Wow! I don’t even know where to begin here. WPPI was absolutely incredible. I guess I’ll start out by saying thank you! Thank you all for making this trip out to the desert the most memorable one ever. You all know who you are. I may have saw you on the trade show floor or in my very first platform class or just in passing. Either way you all had such a positive effect on why this WPPI was so special. I cannot wait to do it again!

On day one of the trade show I was asked to speak at the Zenfolio booth. This is when it started getting real to me. I walked up to their booth to see my headshot (done by the talented Chris Sawicki) and a little bio. I was like ok, wow, thats me. I presented twice on Monday for about 30 minutes each time. It was great meeting you all at the Zenfolio booth. The dude with the cool glasses is the founder & CEO of Zenfolio Alex Peyzner. I meet Alex last year at WPPI. I was so impressed I immediately  switched my web hosting to them. They are a fantastic company.

Aside from business Vegas is about meeting awesome photographers and making friends. The dude on the left in the middle I feel needs no introduction. Now photographers, if for some reason you live on the moon he’s Chris Becker or just “Becker” I met him a few years ago at WPPI. I consider him one of the most important people in our industry. He’s also the mastermind behind The [b] School. If you’re a photographer looking to learn and share this is the place to be. It’s like facebook but for photographers.  The other couple in the top b&w photo are the most awesome people I’ve meet at WPPI. Dale Benfield and his very soon to be wife Meredith McClary. We met Dale and Meredith (I call em “Meredale”) at WPPI last year and instantly became friends. They’re just cool like that.  So those images were from Beckers party. The images on the right are from the Airplanes and Blazers party. That too was a fun time.

On Monday night my lab Millers Lab & mpix pro took about 60 of us photographers out to dinner at Tao. The dinners with them are always great. Thanks to Sara Kauss for this “table shot”. Good times!

On Tuesday (the day of the big night) I spoke at the mpix pro booth. Thank you to all who sat down and listened to me!

Blah blah blah! The next time I’d speak was later that evening…

At 6:00pm-8:00pm to be exact… When I saw this sign outside of my room my stomach dropped just a little. When I first got the news this past August that I ha been selected to speak and have a platform class at WPPI I was like “SAY WHAAAAAAT?”. I couldn’t believe it. When I chatted with my WPPI contact she asked how many people I thought I’d draw. I was like “I don’t know 75-100 people?” She told me she’d put me in a room for 300 people. My only request, don’t put me up against Jasmine Star. LOL.

To my surprise my pre-board had 18 of 210 seats left. When I stepped up on the platform and noticed people were sitting on the floor I was in total awe and incredibly flattered. I’ll admit I was nervous leading up to the whole thing but around 5:45 the nerves disappeared and I got up there and did my thing for just over and hour and half. Before I started I asked who else but Big Joe to give me an intro. It was touching and wonderful to have my father up there for the first few minutes. Once he intro’d me I went into my 3 minute video then turned on my mic and went for it. I have to say I had a blast up there! I can’t thank all 300+ peeps enough who sat and listened to me instead of grabbing dinner from 6-8 on a Tuesday night. I wish you all mega success in your businesses and lots of luck! You all rock! (the photo on the bottom is from an iPhone so pardon the quality)

I’ll end with this. Moments after my platform was over… Pops was a proud dude that night. Viva Las Vegas!

Share this story

  1. So happy for you! I knew as soon as Bill and I sat down with you and your dad to plan our wedding photos 7 years ago, that you were going to be very successful in what you do. Your photos are amazing and just speak to people. You have an amazing eye and wonderful talent. Congrats to you!

  2. Still mad I had to sit this out, but next year! Glad to hear you did your thang in your platform class, woot woot!!!

  3. JP – you did an amazing job at your seminar!! Your class was the 1st one i pre-boarded for, and it was my fav. of the week! So happy to meet you and your beautiful wife and run into you about 5 million times throughout the week! Much love!

  4. that dale benfield is SO hot right now. 😉 Thanks for the shoutout JP! It was so great to see you – hopefully we can get together when we come to NY soon!

  5. CONGRATS!!! You and your dad are so talented and deserve all this success and more! 🙂

  6. why did i just tear up? maybe b/c I missed attending this year? nahhh… you actually made me feel like I was right there through this great post. Wait I know!! Its b/c you are awesome at what you do thanks to having a great “Pop’s” to mentor and cheer ya on! Congrats on your success!

  7. What an awesome experience for you!! So great that you had your Dad and Kris Ann there to share in your glory!! Unlike you, I am not surprised you had people sitting on the floor to hear you speak. Congrats on such an incredible accomplishment. 🙂

  8. Huge props man, HUGE props. WPPI this year was knocked out the park, hell it was knocked out of the city the stadium is in. It’s a blast hanging together, growing together, and sharing such awesome experiences with you and KA.

  9. Congrats JP – what an amazing honor. I’m not surprised that you sold out your talk (and then some). I love that you had your dad introduce you – that’s why I <3 you guys!!! 🙂 So sweet. Congrats again, very cool for you and the fam 🙂