It's Sunday morning and far too early to normally be writing, but we're in Vegas for WPPI, and there are two obstacles to sleep that can't be avoided. First, is the time zone and I'm always a mess - the clock says it 6:00 A.M. but my body is screaming that it's 9:00 A.M. So, I've given up and here I am.
But it's the second reason that's a bigger issue - I LOVE being here. The anticipation of catching up to old friends is out of control and had me bounding out of bed regardless of it still being dark outside. I've written a lot over the years about networking and the role it should play in your business, but this is so much more.
Once you've been to the same conventions a few times over 3-5 years, you have enough people who you've met and hopefully stayed in contact with to make every trip a bigger and bigger kick to attend. As members of the same industry, we all share a similar level of passion, curiosity and need to stay connected.
And there's my point this morning. It's so important to stay connected, plugged into each other's lives. For me, I'm a one-man-band, with my office in my home. I spend the day working, talking on the phone, conversing through IMs and email. Nothing beats a face to face conversation together with a handshake or a hug. Nothing beats eye contact when talking about what's been going on for the last week, month or year.
So, if you're home this week and not at WPPI, I get that you can't make every conference...but, make it a point to put personal time into your network. Make it a point to attend as many conferences and workshops throughout the year as you can.
This isn't a convention, but a quick charge for your soul. It's about sharing time with good friends, old friends and new ones. Nothing beats time with a group of people who all share the same love for the craft and business! We're all looking for many of the same answers, and a good conference is where you'll often find them.
See you on show floor this week and if you're not here now, maybe ShutterFest at the end of the month.
PS If you're here at WPPI, I'm doing two mini-programs in Panasonic's booth this week, 1:30 on Tuesday and 11:30 on Wednesday, so, come on by. Sheila and I will also be walking the show all day tomorrow and you'll find us at Profoto, Marathon or Tamron's booth most of the time.
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.