Tips for WPPI 2011 in Las Vegas

Registration has opened for WPPI.  It’s almost here.  OK, well closer than it was yesterday. Yippee.  Wee heee heee.

For those who are going to WPPI Las Vegas for the first time, here are a few tips from me, to you.  See you there!  Follow me @dianaelizabeth_

  • Bring a camera with a video feature, even if it’s a point a shoot.  You may want to capture some on-screen tutorials you’ll be learning.
  • If you plan on seeing Jasmine Star, expect to stand in line for an hour plus which may mean you’ll be missing a class while waiting in line.
  • If you don’t already have a Twitter account, get an account and start following your favorite photographers and add: @WPPIparties and @RFWPPI.  Make sure you have Twitter on your phone.
  • Look at the schedule and know what courses you want to go to, and find a back up.  Some classes get full.  Seriously, then you’re SOL and then you gotta figure out what you want to do.
  • You don’t need to register for courses, you just show up to the room.  Show up a wee bit early if you can.
  • Consider bringing your laptop/iPad to take notes or blog when you’re relaxing back in your hotel room.
  • Most days look like this: 9 am class all day at the MGM Convention Center and then back in your hotel room by 6:30 pm.  Long days but fun days. Of course this is all my choice, if you don’t want to go to class that’s up to you, but like college, if you don’t show, you still paid for the class.
  • Wear flats.  Oh my gosh, wear flats. I wore wedges my first day trying to be fashionable and I almost cried at the end of the day.
  • Where are you staying?  Just so you know, entering from the front of MGM Grand to get to the convention center and walking all the way through, it’s a long time.  Once you’re there, you probably won’t leave.
  • When you are at the awesome Tradeshow, know how to use your badge. The booths you’re interested in, have them scan it. You’ll get emails and stuff in the mail from them.  If you’re not interested, don’t.  Consider getting another email just for WPPI.  I don’t mind all of the emails coming to my inbox but that’s just me.
  • Speaking of Tradeshows, if a friend is going with you but not to the courses, you can get a FREE Tradeshow pass as the deadline gets closer so you don’t have to pay $15 for the pass. I forgot how I found them but when I do, I’ll let you know. I think Bayphoto is one of them that offers or check the WPPI site.
  • If you’re a first time attendee, you’ll probably be overwhelmed with the Tradeshow because you might just be starting your business and products are overwhelming.  That’s OK.  Your first year will probably be about building your business and marketing and the year after, you can reevaluate what products you want to push.  You can however, look at albums (my favorite are KISS Books) and printing (I like WHCC).
  • Be friendly and make friends when you’re there. The reason why summer camp was so fun was because of all the friendships you made and that’s also why you looked forward to the following year!
  • Bring business cards for WPPI!  And even add your Twitter name if you have one.
  • Bring a small empty extra suitcase or large bag just for the goods you’ll be collecting from your trip.  Paperwork, magazines, maybe the things you’ll buy like equipment or a Shootsac.
  • You may not need to bring your DSLR unless you wanted to shoot Vegas. I didn’t even use mine.
  • If you plan on going to early a.m. classes, then forgo the parties.  You won’t make them.  Figure out which is more important to you – networking and socializing or learning a tip or trick at a class.
  • **WPPI is a week long but you don’t need to go for the entire week.  I’ll be there Sunday morning until Wednesday evening. The Platform Classes are from Sunday to Thursday with a few Master Classes in between (they cost $50 extra).  The classes prior to Sunday are for WPPI Members and cost extra.  So for the general public, no need to attend all week.

I am so excited for all of you going!  I can’t wait for the late nights at Wolfgang Pucks and getting to know some of you.  Please feel free to Tweet at me and let’s get together in Vegas!

Diana Elizabeth had a Starbucks every morning as she headed out of her hotel down the strip and to MGM Grand.  By the time she got to her course her Peppermint Mocha was cold.

Trying to decide what to write to make myself sound interesting.

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