I hosted the Maine PUG (Pictage User Group) here at the studio for March. It was really well attended, a great program and fun networking for all. It was a magical night for me and the studio was such a nice turnout. My program was “Competing in a Competitive Market” and obviously from the crowded photo above … we have a lot of photographers in Maine and the nearby New England who care about this topic.
The lowdown…. I started planning the ”Competing in a Competitive Market” program a month ahead when asked to host by Geneve of Geneve Hoffman Photography – the current PUG leader. I got really rev’d up. I love speaking on the business of photography so I was on a super nerd high with it … but after two weeks of brainstorming, I hit a wall. I knew what I wanted to say, but PUG is a mix of beginning and veteran photogs. Was my insight and the info too easy or too hard? To vague, lofty, out there? I tend to be kind of a touchy/feely type but I didn’t want to come off like a flake with no real ideas. I researched and hashed the talk out over 4 weeks —grabbing nuggets of info, inspiration along the way. I added the visuals to my Keynote files just a day before the show. That afternoon of the program, I cut 20 slides out as overkill. It is always good to step away and them slash edit for too much stuff.
At 5:00 pm I realized our recent installation of Lion (an apple OS) caused the projector not to work with the computer. NIIIICE. I Downloaded the Keynote app to my Ipad and ran the presentation with the projector for that. Saved, just in time. By 7 pm… start time… the studio was beyond packed and I was totally overwhelmed by the turnout. I mean, I loved it… but it was overwhelming to stuff our white studio couch and everything else we own just to get more seats. Really? We already have seating for 30 in the studio. So I’m guessing we had like 40-50 people here. That’s a big PUG meeting for Maine.
Thank goodness for white wine and friendly faces. It calmed me down and I didn’t even feel nervous for the program; just humbled by the talent in the room.
We only had one tiny program glitch with the earlier tech issue: this video on failure didn’t play where it was slotted in the program… this is an older favorite of mine on changing your focus on failures. You can check it out… old Nike ad.
It was tight and for time sake, so we had to skip intros. I hate that, but it was the reality and people were really crammed in. Next time guys, we’ll get those name tags! The program focused on business message, the value story told of your own product and your own focus and self – control. Some big ideas… but WOW, people participated and tossed in really helpful comments along the way. Everyone was so involved — even taking notes. People stayed late chatting about the program, some tips given and how to manage their business to-do lists next!
Incidentally, I will be reworking this program for Maine Wedding Company members in June focusing on the entire Maine wedding industry. If you have a group that would like to see the ”Competing in a Competitive Market” presentation, feel free to contact me.
It is so important to stay social, friendly and helpful to other photographers and wedding industry professionals for so, so many reasons despite the high competition. But mainly, we all want the same things. We all want to live well, see our children stay happy and safe, save for retirement, and live a higher quality of life… oh— and learn some photography along the way.
Join the fun! Join in these groups and watch for their programs:
Maine PUG (all photogs, targets wedding photogs)
Boston PUG (all photogs, targets wedding photogs)
Maine Photographers Coalition (all photogs)
New England ASMP (targets commercial photogs)
Maine PPA (all photogs, targets portrait photogs)
Maine Wedding Company (programs for Maine wedding vendors)
Watch these other sites and blogs for nearby photo workshops, programs:
Inspire Boston (in Boston … typically in March)
People in Maine area who blog about nearby photography programs. Good spots to watch for news, programs.
Blush Imagery (for programs)
Brian Fitzgerald (for photo lighting, Inspire Portland project)
emilie sommers (for programs)
Michelle Turner (writes photo books, for programs)
Nadra Photography (for programs)
Russel Caron (for workshops)
PhotoLoveCat (photo biz blogs, workshop reviews)
Blush Imagery (for programs)
Did I leave someone off? Contact me.
Also, VERY SOON in April by my friend Nadra : (exceptional photographer, fine-art techniques… great advanced level stuff!)