What is it like to meet your hero? Let me tell ya, it is nerve wracking, it is humbling, it is empowering, and it is inspirational.

Arriving in New York, always a welcome view

Arriving in New York, always a welcome view

So many professionals attend and exhibit at trade shows and photographers are no exception. I had the joy of attending the Photo Plus expo in Manhattan this past week. I came away with in person education from leaders in photography (Sue Bryce, Lori Patrick, Jen Rozenbaum and Lindsay Adler) a new holster for my camera which, I am elated about and a personally autographed book from my virtual mentor and photography hero, Ms Sue Bryce herself.


For those of you that follow me here, you already know that I studied virtually under Sue (via CreativeLive) for the majority of this year. I knew at the beginning of this wild year that if I were going to step up my game in my photography business, education was going to play a HUGE part in that success.

I organized each of the week’s assignments with women and daughters and men throughout Asheville over the course of 32 weeks. I sketched out each photo shoot based on the class videos and the topic for the week and was rarin to go! What I wasn’t expecting in this class was how it would affect me personally.

The great thing about Sue is that in her teaching, part of her curriculum forces you to face your own…your own YOU. Your own fears, your own abilities, short comings and strengths. It isn’t only about posing, and set mapping, and business, the real value in this learning is what you learn about yourself. Your own success starts there, and you simply cannot get there without doing the work.

Well, needless to say I evaluate my life on a fairly regular basis. I measure results. I critique my actions and learn from each situation. I’m hard-wired for it. I love it.

Have I had missteps along the way? Of course. I have never been any sort of valedictorian by any stretch of the imagination however, this course was more valuable than any education I received in two different college settings. What I AM is creative, and driven, and thoughtful, and I do my best to support those around me and those that I love and, those I don’t even know.

I can be a little brash at times, haha. However, it is never meant maliciously, I’m kind of “a bull in a china shop” at life.

This past week was a dream come true for me. I got to photograph and learn in new settings from leaders in this industry, enjoy my favorite city for an entire week, I was invited to attend a very exclusive party and enjoy it with the company of a friend and people I had only ever dreamed of enjoying a cocktail with, fan girl a bit, and to top it off, I was able to thank and hug the woman who has championed women’s portraiture through two recessions, educated countless photographers through their own challenges personally and professionally (they do go hand in hand after all) and shows zero signs of slowing down any time soon.

Thank you for such a fabulous experience!! I hope you all enjoy my snap shots. They don’t even begin to do this trip any justice at all. Thank you to all of my new-found connections and the kindness I was shown from so many people. Thank you to my friend Lauren, for being the perfect confidante for the week. Thank you to all of the amazing hosts for the wonderful classes and experiences throughout this amazing week. And, thank you New York. You will always be my first love.

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