Tuesday, March 10, 2009

WPPI Rocks

Time for a post about something other than TV, right?

Lucky you, you get to hear about my amazing time at WPPI! For those of you who have absolutely no clue what WPPI is, let me fill you in. It is the coolest photography convention held yearly in Las Vegas. I had been planning since last year to attend since we lived within driving distance of Vegas...up until we decided to move that week. I was SUPER bummed- until we pushed the move off a week and I decided to go up for 2 days while Mike was off work.

So, I rang my friend Kathy, who is also an awesome photographer (for those of you in AZ, she rocks! Book her now!) and she agreed to brave the 4 hour drive with me and go. Yeah!
We were all set to go when Mike informed me that he not only had to work, he had to leave town. Sweet. So my awesome friend Wendy stepped in and took my girls for me so I could still go. Thank you Wendy! You are the best! (And Ashley, too!)

Kathy and I jetted up to Vegas for the most awesome learnfest ever! We met up with Jean, and some of her awesome friends (Heather, Jennifer, Laurel, Kellee) and we got a rocking group picture with a Chippendales dancer. Well, there must have been a Chippendale's theif running around because that picture mysteriously disappeared! And there were 6 copies!
Oh well. I did get one with Jean:

Feb 09 WPPI Jean and Joy EDIT WEB

And of course one with Kathy (which is kind of hideous of me so I turned it to black and white in order to soften the blow. Give us a break, we had been up all night- more on that below).

Feb 09 WPPI Kathy and Joy EDIT WEB

We perused the amazing trade show (seriously amazing) and went to some awesome workshops, like the Sallees, who were completely unbelievable, and the fabulous AUDREY WOULARD!!!

Yes, we got into Audrey's class! If you are a children's portrait photographer, you are now on your knees crying tears of jealousy. She rocked! We went to her room an hour and a half early to get a seat and barely got them. And I nearly had to fight a lady to hold Jean's seat while she ran to get a drink. Seriously, it was almost a smackdown! The room was filled to standing room only and then the fire marshall came and kicked everyone out who didn't have an actual seat. I was thanking my lucky stars that we skipped dinner to get there early!
Anyway, she had an awesome question and answer hour where she answered EVERY question asked of her. She also showed a full session and talked about how she handles her sessions, how a typical session goes, etc. It was all precious info. I am SO completely glad I went!

After her seminar we were famished so we went to the Buffet. Heck yeah we had to hit at least ONE buffet while we were there! It was so fun chatting with all the girls, and we were so sad we had to get back to Phoenix...we ended up leaving late and getting home at 4 am! YEESH! Completely worth it, though!!

As a side note, WPPI was being held at MGM Grand, but hotel rooms were sold out. Not a problem, we decided to stay right across the street at the glorious TROPICANA!

Let me tell you. We were spoiled there. Not only did we get a gorgeously decorated room,

Trop 5 WEB

But we were blessed to have an ALMOST complete picture frame in there!

Trop 3 WEB

And I think they left a puke stain by the bed, just for my viewing pleasure.

Trop 4 WEB

I opted to skip a shower in their luxuriously footprinted tub,

Trop WEB

And decided to conserve water by using their spotless toilet as little as possible.

Trop 2 WEB

And look! A friend to keep us company! (I really did throw up in my mouth when I saw this one again.)

Trop 6 WEB

We also had a lovely 4 am wake up call by a security guard screaming his guts out in the hallway. It was so thoughtful of them to make sure we didn't miss our first workshop, right? ;)

Seriously, though, it was totally worth staying in that dump to have the awesome trip that we had. I had SO much fun and I cannot wait until next year!


Brooke said...

Next time you need to stay at my place, that's totally nasty Joy! Glad you got through it alive. Jealous of this convention, sounds awesome.

Jen Petty said...

I AM jealous. It sounds like you had a lot of fun. And fun that you got to see Jean too!

Wright said...

I just think this post is freakin hilarious. I don't know a dam thing about photography and I was totally enthralled by your class descriptions.......way to go, Joy!

Amber said...

can I come?

Kelli said...

I never knew you had a personal blog...And this post seriously cracked me up. Almost a whole picture frame, you lucky girl!!

Oh, and Audrey Woulard? I am on my knees crying, you were right.

Kim said...

Laughing so hard at your hotel room accommodations........Maybe next time you can raise donations for the hotel so they can stop shopping at the repo.

Survival mode in the bathing department. And I think I would have bought a blanket and slept on top of that, on top of the bed. You'll risk everything to go to this convention huh?

Meyers_in_China said...

thanks for making me laugh!!

Sherwoods said...

I am seriously jealous of the pic of you and Jean. Love and miss you both!!! Love the hotel. I think you and Mike should take a second honeymoon there!

Jean Smith Photography said...

oh, and i love it that you posted the pics from the sweet tropicana...

Jean Smith Photography said...

look at how hot we are!!! wppi rocked...i am so glad you guys came. ok...next on the list...photoshop world...half photography, half photoshop...i hear it ROCKS!