At the beginning of March I headed to Vegas for WPPI and some fun……
Let me start with WPPI…..in all honesty, I didn’t do a lot with the conference this year, I did a couple of classes and skipped the EXPO. Why you ask? In the classes I did attend, I found there to be a lot of product pushing, whether is was gear, software, or the speakers own products/projects. Last year, I didn’t feel like I was being “sold” something and I was kinda disappointed that that was the feeling I left with this year. Don’t get me wrong, I did learn from my classes, and sometimes the products are amazing time savers that I grateful for, but it felt like a sponsorship (I have no doubt it is) and it didn’t have the same FEEL that is did last year…..I may get some critism for this but it is my opinion. Before I left for the conference, I had a few different photographers tell they were not attending because they felt it was just too big. I have to agree, this year it felt too big. Next year, I may try a private coaching session with a fav photographer or a smaller conference elsewhere.
Now onto the fun……Melissa and I have been besties since 8th grade…..yup… that is A LONG time and we hadn’t seen eachother in a few years – so it was time. She lives in Kelowna, BC and I am in Ontario – we live across the country from eachother but when we get together it is like no time has passed at all. We have had some amazing times together and now we can add this trip to the list. We met in Vegas on Satuday night and so the fun began…..
There was one GREAT part of the conference pass I took advantage of this year…..the Hakkasan Canon Party. Free admission and free drinks for 2 hrs in one of the hottest clubs in Vegas!!!! It was SO much fun!! Melissa and I danced until our feet hurt like we were in our 20’s again, and let me tell you….photographers know how to PARTY. It was a blast.
I can’t go to Vegas without a road trip and photoshoot…..SO….we rented a car and drove out to Death Valley. On the way, we stopped at this interesting truck stop, complete with AREA 51 and alien souvenirs, complete with a brothel out back (with alien strippers?). Turns out, we were driving along side AREA 51 for some time and had NO idea. Trust me, there ain’t much to it. We continued on our journey and passed small desert towns, ghost town ruins and eventually Death Valley. I HIGHLY recommend driving through Death Valley – it literally has everything – snow, desert, mountains, water, palm trees, salt flats and even wild flowers :). We paused every so often to marvel and of course, take photos. I used my bestie for a model and she did amazing – she is natural beauty – inside and out. She even got a quick lesson and took some shots of me.
We saw the sights, we ate some great food, we partied, we went on a road trip, we laughed and then we laughed some more. It was AWESOME and I believe it should become a yearly ritual for us girls – what to do you think Melissa? you game????