Board
Doug Peninger dpeninger@SEPPAonline.com
George Singleton gsingleton@SEPPAonline.com
Kevin Jiminez kjiminez@SEPPAonline.com
Mary Fisk-Taylor mfisktaylor@SEPPAonline.com
District of Columbia
Janet Boschker jboschker@SEPPAonline.com
Salon Exhibition Chair Executive Director
Jessica Vogel jvogel@SEPPAonline.com
*** Paula Mignagna
***Anthony Maril Joe Tessmer
*** Martin Gudz Kaye Newsome
*** Spencer Smith Jason White
Rick Gibbons ExecutiveDirector@SEPPAonline.com
S out he r n E x p o su re
Souther n Exposure magazine is an online publication of SEPPA and is published monthly. Editor V ictoria Kelly vkelly@SEPPAonline.com 919.818.0726 Ad Sales & Business Manager Rick Gibbons ExecutiveDirector@SEPPAonline.com 866.982.4856
*** Lidia Miller Steve Clark
*** Wesley Ellis Gil Brady
*** Bruce Williamson Janet Boschker
*** Patty Hallman Gregg Martin
Article & Ad Submissions 5th of every month OnLine Publication 20th of each month SEPPA 3710 North Main Street High Point, NC 27265 866.982.4856 Acceptan ce o f a d v e r t i si n g d oe s n ot c a r r y wi th i t en dor se m e n t b y t h e p ub l i sh e r. Opi n i o ns expre sse d b y Sout h e r n Exp osure o r an y o f i ts aut h or s d oe s n ot n e c e ssa r i l y refl ect t h e p osi t i on s of t h e Sou theaster n Pro fessi on a l P h ot og r a p h e r s A ssoc ia t io n . Asso ci ati on f i n a n c i a l i n f or m a t i on avai la b l e up on re q ue st .
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Attitude Sets Your Sails... Lew Everling, Cr. Photog., CPP
Are your sails full? Spring has sprung...are you stepping into the summer season with a new and fresh attitude? Attitude is everything but we rarely see a program or course geared towards it. We learn lighting, Photoshop, marketing and more but attitude is something typically just set aside as something that just comes naturally. Given the way broadcast news is these days it’s simply easier to break one down than build one up--have you noticed that it’s easier to criticize than compliment? Why is that?
Happiness doesn’t have to be a dirty word and happiness starts with your surroundings. I wrote in a recent article for SE about the life-threatening motorcycle accident in which my brother was involved--there were so many miracles that kept him alive: a heart condition was discovered, a surgeon “just happened” to still be at the hospital--for broken legs, broken ribs and torn aorta. There were a lot of things he could complain about as he approached his 40th birthday but his attitude was to celebrate the milestones--he can walk again, plays
Lew Everling cont’d... with his daughters and will be returning to work at the end of May after 9 months of therapy and rehab AND 3 months ahead of his doctor’s original thoughts. While the road wasn’t easy, it was much better once his attitude changed.
And then I think: what if I looked at every day as a toddler, seeing everything as if it were the first time. Adopting this way of thinking has brought me a more relaxed view and shown me how valuable each and every day is.
As so often happens in life, when you can change the way the situation looks, change the way you look at the situation.
Here’s my challenge to you: pick a project or task you do daily and force yourself to do it differently. Maybe it’s a Photoshop technique or something in Lightroom or even a photographic style. Practice makes perfect, you know, and you get stronger by challenging yourself.
As I watch my 15 month old son look at the world I often wonder what he’s thinking as he’s walking on grass for the first time, feeling mulch, soil, sticks and leaves under his feet. Every day as I watch him discover something new from the wind blowing in his face to people on the street I catch his excitement from the gleam in his eye to his jabbers.
Complacency is an easy route but the best have never taken the easy path. It’s the attitude you choose that sets your sails. Happy sailing to you all!
Spring Cleaning, wootness Style! Christine Walsh-Newton, M. Photog., Cr., CPP For a long time, I only did spring-cleaning in my house. I considered it a way of taking care of what was mine, keeping things in good repair and not cluttering the place up with things I no longer needed or wanted. This annual purge left me energized and re-focused. Then, I started spring-cleaning my business. It only made sense. Again, I'm taking care of what is mine and making things run smoother overall. Here are a few simple ways to purge your business of things that are dragging it down and sucking up your time. Let's get
that spring-time rev-up going: 1. Purge vendors. If you haven't used them in the last year, you're probably not going to. Unsubscribe from their email lists and ditch their brochures and catalogs taking up room in your filing cabinet. While you're at it, go through all of your vendor files and ditch any catalogs and communications that are more than a year old. 2. Purge paper files. While you're digging around in your filing cabinets, remove all your 2013 business files and place them in a file storage box from the office supply store. They don't need to
Christine Walsh-Newton cont’d... be taking up prime real estate in your file cabinets. 3. Purge digital image files. If you do this, do it now. This also includes making final backup files for 2013. 4. Purge time-sucking activities. Let's be practical. There are only so many hours in a day and there are only so many hours you can have your time occupied by pro-bono photography activities without it impacting your bottom line. We all want to be the nice guy and say “yes” when we're asked for help, but sometimes you just gotta draw a line. 5. Purge your price list. I'm betting you use a computer-based accounting system. And I bet if you checked the “help” section, you could figure out how to set it up so that your profit margins are shown by type of sale. I encourage you to do this. Or if you already have, check it out and make a decision to deal with the item or service with the lowest profit margin. Either stop carrying it or revamp it in a way that makes it more desirable to your clients and more profitable for you. 6. Purge your assets. Assets depreciate over time. It's expected that at some point, your assets will have exhausted their depreciation and are prime candidates for giving the boot. We generally don't have a tough time getting rid of gear and equipment as our needs and technologies change, but most of us aren't so good about getting rid of those little things that add up and take up space and before we know it we have an overflowing props closet that we haven't seen the floor of in 15 months. Yeah, those assets. Or if you're like me, your collection of camera bags rivals any Coach bag obsession. Time to
suck it up and clean it out. Sell it on eBay or take it to your next camera swap meet. Someone else out there will be able to utilize it far better and more often than you currently are. 7. Purge your donations. Oooh, here's that nice guy dilemma, again. Take a look at your numbers for last year. Dollar-wise, how much did you donate in goods and money? How many hours did you donate services? Let's be practical again. There's only so much of this you can do without impacting your bottom line negatively. Pick one or two causes close to your heart and donate to them exclusively. Budget this at the beginning of your fiscal year and stick to it. It's easy to let our compassion get the better of us sometimes. 8. Purge your schedule. Maybe this shouldn't be so close to the bottom of the list, but it doesn't diminish its importance. Take time for you and for your loves. Whether it's Sundays or Wednesdays or from 6PM until bedtime every weeknight; have a time that belongs to you and your family. (I'm pretty sure I don't have to explain this one.) 9. Purge your projects. Just like I'm tossing that old chair on the fire pile because I just know I'm never going to get around to painting and recovering it - let go of some projects that are never going to see the light of day. I just know Mr. Wootness is going to remind me of that dry mount press I keep saying I'm going to use for the custom mounting service I'm going to add to my studio offerings. Yeah, right. 10. Purge social media activities. Yes, I know you're using Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and Instragram for their marketing power. Let's just be realis-
Southeastern Professional Photographers Association, Inc.
April 18, 2014 The SEPPA Board of Governors, at the annual meeting March 30, 2014, approved a retroactive â€œamnestyâ€? for the SEPPA degree program. Records submitted since the degree was first approved in 2010 have not been located, so all submissions until May 1, 2015, will be based on an honor system. If you have received print awards, a seal of approval or any qualifying service to the association, please review the degree chart and submit your request to the Executive Director as soon as possible to be eligible for the SEPPA Photographic Fellowship. After May 2015, any credits since 2010 may not be applied to the degree. After 2015, only credits will be applied that are received in the two-year time frame from one SEPPA Live! event to the next. Medallions and ribbons, as described in the degree requirements, will be presented at the 2015 SEPPA Live! event in Charlotte. Douglas W. Peninger SEPPA Chairman of the Board Submit credits to: Rick Gibbons ExecutiveDirector@seppaonline.com
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Christine Walsh-Newton cont’d... tic about how much of your social media time is actually being used to market. Bonus Hint: 11. Step away from Pinterest. Seriously. I have 3800 pins that I've never looked at a second time. Just ditch it completely. You'll never miss it.
Save the date Christine is a portrait photographer and owner of Gallery C in Dover, Ohio. She is a co-author of “The Daily Book of Photography” and authors “Wootness: The Big Girl and Guy’s Guide to Starting a Photography Business.”
SEPPA LIVE! Charlotte, NC May 1-5, 2015
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Evolve or Die Missy MWAC
It’s not a new mantra, although some peddle it as though it is a revolutionary concept they have coined. Ironically, these folks make their living as business coaches, so one can easily understand why. I read an article from one such “business coach” today. You know the sort-those that make money telling other people what to do and recycling information from things they’ve heard or read from the likes of Seth Godin and Ted Talks. It was sent to me via an emailed link and I opened it, having no idea what to expect. Okay, I sort of knew what to expect; I was just hoping I was wrong. The article, in a nutshell, claims that every old generation has a VERY difficult time adjusting to evolution. Ergo, (yes, I said “ergo” so you know this is a serious article) many live in the “Valley of the KOTOGS” (Keepers Of The Old Guard) “a place,” as the author states, where “all the pissed-off-used-to-haves spit at each other and everyone else.”
Missy MWAC cont’d... He claims “that valley is where some photographers live.” He goes on to write that progress won’t change “because a few angry photographers who’ve decided that the world must remain the way it was when they started, 15-20 years ago.” He then bids a RIP to the KOTOGS and “MWAC haters”-saying they really won’t be missed. Geeze Louise…where do I even start with this? Well, to be perfectly honest, after reading it, I had to start with a tumbler of vodka. So with a soothing adult libation in hand, let me comment: I don’t know any photographer who insists that the world must remain the same as it was 20 years ago. I really don’t. I can tell you I wouldn’t want it to. You ever retouch a negative? Yeah, I don’t know anyone who misses that. And while there are purists who adore film (which I completely understand) the world of digital and the Internet has opened up possibilities that never existed before. It has literally freed the minds and creativities of even the most experienced of film photographers. But here’s the thing this business coach does not seem to understand: To put it quite simply: An unwillingness to settle for mediocrity is NOT the same thing as an unwillingness to adapt. Now, I know that’s hard to hear when you’re a photography business coach, because you count on those new, inexperienced photographers to hang on your every word. THEY are your clients, your
bread and butter, and it is in YOUR best interest to pit the new against the experienced in order to make money. You have to foster a “You vs. Them” mentality in order to sell your services. I get that. I know how it works. And I guess that’s why you think that experienced photographers have no answers. It’s why you applaud the new photographers (your bread and butter) by writing that they are the ones who “question how things are done” and “suggest new ways to solve old problems,” giving the impression that those of the “Old Guard” are still shooting against backdrops with bookcases painted on them as they mount their Hasselblads onto tripods and grab a ProPack of film. And maybe some are…but no one I know. See, it’s not that experienced photographers are angry; it’s that they are staring with wide eyed disbelief at what is being peddled as “good information” to the masses of folks with cameras who don’t know any better…disbelief at the onslaught of workshops and business coaches and webinars that disparage the time and commitment any artist of merit knows is necessary to create a successful business…disbelief that there are those who prey on the naive among them. Yes, the “Old Guard” as you call them, hear advice such as: “People need to like who they do business with” and “Find your ideal client” and they roll their eyes. As Brian Regan would say, “Yeah, you’re
Missy MWAC cont’d... breaking some new ground there, Copernicus.” I know it makes a good sound bite, but “Old Guard” doesn’t hate; just the opposite…they LOVE this industry. They didn’t pick up a camera one day and declare themselves “Open for Business.” They wouldn’t have dreamed of it. And they cry out when they see photographers taking that shortcut; buying into the notion that they need nothing more than a camera and a dream to be successful. And they know, dear business coach, that while many things change and evolve: the things that make a business successful, truly successful, DO NOT CHANGE.
tography businesses. A far cry from the 5 year veterans most business coaches tout as “success stories,” right? It seems you can stand up against the nonsense in the industry and STILL evolve. Even without a business coach. Who knew?
For more of Missy’s out-of-this-world view of (p)rofessional (p)hotography, visit her website at www.missymwac.com
Things like: Knowledge Hard work Commitment Attention to detail Hearing beyond the words to what a client actually WANTS. Friendliness Customer Service A Desire to Always be Better Always do more than paid for Whether digital or film, studio or living room, new or experienced, these truths have stood the test of time. They don’t change with technology. They are tried and true. So, with all that said, might I make a suggestion: instead of berating those STILL in business 20+ years as “old and out of touch” why not learn from them as to what they are doing RIGHT. After all, 20+ years later and they are still running pho-
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The Master Image Don MacGregor, M.Photog.Cr, API, SPA, MPA, F/PPABC/A,(HLM)
How many times have your clients looked at proofs and said “ I don’t like myself in that one” or some variation of an objection? It is quite common. When you show clients “proofs”, you get a lot of objections and more importantly you have broken the promise you made (an amazing portrait) during the consultation. They expected an awesome image and you end up showing a lot of images, some good, some not so good and you make even more promises of retouching and enhancement. Think like a client for a moment: if your photographer promised an amazing session with beautiful portraits and your first impression was more promises of fixing things and also seeing expressions of yourself or family that were not great… what do you think...likely let down. We are undermining the joy of the session and portraits and more importantly the “experience” the clients are having by showing them weak original images. It is a proven fact that showing weak originals (needing color correction, retouching
and enhancement) will lead to poor sales.
However, when you take the time to polish your presentation images to the very best of your ability, your sales will exponentially increase. Never forget that the first impression is a lasting impression and there is no second chance for a quality first impression… in everything we do.
If we make 100 images and 5 unique compositions… we only show the client 5 final master images.
Today every session we do gets serious editing, retouching and enhancing on EVERY image we show. For sessions with a lot of variety of pose (i.e. child or senior) the retouching is based more on actions and fast techniques to polish images. We use Lightroom to color and density correct, burn, dodge and crop as needed. In some cases we might edit in PS to tweak a challenging problem or something we know a client will object to. The last thing we want is the client finding a problem as it puts a negative into the sales process. With families… what a joy. We no longer have clients express objections about expression, weight issues or any thing at all. We only show a master image. We edit a session first and choose a master image from each unique composition. We then analyze it for expressions of subjects. When someone does not look amazing, we select another pose where expression is better and “shop” it. If a sky is blown out and white… we again edit in PS and drop in some nice clouds. We tuck in hips, lift things (no delicate way of saying this and hope you understand my intention), retouch skin and basically have the image totally finished and ready
One must be careful to educate the clients on the process and WHY you are making a master image. We use scripts (words that carefully explain the value of a master image and promote our professional skills.) This is crucial as WE have educated them to want to see a ton of images and WE have created the problem. It is so amazing to sit in the projection appointment … chat a bit and then launch Proselect with the masters (all the others are in a secondary folder on the outside chance they ask to see them and that very rarely happens). Rather than someone saying “oh, I don’t like myself” (which is human nature, we all do it when we see images of ourselves), we hear comments like “wow, we look great”. They cant find anything they don’t like because we have gone to great lengths to present the very best we can. This has eliminated handling objections almost 100%. The big challenge is to choose which unique composition they like and move to display and size requirements. Look at Image #1. It is the raw capture of a location portrait for a 50th anniversary. We had no time nor ability to set up backgrounds or move furniture (hotel lobby) … we only had time to shoot. The shadows on the wall and lampshade are nasty. Now look at Image #2. This took less than ten minutes to do in PS. We cloned out the shadows, lampshade,
Don MacGregor cont’d... softened the skin and added a vignette. Which image would you prefer to sell? Look at Image #3 … raw capture. There several little problems (i.e. blown out floor, drifting eyes on a youngster, clothing that conflicts and a woman sitting and “settling”). This master image took approx 30 minutes to enhance. Again, which image would you prefer to present and sell? The use of master images in our studio has been an overwhelming success. It is actually FUN to sell and our sales have seen a serious increase. We are no longer playing defense and handling objections. I will admit it took a time to learn how to gain our clients’ trust and convey the reason we do master images but it has been more than well worth it.
About the author: Al Audleman is a Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) and PPA Approved Photographic Instructor. He is also an officially-recognized CPP Exam Preparation Class Instructor and former chairman of the Certification Committee involved in the revision of the CPP Exam. He has been instructing since 1996 and has taught at PPA affiliated schools in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Michigan, Texas, New England, California, Canada and the Bahamas. This article is an excerpt from his comprehensive CPP Study Guide “The Road to Certification for Professional Photographers.” This 247-page book is available as a PDF file by contacting Al via email at email@example.com.
Lens Magnification Factors © Al Audleman M.Photog.Cr., CPP, API, FDPE, FDAE, FED, GFD Current professional DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras are divided into two basic groups, both having optical viewfinders, and based on the size of the chip or sensor -- full-frame and partial-frame. Professional cameras are split into these two groups with the full-frame models often more expensive. Sensors in amateur cameras are even smaller and capture a smaller portion yet of the image produced by a lens at the plane of focus (formerly film plane). Sensor Size: Full-frame cameras like the Canons and Nikons capture an image that fills the entire 35mm frame, a 24x36mm sensor in most cases. This allows the use of a larger portion of the image produced by the lens, meaning you will need less enlargement to produce a larger print. Often lenses used on partial frame cameras are assigned “equivalent” focal lengths, meaning the equivalent of
the image captured on a full-frame camera. For example, the lens will be touted as a 28mm equivalent but the actual focal length will be less. On full-frame cameras, there is no such distinction since its sensor captures the “full” image available on a 35mm format. Partial-frame cameras in the Canon and Nikon lines and all the “point & shoot” cameras use a smaller sensor. This means that there is a “magnification factor” when considering the field of view or angle of view (coverage). The magnification factor on most professional, partial-frame cameras is about 1.5X. What does this really mean? A 100mm lens on a full-frame camera captures a certain “image.” The same lens, when used on a less-thanfull-frame camera with a smaller sensor (1.5X magnification in this case) captures less of the image. In fact, it would capture the same image as using a 150mm lens on the fullframe camera. A real-world example would be the point & shoot Canon SX50HS that has a 4.3~215mm zoom lens in terms of true focal length, but the chip is so small that the resulting capture is the same as using a 24~1200mm lens on a full-frame camera ... the 35mm “equivalent.” (This will be covered in a bit more detail later on in the “Road to Certification” Study Guide.)
An important point to understand when dealing with partial-frame cameras, with regard to the above magnification factor, is WYSIWYG -- “what you see is what you get.” You DO NOT just capture a PORTION of what you see in the viewfinder. You actually capture everything you see. Image Size: Image size is a term that can cause a lot of confusion. For the purpose of this discussion, “image size” is the size of the image produced by any given lens regardless of
the camera format. All lenses produce a circular image. Why? Because the lenses are circular lenses in circular tubes with circular apertures. And all lenses of the same focal length produce the same degree of magnification ... or size of the image. This translates to the fact that a 50mm lens on any camera will produce the same image size on a surface (film or sensor). The confusion comes when you consider the size of the actual “captured” portion of that image. Note the illustration above. As your sensor size decreases, you are simply using less of the actual image produced, limited by the size of the sensor. That is the reason that the same focal length lens can be defined as a wide-angle, normal and telephoto lens depending on the size and format of the captured portion of the image. Who says size doesn’t matter?
2015 SE District Judging changes 1. In the past, PPA kept $5.00 from each print case fee for administrative purposes and gave the host organization the remaining funds. The first change that will affect SEPPA is that PPA will retain the entry fees in total. 2. District Judging must be held in conjunction with the host’s convention or event. In the past, the judging was held as a separate event and our convention began after or as the judging ended. This means that the District Judging is to be an integral part of the convention. The objective is for more people, PPA members, to be able to attend the judging sessions as a valuable educational opportunity. 3. Since PPA will retain all income associated with each District Judging, PPA will handle the coordination and compensation of the jurors – this includes contracts, travel and per diem. An expected benefit to the hosting organization will be the ability to use jurors as speakers without the expense of paying any share of the jurors’ expenses. The organization will only be responsible for the negotiated speaking fees and related expenses beyond the District Judging portion of the convention. 4. Juror/Judge selection will be the responsibility of PEC. PEC will work with the host to accommodate the use of jurors that the host may wish to use as speakers. 5. The majority of equipment will be provided by PPA, except for the possible use of the host organization’s turntable and sound system. 6. The print crew consisting of a minimum of 6 people are to be provided by the host of the District Judging. Duties of the print crew include: receive print cases, open cases, sort prints, work judging panels, hang print exhibit, tear down print exhibit, pack cases, apply PPA provided shipping labels and have cases picked up for return shipping. 7.
Print crew members who are PPA members will receive PPA service merits.
8. PPA/PEC will pay for all judging related meal functions, breakfast and lunch, each day of judging and will work with the host organization to use the convention hotel and/or convention center catering services. 9. PPA/PEC, when possible, jurors and PPA staff will stay at the host’s convention hotel. 10. PPA/PEC will provide an awards package of trophies or plaques and rosette ribbons to be given based on Grand Imaging Awards categories. (The District host may also offer additional awards at their own expense) 11. The intent is that there be no financial risk to the host organization for the judging events.