Jason Groupp March 16, 2018 Education

Let the countdown begin! ShutterFest is two weeks away and first off, I want to start by saying hats off to the ShutterFest crew! It’s not easy to put together a show like this, and they’ve done a fantastic job. It’s been exciting watching you guys in the FB group coming together planning your days in St. Louis. Union Station is an amazing facility filled with endless places to shoot. I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with!

I know most of the educators very well and I thought I could offer up some advice as you plan your schedules. Also, if you’ve never been to St. Louis you’re in for a treat! There are some amazing eateries, and if you like BBQ and Beer, well… you’ve landed in smoked meat and hops heaven!


Plan your week!

The SF18 app is a fantastic tool, but as with all technology, it can fail us, so make sure to backup all that planning! Double up your information in your calendar app and set alerts for yourself. You can also enter other events, such as a reminder to audition for the Lip Sync Battle and dinner dates! I’d highly recommend planning some dinners with friends in advance. Maybe you’ve made new friends in the Shutterfest Facebook group, but haven’t met in person yet… This is a great time to make that happen! Everyone loves to get invited, so take charge and plan a fun night out!

Have some free time around your class schedule? Here’s what you can do…

-Arrive early on Monday, and check out the image competition judging! Whether you entered or not (I hope you did!), you can learn so much by listening to the judges scores and comments on competition images.

-Rent-A-Human! It’s not often you get to “check out” a model with professional hair and makeup in a cool place like Union Station and create new images together! Grab a photographer friend or two during the RAH hours, and take advantage of this fun opportunity! Go create something EPIC!

-Too many creative ideas, not enough RAH time? Arrange after hours shoots with the models! This is something that happens at every Shutterfest… you’ll see photographers and models shooting around the clock, collaborating until the early morning hours. If you’d rather have an instructor on hand, check out one of the many photo walks or shooting bays being offered! You’ll find them listed in the SF18 app.

-Come by the Fyrfly-Songfreedom Lab for some free coffee and let Makayla Jade and Dave Harris teach you how to make more money and gain more customers! Learn their workflow process from start to finish, and don’t miss the goodies and giveaways!

-Say hello to your tradeshow vendors! Whether you’re looking for new products to offer your clients, or dying to find that piece of the puzzle that makes your workday more efficient, it’s never easier to do than when you can visit vendors in person! Go check out each booth at the trade show and see what they have to offer that could make your life a little brighter!

-Get together with your new Shutterfest friends and have an impromptu mastermind session! It’s always fun to brainstorm ideas with likeminded friends… after all, the learning doesn’t end when class does! You never know where your new ideas might take you… and brainstorming is always better with BBQ and beer!

Five Classes That Should Be On Your List!

As with any conference, many of the classes fill up fast. As you’re making your list and your backup plan, here are some classes that shouldn’t be overlooked…

Paul and Melissa Pruitt – Photographer Funnels: The New Way of Marketing

Paul and Melissa have been utilizing sales funnels successfully in their photography business for over a decade and will bring their first hand knowledge of how to drive a steady stream of leads and clients to your business in this new digital age. 

4/4 – 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Paul and Melissa are a power couple. Their combined business, marketing, and branding expertise make any class they’re teaching a must-see. With so many creatives struggling with the business and market aspect, this is one that should definitely be on your list!


Joe Switzer – Video Production Gear

The Switzerfilm team will show you the gear they use and how they use it to create video magic. Find out how Switzerfilm uses the smallest, most efficient equipment for consistent successful shoots.

4/4 – 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.  The importance of video for everything we do is paramount for all things social media today and these are the guys to learn from! If you’re ready to add video into your repertoire, this is the place to start.


Danny Dong – Create Impressive WOW Images

In this live demo class, Danny & Julia will lead everyone to walk around the different environments and show you how they look for light, background location, and communicate with subjects to create impressive WOW portraits.

4/3 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Danny and Julia are international award-winning photographers with some serious skills. When it comes to lighting they are two of the best and are great teachers. If you’re looking to up your shooting skills these guys are the best teachers you could ask for!


Jeff & Lori Poole – $6000 Weddings in a $2000 Market

Jeff and Lori share their secrets for attaining high wedding averages in a rural beach town market. In this course, you will master the use of multiple touch points to increase sales incrementally and build a rock-solid sales system that will have your clients spending more and hugging you on the way out the door.


4/3 4:30 p.m to 6 p.m. Jeff and Lori are two smart kids and they love to help our community. Photographers leave so much money on the table every year and these guys have worked hard to develop strategies to help you work less and earn more. Be smart like them and learn from the best!


Jenn Lewis – Create a Full-Service Experience and Get Paid For It! 

Jenn will break down in-person sales, from how to handle the initial inquiry, through the consultation, the shoot, and the ordering session. She understands the fear of the leap, but her no-BS teaching method will ensure you’re making a lot more money when you implement her strategy. 

4/4 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Jennifer is one of the hardest working photographers in the business. She’s worked hard to find that work/life balance and has built a successful business built on battling the streets for many years. She’s also very talented and is one of the nicest people you’ve ever met. She really cares about the success of everyone who attends her classes. You will not be disappointed with her and most likely you’ll find yourself hanging out with her the rest of the week!


Hope this is helpful! Looking forward to seeing you all there! If we’ve never met before I’d LOVE to meet you! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE come say HI at our booth #8-9 and 73-74 on the trade show floor! We also hope you’ll be auditioning for the Lip Sync Battle! Till then! xoxo