WPPI ~ Back from an inspiring week! ~Las Vegas

Happy Monday!  Amazingly I got the kids to school with time to spare this morning despite the jet lag, time change and losing an hour to day light savings time.  I wanted to tell you all about my trip to Las Vegas for WPPI (wedding and portrait photographers international) to kick off my week and a new season!  Inspiring images and people are nothing short of plentiful at this conference.  Many of whom I’m friends with and some that I’ve never even met.  For those of you who don’t know about it, it’s one of, if not the largest trade show and educational show for photographers in my field in the world.  It is an international conference so it drawls people from every corner of the earth.  There is a huge photo competition which I won an award in last year but this year unfortunately didn’t get any awards but that’s ok because I learned a ton!  I got to sit in on Hours and hours of judging and that’s something I haven’t been able to do in the past because of weddings that weekend.  This year I decided that it was important for me to see what was being submitted and to hear the judging from the best of the best.  It was enlightening for sure and I was able to be there for all three prints I submitted.  I scored just under the award level which was a little frustrating but a great reminder that I’m doing just fine because that’s still considered at the highest level of professionalism.  I also learned some things that could have pushed them to that higher level which was great!  I got to see some of the most amazing prints judged, as well as some that were not so amazing but still fun to see critiqued.  I also attended a ton of inspirational classes this year.  Ones about business, finding the right clients and finding myself.  So many people there sharing their perspective makes me want to teach a lot!  Actually one of the things that I really came in to this year was that I want to share what I know with other people and hopefully pay it forward.  It’s not all work though…  we had a blast at the networking parties and grabbing a little R&R when we could.  Allie and I went together which was awesome.  We spent some time at The Valley of Fire National Park did some selfies, I finally got to shoot a cool cave like scene!  So many old and new friends to catch up with and learn from.

I come back with a fire to get this season started right.  I just launched my new wedding web site www.garynevittweddings.com  with my other two brands to come. (Portrait and Corporate)  Thanks Allie Bennett for helping me get that off the ground.  I’m also diving back in to a personal project that I started last year but kind of lost touch with after my life flipped upside down.  It’s been a crazy year and I’m stronger and wiser than ever.  For those of you who don’t know, I have been going through a divorce, found new love, and have gone through a lot of soul searching which brings a completely new perspective to someone in the wedding industry.  I think for a bit there it jaded me but I have come to realize that I still very much value love and commitment and marriage.

I truly love seeing my couples interact and love on each other like it’s what they were born to do.  I took a couple classes on finding the ideal client for me and after a lot of thinking about it, I came to the conclusion that I really love photographing people that aren’t afraid to show off their love for each other.  I want couples who proudly share how much they think their partner is amazing and how appreciative they are for each other.  I want people who are going to cry when they see each other while they are walking down the isle.  Families who are so in to the moment they don’ care if they left their cell phone in the room because they know I’ll capture their moments.  Couples who are in the moment and loving every second of the day, rain or shine because at the end of the day it’s what they make of it and they are marrying the person of their dreams.  I realized I’m a bit of a sap.  I cry during the father daughter dance more often than not.  It makes me giddy to create meaningful images for people that also look totally badass and timeless.  My family portrait clients are those same people.  The ones who want to capture their families love for each other and enjoy the shoot.  Offer me a coffee or a soda because they are nice people and care that I’m a nice person too.   One of the things I was asked to figure out to find my ideal client was what are my core ideals or values.  That’s a really hard question to answer for me.  After some searching though I figured out a few.

1. Be nice!  Be understanding and have grace for those around you.
2. Be helpful.  Because you may just make someone’s day.  I realized I want to teach.  I have always liked helping people. It gives me a feeling that nothing else really compares to.  I like when people help me too.  Holding a door, offering to cary a bag, what ever.  I’m not the best at accepting help sometimes but I’m working on that lol.
3. Be Grateful.  So many people seem to feel entitled these days.  Like they should just have things or get what they want because they think they deserve it.  You have to work for it! To be better, make yourself better.  I have had a lot of clients this year who have been so thoughtful and grateful!  Those people are my ideal clients!
4. Be Yourself.  This was a hard one for me because I have felt a bit lost for a long time and now that I’m back and feel like me again I don’t ever want to lose that again.  It is ok to be who you are.  I love when couples bring it all to the table.  I’m a pretty flexible person and like a lot of things so don’t be shy!
5. Love with all you have in your heart.  Don’t be afraid of it.
6. Communicate! Don’t be afraid to say what you want. You may not always get it and that’s ok too. But if you don’t communicate and assume things, you lose out.

So in a nutshell, Hello 2016! Lets do this.   Here are a few pics from my trip.  😀 Oh and I use a lot of emojis and exclamation points – Sorry not Sorry LOL! 😉

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It’s always rough leaving these two for a whole week!  IMG_4864

Print comp day one. IMG_4871

Lots of iPhone selfies lol 😀 IMG_4890

Print Comp Day 2 Photo on screen by Leslie Gilbert  IMG_4985

Huy!  one of my favorite inspirational people ever.  Proud to be considered a friend and to know this man.   IMG_4992

A couple screen shots from seminars.   I don’t like to put too many out there.  So many amazing speakers!  IMG_5102Valley of Fire is amazing!
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Traditional Selfies for us lol  We do this just about everywhere we travel to.  IMG_5121 IMG_5187

Got to see a show while we were there.  Zarkana – Cirque Du Soleil  Talk about amazing people!!!   IMG_5199

Saying bye to the Signature at the MGM.  This is the last year there. 🙁  Hopefully the next location is as convenient and smooth.  Being there is kind of like not really being in Las Vegas which is probably the only way to get through 8 days there lol!

Thanks for reading!

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