For those of you who know me personally, you know that it's rare I do anything half way. That's not meant to sound like a characteristic I'm bragging about, more a quality that I wish I could tone down a little. I don't seem to have a gauge on passion...when I get into something I love, it's all or nothing and at times downright obsessive. SCU has become that obsession and it's definitely a labor of love.
May just closed our fourth full month as a website and blog. It was another milestone month, but what amazes me is how the weeks simply fly by. This past week was one of those weeks and it was amazing. What I'm trying to express is how grateful I am to so many different people. It's my "network" of friends and associates who make my little corner of this industry such a kick, along with some amazing companies in SCU's growing list of partners.
The week started out with the launch of "Save Me a Seat" followed by BYOB (Bring Your Own Buddy) a program for SCU Alumni. Then came some great posts, the growing downloads of Cindy Harter's guest post and podcast. It all came together with great pick up on a press release on Save Me a Seat, Blog Talk Radio picking up the SCU Podcast as one of their featured programs in photography and new faculty joining the SCU team. Charity Fest launched with a request for guest posts and right out of the blocks there were two emails in my box. New videos joined the archives in the Profoto Theater and Ilford Showcase. It was even a great week on a personal note, catching up to Doug Box and Randy Kerr for a day on their way to teach for a week at the Florida School.
Deanne Fitzmaurice, Pulitzer Prize winner and one of the founders of Think Tank, joined the faculty along with Ed ONeill and Dustin Meyer. A new podcast aired yesterday with one of the country's leading boudoir photographers and SCU joined the ranks for great photographic sites and blogs on Guy Kawasaki's Alltop site.
The bottom line is that no project any of us can do will ever succeed without great support from our networks. It's the old Hilary Clinton line that, "It takes a village!" For me that village includes so many amazing friends, associates and manufacturers. The common denominator is the obsessive quality I started talking about in everyone's passion for imagine and an industry we all love.
So, make it a great Sunday...enjoy your family, cherish every moment and fire yourself up for a new week starting tomorrow. It's going to be the best one of the year so far, but I can promise, not as good as the week after!
Illustration Credit:© bloomua - Fotolia.com
A few years ago, during the GoingPro Project, Scott Bourne and I started using Blog Talk Radio for our podcasts. For over a year I've done a new podcast, whether for GoingPro, my old blog or the SCU site, every ten days. Each one featuring another industry icon.
What's been amazing and simply fun to hear have been the stories of how different photographers got started, what advice they have for new photographers just starting out and comments they've made about various challenges in their careers. I'm far from being a strong interviewer or a great radio voice, but every interview has been from the heart and over and over again, the personality of each guest has made the show unique.
Yesterday BlogTalkRadio sent me an email that SCU's Building Your Network has become a featured program in the Photography category. Well, it couldn't have happened without some amazing guests and all our listeners. While I can't list all of our listeners, I can send out a big thanks to all my past guests...
For once the expression, I couldn't have done it without you, couldn't be more accurate! Thank you for your support and your willingness to share so many stories about your careers!
There are 36 podcasts in the archives of SCU's Podcast Center - each one with a little different focus on some aspect of being a professional photographer. We're all part of an amazing industry and the information shared by so many of my guests is a prime example of people believing in education and giving back.
by Skip Cohen
Those of you who know me personally understand how much I believe in continuous education to build your business. In talking with a lot of photographers over the last few months, I’ve heard so many stories about the challenges in the economy and the difficulty of deciding where best to invest both your time and money in educational programs.
SCU’s Summer Session started with Skip’s Summer School four years ago and as sappy as it sounds, it’s been life-changing for so many attendees. This program is definitely considered one of the very best investments you can make in your education as a professional photographer and that's coming from feedback from many of the attendees over the last few years.
This isn't just about helping you elevate your skill set, but building a community. Today on Facebook there's an amazing group called Skip's Summer School. It wasn't started by me, but one of the attendees two years ago, Brent Watkins. There are almost 300 photographers involved who literally work to help each other every day.
Save Me a Seat
We want to show you how much we believe in helping you “Thrive – not just survive!” We just set up a new billing option called “Save Me a Seat”…all it takes is a $100 deposit to reserve your seat and two payments - $150 charged to your credit card on August 1 and the balance of $350 due on October 1.
We believe so strongly that we can help you grow your business, we’re giving you time to implement some of the things you'll learn at SCU’s Summer Session and start to THRIVE before the last payment is even due.
Remember, no hands-on workshop will exceed twenty people, giving you maximum learning power and the experience of building your network and getting to know your instructors.
Illustration Credit: © Carsten Reisinger - Fotolia.com
by Skip Cohen
A month ago I did a post about my buddy Matthew Jordan Smith and his Future Presidents project. It was the day it all launched on Kickstarter and he was looking to raise $30,000 to fund the project. Well, he made it, but now with less than 30 hours left, we want to help him exceed the goal, but you need to understand why.
Exceeding the goal on a project like this doesn't mean any profitability for the author. What it does mean is the project has a chance to expand its reach. Stronger funding means Matthew has the ability to reach more children, more families and create a stronger project.
If you're not familiar with it, here's the press release that dropped a few weeks ago.
So, this morning's post is a call to action and we're down to the wire. You can guess how many projects over the years I've been involved in, but none with the potential to inspire and involve so many children and families. Matthew's got until the end of the day Sunday - whatever you can do is going to be so appreciated and give you your own little piece of a project destined to be historical.
Thanks for your support!
Dad, Me and Big Blad
by Skip Cohen
In the news today is the press release below in which Hasselblad announced the discontinuation of the V System and one of my all time favorites, the 503CW.
Over the twelve years I was president of Hasselblad USA, we created some incredible memories in marketing, business and just making sure we had fun. It was a work-hard-play-hard mentality. It was an amazing team of talented and passionate people, working with some of the finest photographers in the world.
One of those memories comes from the image on the left, when Big Blad became a trademark at so many different shows. Running approximately 14 feet high it was definitely a conversation piece, but I wonder if the announcement to continue to support accessories for the V System applies to Big Blad - the electric inflator is sounding a little sluggish, but just like Hasselblad's reputation, it's still working!
Here's a prime example of the importance of networks and the great relationships that come out of this industry, a topic I've written about many times. Virtually all of my closest friends, like the Degrees of Separation Kevin Bacon game, can all be traced back to some point in time while I was with Hasselblad.
R.I.P. 503CW - You captured some of the world's most amazing images!
The decision, which comes into immediate effect, brings to an end over a half century of evolution of the company's original camera line.
Dr. Larry Hansen, Hasselblad Chairman and CEO said: "Everything has its place in time. The veteran 503CW combined with an extensive V System range of interchangeable lenses and accessories, was for seventeen years the camera of choice for discerning professionals and aspirational amateur photographers.
But there has been a substantial decline in demand for this camera over the past five years or so and the time has now come for us to reluctantly consign the V System to history. In so doing we would like to thank all fans and customers for both their loyalty and their enthusiasm for our legacy Hasselblad V System."
He added: "Now of course the focus on medium format capture is on our H System - the world's most advanced camera system. The latest generation cameras represent medium format capture engineering at its most exemplary and are well-placed to secure and underpin the company's unrivaled reputation for providing highest image quality and craftsmanship. Additionally we are focusing on new products for advanced enthusiasts."
Hasselblad has confirmed that the last 503CW has rolled off the production line but the company will continue to provide V System accessories while stocks last. V System support will also still be available through current channels.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.