NIKON AIPP EVENT 2012 – SPEAKING PROPOSAL

Hi! Thanks for taking the time to consider us for the Nikon AIPP Event 2012.

Katie and I truly believe in the power of photography to change and improve lives. Not just the people we photograph, but our own lives as photographers.

Everything we have done and everywhere we have traveled in the last 6 years is because of our photography.

In the last year we’ve spent nearly 4 months overseas because of our photography. Weddings in the UK and America. Holidays in Santorini, Paris, Rome, Venice, Wales and San Francisco and so many other amazing places. Workshops in Colorado and Las Vegas.

We currently have more wedding enquiries than we could ever hope to possibly shoot even if a year had 150 weekends.

This year (2012) we have plans for workshops in America in July/August leading up to The Event. In September Katie is traveling to Nepal to document an orphanage for girls who have been rescued from the sex slave trade. The timing of The Event fits in perfectly with these plans. Maybe some things are meant to be? 🙂

We are passionate about filling a gap we’ve seen in the photography industry when it comes to conferences and workshops.

There’s no shortage of inspiration and motivation but what has been lacking educationally is practical, hands-on, step-by-step, word-for-word advice that actually makes difference in photographer’s lives and businesses. Measurable results and outcomes.

Too many photographers come away pumped up and inspired from conferences and workshops but then they get home and don’t know how to implement what they’ve learned.

Whenever we teach we clearly cover: WHAT we do, WHY we do it, and then … HOW to do it yourself. HOW to implement what you’ve learned in a specific, practical and step-by-step way.

As well as the motivational and inspiration aspects of our story, we have also systemised every single part of our business so that we can teach other photographers how to do what we do. Even down to a system we use over and over for portraits on a wedding day.

We use the analogy of your business being a chain. You want every link in your chain to be as strong as possible. So many photographers have weak links in their chain, whether it be their: About Page, Contact Page, Enquiry Response Email, Packages and Pricing, Website/Blog, Photos/Portfolio, Client Meetings, Boundaries and Expectations, Customer Service and sooooo many more …

Everything we teach is applicable to both portrait and wedding photographers. We teach about business using practical step-by-step advice, and we can teach photographers how to take better wedding day portraits and improve their documentary/reportage images as well.

Topics we can cover (or tell us a gap you’d like filled and we can do it)

> Your Business is a Chain – HOW to strengthen every link (Portrait and Weddings)
> Work/Life Balance – at the end of 2009 Katie collapsed and was hospitalised from burnout and exhaustion, and couldn’t work for 4 months – we touched on this in our 2011 HOTD closing keynote.
> Running an Unconventional Photography Business – Work from Home, Run Your Business Over the Internet, Book Clients over Skype, Travel the World
> Working Out Your Style and Who You Are As a Photographer – Our Journey from Shadowplay to Matt and Katie
> Using Photography + Business to Achieve Your Dreams and Goals
> Wedding Day portraits – a system for consistently awesome portraits – a live shoot?
> How to Rock Your In-Person and Online Portrait Sales – just launched in our Online Store
> Shooting and Editing Video for Photographers
> Documentary/Reportage/PJ Wedding Photography – A How-To Guide

Or a combination of all of the above. We’ll do multiple sessions if you’d like us to. We’re not afraid of working our butts off 🙂

A bit of background on our journey over the last 6 years:

For the last 6 years we’ve both worked only for ourselves with video and photography being our only source of income. Katie studied at SQIT. Matt is self-taught. In 2009 Matt was honoured by EventDV Magazine as one of the Top 25 Hottest and Most Influential Wedding Videographers in the World. Then he decided to become a photographer 🙂

Continuing to be successful working photographers is our main priority. Teaching is our second priority. No point teaching if you’re not living and breathing photography and business every single day.

Katie was one of the least confident people you’d ever meet and on top of that she has an anxiety disorder. Phone calls triggered panic attacks, let alone the thought of doing weddings and being a “salesperson”. Katie readily admits that she doesn’t have a single business bone in her body.

Every system in our business has been developed to help Katie succeed as a photographer. By using these systems, in 2010 Katie did $260,000 of family portraits in one year. The year before that was close to $150,000 worth of family portraits. All without a single loss-leader promotion like vouchers or giving away free shoots. All in a small town with over 100 photographers not charging more than $550 for a shoot+disc.

In 2011 we shot 40 weddings. 35 of them we booked over Skype. 35 of them were outside of Toowoomba, 4 were overseas. This year is the same. 35 weddings so far, all of them except 1 booked over Skype.

The crazy thing is, as passionate as we are about photography. We’re even more passionate about helping other photographers achieve their goals and dreams by teaching them, in very practical ways, how and why we do what we do.

We’re not rockstars. We are Matt and Katie from Toowoomba, Queensland. The photography industry doesn’t need more rockstars. What it needs is teachers. If Matt hadn’t started his video business 6 years ago he would have completed his teaching degree. Funny how life turns out and brings us full circle.

We would be honoured to present at The Event. We can be there for the 4 days and we will work our faces off at The Event doing and teaching whatever the organisers want us to. A keynote, hands-on workshops, break-out classes … all of the the above. Anything and everything we can do to add value to an already amazing event.

We are also passionate about the AIPP and we want to give back because of everything the AIPP has done for us through events and photographers we have met. Saying thank-you to those who have helped us is a guiding principle in our lives.

The world is full of infinite potential and life is too short to not be chasing your dreams. We’d love to play our small part in helping AIPP The Event attendees achieve theirs.

Much love!

~Matt and Katie~