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13 and Counting
After 18 months of planning, the 13th Societies’ London Convention and Photo Trade Show sprang into life with eager delegates arriving for the opening Location Shoots, Business School, Qualification and 20x16” Print Competition judging.
Opening on the Wednesday, the Business School (now a regular feature of the Convention) saw a packed meeting room with 100 attendees soaking up the advice from eight experienced, professional, photographers and trainers. The intensive sessions covered all aspects of running a successful photographic business, with advice ranging from marketing, search engine optimisation, sales opportunities and a great deal more, all of which being essential information in this competitive market place.
The number of submissions for Fellowship Qualification, which is the highest photographic accolade that can be achieved by submission of printed images, saw a dramatic increase on previous years and produced four stunning successful panels from: Tracy Willis FSWPP, Christina Lauder FSWPP, Lesley Wood FSINWP and James Musselwhite FSWPP – Associate Qualifications also were achieved by Michelle Whitmore ASWPP, Nathan Wake ASINWP and Kevin Mullins ASWPP.
The popular 20x16” Print Competition judging commenced on the Wednesday, with an increased number of onlookers coming along to experience the judging process. Entries again for this prestigious competition were substantially up on previous years, therefore, two judging rooms where pressed into action.
Location Shoots also launched on the opening day with popular lecturer Mark Cleghorn taking his group to the exclusive Café de Paris in central London concentrating on boudoir photography. Focusing on location lighting experienced lecturer John Denton took his group to the amazing Belt Craft Studios, whilst leading Canadian photographer and lecturer Sam Sciarrino travelled with his group to the magnificent Drapers Hall to present his hands on workshop, concentrating on Bridal Portraits. USA photographer and sought after lecturer Art P Suwansang also taught his group at Drapers Hall concentrating on a fashion approach to wedding photography.
Day two saw the launch of the extensive Masterclass programme which spanned four days of the Convention. In excess of 100 speakers and lecturers gathered to share their wealth of knowledge covering, in depth, a range of topics to help photographer’s career development. Many classes were packed with eager attendees gaining information to devlop the photography and business, with many attendees frantically jotting notes and actively getting involved with the presentations by asking questions, all of which were handled by the lecturing team.
Thursday also saw further Location Shoot groups leaving the Hilton London Metropole to travel to private locations to create stunning images, learning from the lecturers that had been specially chosen for these locations. Xander Casey engaged his group at a preserved abandoned property, which gave a myriad of opportunities to create incredible imagery.
While the many classes had been in progress, at the other end of this gigantic hotel and conference centre, the leading players in the photographic trade industry had started to arrive in droves to set their display stands up for the massive Trade Show. As always, whilst stand builds and product displays are being assembled chaos seems to reign, however as if by magic everyone was ready and up and running before the Trade Show began on Friday morning.
Day three saw the Trade Show open with hoards of eager attendees thronging the isles, all eager to see the latest gear and pick up a bargain or two. So much so that at some points during the Friday attendees where shoulder to shoulder and exhibitors complained that they ‘couldn’t get a tea break!’
Many leading manufacturers exhibited at this year’s event with crowds being especially drawn to Adobe, Canon, Panasonic, Elinchrom, Bowens, Manfrotto, Fujifilm, Olympus, Epson and Datacolor. Album, presentation products and framing manufacturers were also prevalent, many with substantial stands displaying their latest wares.
Meanwhile the Masterclass programme continued with the numbers of delegates growing as the event progressed.
Popular lecturer Richard P Walton took his Location Shoot out to Libertine Club, which is just off Oxford Street, with the group having the run of the venue, this provided another great opportunity to create amazing images in a unique environment. John Denton also led a group on the Street Safari, an ever popular Location Shoot which has almost become a tradition at the Societies Convention.
Day four saw the continuation of the lecture programme and Trade Show, with companies delighted by the response from attendees. Classes again were full with attendees able to choose from a compressive programme of lectures.
Further Locations Shoots on Saturday saw USA lecturer Rick Friedman lead his group to an abandoned church and ever popular tutor Kevin Wilson visit a derelict property.
The highlight for many on the Saturday evening is the glittering Awards Dinner were both trade and photographers are recognised for their achievements throughout the previous year. Over 400 attended this dazzling gala event and enthusiastically applauded the award winners. A special moment of the evening was when popular lecturer, assessor, mentor and judge Dennis Orchard received this year’s Special Achievement Award. His well deserved honour not only reflected the massive input that he has made, giving up countless hours to encourage fellow photographers to achieve the greatest success in the chosen career, but also reflected how well Dennis has recovered and returned to the industry with such enthusiasm following his traumatic experience last year.
The Awards evening saw the crowing of Kevin Murphy as The Societies’ 2014 Photographer of the Year. His prizes included: Fujifilm XT1 Camera with XF56 1.2 Lens and a fully paid ticket to WPPI Convention in Las Vegas with flights and 5 nights Accommodation - valued at £3,200.00
Day five, the final day, saw further crowds attend the Trade Show and Masterclass programme before the Convention drew to a close Sunday evening, with just about all leaving on the proverbial ‘high’ and looking forward to next years event.
With 14,000 attendees the Convention reached new heights for both attendance and enthusiasm by attendees. The Societies team are now busy working on the 2016 Convention with speaking proposals and trade exhibitor’s application forms flooding in.
And finally The Societies team would like to thank all our loyal group of helpers, speakers and trade exhibitors for making the 2015 Convention a success
Would you like to be considered as a speaker for 2016? If so please complete the form which can be found 'here'
Check out the 2014 Convention Video!
Official Shipping and Logistics specialist for The Societies' 2015 Convention
All bookings are final. We reserve the right to change speakers and exhibitors without notice.
Societies Convention and Trade Show at The Hilton London Metropole Hotel ...
You have 319 days to book for the SWPP Convention starting on Wednesday 20th January 2016
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