After two years of attending WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographers International), a week long conference in Las Vegas, I finally had the guts to submit two prints to the print competition. The print competition, in my opinion, is by far the most valuable part of WPPI. Two full days of five panel judging by some of the industry’s best artists with scores and critique given on each print, it’s easy to be overwhelmed all the gold nuggets of information. After so many hours of sitting in on judging, I am always (9/10 times) able to guess the score within 1 point and see the main critiques of any given print.
You would think that with my ability to accurately guess the outcome, submitting my own prints should be easy, but you would be dead wrong. Being so invested and emotionally connected to my own work creates a mental block for me and I have a very hard time selecting images for entry. This alone is the only reason I haven’t submitted previously.
This year, I decided it’s time to get some skin in the game. I submitted two prints that warrant strong emotion to me. The portrait of Kulsoom above did not make the cut for scoring, but it is still one of my all time favorite portraits. The photo below of Eric and Maki on their wedding day earned a Silver Award of Excellence!
A huge thank you to Jonathan Penny for being so patient and walking me through my printing options. He did excellent work and made the whole confusing process of physically submitting the print easy. Also a huge thank you to Kulsoom and Eric and Maki for being patience and allowing me to make something creative yet timeless for them.
While I agree with the critique I received, I still feel incredibly happy with both prints. I’m thrilled to get an award at my first print competition, but I am so motivated to shoot more of the images that I want to create. The validation that what I see differently in my head works for my clients and the industry is like a shot of adrenaline. I’m driven to do more, and do better this year.
So, fair warning to all my clients this year, I plan to make magic with you.
Delighted Images by Desiree Nguyen is an internationally awarded boutique, full-service photography studio specializing in destination pre-wedding and wedding photography based in San Francisco, California. Desiree is a destination wedding photographer for jetset couples. Delighted Images specializes in producing custom photo shoots to best tell your love story. To save your date for a tailored experience, please contact us!