Friday, December 31, 2010

Make your resolutions for the New Year, both personal and professional.

We all make New Year's resolutions. Some of them seem simple enough, while others are a bit more long-term and will require some dedication and effort.

Personally, I have stopped making resolutions unless they are realistic, measurable and attainable. This applies to both personal and professional goals!

For example, I'd like to drop 10 pounds. In order to do this, I know that I have to watch what I put in my body. Avoiding fast-food, soda and other convenience foods will help me attain this goal. For me, 10 pounds is both realistic and measurable. Simply saying "lose weight" isn't enough; I need to draw a line and know the boundary.

A number of my professional "must accomplish" items include educating new photographers, not only in photographic skills, but in the business arena as well. There are lots of newer shooters who won't make it out of 2011 because they do not charge appropriately for their product and will not be able to sustain a viable and successful business.

I am also a huge believer in Professional Associations (PPA, MNPPA, TCPPA). While there are loads of places to gain info in books or online, there is nothing that beats what one can learn in a seminar or by networking personally with other photographers. Promoting membership in these associations is another "must accomplish" item for me.

Last year was the first for Camp David; our first effort was a great success. This year we have more things planned, beginning with opening-day programs at the 2011 Northern Light Convention. We hope you'll join us in the coming year (check out Camp David Photo on FB.)

It's become somewhat of a soapbox thing for me, but we're all in this industry together. We've chosen to make a living doing something we love, so I will continue to invest more time educating photographers on doing a better job in their business, pricing and marketing skills so that all of us may continue to enjoy photography as a rewarding profession!

- David Grupa

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Jerry Ghionis Live - December 30th - 3pm CST

If you've ever seen the work of Jerry Ghionis, you already know of his incredible imagery. If you've ever had the opportunity to spend time with him, you know how inspirational he is.

Last year, Jerry Ghionis was the keynote speaker at the Northern Light Regional Convention. Being a member of the NL Board and closely involved with this event, I had the opportunity to chat with him after his program . . . this man has more creative thought in 30 seconds than I will have all next week.

Click the link below to hear him live - today, December 30th at 3pm CST. 

This is an investment of time you will not regret.

- David Grupa

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Make a Year-End Donation to PPA Charities

With the end of the calendar year and Imaging USA just around the corner, PPA Charities is preparing their annual donation to Operation Smile. The check will be presented on Saturday, January 15th as a part of PPA Charities' Celebration Event, kicking off Imaging USA 2011.

We still need your help. We are only 66 smiles short of matching last year's amount; it cost just $240 to save a smile and change the life of a child forever. 

As many of you are aware, I serve on the PPA Charities Board of Trustees. Both Dave Johnson and I have had our heads shaved to raise money for this very worthwhile cause. We, as photographic artists, have been given an incredible gift. We are fortunate enough to make a living doing something we truly enjoy. It's time to pay it forward.

As an Operation Smile studio, your clients will know that not only are they enjoying your creative artistry, but they are also working with a caring and compassionate business person. If you could donate $5 from every session you photographed, it would only take 48 sessions to change the life of a child. At $10 a session, it would only take 24 sessions! (How many sessions do you do? How much per session can you set aside for this worthwhile cause?)

Please click the link below to make your donation to PPA Charities and have it count toward our total for 2010 (and toward your 2010 tax deductions!)

Thanks for your help!

- David Grupa

Coming this January - Business by the Numbers

Kirsten Holscher, one of the Camp David instructors, will be hosting a seminar in January called "Business by the Numbers". Having known Kirsten for a number of years and watching her progress in the industry, I can attest first-hand that she will get you on the right track with this seminar. Kirsten is extremely organized and goal-oriented; it's no accident that her business is successful.

So many photographers just "wing it" when it comes to pricing and set th
eir prices based on things like:
- emotion (you can't drop prices on a whim just to make a sale!)

- what you would be willing to pay (most of us can't afford ourselves)

- what the photographer across the street charges (how do you know if that person is making enough money - or charging based on what YOU charge?)

- what our family and friends are willing to pay (they're the ones who always expect a deal!)

Forget about what new lenses you want or what new toys you think you should buy; what we truly need to invest money in is ourselves! Education is never a bad thing . . . click the link below to be directed to her website, then make it your resolution for 2011 to run your business properly!

 - David Grupa

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Welcome to the all-new Camp David Photo Information Site!

We are excited about the things that 2011 will bring, including more opportunities for educational events.

You'll be able to work with the entire Camp David crew at the 2011 Northern Light Convention in Breezy Point, MN on February 26th. As long as you're there, you might just as well stay for the entire event; the lineup of talent is incredible! 

Also, watch for helpful tips and Q&A sessions right here as well as on our Facebook page. If you haven't "liked" us yet, make sure to do it now. We will have some fun giveaways periodically!

Finally, make sure to "follow" this site so you always know about the latest events and happenings.

We look forward to an amazing, fun and profitable 2011!

- David Grupa