Central Arkansas SmugMuggers Meet-up
Central Arkansas SmugMuggers met up for the first time in Maumelle, Arkansas at the Holiday Inn Express on August 23, 2011.
Hosted by Steve Wright, Jr. of Wright Way Photography, the small group of seven discussed various photography techniques and shared advice on everything from the horrors and joys of shooting weddings to correctly posing subjects in portraits to discreetly “capturing the moment” in street photography. The welcoming and casual atmosphere invited everyone to participate in the discussion, no matter how crazy the comment, question or story.
Learning about getting connected via social media sites was also a strong point in the overall discussion. Although everyone in attendance had at least the basic knowledge of sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, and various blog hosting sites, few had actually been using the sites to promote their businesses and connect with other photographers.
“You should spend at least 3 to 5 hours per day on social media,” Wright said, encouraging the group to stay on top of their networking skills. “It’s the most valuable thing you can do as a photographer.”
He went on to further explain the importance of spending time on networking sites in hopes of eventually leading readers/followers/likers/whatever to the photographer’s personal site. Here, readers would be able to focus on the photographer’s work and contact information and have a greater chance at booking a shoot.
At the end of the meeting, three lucky photogs received the coveted year free of SmugMug Pro when their names were randomly drawn. Other cool door prizes included the Nikon Portable Keyboard, BayPhoto.com gift certificates, and SmugMug Pro camera straps.
And of course the perks of connecting and networking with other area photographers.
The group ranged from amateur to seasoned photographer – from hobbyist to career professional – and though each of the photographers came from different backgrounds and focused in different areas, there was a sense of camaraderie only found in the art and passion of photography. Until next time, this is Kortney Hinton of the Central Arkansas SmugMuggers signing off!
-Kortney Hinton, Fine Point Photography