Day 1 of The Portrait Masters conference did not disappoint. I started my morning with a delicious cold brew in hand and prepped myself for a head shot with Gerson Lopes. If you don't know this multi-talented individual, one google search is all you need. He is a wonderful photographer and musician and a big part of Sue Bryce's team. I had the honor of photographing Gerson during Richard Woods painterly portrait workshop in February at Sue Bryce's studio in Los Angeles, so it seemed full circle to have him photograph me to today.
I can already feel that this year's conference is so much different than last year. If you don't know this about me, I am an introvert. I can hold a conversation well once I get started but I need alone time to refresh and recharge. It's only day 1 and I have found myself in inspiring conversations with other creatives for hours on end enjoying the company of like minded people. I have met more people in the past 24 hours than I allowed myself to during the entire 2018 conference. I find myself more in a leadership role this year as opposed to feeling intimidated and overwhelmed like I did last year. I feel empowered to help others find out what makes them tick in this industry because I have most definitely felt what it feels like to be on the other side of things.
Today we spent the day learning about each other, hearing stories, shooting with Fuji, having a mini portrait session, eating great food, drinking even better wine while whining about not a damn thing. I love the positive vibes from everyone I encounter and could not be more proud to be a part of this generous community of visual story tellers.
Did I not mention that I had my portfolio critiqued today? Oh my goodness, this takes a lot of vulnerability but taking a step out of my comfort zone has always worked in my favor. Best comment from one of the judges, “you don’t need to be attending this conference, you need to be on the other side of this table with us." MIC DROP!
Sometimes all you need is a little gansta rap, a glass of wine, and maybe confirmation from your mentors that you're on the right course in this life.
Side note, this introvert has totally lost her voice from all of the conversations today! Good thing tomorrow is about listening and not speaking!