Conventions and trade shows come and go in Las Vegas, but only a few are open to the public. One such public show is the WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographers) Conference and Expo held last week at the MGM Grand Conference Center. The event is called “the premier industry event for photographers and image makers specializing in the business aspects of wedding and portrait photography” but interested amateurs are welcomed as well. Judging from the eagerness of the attendees, the show lives up to its “premier” name.
Four days of classes were available to attendees who paid $795 to $850 for a full conference pass. Class subjects included everything from “Wedding Basics” and “Avoiding Bridezilla in the Courtroom: Terms Wedding Photographers Need in Their Contracts” to “Small Town Portrait Studio” and “Wall Portrait Sales: How to Create a Masterpiece.”
The expo alone cost just $30 and plenty of teaching goes on there, too, as the attached video describes. Yes, products are sold on the show floor, and many attendees (including this reporter) walked out with brand new photographic accessories. Personally, I love attending this show because I always find products I never knew existed. Are half-size business cards the newest thing? Or did you know a service exists to “find” lost pictures on your hard drive? Or did you know Steadicam now has a device to steady your iPphone video called the Steadicam Smoothee?
In addition to the pure information gained at the show, the other pluses include an audience that very definitely wants to be there and booths featuring stunning contemporary photos.
The Nielsen Photo Group organizes the WPPI Conference & Expo. Pre-show publicity estimated attendance at 16,000.