Weekly Dose of Inspiration: The 'In Focus' Edition

Okay, to be perfectly honest I don't know if this is going to be weekly or not haha. But right now as I'm going through and making a lot of changes in my life and in my businesses, there is a lot of different things inspiring me especially since, in some capacity, I am seeking it out. I had a post written covering a general collection of stuff, but this past weekend I have been in Wellington with my business partner, Sampford, for 'In Focus 2017'. And oh man the inspiration is in overload. 

 

If you don't live in NZ, and you aren't a photographer, you may not even know what I am talking about, but In Focus is the main industry conference of the year. This was my first year going. Last year I was keen to but my last exam of Uni was the day before the classes started and it just wasn't practical. 

 

This year, Sam and I went down for 4 days and 4 nights, and while the main parts of the conference don't start until Saturday, we arrived on Thursday for a workshop with the one and only Lindsay Adler. Lindsay is an awesome fashion and portrait photographer out of New York, and one of my favourites. I have admired her work for years, and think most everything she does is absolutely stunning. There are so many words I could use, but I don't know if I could really summarise how I feel about it without going into a full on list. Whilst she does fashion editorial work, her portraiture work has a distinct fashion vibe to it, and I love it all. 

 

We found out she was coming to the conference months ago and got really excited about it, and then she announced a workshop on incorporating fashion techniques into portraiture. Sam got a ticket instantly, but I couldn't really afford it as much as I would have liked to go. I got a call that evening from Sam and Grace, and they told me to look at my email. They had bought my ticket for me as a birthday present and I legit almost burst into tears. Grace and I share this hate for obligatory gift giving, but in so far as birthday presents go, this one has been the best I have ever received. 

 

So this is where the biggest dose if inspiration is coming from this week. I mean, to be completely fair the whole conference was incredibly inspirational, and Sam and I both have so many new ideas to work on, but this workshop was magic. Nothing I have done in my life has helped me figure out so much about my career and so quickly. Going through everything from posing, staging and client interaction to lighting techniques and retouching, it was an all in one and has got both of us really inspired to work on our portraiture more and transform Graphite into something focusing more on people rather than weddings. The plans are in overload and we need to have some full day sessions working on changing things up.

 

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In terms of the conference itself, we had more time to experience the wonderful-ness that is Lindsay Adler of course, through a live shoot of some World of Wearable Art pieces. Her boyfriend Chris Knight did an awesome workshop on dramatic portraiture which taught me a lot more about studio lighting - I had been waiting to see more of his work after seeing him assisting Lindsay with all her stuff with the workshop. One of Sampford's favourite Architecture photographers is Simon Devitt and he had a really interesting talk that got Sam incredibly excited about his work. Lisa Saad, Australian Photographer of the Year for 2017 talked about her series of work 'The Anonymous Man' which you should check out. Part of her presentation was a time-lapse of her editing one of her images and omg it is elaborate and amazing. Kelly Tunney, a wedding photographer out of Australia talked about her work and her business and that gave Sam and I a lot of ideas around how we want to do with Graphite. Mark Rosetto, a photography business life coach from Australia spoke about how to structure your business, as well as how to grow it. 

Overall it was a bizarre thing to be part of for the weekend, but it was inspirational and a really fun trip to Wellington. Sam won his first ever award in the Iris awards too, which is really exciting.

 

So basically this is where I will leave it! Each of these people are all over the internet and social media, so you should go check them out and see if you get anything out of what they do. Lindsay Adler is all over Creative Live as an educator, has a new book out on posing, and has some of the coolest portraiture work. All the others will have work you can scope out, and anything you can read on 'The Anonymous Man' series will be awesome. The images alone are incredible.