Awarded Photographic Craftsman Degree from PPA

Earlier this month I had the honor of receiving my Photographic Craftsman degree from the Professional Photographers of America (PPA). The degree was presented to me by PPA President Lori Craft, Hon.M.Photog.Cr., in San Antonio, Texas, at Imaging USA, which is PPA’s annual convention.

The Photographic Craftsman degree represents demonstrated accomplishments in the photography industry as a speaker, writer, and mentor. The work in achieving this degree spanned a four-year period.

Here I am pictured with Lori along with Bryan Welsh, who I selected as my sponsor. His guidance and leadership over the last few years was a key part of helping me earn my degree. Maybe next time I’ll smile?

PPA President Lori Craft, Aaron Hockley, and Bryan Welsh

Home from Atlanta and Imaging USA

Like 11,000 of my photographer colleagues, I was in Atlanta last week for Imaging USA, the annual conference of the Professional Photographers of America.

Imaging USA Atlanta

Imaging USA is a huge event, featuring a huge tradeshow, three days of educational classes, and a variety of social and networking opportunities for all varieties of professional photographers. I was able to meet quite a few interesting photographers, chat with some of my favorite photography vendors, and learn from experts in posing, editing, and lighting.

This year I had a bit of a dual personality at Imaging USA; in addition to being there to learn personally for my photography business, I was also there representing the Oregon Professional Photographers Association. As the 2016 Vice President, I had the opportunity to attend PPA affiliate leadership meetings where I could swap notes with other state and local leaders from around the country. It was a good opportunity to hear what’s working elsewhere, what challenges some are having, and to build relationships to help strengthen the industry for serious photographers.

But it wasn’t all business: there was plenty of fun to be had as well. I led a small group to check out one of Atlanta’s craft breweries, ran into some old friends at the opening party, and got to hang out with a good crowd from Oregon for a group photo and lunch:

OPPA at Imaging USA