June 27, 2013
There are some exciting updates to this year's program you need to know about!
Marketing Boot Camp: Sunday, August 11, 10:00 - 4:00 PM
We had a number of requests from attendees for more marketing support. So, we've added a day of intense marketing. We're going to help with you with the challenges that haunt you the most. We'll talk about pricing, promotions, your website, social media, partnerships, blogging and branding. And if we've missed something in the list, just say the word and we'll do our best to cover it. Skip Cohen will be taking you through the bulk of the topics with help from Michele Celentano, Bob Coates and Adam Sherwin, just to name a few. Then, during the rest of Summer Session you'll have the support of our faculty to help answer more of your questions. Plus, Zach and Jody Gray's program that evening will add to our ability to help you strengthen your marketing and don't forget their half day program on Monday as well. We want to help you thrive, not just survive!
Networking Mixer: Sunday, August 11, 8:30 - 10:00 PM
Thanks to support from Panasonic's LUMIX team we're going to network the right way! You'll not only have a chance to meet other attendees and the faculty, but the LUMIX team will have a few of the new GH3's everybody is talking about for you to test drive for yourself. Mirrorless technology is changing the way we capture images and you're going to be blown away.
Hybrid 101 with Suzette Allen
Originally Suzette was doing a two day Intermediate Photoshop class, but the popularity of hybrid e-products is off the charts. Here's your chance to get introduced to a whole new product line to offer your clients. The potential for you to increase revenue is outstanding and explained in more detail in Suzette's program description listed below. Plus, instead of one two day workshop, she's teaching two one day workshops with the same content, so you can now take her class along with another choice for your hands-on programming.
Just Announced: Lumix G is a proud sponsor of Skip Cohen University. For attendees signed up for the Hybrid 101 class only, enter "LUMIXUSA" in the discount box and receive an instant scholarship of $200. Also receive a year's subscription of ProShowPremium from Photodex when you take this workshop! (Note, cannot be combined with other programs/discounts.)
"Save Me a Seat"
We believe this is an industry first. With "Save Me a Seat" you can register for the program with a minimal amount and not have to pay the bulk of the balance until October 1st! That's sixty days after the program is over, giving you a chance to take what you've learned and actually put it to work producing revenue! Pay $250 prior to August 11 and $350 on October 1st. This gives you sixty days to implement some of the things you've learned and have them on their way to producing revenue BEFORE the bill is even due!
The $100 Alumni discount has been extended right up to the program start date of August 11.
Illustration Credit: © DinoZ - Fotolia.com
The Background on SCU Programs
In 2009, with the help of a whole bunch of good friends and artists who believe in education, we launched Skip's Summer School in Las Vegas. The program continued through the summer of 2012, but now it's time to raise the bar. Welcome to SCU's first summer session, or as some people have put it, Skip's Summer School on steroids!
There is a need for something mid-year to help photographers stay focused, fine tune their skill set and recharge their battery. Over the last four years this summer program has evolved into one of the leading network builders in the industry. It’s no longer just a workshop of photographers attending to expand their expertise, but a community of people who work to help each other all year long.
Check out Skip's Summer School on Facebook. It was started by the attendees themselves and today is a community of 230+ photographers who just help each other!
Thanks to feedback from hundreds of photographers, Skip’s Summer School has evolved into a year round hub for education, networking and expanding everyone’s marketing and business skills. This year's summer session will take the program to its highest level yet, offering outstanding keynote speakers, hands-on shooting and more marketing and business support.
We're going to help you raise the bar on the quality of your work even more than past programs. As we said with the SCU launch in Las Vegas in March, "We want you to THRIVE, not just survive!"
The 2013 Program
Location: This year’s program will take us back to the Chicago area. Everything will be at the Doubletree Hilton Hotel in Oakbrook, Illinois. The hotel is just ten miles from O’Hare Airport, making it a short cab or limo ride. Limo service is available for under $30, allowing attendees to share a ride to the destination and split the cost.
The hotel is large enough to offer a wide variety of shooting situations both in and out of the building, but small enough to give us a level of intimacy not found in big properties. Plus the staff was terrific in supporting our needs in 2012.
We've also negotiated a special $109 per night rate which includes wifi. Also, if you're driving over for the program, there is no charge to park in the hotel garage. The room block will sell out fast, so don't wait until the last minute to make your reservation.
Hands-on Programs: There are currently ten hands-on shooting programs to choose from this year. Plus there is a two-day Intermediate Photoshop program and a business and marketing program. In addition, we’ll have five general sessions for the entire school, focusing on a variety of topics. Each attendee can choose two of the ten instructors to spend an entire day with for hands-on shooting.
All instructors have been chosen because of their teaching expertise. While each instructor demonstrates slightly different specialties or skill sets, they’re part of SCU because they’re some of the best teachers in our industry. If the instructor you want to be with is sold out, pick another instructor. They're all going to be there for most of the program and you'll still have a chance to meet them and maybe even shoot a little if people head out on their own in the evening as they have in the past. Sorry, but there is no wait-list for any hands-on program.
NO CLASS WILL EXCEED TWENTY PEOPLE. We want this program to provide you with the tools and information you need to expand your skill set as both a photographer and business person. You can only do that if you have the opportunity to really get to know the instructor, build relationships with other members of the class and have the time to practice, practice, practice.
Hands-on Shooting: Each instructor will be sharing ideas on a wide variety of photographic situations, usually in the classroom before you start shooting. The Doubletree Hilton offers some terrific diversity in shooting situations both indoor and out. We’ll be providing models for each class and utilizing a diverse collection of different challenges in hands-on shooting. Keeping the class size small will allow each attendee time with their instructors and the ability to build stronger relationships.
Please Note: The purpose of hands-on shooting is to help you become a better photographer and artist. It is not to build your portfolio with a series of images identical to the photographer standing next to you. It's important to build your portfolio with images you can honestly say are your own and that demonstrate techniques that are repeatable within the parameters of your skill set.
Program Costs: The cost for this year’s SCU Summer Session is $549. Your tuition includes:
Alumni Discount and "Thrive": Enter “Alumni” and the most recent year you attended Summer School and receive a $100 discount. The Alumni discount has been extended right up to the program start date, August 11. For example, attendees to Summer School 2012 would enter “Alumni2012” in the discount box. If you were a paid attendee at "Thrive" in Las Vegas, enter "Thrive" in the discount box and you'll receive a credit within 48 business hours after registration. Please note, discounts cannot be combined.
All hotel, transportation, meals and expenses other than those listed are not included in tuition.
"Save Me a Seat" - A special reservation program to help you be a part of SCU's Summer SessionPhoto by Kenny Kim
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. Skip Cohen
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 and two payments - $150 charged to your credit card on August 1 and the balance of $350 due on October 1.
Note: From August 1 - 11 the deposit requirement for Save Me a Seat is $250, combining the first two payments.
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.
A Special Added Bonus - Thanks to Venice Album
At SCU we're constantly looking for ways to help professional photographers not only raise the bar on the quality of their work but also on profitability and presentation. We're very excited to have Venice Album as a partner and they have a special program for this year's Summer Session attendees.
When you're fully registered for this year's program you'll receive a $200 credit on your account at Venice Album. The credit is good on any order of $400 or more and on anything in the Venice Album lineup. This program will run until year end.
In addition, check out Venice Album's current program for visitors to the SCU site. Use SCU70 at checkout for a 70% discount on album sample sets and SCU50 for a 50% discount on your first order. This special program will run until August 31. Here's a post that explains the program further.
We anticipate more special offers from other partners, exclusively for Summer School attendees and all following one simple goal...
We want you to THRIVE not just survive in 2013!
Tentative Agenda and Schedule for 2013
Please note: Each attendee will be receiving the final schedule with room assignments and times for each program two weeks prior to arriving.
Sunday, August 11, 2013
10:00 - 4:00 PM Marketing Boot Camp
5:00 PM Registration Opens for Badge Pick-up and SCU Meet the Partners (Vendors) Mixer
6:30 Skip Cohen: Welcome and Overview
7:00 - 9:00 Zach and Jody Gray: Sales!
What good is working to create the greatest images of your life if you can't sell them?
9:00 - 10:00 Networking Mixer - sponsored by the LUMIX Team
Monday, August 12
8:30 – 12:30 Hands-on Intensive with first selected instructor
12:30 – 1:30 Lunch
1:30 - 5:30 Hands-on Intensive with first selected instructor
8:00 – 10:00 Joe McNally: Inside the Mind of Joe McNally
Tuesday, August 13
8:30 – 12:30 Hands-on Intensive with second selected instructor
12:30 – 1:30 Lunch
1:30 – 5:30 Hands-on Intensive with second selected instructor
8:00 – 9:30 SCU Unconference and Open Forum
Wednesday, August 14
8:30 – 10:30 Michele Celentano: ...And I Still Don't Know What I Want to be When I Grow Up!
10:45 -12:15 Skip Cohen and Adam Sherwin: Holding Focus
Departure for O’Hare Airport: The last program ends at noon, but just to be safe, we recommend attendees book their return flights any time after 3:00 pm.
Special All School Platform Programs
"Sales is NOT a dirty word"
Zach and Jody Gray
Sunday, August 11 7:30 - 9:30
Join Zach and Jody as they open SCU and get your sale on! Becoming a great salesman is not why you got into this business, and Zach and Jody are going to walk you through their process of selling that feels more like a beautiful exchange than it does peddling your products. Once you learn how to create an atmosphere for profits, then your clients will just simply buy from you and be happy they did!
Inside the Mind of Joe McNally
Monday, August 12 8:00 - 9:30 pm
Okay, so we stole the idea from an old John Malkovich movie, but here's the challenge when you have a speaker with Joe's experience. There's virtually nothing he could talk about that won't keep most photographers on the edge of their seats.
So we asked him, "What would you like to speak about?" His answer: "I could talk about being relentless, tenacious and continuing to re-invent yourself. I could talk about the marathon aspects of this career, and how you have to build for the long haul. I could talk about telling stories, which is a skill that is getting lost in the quick hit, single pic atmosphere of the internet."
We couldn't ask for a more relevant topic, so we're just going to let him run with it. What a kick!
Joe's career has spanned 30 years and included assignments in over 50 countries. His list of cover stories include TIME, Newsweek, Fortune, New York, Entertainment Weekly, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, and Men's Journal. He's shot for Sports Illustrated, LIFE, and continues to shoot for National Geographic, a relationship spanning 23 years. Joe was listed by American Photo as one of the 100 Most Important People in Photography and described by the magazine as "perhaps the most versatile photojournalist working today".
Unconference and Open Forum
Tuesday, August 13 8:00 - 9:30
One of the goals of Skip Cohen University is to offer new photographers a chance to share their knowledge, talent and love of photography with the world. There are plenty of "rockstar" photographers out there speaking. Some of them are even teaching for SCU. But what about the photographer who is like the local rock band, playing in small clubs in their home town, waiting to be discovered? Is that you? We hope so.
Skip has booked hundreds of platform speakers, teachers and lecturers for photo conferences held around the country over the last 20 years. He has an eye for talent and he's looking for you. If you think you have something to share that will inspire, educate or inform the photo community, here's your chance.
To be eligible, you must attend SCU's Summer Session, August 11-14, 2013. You need to contact us by email (email@example.com) and let us know you'd like to speak.
There will be up to six unconference speakers. Each will be given a hard deadline of 10 minutes. The topic must be photo related and there is absolutely no selling or self-promotion of any kind allowed. These timelines and rules will be very strictly enforced.
To apply, submit a one-minute video telling us about your idea. What would your presentation entail? How would it benefit our audience? Make your one-minute video using anything from a cell phone to a Red camera. It doesn't matter. We're not judging your video production skills. We just want to know if you have something to say.
The submission deadline is July 1, 2013. Upload your video to Vimeo or YouTube and give us a link.
Send the link to firstname.lastname@example.org by July 1, 2013. We will notify presenters within 48 hours of their selection. If you don't hear from us, that means you were not selected, but don't give up. We'll be doing this two or three times a year at other SCU live events. If you have real passion for photography now is the time to share it.
We'll see you at SCU's Summer Session, August 11-14, 2013.
SCU Open Forum
Tuesday, August 13 Following the Unconference
Open Forum has become an annual tradition at these events. We'll spend an hour following the Unconference just talking about the business. This is where you get to ask any questions of the faculty in a completely unstructured atmosphere. We did the first one in 2010 and we've kept the tradition going ever since.
Anything goes and whoever joins us will do their best to help you work through the issues you might be challenged with.
...And I Still Don't Know What I Want to be When I Grow Up!
Wednesday, 8:30 - 10:00 a.m.
We joke about Michele being like the Energizer Rabbit, but the reality is she seems to have endless energy. She's a mother, a wife, a great friend, a photographer, writer, educator and fitness instructor. She loves every role she's cast into, but it takes balance, focus and an amazing passion for life and the creative process.
Michele will be talking about many of the challenges every photographer faces, ways she found to be more creative and resources for staying on top of your game.
Skip Cohen and Adam Sherwin
Wednesday, 10:15 - 11:30
Everybody does the same thing at every program you attend. You leave totally pumped up, excited about what you've learned and then life simply gets in the way. Within a week or two all the great ideas you've picked up are put into a shoebox and kicked under the bed. All the great intentions to try out new ideas and launch new concepts for your business or your shooting style start to deteriorate and you slip back into old habits. Skip and Adam want to help you hold focus on everything you will have learned while at SCU. They want to give you ideas on how you can stay on top of the passion and implement rather than procrastinate. This is about holding focus on your enthusiasm, new friendships and keeping your creative juices flowing.
Adam Sherwin is Director of Social Media Marketing for Resource Magazine. He's a photographer, videographer, writer, educator and the ultimate geek! His column "Ask a Geek" is a regular favorite of Resource Magazine. Most important of all, he's got an unmatched passion for the imaging industry and has been a part of the summer program team for the past three years.
Skip Cohen founded SCU to establish a different kind of education in professional photography. He has served as President of Hasselblad USA for twelve years and President of Rangefinder/WPPI for seven years before starting his own company Marketing Essentials International. He's co-authored six books on photography, most recently GoingPro with social media icon and good friend, Scott Bourne. His passion for imaging is all about elevating the quality of education and marketing programs for professional photographers.
Suzette Allen: Hybrid 101: HYBRID=Video+Stills+Audio+You! Getting started painlessly
HYBRID is the HOT NEW success train you need to hop on for a profitable next year! Jumping in can be overwhelming at first, so we will break it down and make it easy for you to add Hybrid eProducts to your studio services. Hybrid eProducts can be filmed with a DSLR or Mirrorless camera and created with many software solutions, from easy to difficult, but we will focus on the Easy and Profitable ones!
We will learn the core skills of creating Hybrid eProducts: terms, shooting techniques, technical settings, template use, equipment and audio gear. Then we will shoot video and stills for an eProduct. (Talking business cards, or engagement/grad cards, etc). Next we will take the videos, edit with Lightroom, export and then create products with eTemplates (auto edited) and ProShows with Photodex, and then an optional custom version with Photoshop CS6.
You will come away with the vital skills and knowledge you need to get started with Hybrid, creating profitable eProducts.
Don’t wait to start your Hybrid Journey….your future success depends on it!
Every attendee in this special two day workshop will receive a FREE one year subscription of ProShow Web Premium, a $150 value.For more information visit Photodex and ProShow Web Premium.
Looking to get to know Suzette better, check out her faculty gallery, video page and website."
Just Announced: Lumix G is a proud sponsor of Skip Cohen University. For attendees signed up for the Hybrid 101 class only, enter "LUMIXUSA" in the discount box and receive an instant scholarship of $200. (Note, cannot be combined with other programs/discounts.)
Clay Blackmore: Wedding 101
As one of the most diverse wedding and portrait photographers in our industry, Clay has a reputation for non-stop energy and creativity. Every year attendees have had an amazing experience working with Clay, even when he wasn't scheduled to actually teach! This year, as our Dean of Weddings, he's going to focus his energy on Wedding 101 to assure each photographer gets the right foundation to build a solid business based on great skills and style. Imagine the strength of your skill set learning from one of the finest wedding photographers in the world.
This is about having the expertise to know how to shoot a wedding right from the beginning, before you develop a lot of bad habits. We want you to have the strongest foundation you can have to build your business! Check out Clay's faculty page for more information and then visit his videos."
Michele Celentano: Family and Children Portraiture 201
Loaded with non-stop energy and enthusiasm, Michele is proof that hyper-active kids grow up and get jobs! She's our Dean of Students and has an amazing background. Having the experience of business both on the east coast and now in Phoenix, she’s one of the industry’s strongest instructors. Her business today focuses primarily on family and children and as one of America’s leading portrait artists she’ll be helping you hands-on, learning how to get the most out of every client relationship! You’ll learn how to create art, not just beautiful portraits.
Check out Michele's faculty page for more information. Don't forget to look at her video page and listen to her podcast in theSCU Archives. There's also a special blog post about the launch of her recently released new book on family portraiture.
Bob Coates: Fine Art 101
You name it, Bob's experience as an artist covers it. Starting his career in photography as a photojournalist he's built a reputation on quality, integrity and an amazing expertise. He's an artist, a writer, an educator and a print judge for both PPA and WPPI. In this special program he's going to help you explore how you can bring the world of fine art into your images and expand your skill set to help create a stronger revenue stream.
Keeping photography fun for yourself is important! Bob will be talking about using personal projects to keep your photography fresh and exciting AND how to make money and get exposure for your business with those images. Bob will be sharing a process he has dubbed 'Photo-Synthises' to create painterly images with depth and dimension using Photoshop. He'll also dip into some easy but extremely effective marketing ideas to gently 'Blow your own horn' to get more business.
Check out Bob's faculty page, two guest posts and the most downloaded podcast SCU has ever had.
Bob and Dawn Davis: Lighting 201 - Weddings, Portraits and Control
Besides being one of the strongest teaching couples in professional photography, Bob and Dawn always focus on quality. While Bob will help you understand lighting and the bread and butter shots for portraiture and weddings, you'll find Dawn's input invaluable at learning to understand and work with your clients. Great images are all about great expressions and they don't happen without building trust, listening to and understanding your clients. They do an outstanding job of complimenting each others skill set.
Check out their SCU Trifecta with their guest post, podcast and videos. Bob's WTF series is now hosted on the SCU site with a new episode every week.
Dixie Dixon: Fashion 201
This is an afternoon program limited to just 20 people on Monday, August 12 starting at 1:30 pm.
Whether your main interest as an artist is fashion or not, adding a fashion flair to your images can be an invaluable tool to help you separate yourself from your competition. It can be contemporary, fresh and perfect for bridal work, seniors and even family portraiture. Over the last five years Dixie Dixon has set a pace that's unmatched for branding and building her reputation. She's had feature stories and cover shots in virtually all of the major photographic magazines and even the cover of Nikon's magazine. Her client list reads like the Who's Who of lifestyle companies.
This program is a 3-4 hour fashion shoot with Dixie in the driver's seat working on the Doubletree Hilton property. There are some incredible places to shoot and Dixie will be handling the shoot just as if SCU was her client. This is your chance to pick some great tips from a photographer who's setting an incredible pace in the fashion world.
Check out her videos and faculty page for a better view of Dixie's her work, her style and why she's taken the fashion industry by storm!
Zach and Jody Gray: Business/Marketing 101
This is a four hour program, limited to just 20 people on Monday, August 12 starting at 8:30 a.m.
Creating great images is just one small piece of the business puzzle. Join Zach and Jody for this intimate 4 hour class on creating a thriving business from the ground up so you can get more leads, more clients who want YOU, have more fun and make more MONEY! Zach and Jody will take you through their process that has helped 100's of photographers increase their bottom line and create a business that works for you, instead of you working for your business.
Topics covered: Branding, pricing, client experience, word of mouth & word of mouse marketing and closing deals.
Check out Zach and Jody's faculty gallery, then cruise by their guest post and follow them on their blog and website. On April 1a new podcast airs featuring Zach and Jody.
Justin and Mary Marantz: Wedding 201
Justin & Mary Marantz are responsible for what many have referred to as the finest profile video in wedding photography. They believe in being themselves and it's their personalities they want their clients to connect to, just as much as their work. They'll be working to help you develop techniques to be the ultimate storyteller, including both the technical side as well as the "Why" that underlies it. Understanding exposure, lighting, posing and your gear are the first part of the challenge in becoming a great wedding photographer. The second part is developing trust with your clients and being able to tell their story in a way no one else can. Every wedding is unique and each couple deserves someone who is committed to telling their story and writing their history for the generations to come. Justin & Mary will walk you through each step of the wedding day, covering every potential trouble spot along the way from a dark church to an unruly bridal party, and help you identify those key moments that simply can't be missed.
Check out their faculty page and then watch one of the best about videos ever produced by wedding photographers.
Jen Rozenbaum: Boudoir 101
Boudoir photography may well be the fastest growing category in professional portrait photography. If you do it right, it can be an incredible business, but do it wrong and "you'll never work in this town again!" This is far more than just making your clients look sexy - it's about the complete experience, self-esteem and creating a stunning image that captures the personality and essence of your client. Over the past five years Jen has become one of the most recognized boudoir photographers in the country and it's because of the time she spends to create only the very best images focusing on her clients, lighting, composition and exposure. You need to have the skill set and great communication skills and be able to develop a high trust level with each client.
To learn more about Jen, visit her faculty page and then watch her AOL video, having recently been featured on AOL's "You've Got..." segment.
Ryan Schembri: People 201
Portraits, Posing and Composition
He's SCU's version of Thunder from Down Under as Australia's Ryan Schembri shares his tips and technique for creating outstanding people work. This is about directing and lighting people to simply look amazing. Think about every great portrait you've ever seen - the key is the lighting, the pose and at the foundation, the direction from the photographer at the time. Ryan will help you develop techniques to elevate the quality of your work regardless of what you're shooting whether portraits or weddings. The key is making your clients look amazing!
Ryan has been shooting for 11 years and his work has been recognized all over the world. He's a five time WPPI Grand Award Winner, 2012 AIPP Australian Wedding Photographer of the Year, 2011 NSWAIPP Photographer of the Year and three time NSWAIPP Wedding Photographer of the Year...and the list goes on and on.
Check out Ryan's faculty page to get to know a little more about him and his work.
Roberto Valenzuela: Wedding 201
“Practice doesn’t make perfect. What if you’re practicing it wrong? Only perfect practice makes perfect!” It’s Roberto’s mantra and nobody teaches creativity in wedding photography better than Roberto. You won’t just be learning how to analyze and dissect a scene, but how to practice with ordinary objects as well as models. As one of our industry’s finest wedding photographers and instructors, Roberto will help you develop a series of exercises to elevate the quality of your images at every wedding you shoot.
Check out Roberto's faculty page and his site for a more in-depth look at his work.