Each year, tens of thousands of photographers and creatives head out to Las Vegas for Nielsen Media’s WPPI Convention – and it’s that time again, as the festivities kick off in a matter of days. It’s a whirlwind week and, like many there, I’ll have a pretty packed schedule. So packed, in fact, that I often try to step back into a closet, or hide under a stage, (or wrap myself up in a curtain) for a good 5 minutes several times a day, just to close my eyes and re-center. Not even joking, it can get that dizzying. That being said, I really would love to meet up with as many of you as possible. I make some great connections on social media and many have become real-life friends through those initial electronic hello’s. I marvel at how six degrees of separation are now, like, two. Listed below is my schedule for the week at WPPI, hopefully you come by and say hi. Sunday, March 10th, 9am-10:30am: Guest Speaker, along with Roy Ashen, CEO of Triple Scoop Music: Exploring how music impacts creative work. Sunday March 10th, 12pm – 1:30pm: My Platform Class! This all-new program is entitled From Start To Finish, A Contemporary Portrait Shoot. I’ll be walking through the in’s and out’s of what makes portrait shoots work – the good, the bad, and the hilarious stumbles. I’ll also be showcasing some behind-the-scenes video, shot by Kelby Training (who recently released my first course with them), to illustrate many of the techniques I describe. If you haven’t already, pre-board for this program! A huge thank you to WHCC, Artsy Couture, Adorama and Animoto for sponsoring this program. Genuinely grateful for the support. We’ll be discussing, in detail, the entirety of a shoot, including in a client’s home, outdoors in natural light, and showing some in-studio work, as well. It’s basically the same as shadowing along on a shoot, with detailed video breakdowns to boot. A quick peek from some behind-the-scenes video, showing our little subject The Shot: Monday, March 11th, 11:45am & Tuesday, March 12th, 12:30pm: I’m quite excited to be speaking at The Nikon Theater both days, along with these other fabulous instructors: In addition, on both Monday, March 11th and Tuesday, March 12th, I’ll be interviewing a number of top creatives for reDefine Show, for future episodes of our web series about creatives who make it work. Our most recent shows include interviews with Vincent LaForet, Lindsay Adler, Stuart Scott, and Jeremy Cowart. Of course, you can see all the shows on AdoramaTV. Tuesday, March 12th, at 7pm: Framed Awards gathering, quite honored to join the other nominees for top children/family photographer of 2012, along with all the other impressive nominees in other categories. On Wednesday, March 13th, at 1pm: I’ll be speaking at the Kelby Training booth on the subject of Photographing The Modern Family, on the creative and technical aspects of documenting what matters to us most. I’ll also be signing copies of my book Envisioning Family and my co-produced media series, Capturing Life Through (Better) Photography for Peachpit, and signed copies will be available for purchase at the Expo. In between there are coffee dates, meetups, advisory board meetings, creativeLIVE meetings (my first All In One Life 3-day course, Health & Energy, is the week after!) dinners, multiple what’s-vegan-on-the-menu hunts, after-hours events, smoothie-making sessions in my room – and many, many, many hugs. Some of my dearest friends are in the creative industry, and I’m truly looking forward to seeing many of them. Thursday, March 14th – For the first time ever, MY FAMILY FLIES OUT TO SEE ME IN LAS VEGAS FOR AN EXTENDED WEEKEND, AND WE DISAPPEAR SOMEWHERE IN A NEARBY NATIONAL PARK but hopefully not literally! I so love these faces. I love how we work each day to support each other to do the things we love to do. How we make it a family rule to at least try to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. Whether it’s photography or hosting a show or writing or soccer or baseball or dancing or producing races or racing races or publishing a magazine or learning to read or getting in a cold pool or saving a fish from a 5th grade experiment … as is said, it’s not always easy. But it’s worth it. It’s quite definitely worth it.