In the thick of our Ecuadorian adventure, I am also able to co-plan an awesome event: learnfest 09, which I am sooooo excited to announce! This is a collaborative effort between myself, Lena Hyde, Laura Novak and Audrey Woulard. After a truly beautiful experience this past September, we are currently updating the website to add all the new details. Registration will officially open at 12pm on November 15, 2008. We were thrilled to sell out last year’s quite early, so if you are interested in attending, please sign up at your earliest convenience :) We have also chosen a new location for learnfest 09: Chateau Elan, a beautiful 3500-acre spa, winery, and resort located about 40 minutes outside of Altanta, Georgia. This year’s learnfest will occur on April 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th. What can you expect? To experience in-depth instruction on shooting, post-production, marketing, business strategy, revenue generation, and studio and daily workflow. Redefine what success can mean in the portrait photography business. Interact in small groups of 16, meeting with each instructor throughout the course of three days as part of an overall program that is tailored to deliver a comprehensive leaning experience for the portrait photographer. Network with other photographers from around the world, in addition to the hosts, in an environment built to encourage sharing and connection. And offer yourself the opportunity to completely focus on improving your skills, your business, and your future in photography in an environment that fully encourages you to step away from the pace of every day work/life.

We are still adding feedback from learnfest 08 to our website, under the Buzz Section. i just grabbed the first several of many (in no particular order!!) :) Learnfest was by far the most incredible learning experience I have had in my photography career. Lena, Tamara, Laura and Audrey are all extremely talented business women with an incredible eye for photography. They each have varying business models that are all highly successful which helps them bring huge value to a workshop forum. I can truly say that they are all GREAT speakers and are true to themselves. They hold nothing back which makes the attendees learning experience that much better. I can’t wait to see what this will do for my business in the coming year! I can be assured that if I take a third of what I learned at this workshop and apply it my business will more than double. It’s worth every penny to attend! I want to go again! ~Mary Kelting Inspired. Invigorated. Connected. These are just some of the words that describe how I felt after my experience at Learnfest. I?ve been to several other workshops and conferences but none compared to the overall knowledge gained by the instructors at Learnfest. I?ve incorporated some of Tamara?s techniques into my sessions and the results have been more fun for everyone AND produced better images. I?ve tried to find a simpler path thanks to Audrey?s streamlined system and schedule. I?ve started to assess my pricing and sales process as a result of Laura?s advice. And am revising my branding and marketing message to grow in the direction I want to go in after internalizing some of Lena?s recommendations. And one of the unexpected results of Learnfest ? developing positive new friendships with peers. Friendships that feel like they always should have been there and now are a big part of my life. I?m super excited about what is ahead for my business this year. So much potential! ~Jessica Grieves I am still trying to wrap my hurting, overloaded brain on the experience I am coming off of. Spending two solid days with 60 photographers from the United States (and Canada!), in four intensive, 4-hour classes with instructors I have fallen in love with was pretty close to heaven on earth. When you typically sign up for a workshop, you hear one person speaking, and come out of it thinking “wow I want to recreate that exact same thing they did.” And you go home and try to adopt something that isn’t born out of your own creativity. Learnfest is so unique in that you hear four very different business plans and success stories from four very different women. And although everyone hears the same information, no one person walks away from it with identical plans of attack when they return home. It’s like setting out a whole list of ingredients. Some are the basics. Some are fine spices. Some are garnishes. Each person will create their own unique recipe for success based on the ingredients that were made available to them. And the end results for all will be award-winning. If you’re serious about being a professional photographer, and have passion for what you do, you can’t go to Learnfest and not come back rejuvenated and inspired. ~Jane Johnson LearnFest was such an amazing experience on so many levels for me. In just a few days I grew not only as a photographer, but as a person. I learned to believe in myself and in my talent. But more than anything, I learned that you can have a successful business and have a life at the same time. These four ladies are so phenomenal. They were selfless in giving of their time and valuable advice to help us and stopped at nothing to make our stay and our experience top-notch. I met such a great group of photographers from all over the country and made friendships I hope to last a lifetime. I highly recommend this workshop if they plan on doing another one! GO….. don’t hesitate; you truly won’t regret it. ~Suzie Seagraves … A fun image from one of the shooting clinics I led at learnfest 08, showing how to shoot in *any* lighting/weather conditions…

And a few more of that same model – we had so many beautiful ones to photograph, wow!! Looking forward to this year’s :) :) :)

Additional details like pricing, all-inclusive specifics, faq’s, etc. can be all found on the website. Hope to see many of you there! (um…at learnfest 09, not on the website :)