SWPJC – Don’t wait till Next Year!

Dave Black, former speaker at SWPJC

SWPJC March 10 – 12 and Student Workshop 9 – 10

“Next Year” is the common thing I always hear from people when I ask them if they are going to Southwestern Photojournalism Conference this year.

This is the 25th annual meeting of the conference. The conference has changed through the years to reflect the industry as best we can.

In 2007 and 2008, the economy was a brutal hit, and our numbers suffered because everyone’s budgets were hurting.

We added a Student Workshop to the front end of the conference for students to get some one-on-one time with our speakers. This has proven to be very helpful for students to get their work reviewed and talk to the industry leaders.

The industry has been hit hard. Last year Canon and Nikon Sales were down close to 50%. All this doom and gloom doesn’t mean there is no longer a need for photographers.

At the same time, the industry is changing the number of pictures taken last year. That adds up to more than 14 trillion photos annually (14,600,000,000,000). Much more conservatively, if only one billion people have cameras or phones and take less than three photos per day/1,000 pictures yearly, that’s still 1 trillion photos captured annually.

The need for those who know more than just how to push the button is in great demand. People know that with all these photos being created every moment for their “Brand” to be seen, it must break through with images that “Capture the Audience.”

This year’s keynote speaker was Garrett Hubbard [left] at a previous SWPJC.

I know I go to the conference to meet people I can hire throughout the year as projects pop up for my clients. Last year I hired many photographers for projects and continued to look for more photographers. This is where I go to find great shooters and those who see this as a calling.

Esther Havens, past speaker.

Don’t wait for next year anymore. Commit to meeting with other photographers who see this as a calling. Come to Fort Worth this year and connect. Listen to some of the best in the industry tell you where they see things going for the professional photographer.

Go to the website to learn more about SWPJC.org. Then go and book your transportation and hotel. I hope to see you there.

Gary Fong with the Chick-fil-A Cow.

Don’t resort to Next Year when there might not be a Next Year conference. Signup and come while we are still doing SWPJC.