PPE14 Header2


Speakers scheduled for PhotoPro Expo 2014

Jerry Ghionis, Sam Abell, Matt Kloskowski, Blair Phillips, Melissa Ghionis, Brian Smith, Stacy Pearsall, Suzanne Phillips, Richard Sturdevant,  Jeff Locklear, Jefferson Graham, Bill Fortney, Mark Zucker, Jen RoZenbaum, Sandy Puc, Jim Cunningham, and many more stars!

 Sam Abell



sam Abell*     sponsored by  Canon USA

Sam Abell: The Story Matters,  Light & Inspiration

Sunday, February 9th
10:00am - 12:00pm

Legendary and celebrated National Geographic photographer Sam Abell learned photography from his father at their home in Sylvania, Ohio, where he was born. He graduated in 1969 from the University of Kentucky in Lexington with a B.A.

Abell has worked with the National Geographic Society since 1970 and has photographed more than 20 articles on various cultural and wilderness subjects. He has also lectured on photography and exhibited his images to audiences throughout the world.

In 1990, Eastman Kodak published a retrospective monograph of his photographs titled Stay This Moment: The Photographs of Sam Abell. A companion exhibit of his work was shown at New York City's International Center of Photography in November of that year.

Abell's book credits include Contemplative GardensThe Inward Garden: Creating a Place of Beauty and MeaningAustralia: Journey Through a Timeless Land, and Seeing Gardens.

In 1998 he collaborated with author Stephen Ambrose on Lewis & Clark: Voyage of Discovery and again in 2002 on The Mississippi: River of History. That same year, he worked with author Leah Bendavid-Val to produce a retrospective of his life and work titled Sam Abell: The Photographic Life. Two additional book projects, Four Stories and The Life of a Photographer, are scheduled for publication in October 2007 and October 2008, respectively. 

Sam's work is known for its transcendent qualities, starting at the documentary level yet open to interpretation on an aesthetic level. He has said that he could be perfectly happy with his photography even if his only subject was light itself.

He also received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from the University of Toledo on May 10, 2009.

Sam Abell's latest book, The Life of a Photograph, completes a set of three volumes begun in 2000 with Seeing Gardens. It was followed in 2002 with The Photographic Life.

Program Description:

Inspiration: How I Make A Photograph

Sam Abell is a speaker who will tell an evolving story with a quiet, compelling demeanor.  Over the years his lectures about Lewis and Clark, the great adventurers, his autobiographical presentation, The Photographic Life,  and his thoughts on The Life of a Photograph have brought him renown and many more admirers to his work.

Sam's philosophy about photography will resonate with everyone; photographers and non-photographers alike.  This is a program in which you can just sit, enjoy, and luxuriate in the pleasure of Sam's photography and inspiring stories behind the images. Don't miss this presentation, Sam's presentation just may be one of the best you'll hear at PhotoPro Expo 2014.


For more information about Sam Abell, and to view more of his amazing images please visit: http://samabell-thephotographiclife.com/ 

*Sam Abell will be presenting Sunday morning as Mr. Benson, previously scheduled, regrettably was unable to attend because of a previous commitment that extended into this time frame.


Jerry Ghionis          sponsored by NUImaging Professional & PhotoPro Expo

FIVE Steps To a Powerful Photograph

Saturday, February 8th
9:30 am-12:30 pm

Widely regarded as one of the top five best wedding photographers in the world, Jerry Ghionis is based in Beverly Hills, California and Melbourne, Australia and travels frequently on international photography assignments and speaking engagements. With the flair of a fashion designer and the ingenuity of an architect, his style can be described where vintage glamour meets contemporary fashion. Renowned for his creativity, he not only has the ability to capture the natural magic on your wedding day but he creates magic of his own. His natural love and empathy for people creates powerful visual story telling. With the innate ability to make everyone look and feel beautiful in front of his camera, Jerry’s images are often simple yet a complex blend of soul, imagination and technical skill. Whether he is shooting a glamour session, lifestyle portrait or boudoir beauty, Jerry has the ability to see what others don’t and bring out the best in any situation. 

Program Description:

5 Steps To a Powerful Photograph

Widely regarded as one of the top five best wedding photographers in the world, Jerry will break down the 5 steps to creating a well crafted image. He believes in respecting the "old school" rules but making them relevant for the 21st century. Jerry's system with spontaneity will simplify your approach to every shoot. With his "easy to understand" teaching style and entertaining delivery, he will show you how to effortlessly evoke emotions from your subjects and how to combine that with the right light and pose to create images that look glamorous yet natural. You will be inspired, challenged and educated by one of the industries brightest stars.


Blair Phillips - new


Blair  Phillips       sponsored by  H&H Color LAB

Break The Mold

 Friday, February 7th
  9:00pm - 11:00pm

Blair is known for his innovative lighting, fashion forward posing, and unique locations. Each year, Blair and Suzanne photograph between 20-30 weddings and 600+ studio high school senior, newborn, and family sessions. They have a passion to teach other photographers how to express themselves in ways not found in traditional training, and they have had the opportunity to educate photographers all over the United States including WPPI, WPPI U, Imaging USA, SYNC Seniors, various state PPA affiliations. 

Blair and Suzanne started their business 9 short years ago in a small, economically deprives mill town of just 3,000 people in North Carolina. Since then, Blair Phillips Photography has become a household name that people in his community and from several states away, have come to know and love.

Program Description:

Blair's program offers solid strategies for being successful in today's market. He is definitely one of the new breed of photographer who has figured it out and is making a difference in this profession.

Their program covers the gamut of marketing and promotion, creating your own style, and solid lighting and photography techniques. Spend some time with Blair - it will inspire you, educate you, and give you a giggle or two as well.

Brian Smith      sponsored by  PhotoPro Expo

Secrets Of Great Portrait Photography
Friday, February 7th

Miami photographer Brian Smith is the luckiest guy on the planet. He won a Pulitzer Prize at 25, he’s told Bill Gates exactly what to do for an entire hour, appeared on The X Factorexhibited at the Library of Congress, dined with the President and 3,000 of their closest friends, shared cupcakes with Anne Hathaway, gotten drunk with George Clooney and married the most beautiful woman he ever laid eyes on… 

For the past 30 years, his iconic portraits of famous celebrities, athletes and executives have been used in advertising, by corporations and have graced the covers and pages of hundreds of magazines including Sports Illustrated, ESPN the Magazine, Time, Forbes, New York Times Magazine, Elle and British GQ.

His first magazine photograph appeared in LIFE Magazine when Smith was a 20-year-old student at the University of Missouri. Five years later, Smith won the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography for his photographs of the Los Angeles Olympic Games. He was again a finalist for the Pulitzer for his photographs of Haiti in Turmoil. His photograph of Greg Louganis hitting his head on the diving board at the Seoul Olympics won first place in both World Press Photo and the Pictures of the Year competition.

Program Description:

Celebrity portrait photographer Brian Smith shares the lessons he’s learned over the past 30 years capturing the faces of the famous and infamous as a top magazine portrait photographer. Brian will discuss his approach to editorial and commercial assignments from concept to final images, and detailing his approach to lighting and problem solving on productions both small and large. Smith will also share secrets about how to quickly capture the personality of the people you photograph and he will also discuss how personal projects can be used to generate editorial and commercial assignments, and allow your personal style to evolve and grow while generating assignments you love to shoot. Smith will share celebrity portraits of from his new book ‘Secrets of Great Portrait Photography’ to show ways that you can make everyone you photograph look and feel like a star.

Stacy PR Pic

Stacy Pearsall       sponsored by PghotoPro Expo

Shooting Under Fire: Location Lighting

Saturday, February 8th
  4:30 - 6:30 pm

Stacy L. Pearsall got her start as an Air Force photographer at the age of 17. During her time in the service, she traveled to over 41 countries, and attended S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. Now combat disabled and retired from military service, Pearsall continues to work worldwide as a freelance photographer, and is an author, educator, military consultant, public speaker and owner of the Charleston Center for Photography. 

Pearsall was one of only two women to win NPPA's Military Photographer of the Year competition, and the only woman to have earned it twice. She's been honored as the Air Force Veteran of the Year by the Air Force Band and PBS, presented the Trojan Labor American Hero Award, honored with the Daughters of the American Revolution Margaret Cochran Corbin Award, lauded by the White House as a Champion of Change, and holds an honorary doctoral degree from The Citadel.

The release of her first photography book, Shooter: Combat from Behind the Camera, received worldwide praise as "A book of the highest levels in the annals of combat journalism." And her second book, A Photojournalist's Field Guide: In the Trenches with Combat Photographer Stacy Pearsall, is "A must have for every aspiring photographer out there, and even pros can pick up a few new tricks to help them become better photographers."

Matt K

MATT KLOSKOWSKI     sponsored by   NAPP/Kelby Training

Lightroom 5, Adobe CC, and  HDR

Friday, February 7th
 9:30 - 12:00 pm and also in Expo Theater

Matt is the full-time Director of Education for Kelby Media Group and a Tampa-based photographer. He's the Editor-in-Chief of Lightroom Magazine, the lead instructor on the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom LIVE Seminar Tour and author of several best-selling Photoshop books. Matt also hosts the world's top Lightroom blog, LightroomKillerTips.com, where he's built up a massive library of Lightroom videos, presets and tips. In addition to teaching Photoshop, Lightroom and photography seminars around the world, he's an instructor at Photoshop World and one of the full-time staff writers for Photoshop User Magazine.

Jen Rosenbaum PR

JEN ROZENBAUM        sponsored by  Sigma USA

The Woman's Photographer: Secrets for a Successful Boudoir Portrait Experience

Friday, February 7th

Jen Rozenbaum embraces her femininity while allowing women to embrace their own.  By daring her clients to shed their clothes, they begin to shed their inhibitions.  In just five years, Jen has found a burgeoning audience in the intimate photography market.  She proves that you can own your world if you live fearlessly, think audaciously and act spontaneously.

Richard PR Pic

Richard Sturdevant        sponsored by  BWC Labs

Turning The Ordinary Into The Extraordinary
Friday, February 7th

Richard Sturdevant is a leading expert in photographic artistry and creative composites. His award winning work, style, and techniques have earned him high praise in the photographic industry. Richard is known for an impressive track record in PPA print competition – receiving 13 prints with a perfect 100 point score in both state, regional and district competitions. He also made history with PPA at SWPPA District competition in September 2010 for the highest print case ever scored in the USA, Receiving a 100 print score on all four of his prints. He is the Grand Imaging Award (GIA) Winner for 2011 with best print in PPA - See more at: http://photonortheast.org/?page_id=1540#sthash.TXDO6y22.dpuf

Jeff PR Pic

Jeff Graham Pics

Jefferson Graham        sponsored by PhotoPro Expo

Don'T Be Afraid Of Video - 5 Easy Steps To Success
Sunday, February 9th
 4:00 - 6:00pm

Jefferson Graham is a photographer and Los Angeles based tech columnist for USA TODAY, and the host and executive producer of the Talking Tech video series. 

He is the author of nine books, including "Video Nation: A DIY Guide to Planning, Shooting and Sharing Great Video," and regularly speaks at seminars (including @NYU, PhotoPlus, B&H Camera, the Apple Store) showing photographers how to adapt to video. Be sure to bring your camera and to be ready to shoot. Graham will have you out of your seat working on a video during the session, which he'll group-edit on the spot. 

Graham has produced over 1000 episodes of "Tech" for USA TODAY--all with DSLR cameras, and occasionally a smartphone or GoPro, and is also a working portrait photographer in Manhattan Beach, California and an accomplished jazz guitarist. 

 Website links: 




Melissa 2

 Looking good 2014

Melissa GHIONIS       sponsored by  Nuimaging Professional &PhOtoPro EXPO.

Killer Customer Service to Maximize your Profits

Saturday, February 8th
7:30 - 9:00am


The ability to connect with a client isn’t just a convenient skill to have.  It can dramatically affect the bottom line of your business – from initially booking a client; to ensuring a healthy sales average after a session or wedding; and easily resolving any complaints that may arise.

Instead of providing vague theories on the importance of “selling yourself”, we’ll discuss step by step suggestions on how to create an instant bond with clients using body language and other highly effective techniques.  We’ll also examine how to use these techniques to book almost every client that walks through your door, how to dramatically increase your sales after a session or wedding, and how to successfully handle a complaint or unhappy client.  You’ll be left with a set of business skills that you can combine with your artistic talents for a killer combination.

- How to master the art of creating instant connections including tips on projecting confidence and credibility
- Creating opportunities that make it easy for your clients to spend more money with you
- Step by step guide for successfully resolving any complaint

Melissa's Bio:

After running a successful, award winning studio in Boston, MA for over a decade, Melissa Ghionis has developed a reputation for her skills in creating and cultivating relationships and for her excellent customer service.  Her experience in the US market managing a boutique studio is now also balanced with the experience of working in a high end studio in Melbourne, Australia with her husband, Jerry.  Melissa’s most recent passion is the creation of her non-profit charitable organization named The Soul Society (www.thesoulsociety.org) which she co-founded with Jerry Ghionis. The Soul Society was created with the specific purpose of caring for poor, homeless and orphaned children in third world countries, one soul at a time.

Bill Pr pic

Bill Fortney      sponsored by PhotoPro Expo


Sunday, February 9th
  7:30 - 9:30am

Bill is currently a Nikon Professional Services tech rep for the Southern U.S. and Nikon's liaison person for the Nature Market. In the past Bill has been a High School teacher and football coach, AP rep, Medical photographer, and Marketing Public Relations person. In 1991 he and his wife Sherelene founded the Great American Photography Weekends and for 12 years he ran the field events for the company, running over 250 events in every major national park and in Africa and the Galapagos Islands. Bill is the author of five photography books, including his newest - America From 500 Feet II 

Sandy PR Pic

SAndy Puc     sponsored by Canon USA & Bay Photo Lab

"LIVE" On Stage Demo - Everyday Lighting Magic

Friday, February 7th
1:00 - 3:00pm

Sandy’s passion for connecting with people and her remarkable ability to capture her subjects’ personalities make her one of the world’s premier portrait photographers. She holds the prestigious titles of Print Master and Explorer of Light from Canon USA and previously served on the Board of Directors for the Professional Photographers of America (PPA). Sandy is also a passionate educator, as she travels the world sharing her knowledge of the industry with other visual artists through Sandy Puc´ Tours and numerous other speaking engagements. 

In 2005, Sandy co-founded Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, a non-profit organization providing heirloom portraits for families who have babies that will not leave the hospital. With over 7,000 volunteer photographers working in over 25 countries, this important work is reaching families all over the world.

 Jeff L PR Pic

Jeff Locklear        SPONSORED BY H&H Color LAB

The Power Of Screen Screen For Amazing Images
 Thursday, February 6th
 7:30 - 10:00 pm

Program Description: Green Screen for Volume Photography 

Green screen is the new buzz word in volume photography these days. We will look at why you should utilize this technology and why you might not. The first step is understanding how the process works for volume photography. We will cover selecting the right equipment and why. The right digital background choice can make or break your end product so we’ll discuss how to choose your backgrounds & how to create your own based the pose of your subject.

Finally armed with a complete understanding of the limitations of green screen we’ll discuss how to get creative using the flaws of the process. 

Jeff's Bio:

Jeff Locklear has been involved with some aspect of the photographic industry since 1976, starting as a staff photographer for Photo Services with Central Missouri State University. Taking a detour from his beginnings, Jeff served as plant manager for a commercial color lab in the Kansas City area for 4 years. During this time he obtained invaluable information in processing and printing.

In 1984 he left the color lab and opened a portrait studio, specializing in wedding photography. Since joining the PPA in 1989, Jeff has received numerous local and state awards for his portrait and wedding photography. Jeff has also been in the Kansas Top Ten Photographers ten years in a row. In 1994 he won first place in the prestigious Brides Choice wedding album competition.

“Teaching photography has always been a passion of mine. With the growth of digital technology in professional photography it has populated our industry with a new enthusiasm and a large crop of new photographers in need of instruction at all levels.

Suzette PR Pic2


Suzette Allen:         sponsored by Panasonic & Bay Photo

HYBRID Photography: Add a little Motion [Video] to your Portraits for Profit!

Sunday, February 9th

7:30-9:30 am

And also appearing at Expo Theater

Program Description:

Need something to set your photography apart from the rest? Suzette Allen is here to show you how easy it can be! Hybrid, the combining of stills, video and audio, is turning heads everywhere and people are taking notice!

Suzette will share the simple techniques that you can implement now and show you how easily you can use hybrid e-templates to get you noticed, too. And if you are already familiar with shooting video with your DSLR or Mirrorless camera, Suzette will give your pointers to help you fly through the process. From what to shoot and how to record it, to how to maximize motion for impact, you will see what tools you need (or don’t need) to give your images and eProducts a professional look.

Once you have captured some Video+Stills+Audio, how do you put it all together to make a finished piece with impact, or create an eProduct that you can sell to a client? Let Suzette spell out the options for you and show you the many ways to create hybrid products! The EASY way! All the new terminology and tech doesn’t need to be overwhelming. You can start embracing it at any level and enjoy the process of learning and creating HYBRID eProducts that get attention. From editing to creation, using Lightroom, Auto Editing, Photoshop, and ProShow, you can see how to put together a fun eProduct at whatever level you are and start creating today! Enjoy Suzette's Moving Portraits on display at www.suzetteallen.com.

LAndon PR Pic 

Landon Day: SPONSORED BY  Graphic Authority

The Power Of Speed-Lighting

Saturday, February 8th
7:30 -9:00 am

Landon Day is not new to what it takes to create a beautiful image.  He has a degree in Fine Art and has been running a successful studio in Mansfield, Texas for a number of years.  Landon has also discovered the flexibility and simplicity of Spped-Light shooting.  His techniques he will share with you in his program will show you how easy it is to get a great result with these compact lighting jewels.

He'll then take you into a Photoshop demo that will show you how to really transform your images to create a level of customer excitement that can lead your photography business to even greater success.


Jessica PR Pic

JeSsICA EdwarDs:     SPONSORED BY Miller's Professional Imaging

Senior Photography "Pricing Outside the Box"
Friday, February 7th
7:30 - 9:00 am

In 2011 Jessica Edwards Photography was named “Top 10 Photographers in Missouri” by the Heart of America Professional Photographers Association.

We’re also proud to announce that one of our images won the highest honor that the Professional Photographers of America awards to prints in their International Print Competition! “Dance of a Black Widow” feature on this page recieved the honor of becoming a Loan Print. This award is reserved for the “best of the best” in the International Print Competition. We are honored and humbled.

Program Description: "How much should I charge for an 8x10 in my area?  

Unfortunately, there's no magical formula to solve to get the right answer.  There are many factors that goes into how much you should charge for your work.  In this class, we will discuss the factors that you should and those that you should not take into consideration when determining your value.  By looking at your overall financial goals and working backwards, you'll be able to figure out how much you need to charge to reach those goals.  

By setting up a pricing menu that allows your pictures to sell themselves, it can be easier than you think to make the profit you desire.  You don't have to be a great sales person to get great sales!  We'll also discuss effective in-person sales techniques that ANYONE can do.  No high-pressure, used car salesman techniques…just effective sales strategies that can easily help you double, maybe even triple your sales average."


Jim Cunningham    SPONSORED BY   Miller's Professional Imaging

Sizzling Your Images With Background Magic

Saturday, February 8th
Expo Theater

With a degree in Marketing from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Jim has been a photographer in Little Rock since 1976, and has owned his own studio since 1983. Recipient of 9 Kodak Gallery Awards and 4 Fuji Masterpiece Awards, Jim has spoken at state and regional conventions and has presented workshops at Imaging USA twice. In 2010 Jim had the honor of teaching Corel Painter at Canada’s National Convention. Since 2001, Jim has enjoyed teaching Photoshop and Painter workshops, and feels that digital imaging gives the photographer the ability to create what we see in our mind’s eye.

 Ralph PR Pic

Ralph Pics


Winning BIG In Image Competition

Thursday, February 6th
 10:00-11:00 pm

Romaguera began his photographic career at the age of 18 in the U.S. Naval Reserve. Following active duty at the Naval Photo School , he obtained a part time position with United Press International and later became a full time photojournalist for the Times Picayune Publishing Corporation in New Orleans , LA.

In 1971, Romaguera opened his first portrait studio. Presently, the Romaguera family own and operate four studios in the Greater New Orleans area. His exhibition prints have been accepted in the General, Loan and Masters Loan Exhibits of the Professional Photographers of America.

Romaguera has received his Masters and Craftsman Degrees and is certified from the Professional Photographers of America. He has served on the Wedding Group, chairman of the Photographic Exhibitions Committee, the International Committee and vice-chairman of the Convention Committee for the Professional Photographers of America. Romaguera has been honored with the coveted National Award, the International Award, the American Society of Photographers Service Award and the Directors Award from PPA.

Romaguera has served as President of the Greater New Orleans Guild, the Professional Photographers of Louisiana, the Southwestern Photographers Association and the American Society of Photographers. Currently he serves on the Board of Directors of the Professional Photographers of America.

As a platform speaker and a judge, Romaguera has lectured throughout the United States , Canada , Mexico , Germany and Great Britain . He has been a presenter numerous times at the National PPA convention, Senior Photographers International and Wedding and Portrait Photographers International. He has been an instructor for the Winona International School for Professional Photography, the Florida School , the Mid America Institute of Professional Photography, the Mount Carroll School and the Texas School of Professional Photography.

Romaguera has the distinction of being one of Eastman Kodak’s Professional Division’s “Mentors”, which is held by only nine professionals in the United States.

Romaguera was chosen to represent portrait photographers on the NBC Today Show in a series celebrating the 150 Years of Professional Photography

 Rick Head Shot

Rick Images

Rick Trummer         SPONSORED BY:   PhotoPro Expo

Growing Your Bussiness Profits

Expo Theater
Sunday 12:30 - 1:00

His career in photography now spans over 32 years and he continues to push the
ends of the envelope with his innovative and advanced teaching techniques and
methods. He has received numerous awards for his commercial, wedding and
portrait work and is considered an authority on digital imaging, digital asset
management, business and studio management. 

Rick is a two time President of the South Central Photographers Association as
well as a Past President of the Wisconsin Professional Photographers
Association and the ASP. He is currently serving as President of the Northern
Illinois PPA. He continues to share his knowledge and professionalism with
fellow photographers and students of photography, and continues to strive to
better the photographic industry.
In May of this year, Rick opened up Rick Trummer Consulting and has been
creating successful game plans for many studios throughout the Midwest.

Mark Zucker




Expo Theater

Saturday 1:30 - 2:00

Mark Zucker is an involved leader who thrives on meeting challenges, breaking new ground in business initiatives.  Mark is also an author and frequent speaker on popular topics such as attracting and satisfying clients in the post-digital world; avoiding “digital disease” or the pitfalls of the digital revolution; the importance of people skills in marketing & selling creative/technical services; and how to run a successful business. Mark is also a business school lecturer at College of Lake County.

As an industry Innovator from day one, Mark has upheld Zookbinders’ commitment to providing the finest quality products, quickest turnaround and best customer service. Under his leadership, Zookbinders has consistently broken new ground to keep pace with the changing needs of photographers. Our production cycle time is among the fastest in the industry and was the very first to commit to two-week delivery times; the company was first to offer digital templates to photographers for album design; and more recently, the company created a one-stop shop for photographers with the addition of in-house print services for digitally designed albums; and as of 2008 we provide in-house print services for all of our Zook Book, Matted Albums and PhotoBooks.  

Nicholas Viltrakis

 NV Collage

Nicholas Viltrakis      SPONSORED BY: PHOTOPRO EXPO

Red Carpet Showdown

Westcott Hollywood Model Shootout
Sunday: 2:00 - 2:30

Nicholas Viltrakis is a zany internationally published photographer and instructor who has held entertaining and inspiring seminars and classes on everything from speed lighting to Explosive Wedding Growth in the new economy. His work has been published by Rangefinder magazine, Cincinnati Wedding Magazine, HM Magazine, the Cincinnati Enquirer, Animoto, Johnson and Johnson's Grant Program, and many others. In addition Nicholas has presented at PhotoPro Network's acclaimed Summer School, been an instructor for David Ziser's Master's Class many times, and recently completed an unparalleled 3 day long seminar in Florida for Harmon School of Photography. Come join me at the Westcott Booth! www.viltrakis.com